Bits & Bobs Upon Reflection 

I enjoyed going back to work yesterday. 

The first two periods were brilliant. I was worried about first period because I’ve had that class three times already, and whilst they were getting better and we all quite like each other, morning periods have been the worst. One of the boys went to open the infamous window (had thrown things out of it last week) and I said, “Uh uh,” and he assured me it would be okay because he’d taken his tablets today. 

No lie from him; what a difference some pills make. We went to the Library to work on resumes. 

And, in Period 2, I was in the Support Unit. I love the kids and staff in this unit. We worked on numeracy and capitalism/market strategising by playing Monopoly. 

I had a massive run in with two rude seniors during Periods 3 and 4, and a massive success with the rest of the class, surprisingly. And I think it stemmed from a few of us crying during Big Daddy. One of the friends/co-conspirators stayed behind to talk to me into lunch. I love those moments. 

And Year 7, last period, came in, in dribs and drabs, which made control and settling harder. 

I’ll follow it all up and eventually the kids will behave, but I’m too old for the patience required. And I’m just not into teaching as much, well, snobbily, teaching kids who don’t want to be taught. 

But I love tutoring, and love my business. 

Kids that do want to learn and do want to improve. My first client yesterday afternoon is a smart child who struggles with getting his ideas onto paper. I started some meditation and focus activities with him that worked. And my second client yesterday, well, she has been helping her friends in class with their Maths and getting it right. She said that she had never been able to do that before. 

And the best part is their faces when they see me; they light up from their toes and straight into their eyes. I love it. 

If I can grow my business, supporting people that want the support, I’ll be a very happy woman with lower blood pressure. 

Nice segue, hey.

Five days on my meds for Diabetes and I can feel the difference within me. 

At first I struggled with extreme hunger and needing to eat at night which is abnormal for me but has been happening for the last couple of weeks; I’d just put it down to my period and emotional eating. I now think my sugar levels were out. For the first few days I also suffered gastro but felt like it was a good clean out, and it’s stopped now. 

I’m managing my diet a lot better after a lot of reading, and will be seeing a dietician soon. I’ve minimised my sugar intake and now need to start on the carbs, but I’m adjusting well. Just the kick in the pants that I needed. Exercise will follow. I feel much better within myself. Oh, and I don’t get up to go to the toilet during the night. Who knew. 

I’m spending time with a sister and the nephews today. A Day Out With Thomas ( the tank engine) at Trainworks (across the road). Very excited to meet the Fat Controller (ironic) and ride on Henry. Woo hoo! 

Standing in my Truth 

I am home. I have slept most of today after a delayed flight and two hours of very disjointed sleep on the plane. And possibly, probably, after a massive and very transformational week in Western Australia. 

Man. Today, I can feel the shift deep within me. There is a sense that life has changed for me. I am owning, claiming, who I am and the power inherent in that. Today, I am standing in my truth. And it brings with it an organic trust that I will be okay. 

I am powerful. 

My arrival in Perth was a whirlwind experience; straight from the airport to breakfast to Mel’s and a workshop for us and Mel’s cousin. We opened with the I Am writing activity, the creation of personal affirmations and a clay manifestation of the intent for us. My affirmation, I am powerful. 

The days that followed provided opportunities for me to manifest this. More importantly, I met some incredible humans who enabled me to manifest this. And, this growth was consolidated yesterday when on two separate occasions, two groups of strong women stood in a circle of power around Mel’s lotus in meditation and manifestation. The power generated was palpable. 

Women, working together, rise together. The sense of community generated when women commune fuels the Goddess’ compassion in action. Women become buoyed and supported, inspired to reclaim what has always been their’s; their destinies. 

Between my experiences in India and Western Australia, I know this to be true. And I can feel another shift in my ever emerging business plan. I know the direction I am moving, and I embrace it. 

Bring on the best seller so that Rocky Point becomes a reality lol. 

Synchronous Moments

It is the first of February. Thirty one days of 2017 gone. Thirty one days into my reckless gap year. And January was an emotional rollercoaster. 

After tutoring yesterday afternoon though, and missing the kids at school, I have remembered how much I absolutely love teaching. The act of teaching fills my soul with warmth and love, connectedness and vigour. And, I love writing. The ability to weave lessons and beauty and truth into a tapestry of words – man, nothing like it. 

