Enter Eighty-Eight: Heaviness, Holes ‘n’ All… (1-3 January)

This year will be a particularly difficult transcription for me, for a number of reasons:

Because I’d decided in ’87 that I needed more room to record, I didn’t buy a day-to-a-page diary. Instead, I started out with a little ring-binder folder (see Tuesday 29 Dec, in the previous post] but as it filled up within the first few months, my 1988 diary ended up scattered throughout various notebooks and writing pads. Thankfully I did collate and transcribe them by hand some years later into a thick A4 spiral-bound notebook (pic below).A Life in Words

Because I wasn’t confined to an allotted space, I wrote more. A LOT more (…and gawd, did I dribble on…) This is painful in itself: it’ll demand more time & effort to publish my weekly posts.

Because of the scattered entries, but also mainly because of my particularly frenetic social life, some entries (days) were lost as a result. I’m fairly certain this is the only year that has ‘holes’ in it. This would be one of the main reasons I reverted back to ‘day-to-a-page’ diaries ever after. The limited space also encouraged me to continue my routine: an open book (unlimited space) is quite intimidating and feels like a lot more work… )

And finally, to be totally honest, I just didn’t like 1988. I can’t really explain why: maybe it was simply the Real World, the literal end of childhood. I was now facing Real Life and Responsibility. It wasn’t an easy year for me; the whole world as I knew it fell away beneath my feet. I somehow found it traumatic, but in an entirely different way to the bus accident: it was more personal. There was no extraordinary tragedy/ies to which I could ascribe my feelings, my actions and reactions: this was me drowning (as it felt) in the face of ordinary, everyday life experiences.

Friday 1/1/88

Well at midnight it was hug like crazy. I hugged so many people and got some kisses too. I’m sure I could’ve kissed Philip (N) had I not pulled away in the first place. [There’s that inherent shyness that most people can’t see in me…] I was so hurt when I saw [privacy omission] and Jim … they went all the way. I really wished Mark was there then, but was O.K. Soon after, though, Megan Sharon & I left: got a taxi to the Hill. Wasn’t too bad in there, but all the sleazes were left. […as they always are….] I was in a real mood.. not really happy (very tired) and thinking one hell of  a lot about Mark. God I wish he was here. So much. Well in Smithy’s we sat (after Sharon & Megan “exploding”) [that is, after they each downed the particular cocktail we all favoured for intoxication purposes- aptly named ‘Explosion’. For those who missed the description previously, it was a glassful of straight spirits, set alight and consumed through a straw…] & I was real bored- that Darren S guy came up beforehand and was saying how he’d wanted to see me again after that night (I was so nonchalant) (almost bitchy) […yes, well, clearly not interested…] It was really boring (CB & I were dead tired Sharon annoying me so much ..getting shitty ‘cos I “wasn’t getting into it”. Anyway we left around 3:30, with [privacy omission]. Dropped Sharon home, then to a 24hr [service station …”servo” as we called them] Megan & [privacy omission] got food – CB & I nearly bombed [fell asleep] in the back of the car (talking a lot about [privacy omission] tonight she had Shane McM; bitch) so then [privacy omission] took us to Megan’s where we sat and talked for a while in the car. Finally they left (CB & privacy omission]) and Megan & I prepared for bed. A Life in WordsAfter reading Mark’s letter, it was about 5:30 and daylight was breaking. I woke a few times, but got out of bed at, get this: 1:00pm! Megan & I had food, a swim, food then mum got me (about 4:00) We talked a lot in between. I’m still worried about what to do this year. What will I do?? SHIT!! So I watched TV all afternoon. Mrs H came past (walking the dog, Gemma) and stopped to talk… all about careers & life after school. Megan forgot to ring me tonight ([privacy omission] did this arvy- she knew I was shitty with her about Jim) Just watched the 4hr AUSTRALIA LIVE show (bicentennial thingy) was quite good! Some things were really funny! Now I’m going to watch DR. ZHIVAGO while everyone else bombs A Life in Words(I probly will too) Have so much to do: get Mark a present, send him a telegram, [Ha, seriously? For anyone under the age of thirty, imagine going to an office in town to pay someone to send a text message for you. That’s pretty much what a telegram was…or IS if they even still exist?] decide about my QTAC, get Mark’s family a prezzy, clean my room, etc, etc, etc! …Ugh! Well Goodnight. First goodnight of 1988!!

Saturday 2/1/88

Well, I got to bed around 2:15 last night after Dr. Zhivago (which I really loved) deciding that Rage wasn’t worthwhile watching. I woke, god knows, to answer the phone (Joannah: [privacy omission]) around perhaps 10:30(??) I spent the day, well, most of it, cutting up magazine pictures (watching cricket) and was still doing that when Mike & Cynthia and Dougie, Thomas and couz Kylie & her best friend Nonie, arrived. I felt unsociable because of it, but I tried. Could tell they were bored. Sharon rang in the meantime & invited me to Green Is. tomorrow I said I’d ring her back. So I finished cutting pictures and cleaning out more drawers (and “regions”) of my bedroom. Taylors & Co and Sharon rang – I said yes. A Life in WordsTonight I have a rather large mess on my bedroom floor. It’s 9:30 or so and I don’t care if that’s the way it stays. […which is impressive considering how neat and organised I am – verging on OCD…] I need an early night. Gotta be up early tomorrow. God I’m missing Mark! Only 3 days left! Catching up my ’87 HW diary this arvy too – that took up time & space. [And was it really so important? No!] I have so much to do!!

Sunday 3/1/88

Mum woke me I don’t know when because I was tired and hadn’t finished my dream, but I got up at 7:38 anyway. Had breakfast, waxed armpits (!!) then rushed around trying to figure out what to take (& wear). Had nothing in the fridge I could take to eat, neither did we have any suntan lotion (only 15+ sunblock – so I took that) Got there just a little late (Sharon said she was beginning to worry→ panic) Bought tickets & boarded. Packed boat→ had to share our seat. Once there (long boring trip) found ourselves an area, swam then baked. A trip to the kiosk (and back for a swim & a bake again) revealed… NO spunks (unattached ones, that is) How depressing! So after another trip (to get lunch) then another bake (I felt I was getting burnt) we went, got a loaf of bread and Sharon fed the fish. She borrowed snorkels and goggles from this man and occupied herself . I sat, staring into the water, watching that man’s [the snorkel-and-goggles man’s] lady (wife!) having heaps of trouble in a canoe when I realised this most gorgeous guy (worked at the island) was sitting close by… laughing now & then. He made some comments and I laughed. A Life in WordsGod he was cute! Grant Kenny lookalike! [Grant Kenny (see right) was an Australian Ironman champion in the early 80’s] I said after awhile (Sharon had come up) “where’s the lady in the canoe?” and we laughed again (Uh, yummy!) So Sharon & I hung around, then went for our last quick dip (having gone back, gotten our gear, and placed it on our boat) Got on, then went off again to get food at the kiosk & on again & there he was! We went up to ask one guy some silly question just so we could perve. [Ha, teenaged girls…] Trip home seemed faster. God my legs are so burnt: so’s my stomach & lower back ..mph! Pain! Walked up to the Hostel, I rang mum & Sharon caught a Hayles bus home. [Hayles Pty Ltd was the company that ran the vessels to the islands at that time, and they naturally (a tourism essential) provided courtesy buses so she snagged a free ride home since one of their routes passed close by. Unfortunately, they didn’t ‘service’ my part of town.] Did nothing at home except worry about the amount of things I have to do tomorrow. Presents + telegram for Mark… clean room, go through QTAC forms. Oh dear! Watching cricket now – it’s depressing cause we are losing (again?!) [maybe that’s one of the reasons I’ve ended up with an aversion to watching it now?] and it’s about 10:00. So I might go to bed, now. Beautiful weather today. We were going to go to beach night but decided we were too exhausted. I’M BURN’T!! [I have no idea why I threw an apostrophe in that word. I did know better… sunstroke, maybe?]

