Getting back together…

I know that it has been a while since we caught up, months actually, and If I’m honest, I was a little nervous about tonight, and I wasn’t sure it would be the same, feel the same.

I know that when things got hectic, and I got sick – I let us slip…  That’s why coming back was so hard. What if it wasn’t the same? You know we had great times together. What if something else comes between us again?

I made the decision to see you at the last minute. I think it was so I wouldn’t talk myself out of meeting. My stomach was a knot, my head a bit of a mess… What if doesn’t feel as good as the last time, what if the magic was gone…

I wore the outfit you like, Ha, no, You don’t really care what I wear do you? You just want me to turn up. I think I wore that outfit for me, I always feel great in that top and those pants – ready to take on the world, confident, strong…

Before I know it, the dream is reality again. We are together, my knees start to shake, I kind of stumble, and I am slow, but slow can be good, right? I know I am rusty, but the rhythm comes back, my arms, legs, hips all start to work in sync – it feels wrong, but right at the same time, such a cliché!

After a while I realize I am so tense, Damn, I know I am over thinking this. I just want it to be good, like it used to be –  like I used to be. I use a little mantra, relax Lin, relax, I feel the tension in my shoulders go, then I relax some more – just feeling every moment with you…

When we finish I can feel those endorphins kickin’ round in my system, I almost forgot how good it could feel – just you and me…

My body quiets down, the feel good wearing off as my heart rate returns to normal. I am lying on the bed, and it starts; I know you never criticise me, – it’s never you – but the doubts creep in, and those critical voices come out to play,

“You started out too fast, your pace was off.”

“There was no rhythm – towards the end you were lagging, you know you were.”

“HA the ending, well you didn’t…you didn’t finish well dear”…

I almost scream, SHUT UP! – But it is now 2:30am and the apartment below would probably hear… So I scream it in my head… I remind myself, it’s ok to be rusty, it’s been a while, and that you don’t care, It doesn’t matter how long I lasted, or that my rhythm was off, that I was slow, or so hot and sweaty at the end that it was a little embarrassing…

What matters is that I came back to you tonight, in the wee hours of the morning, I came back to you, and you welcomed me with open arms, no judgment, no laughter, no “You should have come back sooner”.

You don’t judge me, never have, never will, and that, that is why I love you Running.

Lin xox

The Boyfriend Cake…

I haven’t posted in quite a while, sorry about that. There have been many many things going on with life and to be honest up until my tonsils came out 1 week ago, i really had limited energy and used every moment of it to just get by, sleeping enough to recuperate and go back to work for my next shift. Sounds a bit doldrum like – but it is the truth.

Something funny happened a few months ago. I was still (in a much slower capacity) dating and had met someone online that I thought I would give a chance at a real life date. So we met up… and it is still going well, almost 3 months in now and I would suppose that he has the title of boyfriend (BF seems like an odd term at my age) Honestly he has done pretty well at being around sick Lin for the last few months, and in recovery stage post surgery as well!

But navigating a relationship at this age and stage of my life is quite different to other stages of my life, and it is different again to dating. Whilst dating I had in my head that I wanted to be in a committed relationship, but the reality is different again to the expectations, and with that comes a lot of personal reflection and self assessment.

I am learning that a Relationship is essentially expectations of self and others, negotiating these expectations and understanding that time will impact on the trajectory of the “us” that springs forth.

I am a fairly forthright person and believe that truth in love and kindness is what is needed (with a good pinch of timing) but it is a bit like baking a cake, there is a recipe (proportion / ingredients) and a lot of mess that makes a good cake and time will tell if the cake is going to rise to the occasion. The same goes for us I suppose. It is fun, messy, tiring, exhilarating and yep the cake is still baking… But I will sit back and enjoy the process, and enjoy getting to know the me and the him in the “us”.

Till next time, Lin xox

Mum

I am not a mum to my own children. I have been a foster carer in a past life, and that gave me an incredible insight into parenting at some levels. It is the hardest job in the world being a parent. It means that your life is not just about you anymore, and that you are responsible for another human being.

I remember calling my mum after my first week as a single parent foster carer of 3 teenagers; I thanked her for putting up with all my teenage angst, and told her how I didn’t know how she did it…She told me it was OK, that she loved me, and encouraged me not to give up, that I was doing OK… She laughed when I told her all her sayings that I had used in that week and always swore I would never say to my kids.

I also felt ashamed for some of the hateful things I had said to my mother growing up, names called, anger screamed. Often it was not my mother that I was angry with, but another situation, person or I felt generally sad about my life… I was angry at Mum because she was safe, I knew she would always love me, never reject me; that was something that I never doubted.