I start February calm again, with restored focus and stronger trust. Lessons from India and the beauty of Hobart rolled together into one last night in the guise of a film, that everyone should see. If only for the artistry and sophistication in how the story is told. 

Lion.

Dev Patel must be my favourite contemporary actor. He can tell any story authentically. No words. 

Lion. A reminder to me of all I desired achieving this year. A reminder that life is short and that suffering mindfully yields a beautiful life, ultimately. And, a reminder that life happens and that we should embrace it with compassion and purpose. 

India and Hobart. The last two places I have travelled to. Together in one film to remind me that this year was still about service as well as telling stories. The goals I had gently pushed to the side in the anxious flurry of not working and excitement in organizing travel. 

I trust that I have needed to work through something and that is why I have been anxious, and I am at peace with that. 

Yesterday culminated resolving my sense of value and worth, and the love for teaching that I possess, as well as remembering the different things that I set out to explore this year, and trusting that this is all a process and was never meant to be easy … or everyone would do it. 

Maybe this is why a couple of people have called my gap year brave. 

Maybe I am. 

Identity

I have been so busy. I wanted to make this year The Year of Living. I wanted to trust that the universe would provide what I needed to make my life happen. I wanted to reconnect with the people I love and adore. 

And, I have, am and will be. 

I saw the new year in at Eden, on vast acreage, overlooking the coastal towns with Donna, John, their cats Odin and Loki, and my two boys. Max didn’t cope with the wide open space or the cats so surprisingly, found himself happier on the lead whilst Sammy was fine to roam. I spent a few nervous moments thinking the eagles soaring and protecting the property would swoop and steal Sammy (thanks to The Proposal for this fear) but settled eventually. 

The three of us started planning a retreat we hope to host in June/July with building a scarecrow one of the feature activities. It sounds weird, but the mindfulness required and the act of creating something tangible and useful was highly therapeutic. Meet Hilda the Healer …


I drove home on the 3rd feeling hopeful but nervous. I love Nimmitabel, a village out of Cooma. I want to buy land there, lots of land. At the end of this year, it may easily be do-able. I’m excited about this. 

I am surrounded by reinforcers and inspirers. Ginny and Marcus, also moving in different directions, are also hoping to host and run retreats in the Mountains eventually. In a sense, we have been building our own community and seem to be on the verge of auctioning it all. Again, exciting. And terrifying. 

Lunch with Amanda, Nathan and newborn Brody, and when family has babies I no longer feel that sense of painful longing. I possess an inner acceptance of where I am and where I am not. And their willingness to accept me back has been a real blessing for me after a few years of necessary hibernation and healing. 

An then an important shift started to happen for me. I am seeing myself less as a high school teacher and more of a small business owner, life teacher. I am loving how the transition in identity feels. It is wholly empowering. And today, I’m feeling less terrified and more excited. 

Birthday celebrations for Karyn and more catch ups. Quality time with quality people, reinforcing old bonds. 

Time at Swansea, revitalizing my love for camping, and more quality catch up time with more extended family. And my obligatory summer burn. Once every year. I never learn. A childhood longing to be brown. 


Home to more catch ups on a bloody hot day …


And, this weekend working on promoting my first course for the year, assignments, planning before another week of catching up before cruising to see January out. 

My cousin comes to stay in February. I am heading to Perth to see one of my soul tribe from India. And somewhere in there I need to work to raise money to fund this new life. 

It is liberating. I had a vision for the life I wanted to be living. I’m heading there. The journey is happening. 

I am blessed. And exceptionally grateful that the trauma of last year has forced me to liberate myself. I feel alive. I am not just existing. Life is transition and flux and chaos and the unknown. I will not have regrets. 

Namaste 🙏🏻

Tattooing as Divine Conversation 

I could not access the words through the thoughts yesterday to write this. Those of you that follow me know how transforming my recent trip to India has been for me. I consolidated and signposted this with a tattoo yesterday. 

But, the journey for this tattoo started in January. So I think it is fitting that I close the year with it. 

In January, I received an email from Alana Fairchild promoting a Lakshmi retreat in India for late October. I felt the calling to go, trusted it, and replied that I would be going. It felt right. I knew I was meant to go. I didn’t realise how right it was at the time, just that I had to trust the calling and step outside of my comfort zone. 