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Stevie Wonder, Fisticuffs & The Sleaze (9-15 November)

Monday 9/11/87

A Life in WordsStevie Wonder was excellent! [I saw him twice on this day: he made a special appearance at our school and then I attended his concert …] Today was really good! Got Jo, and at school took last photos, wasted remaining exposures [on ourselves, see right]– folios [proper commercially manufactured ones] not suitable + too expensive (saw Mr. W) late for parade! Everyone loved my new shoes! Bludge in chem & maths. Didn’t see Mark at little lunch. Double art I raced around getting my folio completed – at lunchtime went to the hall. with Cameron, Chris Glyn, Brett, Jo, Justine, Fi & Mima – a laugh waiting for Stevie to arrive. [I don’t know for sure, but I’ve always assumed that Stevie Wonder’s appearance at our school was directly related to the bus accident: a compassionate response by the man. At the time however a reason wasn’t warranted; we were pretty darned excited simply because international stars rarely visited Cairns, let alone to our school.] Stuart smiled at me & I didn’t know what to do after I smiled back – I was really embarrassed! He [Stevie] finally came around 2:00 and talked & sang (a little) till 3:00 (missed eng & biol – yay!) Only talked to Mark a little after school. Picked Jo up around 5:45. . pizza tea. Not many people we knew at the concert – not many people full stop- but they made the noise of a big crowd!! At the end I saw a guy who talked to me (really cute) I think it was James from Playpen. see – I can’t really remember what they both looked like [uh, yeah: this is but one of the many effects copious amounts of alcohol will have upon you] – but he was cute!! YUM YUM Jo’s flipped! [as in, she thought he was very attractive too…]

Whilst I actually can’t recall whether Stevie sang “I Just Called to Say I Love You” during his appearance at our school, I had to include it because it holds the most sentiment for me: firstly – and of less relevance – I think of it as my father and stepmother’s anthem, since they met around the time it was released in 1984 and I remember Dad literally singing it on the phone to Jenny at some stage (I’m fairly sure it was also their wedding song). But at our 20th Year School Reunion (2007) our principal performed an amazing operatic rendition for us (unbeknownst to many of us he was a classically trained singer) not merely because Stevie’s historic visit was a highlight of our senior year, but also for the lyrical sentiment.

Tuesday 10/11/87

talked to Mark a fair bit today. And Stuart, well, it’s really wierd – I’M SHY!! [People still don’t believe this about me, to this day. I am inherently shy.] I can’t bring myself to even look at him, in case he looks at me. But I’d really like to talk to him. Shit. I can’t believe exams start on Thursday & I haven’t even begun to study. All my artwork’s done now (marked too) Oh, I forgot to ring Jo – [she] was away at Fitzroy with Mark [‘her’ Mark, not ‘mine’]. Talked a lot in biol. chris reckons some St’s guys said I was going out with Trevor G. No way! “I barely know the guy.” Chris said “Well, they know you!” SKINT! [At the time, I was more chuffed than confused: “guys I didn’t know, knew of me? Wow!” But retrospectively, I sense this could have had a kind of unsavoury edge to it: I mean, how would a rumour about me ‘dating’ a guy I hardly knew begin to circulate? Had I gained a reputation of ‘some kind’?] Watched the water polo today – Mark in it. What an arse that guy has!! Lost my diamonté bracelet sometime from 7th p. chem. till when I got home (we dropped cameron home this arvy) Great, huh?! […sarcasm about the loss of my bracelet, not ‘elation’ for giving a mate a ride home…] I’m so tired – that’s the only reason I haven’t studied – nearly fell asleep this arvy. Mark rang to find out what prac. it was we had to do for 2 morrow. V. short phone call. We still need to have that “talk” yet, I wonder!!! So tired tonite – I can’t wait! 10 days till it’s all over! (& that’s including days I don’t have exams!) WOW! Great! [I’m surprised I was so eager for the end of school, considering I had no set plans for the future. I think I was more focussed at this point in time on the post-school, pre-Christmas partying I had imagined there would be. Like school holidays but with a more significant sense of freedom. *Sigh* So short-sighted…]

Wednesday 11/11/87

A Life in Words
The back of my skirt was just as – if not more – messy than this…

Today was quite exciting! Our last working day at school. Actually, I didn’t feel emotional at all.. I just had fun running round doing things we don’t normally do – signing each other’s clothes [see my school skirt above] -signing walls tables, etc getting photos taken – doing no work despite exams! Rearranging rooms & furniture! I talked a fair bit to Mark today. He gave me a note – I was speechless after I read it. I don’t understand what he’s trying to say- he realizes he needs me, he thinks I’m changing too fast .. he can’t understand me. Oh dear – we need a talk (big talk) soon. Wonder if that’s what he was going to say on Saturday night He doesn’t talk to Nicole anymore – wonder if he said anything to her? he loves me & needs me. I can’t believe he needs me. Anyway it’s almost 12:00 – I’ve been studying english – I must do well in this – I need to get over 82% Mark wanted to fight Stuart W. today. Why? But everyone’s saying he’s signing his own deathwish – Stuart’s black belt in karate. Well! Looks like TD & him are back together. Stewart P. drove by school this arvy. I had so much fun esp. this arvy.

