Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A Word With the Buddhists Please!

Oh God, gods, universe, whoever is out there listening to me.

Daughter.  One.

Mom?  Are you there?!

Because I realise that last blog sounded like one big whiny nagging rant. 

Maybe this is what happens when you give up prayer?!  (I know it's what's happening when I don't write, when I try to stay positive and not write anything negative, when it all starts to build up and and then I can't write anything.)

So, the word to the Buddhists, it isn't Om but I'm not at liberty to print it.  Trying to stay positive and all.  

But I would like a clarification on this "surrender" everyone keeps going on about.

Does surrender mean I don't have to work so hard? 


Does "everything will be fine" mean Ryan will be okay if she doesn't learn maths and English and history and science?

Does accepting Ryan mean accepting she has no interest in the world around her, no natural ability - in fact a diagnosed DISABILITY - to initiate her own activities, plan a day, set steps and finish an activity? 

Does "it's okay" mean it's okay for her to go on welfare and sit in her government subsidized housing all day and watch videos when she gets older?

Is that okay?

Is that okay if she's happy?

Will she be happy?

Do I have to work so hard to drag her from her own world into ours?  Is it okay that she's happier in hers?  Will she get lonely there eventually?  Will she realise she wants or needs more than watching videos alone?

What is my job, God, gods, universe?  Do I push her and pull her and fight her and struggle?  Do I continue to exhaust myself, give up time with Ian, give up my time to write, to run, to meditate, to sit outdoors, to go to South Bank, in order to force her to do things she doesn't want to do?

Hey, how'd I get stuck with some knight's kids?!

She is such a burden to my journey.

And I am such a chain around her neck.

I'd be a fool to think "surrender" meant the same as "giving up."

Krishan Chopra (and, oh dear, he's a Hindu!) says it's about doing your best and leaving the results to God, about being the arrow but letting God be the archer.

But I'm tired and I'm still not sure what "surrender" means.

Maybe it means admitting I am tired, letting myself get fat, do less.  Maybe it means having the courage to do NOTHING.  Nothing.  Saying no.  Maybe August could be my month of doing nothing.  (The Bridge to Brisbane isn't til September 1!)  Could I be that brave for my daughter, for my family, for myself?  Could I spend a whole month doing NOTHING?

Sons.  Four.

Maybe "surrender" means acknowledging that working this hard isn't working, that in a results-oriented world you are only as good as your last workout, your last race, your last diet, your last test score.  Maybe "surrender" means trying something totally new.

Hmmm...there IS that Taoist Temple just down the freeway from here. 

Haven't had a word with them yet.

You think they'd let me in?!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Word to Shiva

Hey man, I get what you're doing, I really do.

July 7 at the Abbey Medieval Fest.  The irony of dressing up as Romani/Gypsies has NOT escaped me!

No personal growth without trial, no gain without pain, no achievement without stepping outside your comfort zone, climb that mountain to see what's on the other side.

But listen, this is why I go to the gym.  I don't need it from my god.

For the first time I was happy where I was.  I'd accepted the step for what it was and I was content.

Maybe you misunderstood. 

I hadn't signed up for a six week challenge.

I'd already climbed my mountain.

This move, Shiva, it really sucked.

New bikes in front of new home.

And I don't care that we're all in a better place.  I don't care that we are surrounded by horses.  And by neighbours who want Ryan to ride and care for them.  I don't care that the girl next door comes by looking for Ryan to ride with her on weekends and after school, that she and her brother also ride motorbikes and have a track out back where Andrew can ride, that the kids on the other side are the Aidan and Matthews' age and like to ride bikes on their own bmx track. 

Although, okay, the sight of that pony and pregnant mare out back does really make my day.  And I do like it that we can let them out anytime we like and let them roam around our yard mowing the lawn for us.  And I can't wait until the mare foals at the end of September.  It will be so cute to have a foal running around.

Ryan on Caspar.  Tough life.

The neighbourhood is real friendly too.  The only ones who didn't like us were the plovers in the back field.  They felt they should be allowed to make a nest and raise their young without bother from the rest of us.  But the kangaroos and wallabies are cool with it.  And the kookaburras and rainbow lorikeets.  We're not prejudiced, we like the ibis too.  And that pair of endangered native ducks that waddles about sometimes.  So much better than not trying to run them over on Lawnton Pocket Road.

It's so nice to get along with the neighbours.  Just last night I spoke to Jen over the fence while we were doing our chores.  She had a glass of wine with her.  Next time I am setting up chairs and bringing a bottle for us.  Dan and Damon want to take the kids to Kenilworth to ride motorbikes.  And at some point we owe everyone - neighbours left and right - a big barbeque at our bar out front.  Because we're in the middle.  And because Charmaine, who told us about this place, can ride over the back trails and tie her horses to the hitching post.

July 4.  First party at the outdoor bar and grill.  New home, old friends.  (And yes, the coolness of Nicole matching her Ute has not escaped my notice!  Is this how Aussies dress up?!)

But look Shiva, you really weren't listening to me. 

I was comfortable where I was.  The kids were doing well.  I had the home schooling and the activities all set up.  I liked my gym and my routine.  I had the writers' groups going and I knew where everything was.  I had no energy for a move of this magnitude.  Not only two years after our move from Germany.

Are you forgetting that move, Shiva?  I was still recovering from that move.

THAT was my mountain.

Anyone can play "Pass the Parcel" at a birthday party.  We have a bike track!  (And only broke one kid, sorry about that Nicole!  Why is it always Lachy?!)

So here I sit, six weeks later, in a half-set up house, the kitchen cupboard a mess, the bathroom mostly still in boxes, books everywhere, strewn about the house as we read and use them, the playroom getting messed up faster than I can pick it up let alone set it up.

This place is perfect for us.

So why can't I move in?

It's not just the kids' activities and the lack of time.  There is something keeping me from setting up home here.

Ian discovers horse poop on the bmx track.

And I realise it's because I know, deep down in my heart, that this isn't the last mountain. 

No matter how much I want to settle down, this isn't the way my life was meant to be.  I was cool with this until now, but find myself struggling with it now that I am happy where I am.  I don't need to move anymore.  I can move forward without changing locations. 

So why is the Merry-Go-Round spinning faster and faster and faster just at the point where I am ready for it to stop and let me off?  New schools, new lessons, new teams, new groups, new people, new teachers, new friends; all better for us, all moves forward, but when will it stop spinning so I can get my bearings?

The Haitians have a saying.  "Deye mon gen mon." 

Setting up house is easier with friends!

Behind the mountains there are more mountains.

So Shiva, if you're listening, I'm ready for a rest now.  No more mountains.  Leave the climbing to Miley Cyrus, I'm done for a while.

I've got to unpack.  I've got to settle in.

And really, Shiva, I appreciate the push, I really do, but it's time for a cool-down track.  I need to catch my breath.

Chillin' out with Elmo!

I need to breathe!

And if you can't do that for me, Shiva, maybe it's time I went back to Buddhism!