In early March, I was informed that I was under investigation at work for failing to report the misconduct of other staff members. This investigation, ironically, lasted two days shy of forty two weeks (an overdue bub- yep). Whilst I suffered/endured/survived extreme bouts of anxiety and disconnection, the upcoming trip to India sustained me. I knew it would set me on the right path. 

In April, for my birthday, I was going to host a picnic but made the decision to postpone it until the investigation was resolved. After all, how long could it take? 😳

I also wanted to mark my birthday with a tattoo. I was thinking a mandala. I like them. I googled mandala experts. 

I came across a Sydney artist, Mark of Nara. His tattooing is distinct and his website suggests that he works with tattoos in a spiritual and healing mode. This piqued my interest and I contacted his studio to make an appointment. 

No more bookings for 2016. A wait list for 2017. 

Initially miffed, I trusted that what would be, would be. I didn’t look further for an artist. I’ve never been tattooed by an artist with a wait list. It was a bit novel. 

And then, India. A retreat and trip that would completely transform me. I integrated aspects of myself, and began to see myself as beautiful, inside and out. I saw myself as the Divine sees me, sees us all. A child full of light, love, compassion, power. A child who deserves to live her best life, create her best life, away from bureaucracy and limiting, ridiculous precepts. 

Alone in Dharamshala, at the Tibetan Cultural Centre, I was guided towards a statue depicting Green Tara; compassion in action – hand shown and foot ready to jump, sitting on a lotus. She called to me. Really called to me. Something inside was cemented when I saw her, transformed me. If I jump, was ready for action, coming from compassion, I could live my best life and become the best version of myself. 

She is my symbol for India. 

I came home, high, ready to embrace everything that could be, and fell into the drudgery of work. Returning emphasized how unhappy I was in the monotony of work, with no life balance or time/energy to do other things, to be all that I can be. 

Investigation over. 

One funeral after the other: reminders that life is too short to writhe in misery and I decide to take leave for next year. I plan travel, book writing, growing and transforming my business, casual teaching to sustain me. 

And then I receive an email to inform me that Mark of Nara is taking appointments for 2017. I had to send my idea to him. If it appealed, I would get an appointment. 

Green Tara. A brief explanation why. 

He rang a few days later. I booked in for yesterday. 

I was so nervous when I met him. Did not doubt the tattoo or his ability, but so nervous. In retrospect, my body was preparing for the journey ahead. 

We talked about the tattoo, what it meant to me and why. Just in conversation. A moment to mark transition, and a commitment to myself of my worth and my value. A reminder in moments of doubt to trust the Divine and the energy. 

Like India, I am now struggling to put into words the experience. There were periods of animated talk and periods of quiet reflection, for both of us. As we talked more, it became apparent that 2017 represents for both of us, a need to travel and move away from the normal confines of our working lives. 

Green Tara was representing both of our journeys forward; a reclaiming of our own selves. Synchronous. 

My talk of India inspired him, and when his partner came in, she mentioned that she had woken up with India on her lips. They will go, trusting that they are being called too. 

We have the power to create a better world with our intentions. Community is the way forward. I am realizing I am a part of a tribe. Together, through our intermittent interactions, we will transform our lives and our communities. This is the way. 

Mark finishes his tattoos with drumming and singing to seal the intention of the tattoo. 

I was in a meditative state for most of the tattooing process, the pain was intense. Shedding past and outdated beliefs about myself, and the expectations of what I thought my life would look like. With each line, each period of shading, they were ripped from my body and my soul, leaving me happy and returned to my peaceful, calm post India self. 

I am back. I am in control. I am in full trust. I have made the right decision. I am on the right path. This is where I am meant to be. 

The universe does work in mysterious ways. We have to trust that everything that happens, is meant to. We need to act on opportunity and trust the intuitions we receive. They guide us to happiness and health. They empower us to be our best selves, living our best lives. Tragedies, ultimately, become opportunities to shed the old and embrace the new. 

Namaste 🙏🏻 

Nothing Prolific 

Anxiety and fear have passed. Gone. Faith in the universal order has been restored. Friday, my last day at structured and guaranteed work for a year, felt surreal. Yesterday, I hosted a partial family Christmas. 

Surrounded with reasons for gratitude. There was a moment that I sat back, and just soaked in the conversation around me, and felt truly grateful, peaceful and like, yep, this is what life is about. 