A Life in WordsThursday 12/11/87

It happened today- Mark & Stewart fought – end of little lunch (after my disgustingly difficult english exam- so much for a VH overall! That was some hard test!) I nearly choked on my hot dog – Mark’s shirt was destroyed- had a blood nose. Why were they fighting? [I never found out. Or if I did, I can’t remember why, but I’m fairly sure that it bore no relevance to me …to my knowledge.] FOOLS. God, I don’t understand… [you wouldn’t Liss, physical combat is a testosterone thing…] we didn’t get to talk today, but before he left, I talked to him briefly- was being very nice. I rang mum – answering machine on. Sat & waited, & waited & waited. At home did 1st chapter – all arvy. Is now almost 11:30 and I’m nearly  totally unprepared for the rest of the exam. I so badly need to do well in it. SHIT! Mark actually rang this arvy – wanted to come around to have that talk, but I was studying. [Damn, you may have had a better chance of discovering the reason for the fight…] He’s coming over 2morrow – after his geog. exam. [I’m] Nervous! Bloody biol. It’s not fair – if only I’d not been so pushed for time, I could’ve started earlier like I’d wanted to. [Um, if you hadn’t been partying like a rockstar for the past four-to-five weeks…] Shit, shit, shit! Am so tired now Please do me a big favour God- let me do exceptionally well in biol- it’s my last hope. See ya 2morrow. Can’t wait for next week!

Friday 13/11/87

Biol wasn’t too bad after all .. I’ll pass it, no sweat, but will I do well enough? That’s the question. It seemed pretty easy, tho’. I didn’t talk too much to Mark today… I didn’t go home straight after the exam either. In fact we waited around till about 2:00! (BORING!) Went for drive (mima had the brown alfa for the day!) Fi dropped me home, where I waited for Mark to come around. I rang his place just after 4:00 and Sandra said he was out .. he rang back at 5:35! I told him I was going out so I’d ring him tomorrow. Well, Jo & I were very late – about 7:45, but thankfully, so was everyone else. [I am only guessing when I say this may have been a dinner for our CAD art class… I can’t imagine what else it could could have been. More detail in future Liss, please!] I had 2 cocktails, and we’d only gotten thru’ 3 courses before everyone started making speeches and crying etc. [Crying? …sounds like our art class…plied with alcohol…] So we all left. At Playpen Jo realized she lost Robbie’s watch and wasn’t happy. Met Angie & we went to Croc. Rock. More people there, but not necessarily a rage. A Life in WordsI was so and I mean so drunk – was really off my face – don’t remember quite a few things, except this sleazy guy who (his friend) drove me home & wanted me to “suck him off…” […and this is exactly the kind of thing parents would fear. The intoxicated girl brushes it off in her sense-impaired state, but what if that ‘sleaze’ had been more aggressive? Oh the risks we take in Life… By the way, in case there was a shadow of a doubt, I certainly didn’t fulfill his wish…]

Saturday 14/11/87

I’ve got lovebites from him. YUK. [Perfect: an unavoidable, (temporary) physical reminder of what getting “off your face” can do to you. The question is, was your lesson learned?] So after stumbling to bed, then to the loo to vomit, slept till about 8:30 (??) Cameron & Glyn came over after weights, for a short while, then Jo rang around 10:00. I rang Mark after that. He said he couldn’t come over – Sandra had the car. Said he’d come when she bought it home. So I did nothing – slept, veged (still drunk!) He came, we didn’t say anything to start with He is sort of going out with [privacy omission]. He won’t say he is- it’s a completely “Physical” relationship. I felt so sick. The talk I feel was fruitless, pointless. [Why? Because you didn’t hear what you wanted or expected to hear?] I wasn’t one bit resolved [the most powerful resolution is the one You make for yourself: there was certainly revelation during this talk… for all your analyzing abilities, could you not reach a resolution for yourself, by yourself?] and after he left (we’d agreed to be friends & build it up, even try before he left [for an overseas family holiday]) But I can’t. Not while I know he’s [privacy omission]. Jo rang, otherwise I did nothing went to bed 7:30 – slept from about 9:30 on. Shit, I can’t do it. I need someone – I’m so dependant – so dependant [this is painfully clear] – God it hurts to know they’re together. I’m gonna have to talk to him Monday or ring him tomorrow – tell him I can’t do it. It’s killing me.

Sunday 15/11/87

Woke around 9:00 – almost 12hrs of sleep! WOW! But it was a little restless, this sleep. Really depressed a lot of the day -didn’t feel like studying – didn’t care. [Excessive alcohol consumption + a negative experience = certain depression] It’s 9:10 now- I’ve had coffee so it’s useless going to bed. So I may as well study_lot of good that’ll do me. I’ll fail anyway. I really don’t give a fucking shit anymore. Not a shit about anything. I might as well curl up and die. Mima visited tonite, Jo rang this morning, I rang Fi twice & I saw Gordon at Licks when we went to get Pizza for dinner. Wishing Well’s on now. [Another Terence Trent D’Arby song (see below). I was so ‘attached’ to his album…] So what? God I’m pissed off. I’m so sick of life. I hate school & I hate work & I hate myself and I hate Mark. That’s a lie. I hate what he’s done to me. I hate him getting his own way all the time. I can’t let him have it all the time. [So…….] What about me? He doesn’t care – just make himself happy Jo said Stewart didn’t say much about me_ _said he’d been keeping in touch (LIE) said he’d ring me – he WON’T. [Wow, I really got dem ‘bad feels’…]

Desperation, Delusion, Despair & ….Drunk (21-27 September)

A Life in Words

A Life in Words
…not quite there yet…

This is an unusual way for me to begin a post, but I feel the need to warn you now that it comprises a tragic mix of desperation, delusion, dependence and despair (because it was a particularly heavy week; processing my first ever experience of being dumped). It makes for a juicy read but it’s THE most embarrassing for me to date, by far and away. (The quotes I found all help to describe and/or ‘justify’ some of my feelings about it so fittingly that I decided to include them all). It’s very difficult for me to accept that I actually thought and acted the way I did: the antagonism, grovelling and bitchiness all borne of desperation, (ego-driven) pain …and a clear lack of self esteem. But this (Life) IS a learning process…

 

A Life in Words
…even if it involves THEM?

Monday 21/9/87

I’ve got it! I’ve got it! I know how we should be! [‘Should’ is one of those useless, stress-inducing words; implying obligation, duty, correctness: all of which mean different things to different people, to boot.] . . just like the Christmas holidays → then also those 3 days before the camp. That is, on the holidays, I don’t ring every day; only  be a ‘friend’ and let him decide what, if we do anything, [ugh, in other words be a door mat?] unless I’ve got a set proposition. And at school, I just don’t go up to him at all …except maybe a little bit. I don’t know if I’ll even sit near him in biology. That way he’ll have his ‘freedom’ and, will start to miss me a bit & ∴ chase me more than I do, him [Oh dear. *shakes head* Liss ….where to start?! ….perhaps by not thinking so much?]  Anyway today, ate very little .. my stomach’s shrunk. (GREAT!) Mima & fi didn’t want to do anything today. . I got my hair cut Did scrapbook most of the day. Fiona rang Mark this morning, but wasn’t home. I hope she gets around to it soon. [Seriously? Surely some part of me was aware of the futility of this caper? Getting my friends to try to retrieve information for me (‘answers’ I believed I needed – even though they were all there in plain sight…) was not just useless (why would he ‘open up and spill all’ suddenly to one of your friends? At worst, wouldn’t that in itself indicate that he wasn’t comfortable being truly open with you?) and actually counter-productive: exacerbating his negativity toward you.] I NEED HIM. [Um, like oxygen? I don’t think so.] I’m not sure he needs me now, after all this. [Ya think?] A Life in WordsIt makes me wonder how he could give up that easily. IT STILL HURTS ME. SO MUCH. [It’s still pretty fresh. That’s to be expected.] God, I wish I could turn back the clock. A whole year. [….aaaaand then what?]

