The Pursuit of Happiness

What a  perfect day!

A long, but perfect day.

I woke this morning to a dark room (new blinds – thanks Margo!) after a mostly refreshing sleep, but still tired, to get dressed to start my trek into the Blue Mountains to attend a workshop. A mild winter day greeted me, and a long and new drive through absolutely beautiful countryside began. I was in heaven. If the Blue Mountains was not quite so far from work, I would be living there. I have never seen so many people with dreads in one place. And I want to buy some flowers, daisies, to weave through my dreads. That was obviously an aside. Welcome to Tina’s happy brain.

I arrived at about ten in Leura and met with my good friends who were accompanying me today. We were early so went to get coffee. And then back to the workshop to register.

My dreads were put in by Ginny and Marcus eighteen months ago. I had removed my initial dreads that I had had for over ten years in 2006 to fulfil a promise I had made to two special people in my life (I only made the promise because I thought you could only shave your head to remove dreads – I was wrong so goodbye dreads – at least I have integrity?). I enjoyed being a pretty blonde when I curled my hair for the years in between, but every time I saw someone with dreads I pined after them.

Had to be a sign.

Then I made a deal with my hairdresser that if I fell pregnant I would get them back. I didn’t fall pregnant but I realised that if I had been willing to get them back, I shouldn’t deprive myself in the face of loss of something I obviously wanted. So I googled and came across Ginny. I booked in. And in January 2014 I spent eight hours with Ginny and Marcus, before they moved to the mountains, and returned to my authentic self (not as pretty as the blonde curls but definitely who I am).

And I did not just get my dreads back. I made two kindred spirit friends. Beautiful people, walking the talk.

Marcus completed prac with me last year. And so when he started his school, The Pursuit of Happiness School – Blue Mountains (Facebook it), I was more than happy to support him, and to continue my path of self-development.

And so today, we focused on the blind spots that prevent us from moving forward. Probably the most practical part for myself was the schema work in the last session. Eleven schemas were presented. The aspects of which hold us back until we acknowledge them and bring them into balance. For me, the first one seemed to resonate.

For as long as I can remember, I have recalled a few key events from my childhood where people were quite critical of me, and so I learned very early that I did not possess any real value except for what I offered to other people.

I have never regarded myself as very attractive (rightly or wrongly). Sometimes as an adult this has been tested for me but never with long lasting effect. I remember standing with my sisters and my mum in a shop. My sisters were both blonde; I was not. The lady that mum was talking to commented on how beautiful mum’s two blonde daughters were.


I think I was like nine.

Then there was the sexual abuse, the beltings at home, and this insistence that I was morbidly obese when looking back on photos, I realise I was actually at a normal weight, but not as thin as my beautiful sisters (I have since worked on becoming overweight successfully – funny how I made that public perception of me real). Basically, I learned that I wasn’t very valuable except for what I could offer others.

And so I lived my life as an ugly person, who needed to serve others because they were more valuable and important than myself. I think I am shy because of this. I am fine with kids but in front of adults it still impacts. I am worried that people will hate listening to or hearing from the ugly one. At least, this is the inner voice, and I fight her quite aggressively.

Obviously, for the most part at 44, I realise that what she says is utter bullshit but it did frame the reality of probably my first thirty five years of life. Tragic waste of time. And so, as I said, I fight her. Like today, as much as I hate speaking in front of others, I forced myself to do it. As much as I hate initiating conversation (unless I am travelling), today I initiated.

And when I received a series of compliments on two fronts, after initially cringing, I fought the inner voice and accepted that these lovely perceptions of me were as valid as the nasty ones, in fact probably more valid, so I stopped cringing and embraced the moment, both times.

Btw, did you know that several times throughout my life, at different ages impressively, all after eighteen, I have received many comments regarding my face being angelic. I think I might be an angel. I think this is why the TV show Touched By An Angel resonated and made me cry. Another aside, sorry.

I have more work to do on this. And more reading to complete on the schemas so that I can thoroughly unpack them and map a path forward. I am blessed with time though.

And then to my niece’s birthday party. Very loud. Especially after the quiet. But man I love my nieces, younger brother and nephews. The children I get to love as if they are my own, treat as if they are my own, and give back because they belong to someone else.

Best of all worlds right there …


More coming tomorrow …  it is late, and I am still processing.

Thank you Marcus and Ginny for today. Beautiful vege soup.

One thought on “The Pursuit of Happiness

  1. You ARE an angel! You are lovely and I hope you’re ready for waves and waves of compliments. Confidence usually invites them and your confidence is blooming. I love the dreads btw!


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