Mum was always safe, but it wasn’t until I grew older that we grew closer. I didn’t really understand my mothers strength until I became a woman myself. It wasn’t until I grew up that I saw and understood her love for family, that she would put her own needs and wants aside and solider on in the face of tough times and opposition. It was when I realised this that I finally saw my mothers true beauty and strength.

Neither of my parents are perfect people, we all have our flaws – but I know this.             My Mother is a woman who loves her children, their partners, her grandchildren and extended family with the heart of a lioness combined with a spirit of grace, wisdom and forgiveness.

Not everyone gets a Mother like mine – the work I do is testament to many young people who don’t get a childhood or parents that they need and deserve. My two brothers and I are the lucky ones. Forget about the 70 million dollar Powerball draw – We won the lotto when we got a mum that loves us unconditionally and with passion to see us become the best version of ourselves we can be.

Thanks Mum & Happy Mothers Day,  Love Lin xox

P.S. Remember to tell your Mum what she means to you… and not just on Mothers Day.

Society, Church, Sex & Being Single…

On Monday there was a story doing the rounds of the Australian Media outlets. It featured on Channel 9 news in Melbourne. There is a link to the Courier Mail article at the end for the full context.. Overall it was not a well researched article, and was full of quotes from people designed to get a response and polarize opinion. Well it got me, hook line and sinker… or should I say stinker.

The premise of the story was this; Grab a man if you are a single girl or miss out. (Subtext you are to blame for being single, It is your fault for wanting it all) In fact what really frustrated me was Catholic Church Priest Father Tony Kerin episcopal vicar for justice and social service in the Archdiocese of Melbourne, and his gems (*cough*) of wisdom, that went a little something like this;

“Today’s women wanted the best of both worlds.” “Are women getting too choosy? I’d say yes,” Fr Kerin, speaking on behalf of the archdiocese, said.

“I think many are setting aside their aspirations for later, but by the time they get around to it, they’ve missed their chance. In trying to have it all, they end up missing out.”

WOW – thanks Father; We want the best of both worlds – Really – Too Choosy you say! Can’t we just aspire to have the best life we possibly can? Of course relationships are about compromise, working together, learning to live with differences and  live together.  But we no longer live in a world where as women we are reliant on a marriage to make sure we are “looked after”. I want a partner that is an intellectual, emotional, and sexual equal and treats me like one. No I am not willing to settle for less than that.

I didn’t happen to meet anyone in my 20’s for a bunch of reasons; “Never mind” says the Catholic Church, “that’s your lot in life, you’ve missed your chance Lin now live with it”. Or in Cartoon like fashion I imagine it a little like  this “Haha ha you tried to have it all woman!!! Now take that (slap)”.

There’s an expletive I want to scream at this priest it goes something like; “F#&K OFF!!

Honestly I wasn’t trying to have it all, I was just trying to live my life… My 20’s were hard work and a huge learning curve… I am kind of glad I didn’t get married then, I was a mess; physically and emotionally.

The very statement of women “trying to have it all that they end up missing out” is so misogynistic; And then there is the push to get married, like that doesn’t have anything to do with Christian views on sex.

But hey, don’t worry girls, the  Church doesn’t seem to be such lovers of women unless you are the virgin mother! After all it was a female that ate the apple and lead Adam astray, Women who are depicted as adulterers, and then the bibles love of highlighting the female role of seductress who will lead men astray…Yeah the church has a really healthy view of  relationships and sex… They don’t place any guilt around sex at all right?

But wait there’s more! The article also explains that there are substantially fewer available women than men out there … I also have an issue with the way this was stated in the article, and here is a quote from the article in relation to the work of Demographer Bernard Salt (who is promoting his new book that talks about this topic);

“Demographer Bernard Salt calculated that for single women aged 25 to 34, there is substantially less heterosexual, well-off, young men available after excluding those who were already married, in a de facto relationship, were gay, a single parent or earning less than $60,000 a year.”

The article here makes the assumption that single women aren’t interested in any men that are single parents or earning less than $60,0000 a year. The subtext of this to menfolk; If you have kids, well then women are not interested, if you earn less that $60,000 in the last financial year, sorry mate you’re not a viable option. How bloody insulting to men and women. So as a woman, I must only be interested if you are single, no kids and earn over $60,000. What are you smoking Bernie??

I have dated guys with kids, it is not a deal breaker. I have also dated men that earn less money than me… I can earn my own money thanks. But the figure in the article is also arbitrary given I have dated tradies that earn less than me on paper for tax reasons, but more in real life in their business.