Tuesday 22/9/87

In town with Fi & Mima, met Brent. Didn’t do very much really. (I was on the lookout for Trisha F bitch) [Haha, what, to “have a go”? Pffft, talking tough! I don’t have an aggressive bone in my body. I obviously wasn’t completely aware of that back then.] I didn’t have any money until late in the morning; when I found Julia & got my $50 from dad. (Then mum found me and gave me my bankbook & when I tried to swap it over for a cashcard, [yeah, that’s right people, the era of ‘plastic money’ (including Australia’s currency change to polymer notes) burgeoned in the 1980’s (even though credit cards had been around for awhile). ATM machines were slowly popping up – but only at bank branches] they said I had to be 18. That sux. I’m gonna change banks. [Can’t recall with whom I banked back then.] Fi had a doctor’s appointment. Mima, Brent & I got ice cream (gelati – I couldn’t eat it) [Now that’s a serious state of affairs – if I “can’t” eat one of my favourite treats…] Were going to get a video and watch it at fi’s but Stewart didn’t let us!! So we went home. I rang Nigel about the english [assignment??]: we’ll have to work out something. Also Steven, but he was “at the movies”. A Life in Words[Yes it gets worse: I’m now harassing his friends…] So when Jason, Fi & I got there (with Wade, David etc) I saw him and tried to talk. Keith walked past & I knew Mark was hiding. It’s almost as if he hates me. [No, he just wanted space. But in my defense, I literally was there with friends to see the movie, not to hunt him down…] He (when he did show) stayed well away not looking or talking to me at all. It hurts so much. I sat next to David during the movie & Fi & Jason said they didn’t see him, or even Keith look over once. I’m sure he’s trying to hate me. [How easy it is to create anxiety! Attempting to assume the thoughts of others is such a waste of energy: nine out of ten times you’ll be wrong and/or you’ll never find out anyway.] Walked off towards city place straight after→

Wednesday 23/9/87

→talking to Terry outside. We went to Yanks… I didn’t feel like anything to eat or drink. After, we went to Jason’s (just Fi, Mark B, & me) (David came in Jason’s car) and watched Bruce Lee (They still call me Bruce!) A Life in WordsBut we all fell asleep during it at sometime. Raining lots. At home, around 2:30, I bombed- freezing! This morning I was depressed when I thought about the movies, and how mark was. Why is he doing this? [I was so blind…] Keith even came up to me & rubbed it in.. “we were coming over & Mark said “shit!”..” That makes me feel really great. I feel like crying. Today, I watched TV, and did crash scrapbook again. I rang Fi after Steven (Steve said he’d talk when he called Mark around lunchtime) [Oh god, I wish I could shake myself!] So I told Fi Mark should be home around then. I need help. I’m hurting so much. I’ve got a horrible feeling he’s not just “having a break” so we can start again, but “having a break” so that I get used to being without him. [That’s a gut feeling. And for future reference… it’s usually right.] NO!! He can’t. Raining all day today (cool) Cameron & Glyn popped in & we went to Fi’s & then mima’s. Steven didn’t ring me back. [Certainly can’t blame him…] Sharon & I went into town first, then were rejected from Croc Rock. Waited outside freezing, for people to bring out [next page…]

Thursday 24/9/87

→some I.D. for us. Sharon in first. Then I waited ..Linda bought out the same I.D. I talked to Mark. [Privacy omission] “snuck” in. The night, as a whole, was bad. I regretted going now, tho it’s lucky I did. He spent most of his time, when I first saw him, alone, or with no girl. Keith with Angela M. I danced, hung round Sharon. Talked to him a little. Every person I spoke to seemed to be negative (no, they were negative) Fucking [privacy omission] said “he’s a bastard etc.” People all telling me he cheats on me. Even [privacy omission] admitted it. (Sharon left earlier than me) A Life in WordsI got really upset in the end & Mark got shitty (fucking Angela all over him (as good as she’d dare while I was around. The sick bitch even smiled at me all the time- until I fucked her up- dirtiest look – & she avoided me.)[There it is… vitriolic jealousy.] Eventually, to cut the story short, I talked to him ..he was really pissed off. I can’t even give him 3 days without suffocating him & even his friends, too (ringing them up) he’s pissed off I talk behind his back etc. [You totally had this coming.] Anyway, I got home around 4:15. Couldn’t sleep- got up at 8:00. Fi came round after I rang her. Long talk I told her everything, and cried. I watched TV the rest of the day & slept lots up till 6:30 …went late nite with Fi, Liam & Jason, met Pol, Brent, Peter & Mima. (Boring there) then to Jason’s to watch Pirate Movie on video. Made me sad cos I’ve got no one. [Up until this year, you had no one. You survived the first 16 years of your life without ‘someone’…] I’d desperately like to meet Phillip C soon. I need him – he’s right for me. [Oh lordy. Now you need a guy you don’t know at all, but emphatically assume is right for you? Purleeeease.] I know, when Mark’s “had his time” I’ll go back, but mate I’m gonna rev the shit out of him first – laying down the “conditions – regulations & expectations” and it won’t really bother me if he doesn’t want to comply: I’ll have P.C. [Righteo. Utterly warped fantasy. No other way to describe it.] As for Angela M & Tricia – they’ll never get what I have – his love. [Needing to feel ‘superior’ to appease my crushed Ego…]

A Life in Words
So… anyone? Anyone got the feels for me yet?! This succinct Finnish word has no English equivalent. Pronunciation? Ha, good luck! Apparently something like this: ‘moo-er-ta-ha-pay-ah’

Friday 25/9/87

Let me warn you – I’m still intoxicated at the moment. [Oh Gaaad, yes. You should’ve seen my handwriting in the diary…] I’m not supposed to let Mark know that I spent the night with Glyn & Cameron in town. [Ah… whoops, my bad? D’ya think that secret is a matter of importance 28 years on?] They were meant to go out. But mate, I got drunk & I had an ace time. I started out with Fi, Jas, Brent, Pol & Mim, late nite shopping (hoping I’d either see Philip C out or spend the rest of the night with David (Jas’s stepbrother- gorgeous hunk) [It’s intriguing watching myself ‘grasping’ for something (someone) to fill the ‘void’…] I know Mark’s with someone tonite. He’s a playboy. And he’ll never change. [If “the drunken tongue speaks the sober mind” …why was I hanging in there?] I went grass skiing with Pol, Peter, Fi & Jas. David watched- Dave hangs around alot – Hope he likes me. I think he’s gorgeous. So’s Philip. At home around 3:00- rang Cam. & Glyn …couldn’t find out if Philip was going out.A Life in Words I’ll die if he did. [Really?] apparently lotsa people I know, know I like Philip. […REALLY? Yup. Turns out I’m pretty easy to read…] It’s 12:30. Jo’s comin’ home 2morrow YAY!