Nothing else really matters. 

It was my first Christmas being really present after Natalie’s death four years ago and my miscarriage three years ago. 

Time. Weird concept. There hasn’t been a single day where Nat hasn’t been in my thoughts. Her passing doesn’t feel that long ago. I try to honour her life by trying to live my best life. I’m not always successful; I am human, after all. 

Sixteen years ago, on the same day I miscarried three years ago, I woke up and went to work as usual. When I arrived, the day of Year 10 Graduation, we were all informed that one of our Year 10 students, one of my students, just hadn’t woken up. The kids, the staff, her family – shock doesn’t describe it, and then the grief. My. She, Erin, has visited my classroom through the years. Some of my more sensitive students have felt her presence and one heard her call out. An interesting lesson that was lol. 

Like Nat, life cut short way too soon. And then Luke and Steph, followed by Jamie, Nich and then, last year, another Nicholas. Lives all ending way too soon. 

In my head, it has become important to honour their lives by living. I think, in part, that inspired me to take leave for next year. I also promised myself when I stopped all fertility treatments, accepting that I wasn’t going to be a birth mother in this lifetime, that I would really do something in my life, beyond the every day; my legacy would not be in the realm of birth children. I would travel and have adventures. I would create a different life. 

A Tina type of life. 

One of the ways that I have already started to do this is by saying yes more, and making plans. If someone asks me or suggests to me something, and it feels right, I don’t pause to think of the practicalities, the anchors, I jump and am trusting that the universe will provide or know that my savings will be lost in travel next year. 

One of my inspirations for this is another ex-student, Justine. Justine was one of Erin’s friends. She created a bucket list of sorts, things to have done before she turned thirty. What a rich life she has lived in honour of herself first and foremost, but also in honour of Erin. Amazing inspiration. 

There are always ways to make money to pay the rent 😳🙏🏻.

Hehehe. 

So, I’m going to write my book, I’m going to grow my business by sharing my strategies for healing and living, I’m going to travel, and I’m going to host game nights at my house. 

Living is more than safety, more than routine, more than working yourself to the bone. My ‘gap’ year is going to explore the potential for my life, for me. Not as youthfully as it would have when I was eighteen or in my twenties, or even in my thirties, but ‘appropriately’ for now. I will foster the things that I love and see where it leads me. 

Jumping is scary, dying unfulfilled and without passion for life though, well, that’s terrifying. 

Who’d Have Thunk It 😜

I’ve just completed my first webinar course. I enjoyed it. Like, really enjoyed it. And I think I’m ready to start writing an online course. My writing to heal course but online. 

Overwhelmed a little but immensely excited. I am thinking of doing her Courses That Convert course to actually write it. I need to make some adjustments but I think I can make it work. 

Anyone that has known me for a long time knows that technology is not my strong suit nor a direction I ever really wanted my life to go in. And here I am anyway.

Never say never, Tina. 

Aaaaand no I won’t be signing up for her course. It costs $997. Oh my. I think I’ll take the longer road and work it out for myself. It can’t be that hard (famous last words). My course won’t be that much. 

What a revolutionary world. 

The Right Path For Whatever Reason

I’ve been absent from my blog. I have kept up my gratitude every day but chose to stop posting it. It’s important to me but highly likely, boring to others hehe. And I’ve been processing everything in my life leading up to this full moon.

I bought the car. I now drive the car. I zip around like I’m in my twenties again lol. The purchase came with some grieving to do though. I initially bought the Tiguan because I was going to have a few kids and be a soccer mum, so we needed the space. Saying goodbye was hard. Intellectually I know that I’m not going to be a birth mum. However, I didn’t realise that there was a part of me still holding on to the dream. And so many people in my life are always pregnant. It’s hard. 

I am in the process of moving towards acceptance that pregnancy is the one that got away from me, and that is okay. My life is fertile in many other ways. 

I run my first series of workshops, starting Tuesday week. And there are people interested, which to be honest, terrifies and excites me all in the one breath. 

Such a huge step for me. Seeing myself as a healer rather than a teacher. Those labels start to do more than just identify us. Sometimes we become so safe inthe definition that we think that is all that there is to us. 

Starting my business is me giving myself permission to be more than a label or definition. I feel that I am finally ready to embrace all of me and accept that I am valuable in my entirety. 