This article does confirm that dating out there is hard. There does seem to be less viable men out there than women. However my single male friends tell me they aren’t finding it any easier either, and that finding a female partner is hard too.

This whole article screams of fear mongering to me; it screams of 1960’s expectations of the lives we need to lead. Hey ladies if you’re not in a relationship of some description there is something wrong with you..can anyone hear the word “Spinster”sitting on the cusp of this article… (Now where are my cats and balls of yarn!)

Thanks Church again for telling me (and other women) that we should follow your prescribed playbook for our lives. Hang on I know what to do; Let me find a man who I don’t get along with, marry him,, quit my job, have a couple of kids and bake all day…    Not that there is anything wrong with being married, having kids and baking all day …     But God forbid you are gay, bisexual or having sex outside of marriage… No, because according to the church that is forbidden, God doesn’t approve, there can be no love for you, no grace… You don’t fit the marriage mould, or aren’t allowed into the “club”.

Now I know plenty of Christians that wouldn’t agree with what the priest said about single women being picky, but I know plenty that would as well.

I know Christians and churches that love and accept straight, gay, bi, tri – well anyone really. But there are also plenty that don’t and actively promote hatred towards people who don’t fit their mould.

What I am sick of is this… Faith groups (of any description, denomination or religion) bullying groups of people and making “holy” unhelpful statements about how people should live their lives. Women in particular have been bashed enough by faiths across the globe. For crying out loud, most women (and men) I know are just trying to navigate their lives the best they can, with what they have, and get through each day. Leave us alone Priests and demographer’s… We got enough on our plates…

Rant over (for now)

Till next time; Lin xox

Grab a man or miss out, girls warned | The Courier-Mail.

~ Relationships; Old & New

Marilyn Monroe

“I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.”Marilyn Monroe

I have thought a lot about relationships this week. What they are based on, what people expect of us, what we expect and want of ourselves. What I been pondering is two-fold, Old & New, Beginnings and Ends;  Like what happens to relationships (either platonic or romantic) when a divide grows and there seems to be nothing left in common? Or the parties involved aren’t being real anymore? In some respects it is easier when the relationship is romantic, often you kind of know when it’s over or not going to work; this somehow seems to be more difficult with platonic friendships… Can you “break up” with a friend in a nice way… How do you say in a platonic relationship “Look I like you but just not like that anymore, let’s be friends; oh i mean… Um let’s not be friends” Awkward right?

I adore the words of Marilyn Monroe when it comes to relationships; either friendship or romantic… And let’s be honest; relationships aren’t easy; personally I have a habit of just blurting out stuff, being too open and honest – perhaps it is a style of guerilla honesty to see if you can handle me 🙂

For some reason the idea of not being friends with someone anymore doesn’t sit well with us. We all want to be liked, we are social creatures. Redefining relationships may mean that you need to draw in new boundary lines; or it may mean the line is a separation line – fold along the dotted line and cut. ———————————————-

While closing doors on relationships that need to be shut can be hard, Starting Relationships – Well that is hard work too!

I am beginning to learn that Dating is a Minefield, a Minefield people! And, as I am learning, somehow even harder in your 30’s. You see I am now pretty happy with my life, yep sure it would be nice to be in a relationship (with a great guy obviously) but single-dom is pretty attractive most of the time, and is a hell of a lot better than being in a bad relationship. As Marilyn’s quote at the top says, I am impatient, a little insecure (after years of being obese and ridiculed who wouldn’t be right) and like us all, I can definitely be selfish… but I do have a best side too 😉 and Dating is about finding that person that can handle your best and worst, that doesn’t happen overnight. Being in a relationship requires building a friendship, and trying along the way to get to know the real person not who you want them to be, or comparing them to your other friends.

Ultimately Dating is a bit of a process; in your 30’s a lot of your friends are married, you have your social circles set and meeting new people can be tough. Meeting new single guys even harder. There is the first date, the text messages, the second date, the phone calls. It is a process, it takes time and while dating is hard work, it is fun as well. Your 30’s presents the problem to that you have developed your personality over a longer period of time, and are more set in your ways. I have some pretty funny stories about some of the people I have met, I’ve learnt more about myself, what I want and don’t want, learnt that the best thing to do when someone won’t stop texting you and you have been clear that you are not interested in pursuing things further, is to ignore the texts (they do stop and nothing you can say will make you look better in their eyes, trust me on that one).  I am not entirely sure dating is time well spent…but hey maybe the next date will prove me wrong, and that’s the point right!

Till next time, Lin xox