Saturday 26/9/87

It’s 9:00. My first night home since Monday!! WOW! (I need the sleep!) Going to the beach with Sharon &, get this; LUCY!! Yeah, she rang this morning, wanting to go out, but this Saturday no parties & no one’s going out So we’re going to Beach party sunday night at Playpen (FUN, FUN, FUN!) Hope Philip’s there! Did nothing today (made lotsa phone calls though!) Went to the Boat Show – boring – saw Mark riding up Reservoir Road, on the way. Sharon said he was with Steven last night & no girls! I couldn’t believe it!! I’m feeling really strange at the moment _ I love him still, but I’m not missing him – I think it’s because I know we’ll get together again. Hope he’s not trying to fall out of love with me. […I don’t think people have to try to do that, Liss…] I’ll shoot him!! Jo came home – yay! Ringing late tomorrow to see if she can come out to Playpen tomorrow. Philip wasn’t out last nite. Was Raining just before – hope it’s not tomorrow. Hope I see Phillip (yummy) C. (or David!!)

Sunday 27/9/87

I had so much trouble getting to sleep last night. 9:00 I got to bed & around  12:30 to sleep. I heard a request to Joannah & it sounded like Elissa or Elisa. [The song requested was Icehouse’s “Electric Blue” …I’ve included a link to it on YouTube (below) if you’d like a listen.] A Life in WordsWondered if that was for us? (No one said who it was from.) [Chances of there being two other friends with our names in a city of about 50,000 was pretty slim, I reckon …especially my name. Oh and I/we never found out who it was either.] Anyway I got to Sharon’s on time (lucky – I got up late) To Lucy’s, then on the bus. It was very windy & grey at Palm Cove. We walked around, taking photos. Jo’s shop wasn’t open. We sat around the shop trying to ring Mr W. It started to clear up around 1:30.. we swam (Sharon & I ..in the “surf” – cold, but great fun) Saw Fi just before Mr W picked us up (just after 3:00) and she followed them to Lucy’s. We got ready after going to Sharon’s & getting her gear (Fi went home) Lucy, Sharon & I walked to Smithfield Tavern – the bottle shop was shut -everything was shut! So we went to Beach Night, sober. Got in back door – no ID asked at all. The night was excellent! Got crowded quite quickly, but there was barely anyone I knew- Sandra F, Carla G. That’s it!! So we raged something unbelievable. I had 10 Tequila slammers [shots]! […the annoying thing about my going out on a Sunday night is that YOU don’t get the full story until the next post… just like a real TV serial, you’re left hanging…]

Cardiovascular Conditioning & Sizzling My Scar (27 April-3 May)

Monday 27/4/87A Life in Words

Periods are a pain in the arse. Bella was at school today – for a visit; I didn’t quite know what to say to her ..it was embarrassing. [I’m not exactly sure what I meant by this.. perhaps that, outside of our shared injuries/hospital experience I didn’t really know her, so didn’t know how to comfortably converse with her?] Also Mark gave back  my necklace – has a rash on his neck & it’s irritating (wonder if it caused it ..or if that’s a subtle hint) [paranoia or gut feeling?] HOT (not really just warmer than usual – & sunnier most of the day!) Of all the people I told (about last night’s freaky experience.). they were all “shocked” except Mark- I thought so .. he doesn’t believe in that stuff, I gather. My day O.K. got on O.K. little lunch (end of) + what. I saw of him in big lunch & then in bio, I took his chair away from him & he hit the floor (then me, of course) But got shitty (muck ’round) & wouldn’t talk to me. I got worried of course ..when I rang him tonight, he sounded very bored ..vague disinterested said he hurt his leg again ..nothing to do with me – “don’t be silly” (I’ll bet it is though) Late night. Mark is so moody. . sometimes I really feel I don’t care. (But I always do, underneath, tho.) 10:50. HOT! Rushed art for nothing – found out I needn’t have handed in any if I chose! […part of the ‘Special Consideration’ I received due to the accident and its aftermath. Because I was absent from school for six weeks, my first term was effectively ‘wiped’ with respect to my final senior grading. In fact, my entire first semester was taken into account and bore less weight than the second in the end.] so 4/7 [pieces] ain’t bad!!

Tuesday 28/4/87

Went to see Kerri again this week..this arvy Just me..mum & Julia outside. I talked about how I understand my life situation and am going to tackle it ..front on..Kerri said I am a strong person [as have many others since] – she’s going to try & build up my confidence. Well, I felt sick this morning- it ended up being worry over Mark ..I still haven’t adjusted to his moods & sarcastic behaviour. A Life in WordsBarely talked all day (even thru’ bio prac.. rat dissection!) till big lunch.. had a talk.. I felt a little better. have worked out yet another thing (we only solve things bit by bit in dribs & drabs) he is not ever bored with me – when I’m round, he is just so relaxed that he feels he doesn’t need to say anything. See? mmm, well.. told Mr Patty quickly today about Sun. night..he seems pleased (& believes) it happened. [Mr Patty was the teacher whose talk with me in hospital soon after the accident struck a chord, easing my mind and creating the basis of my spiritual belief system for Life. (Go to this post to revisit this experience). He’d said he believed that deceased loved ones will send you a message or some kind of sign that they’re there and are okay some time after they pass. Monique certainly did that for me, unequivocally.] I am for sure. I’m also excited again- I’m interested in school… but esp. social life .. I do more with Fi & Mima now …and of course still there’s Mark .. so I’m happy (also that Monique is there with me!) Can’t wait for Terry’s party this weekend. Fi & I (get Sharon to, too) wanna go. (I haven’t gotten “happy” for ages it seems!) [Rather than “not miserable” that “happy” actually refers to being “tiddly-drunk”…] Life has new meaning!!! Skin is clearing up. I’m Getting fatter argh!