And I believe I’m fulfilling my destiny. I’m open, I’m willing to receive, and I’m willing to work hard. 

I consider myself to have trust issues; I’ve always defined myself that way. Damaged childhood, damaged adult. At the workshop with Alana Fairchild yesterday, rather than feel confronted and anxious by a trust activity with people I do not know, I felt energised and truly excited. People had to touch me to stop me from falling, and I didn’t care. I felt safe within my core; no one could hurt me therefore I could trust because I was trusting myself and the universe (God energy or however you regard it). 

It was amazing. Soul inspiring. A measure of my real growth and real comfort with who I am. I also didn’t feel shy. A little reserved in some activities, but not shy. I think I oozed confidence. 

Bizarre. 

And listening to Alana’s story, I felt that I am making the right decisions for my life. This business will be a growing process and I must be patient, and trusting that even if it doesn’t work out, the journey is the valuable piece in my life’s puzzle. I am where I am supposed to be. 

Throughout the meditations yesterday I saw an Amazonian warrior dancing in grass. I need to google it. She kept appearing. If anyone knows what that could embody, please let me know. Amazon rainforest not oversized women Amazons. 

Buying A New Car

When I bought my last car four years ago, I hoped that it would eventually transport my children. So, I bought my dream car, a big car. One thing after another, organizing my life and my finances to ensure smoother sailing for my business, and it’s time to buy a new car. 

And I’m downsizing. By choice. Reprioritising my material possessions. 

I won’t have children so I’m buying a smaller car. Realistically, it’s usually just me in my car, and then Max, my dog. My fur family. And yes, very much my child substitute lol. 

A friend subtly pointed out yesterday that I’m letting go of two dreams with the purchase of the new car. Yes, yes I am. 

My dream car was not all I dreamed it would be, and my dream of being a birth mother is further in the rear view mirror. 

And you know, I’m okay with it. Not one tear shed. And no real pain felt. In a week where anxiety has been high, and a good friend gave birth, I am okay. 

I am in a place of acceptance that those were not to be my life path or choices this time around. I’m not here for better things, but different things. I joked with a different friend yesterday how I sometimes think I experience so much to be able to better empathise with others. And surely, this will help my business to grow. Here’s to hope lol. 

So, I should pick up my new car within ten days, and thus begin a new chapter in my life. 

Tina, the teacher and the healer. 

Go me. 

But what a release to feel me moving beyond the stigma I created in my head about childlessness, moving towards freedom and new growth in a completely different direction. Maybe my business is my birth child, raised and grown to service others, as well as nurture myself. 

As Diane Lane’s character in Under the Tuscan Sun discovers, sometimes our dreams come to us in unexpected ways.

❤️

A Drive 

I have only sat outside in my backyard twice since moving in ten months ago. Abnormal. 

I started to question why. I also haven’t gardened much and recently, I am struggling to contact my lawn man to have it cut. It’s like I don’t care about it. Abnormal. 

So, before I moved I debated getting rid of my outdoor setting and buying a new one.  My backyard, and especially my covered area, is so much smaller here. I decided to bring the setting here and set it up out the back. I’ve cleaned it. I bought new cushions for it. I put solar lanterns up and my wind chimes. 

And I’ve sat out there twice. 

My sister introduced me to her outdoor setting, purchased on EBay. I looked. I found. I bought. 

Today I picked it up. Saturday I will assemble it. It’s perfect. 

I drove an hour each way to get it. I’ve stopped listening to music when I drive, preferring to absorb my environment and process. A beautiful run through the country today to get my new setting. I felt relaxed. Calm. Peaceful. 

This week I have felt more like myself. Still some anxiety but my personality has come back a little more strongly. I thought about why. 

1. Away from the cause of the anxiety. 

2. Controlling what I can control:- 

a. To Do list

b. When I go out 

c. Who I see

d. My home environment 

e. Organising to buy a new car

3. Realising the whispers are turning into roars and focusing on my business plan again; making a stronger commitment and devising a strategy forward. 

And I think this is key. I was ready to take back control of the things that I can control but had to be out of the environment of the anxiety for a good solid week before I was able to do that. 

I’m still feeling anxiety, especially in my tummy. But I feel like I have some control over my life and I’m starting to slay the fear. 

Interesting. And as a result, I don’t think I’m going to be ready to return to the source of anxiety on Tuesday. 

We’ll see.