Wednesday 29/4/87

10:30. 3rd night in a row – I can’t handle these late nights. Good day today. Bella was at school- in our bio. class. [I’m obviously more comfortable with her by now?] (my skin’s clearing up!) Caught the bus to school .. Mark talking (mostly about the starsign book – all day really) to me before school..during bio…little lunch… and big lunch.. cutey!!! In fact, a happy day all over! Recreation – aerobics; we were late (the Northland Buses forgot to come-that’d be right) [Northland were the owners of our ill-fated bus and I wasn’t a fan of them, understandably. Since initial police investigations implied that brake failure was the cause of the accident, there wasn’t a positive feeing toward them by the community in general either. I believe they ended up liquidating at some point after all the legalities (formal inquiries and trial) were finished…]  A Life in WordsAerobics was hard … the hardest part mainly was the running & jumping exercises – the cardio-vascular work-out I couldn’t bear that too much. [Wimp! To be fair, I didn’t know how to breathe back then. Oh to have known the things I do now! At least I never wore the high cut G-string leotards & leg warmers! (see pic)] Realised so how much out of condition I am. [Um, were you ever IN condition?!] Wanna start riding to school again soon. Mark does weight training while we do aerobics (skint!) But I didn’t see him at all really. Julia said she did & that he sometimes looked at me Skint! [GAWD I hate that word! When the hell did I grow out of it?] Mr Grossetti took Fi & I home.. so I got home v. early.. read Dolly all arvy & tonite wrote out ‘Taurus Male-Cancer female’ essay for Mark for 2morrow. [Priorities? Messed. Up. Can’t do an english assignment overnight to save yourself but no problems writing one out for your boyfriend.] mm… I’m happy. or pleased. Today was nice, indeed. Even though it was bloody hot (esp. during aerobics!) Did no HW – argh! (FAT!)

Thursday 30/4/87

Another good day. (Asked “officially” to go to Terry’s party! Am going – you bet!) Talked quite a bit! (But today he was more crazy than ever.. acting wierd & silly) Then, we went late night shopping tonight, just the two of us – Jemima [privacy omission], Brent working (visited him) so Fi decided to leave us alone. It was good tonight – I asked him to the formal- he is my partner for sure & we’re wearing black & electric blue (& white – for his shirt) Unreal!! When talking to Brent he mentioned he was saving to take mima on a holiday at the end of the yearA Life in Words..suggested Mark & I come with them to an island resort (Mark wants to go to the Gold Coast [Schoolies? It wasn’t quite the massive event back in the 80’s as it is now. In fact, I didn’t even know it existed…] (well, not really: wanted to go overseas, but had to settle for Gold Coast)) would be good if I could spend it with him. That’d be unreal. (Little worried before we went -when I’d rung him (after several ‘engaged’ attempts) said he’d been on the phone to Tricia.. what about? Scary.. but I soon forgot. He loves me.) Cannot wait for Saturday night!!! COOL! Is 10:10. Am buggared. Good ideas what to get Mark 4 Birthday! Sleep now… must sleep (saw Kylie – his old flame tonite – she’s short[interesting choice of criticism…]

Friday 1/5/87

Mark is such a cutey! Came late today and I only got to talk to him at big lunch – he left ½-¾ way through it – was very tired & bored.. (Seemed a little shitty at little lunch- with Steven – not me) so I had another good day. Cannot wait for Terry’s party -Fi’s going & Justine (lots of people are!) I tried to ring Sharon but no answer (about 8:30) so will ring tomorrow. Went into town with Jules & mum… just little things… tried on my formal dress again- will need to lose weight for it- off the stomach only, really.A Life in Words [Also clearly didn’t know back then that you “can’t spot-reduce”] I love it!! Get it made in blue for Mark. Oh, I can’t wait Got my new camera working tonight! (Got it last nite at Earlville-it’s beaut!) [If it’s the one I’m thinking of, it was a funky red thing…] Am gonna take it tomorrow night (& lock it in Brent’s car when I’m finished with it.) Cannot wait! When I got home .. there were about 3 messages – all from Mark on the machine (what a cutie!) I’d wanted an early night. Fat chance it’s 10:35. Still too warm- when will winter hit us?!?

Saturday 2/5/87

Woke about 7:00- angry… I couldn’t sleep in longer.. today I did my crash scrapbook all day (almost)… well .. sticking in cards, that is .. I got them in order & began sticking them a few in.. cause there were so many interruptions… I went in to town to buy fixative [an art product] and, Ross & Thelma came over (leaving tomorrow I think) for a while. I tried to ring Sharon all day… only got onto her mum around 5:00- she couldn’t come. Just fuckin’ great. So I rang Fi & we decided when Brent went to pick up them, they’d come here & we could take Justine. So, finally at about 10:00 they came (I was so tense!) Brent & Fi went to pick up Thorstein..we stopped at a bottle shop.. at the party (heaps of people compared to last year) found Mark – drank my 3 Westcoasts (well, 2½).. was boring really. I was tired .. police came around so everyone had to go (about 11:30) I stayed sitting with Mark for ages … then I left around 1:00. Boring. Was an excellent start. Oh! Robbie was there & I said hello when I was talking to Maureen (she was looking for him at one stage) she said he said something (good) about me: wonder what? She was laughing about the fact that I got with him… [1987 witnessed my first ever ‘obligatory’ New Year’s Kiss… even though I wasn’t actually searching for it. This post will fill you in…] why did he blab? [Oh who knows, and what does it matter, Liss, really? The over-analytical mind feeds paranoid thought patterns…] Boring

Sunday 3/5/87

Got up around 9:00. so tired! Did nothing today – tried to do english but just couldn’t. [Ha. See?!] Nana came over today & Ross & Thelma too.. to see her before they left. Otherwise that was it. A Life in WordsI sunbaked around 3:00-4:00…my scars (the white parts – I put zinc on the tender red bits-) are now pink & that will (hopefully) go brown. [Oh dear, I hope I didn’t actually do more damage. The aim was concealment: my idea was that by tanning the paler skin, the red keloid scarring would be less conspicuous.] Mark rang while I was in the shower, so rang back about 10/15 mins later. Talking cute. God, he’s gorgeous. I love him so much. (Realised it’s been a week tonight since Monique dropped “Walk Like An Egyptian” on the floor, for me to see – everybody I’ve told (& there were quite a few!) seems to believe!) [The message from my deceased friend was, and remains, one of the most impressive & unforgettable experiences in my life to date. Go to my previous week’s post for the details of the ‘occurrence’.] I’m seeing Mark tomorrow hopefully. Must do my assignment tomorrow or I’ll be in deep shit. Watched the movie- is now 10:40. Am so tired (Mark got ‘hit’ last night – there was a fight ‘tween Patrick O’S & PP – Patrick missed Peter twice – got Terry & Mark.) Poor Baby. Am gonna ask dad if Mark can come to Port Douglas for the wedding. [his marriage to my stepmother Jenny] Hope so. So much. Fete this Friday – cool!! NIGHT!

More Trauma, More Surgery, More Drugs… (23 February-1 March)

Monday 23/2/87

Shit. I slept well last night…ready to finally go home..had shower, then the nurse took off my dressing for the doctors. They came, Talked. Then looked. MY STITCHES BURST, I HAVE TO HAVE A SKIN GRAFT ON WEDNESDAY. [In other words, I had to go under the knife again: to have the procedure I was meant to have in the first place. Not just insensitive & arrogant, but also incompetent surgeons?] I couldn’t stop crying when they left – mum & Kerri the social worker were with me. A Life in WordsI didn’t realise just how much I was looking forward to going home, till I couldn’t. Bastard. Bitch. I hate my leg… I’m going to have the biggest scars & a totally deformed thigh. it’s not fair. I’ll miss out on the carnival.. wednesday night. I hate my leg, I hate that bus, I hate life. Everything’s going wrong – my health, my “love-life” (Mark), my schoolwork. [Because I was so distraught about ‘everything’ by the end of the day, I failed to mention the tortuous consequence of the failed surgery; the removal of the stitches. It was horrendous, quite possibly the most physically painful experience in my life to date. At least I was in shock whilst pinned under the bus. I was given no local anaesthetic, no heavy-duty painkillers… just a couple of pills (‘digesics’) before the nurse began tugging (albeit as gently as possible) at the sutures stuck in the raw flesh around the entire circumference of the hole in my leg. You have NO idea…] I had a few visitors ..Justine & Angela & their mums, Yru & Mr Gordon & Dad came. [Dad] Got back from Adelaide today. God, I’m hot. And pissed off & depressed. Oh life’s a shit, a bitch. Imagine my scars .. to think I would’ve liked to do modelling [I’m not sure that I had ever really desired that myself: I think this was more of a notion inserted into my consciousness by others…] Everybody’s telling me it mightn’t (most likely it won’t) be bad… [being optimistic for me] They’ll disappear/fade with time. But I haven’t got lots of that. [? What did I mean by this?] It’s not fair. And Mark…that’s not fair, either.. we need to get on better.. I want to walk & go out …SHIT I’ll be here at least another week, I’ll bet. Not fair.

Tuesday 24/2/87

I was thrown into depression again, today. After showering I went with Kerri down to her office We had a talk about the crash etc. Fiona & her mum were waiting for me outside ..walked back to my bed.. A Life in Wordsmum came with the letter from Mark. It said “goodbye” & envelope contained the necklace which he “washed”. [Thanks for the ‘double whammy’, Universe. Talk about Murphy’s Law…] He was really angry about me sending him away. I got rather upset. Fi read it … I wrote a note for her to give to him & the photo of us… I was so upset. The rest of the day went slowly. I watched TV but wasn’t ‘there’. This arvy Miss Stephenson & Mrs Connors came & talked. Mark came up, while they were here. I had a heart attack – honestly, I thought you could see my chest pounding. When they left, we (or I) talked (mostly) He’s coming back tomorrow. We have quite a bit of sorting out to do. He can’t understand that I “don’t trust him”- ANYBODY. I’ve got to explain, but I’m afraid he won’t understand & will say goodbye for good. [Actually, I’m not even sure now what my reasoning was…] Had lots of visitors tonight. Is 9:30. Big day tomorrow – skin graft. Huh. Great. And bloody carnival I’ll miss out on.

Wednesday 25/2/87

A Life in Words
I’ve no idea why I decided I needed to keep this bottle of ‘Hibiclens’ pre-op soap…

I am rather ‘happy’ compared to yesterday & Monday. I slept badly last night – I mean, I couldn’t get to sleep to start with. This morning I had my pre-op soap shower & put on my lingerie (ha, ha!) (op. costume) about 10:00 I think, they started wheeling me away – but I stopped them: I wanted my pre-op needle!! [Junkie!] I got it. Waited less time this time, outside. [By now an old-hat with the pre-op experience, I had decided it was time to try to fight the grogginess and remember everything I could.  The wardsmen had stationed me right beside a tropical fish tank in the surgical waiting area and with my head lolling to the left for better focus on the aquatic life, I remember thinking “gotta count the fish”. Did I remember how many there were? LOL] At 10:55 they knocked me out totally. I remember being put back into bed.. When I woke, Mark was here, with Jules, Leanne (J) & mum. We talked well. He came up during lunch. .spent rest of the arvy with me. said he’s coming tomorrow too! YAHOO! He left me a letter, you see, telling me just how much he loves me. It is a gorgeous letter. Few more visitors today. (Jaque & Trina!!) BLOODY SWIMMING CARNIVAL on TONIGHT I’M MISSING IT. SHIT. NOT FAIR. I’ll be laid up in bed for “about 5 days”. Great. Huh. Little hot. I come out of anaesthetics pretty well, pretty quickly. [Like I said, I was a professional by now…] Am feeling slightly more confident about my scars now. Have a feeling I’ll get rid of them rather quickly! [Hmmm, seems I still didn’t understand the extent of my injury?] Hope so. Damn missing the carnival. Damn. G’night!

Thursday 26/2/87

Mark didn’t come up today. But I wrote a letter for him this morning. Numbness of my leg wore off at 2:00 this morning – I woke – my leg was ‘burning’ – stinging so much it felt on fire. I got a needle & my leg hasn’t hurt too much since. I wrote a letter to Roger [my cousin]. Got a letter from Lucy- she’s coming up at Easter. Nothing much happened … Keith came up! So did some others – mima – told me about some notes [privacy omission] had written in [privacy omission]‘s biology book – something like “I heard Elissa & Mark have broken up- I feel guilty but I’m so happy.” Ha, ha! He loves me! She’s skint! I gave Julia my letter to give to him tomorrow. I wish he’d come up today. I might be out Monday according to the doctors & “how I feel” A Life in Wordsso hot ..have to have washes in bed ..no more showers – & bloody bedpans – I did a poop tonight – hate doing ’em in bedpans. SKINT [privacy omission]! mark – I love you!! Conversation mostly about carnival- I missed one hell of a night DAMMIT!!

Friday 27/2/87

He came this afternoon ..no kisses, but holding hands.. yum, yum, yum ..I’m in love! Julia said she gave the letter to Lynette C to give to him & Sharon told me he got it. (Mima, fi, justine, megan, sharon came at lunchtime) I did a little bit of work today, listened to music, watched TV … all the same boring stuff. Oh, he’s coming tomorrow, too. Can’t wait till I’m out of here. Longing. A longing to be with him as much as possible. My leg’s annoying. Needed a needle last night again . . woke 1st – got digesics (??) [oral painkillers] 2nd time given the needle. Wowee! Police Academy’s on TV now UNREAL!! ♥ Mark. Trina visited. I’m getting used to the food – I eat most of it now that’s how long I’ve been in hospital. Oh dear. All I can think about is Mark. I’ll bet he liked the letter. I hope. YUMMY – hot afternoon. Pain-in-the-arse leg. Oh, I wish time would fly. Am sleeping badly. Lucy’s coming for Easter hol’s – so are Jodie & Michael & A. Hilary & Delanie should have moved back up here my then too! WOW!

Saturday 28/2/87

mark spent about 3½-4 hrs with me this arvy- left at 5:30. (Although Andrew J & Martin J interrupted for about ½ hr – I think I gave them the hint … I didn’t know what to talk about – so didn’t say much… Mark mucked around with the stuff on my bedside table!) [How completely uncomfortable, but inexcusably rude. I am retrospectively embarrassed.] It was funny… affection now & then, (no kisses, though … not even goodbye) but mostly “buddies” …Crabby came up tonight and, believe it or not, Marney & Nola R! But I kept talking to Wayne I don’t believe how well we get on! He gave me a goodbye kiss, cos it’d be the last time I see him for a long time. They’re leaving for their leadership camp tomorrow afternoon. I want to go home Monday, for sure. I want to get better really quickly so I can walk & dance, at least. Even if it’s a limp. I want to go out & get with Mark; something I haven’t down for nearly a month now. I think, in a strange, twisted sort of) way, this crash has made me more “well known”….people being more friendly ..and perhaps (guys) noticing me. But I’m for Mark. I know how [privacy omission] feels now .. heaps of guys you’d love to flirt with, get with for a night – but the one guy you love and want forever. No one will ever replace mark. I wish we could have a future together – I mean life-long, you know. But it won’t happen … I’m sure. [A fairly safe prediction, that one: teenage romances burgeoning into lifelong partnerships are as rare as hens’ teeth] HOT again. Can’t wait to have a proper shower again!

A Life in WordsThe diary I used in 1987 was a generic one (not specific to the year) so it had a page for 29 February (perchance the owner happened to use it in one of those). Since ’87 wasn’t a leap year, I had extra space to write for Saturday… but underneath this very important notation:

Sunday 1/3/87

He didn’t come up today. In fact, besides Justin, Mr McKenzie & his family and  (of course) mum & jules, no one did. Boring! I watched TV, read magazines .. that’s about it. God, I hope this is my last night here. I really don’t think I could stand much longer – one more night. NO! I need to get out ..get better quickly.. I’m dying to go out & do things again. I wonder when I’ll see Mark again . . . would he come to our house? I wonder! Talked about the crash with Justin- I’d love to find out what happened- when. Wouldn’t it be great if we could put back the hands of time. But, no, I shouldn’t think that. What’s done, is done. [Nice little hint of Wisdom there] I hope it doesn’t hurt me to walk on crutches again… I want to be able to do it so I can get out. God, I want to go. I’m still in a bit of pain… but not near as bad as thursday  I still need tablets (digesics) but I can roll over at night again. I’m looking forward to a shower again, too (wash my hair!)

 

Life is a Creek

A Life in Words

Life is  a Creek. There are countless analogies out there but one of my clients mentioned it last week and it really stuck with me.

You see, I’ve had a pretty interesting few months. For someone who likes to think she “gets it”, who has perfect faith in her spiritual/philosophical belief system, I’ve had one hell of a big Awakening.

It started with a physical ailment; some serious back pain. It’s not like I’ve never had ‘serious back pain’ before: this was different. This didn’t actually involve the disc bulges or neural pinches I’ve typically experienced in the past. No, this was just plain old muscular seizure. My physio was a bit puzzled. My yoga teacher wasn’t.

I was aware enough to recognise it was due to Stress. Work stress. I’d taken on a fourth job… for a variety of reasons, but in all honesty, money was the ‘deep’ motivation. I thought this opportunity might also lead me in a new direction, widen my scope for ‘Success’ because it involved one of my passions.

Suffice to say, I was wrong. I’d had what I thought were rose-coloured glasses on. I’d ‘pushed’ myself under the belief that I was being pro-active, but I came to realise, I was actually being driven by a deep-seated ‘desperation’. As always happens, the awakening came in a series of realisations.

Firstly, on the physical level, I realised the culprit muscles seizing in my back were only doing what they were ‘taught’: in the Past, the physical treatment for my injuries/pain required me to be in a specific postural position for relief, release & recovery. Five or so years of this particular ‘rehab’ position had trained certain muscles to respond (that is, created a new pattern or ‘habit’) to any Stress, by immediately contracting to ‘protect’ that area that I had led myself to believe was inherently weak.

I knew what I had to do; from my philosophical/spiritual point of view (to which neuroscience is now alluding also, incidentally) it was simply Common Sense. My Yoga teacher didn’t really have to tell me. I knew it. And my Physio agreed. I had to Stop. Rest. Meditate. As much as possible. So relaxation/healing meditations were added to my daily routine.

When the root of my Stress was elicited by my acupuncturist (he didn’t actually have to dig it out of me – it seemed to be a case of just being ‘the right time’ for the words to spill out of my mouth) he gave me some more focus for my meditations and breathing that addressed my physical as well as emotional pain. And I practiced.

I had also been reading a book recommended to me by my yoga teacher (even better; she had presented it to me in a pile of books and I had been the one to choose it from the stack… another perfect example of “cosmic timing”) It had taken me awhile to get through because I simply had so much other stuff to attend to, but I had caught glimpses of clarity as I worked my way through it.

The kicker came towards the end of the book.

Dammit, I know this stuff. I’ve read heaps of ‘new age’ literature and it all makes perfect sense to me. How could I not have seen this and more importantly lived it until now?

The author – himself a yogi – wrote of his own ‘Illumination’ and his three simple words struck a huge chord with me.

“I don’t know.”

What? This:

My whole life has been plagued by these words, with respect to ‘Purpose’. What Am I Here For?A Life in Words

I have struggled with this forever. It’s the deepest source of my Depression.

Describing the weight that lifted from him when he spoke those words out loud to no one in particular, and moreover, the revelation that it didn’t matter – none of it mattered – Blew. Me. Away. Forget the light bulb, I had a hundred floodlights in my face.

The source of my deepest struggle instantly dried up.

I always knew I was the master of my life: heck, I have read enough to know that. But to strike at the heart of one of your most dominant Concerns is totally liberating.

I can fully practice what I have learnt now. In one fell swoop, my Fear of the Future has gone.

So now I’m focusing on being a Leaf.

As my client put it, if Life is a creek and we are all fallen leaves being freely carried by its running waters, we are bound to be washed up against debris, pooled & eddied. Most of us get stuck: trying to fight, resist or control. What leaf ever moved a rock or fallen tree trunk out of its path? These struggles and challenges are an absolute and unavoidable part of Life. I’m ready to let go of resistance, to let the waters carry me where I’m meant to go.

I am finally ready to really Trust.

I have found renewed Faith. And god, it feels amazing!