Healing is Messy: Step into the Arena

I am starting this post with, I am good and I’m in a good place. But, healing is messy and it is unattractive and it is an individual process, and as a result, can be quite shameful. Mental health still has a deeply ingrained stigma attached to it that is entirely unwarranted and socially unhealthy for us, people.

My perception of my childhood is that it was traumatic. I have resolved a lot of the deeper stuff, but every now and again, another layer becomes ready to be peeled off and I need to put the work in to do that. I’ve been doing this work on myself for thirty or so years.

I live a blessed life because I worked hard to create it. I’m a strong, wise, resilient and empowered woman because I do the work and own my truth.

I would love for it to be finished, but it isn’t.

Last weekend, I was at an intensive training weekend for tuning forks for my Diploma in Sound Healing. It unlocked another hurt that needed to be healed.

Healing is a process.

First, there was the unlocking of a deep hurt. I cried and cried and sobbed and ugly cried and then cried some more.

It took a few hours of just sitting in this teary grief before I felt an old anger pattern emerge. Anger that no one loves me, anger that no one reaches out, anger that I give so much to others and it never feels balanced or reciprocated or fair. Just plain pure unadulterated anger. Unreasonable, unfair, childlike and fully ego based and driven.

Then, well, then came the heaviness, the numbness, the desire to run away, the embarrassment, the shame, the fear that you’ve fucked your entire life up and scared everyone away because you are ungrateful for all that you do have and all the people you’ve shared time with throughout your life. And really, shouldn’t you be over this by now.

So, at this point, self care became important. For me, this means one breath at a time, and time for the soul to reconnect to source in nature. I did this yesterday. I left, breathing deeply again with a headache lol. But, balanced and calm.

This enabled me to work and to start sharing my energy again, in small doses with armour around my heart. Just the reality.

Back in this space, I can ask questions: what is the root cause of this grief, this recurring pattern, this destructive and intense emotional response?

The answers come. On the toilet this time.

Abandonment.

As a child, ideally, we feel supported and loved and safe and protected.

I didn’t feel this way.

The narrative I crafted for myself was that I wasn’t worthy of being held safely, I wasn’t valuable, I wasn’t good enough just as I was.

I give to receive. That’s the ugly truth of it. In recent times, I’ve shifted that motivation significantly and have surrendered a lot of that attachment to expectation, but obviously, not enough. I had never dig into the root cause, around it, sure, but not into its marrow.

The time has come for me to do just that.

From the abandonment fears, deeply connected to it, is a strong sense of betrayal and trust.

As I reflect to my miscarriage, I see these patterns and threads weaving together. As I reflect on the Investigation, again, these threads interweave. Now, my life is ready to do the deep soul work to correct and rebalance this imbalanced perception.

Before I could do that though, I needed to relive it one more time, out of a crisis situation, that I could understand it without the immediate intensity of emotion.

I share my journey because I think it’s important that we all share our stories to heal, not just for ourselves, but for past generations and for our world.

We don’t talk about the darkness and heaviness in ourselves and our world enough. We hide in it. And we do this because too many people don’t understand it. And we are scared of being labelled or stigmatized it judged.

A very well intentioned friend said that I was better than this. I’m human. I’m a work in progress. I have many layers and many faces. My strength in spirit comes from me standing in my truth. I still feel the shame of this though. I acknowledge it and tell it to fuck off because I think more positive comes from me doing this, than from hiding it. Time might prove me wrong. But I don’t believe so.

My truth isn’t always tidy; it’s very often a very messy conglomeration of different things. It takes courage to be real in a world where real seems to be a dirty word. I own my trauma and I own the impact. I’ve lost good people from my life as a result of my messy truth; I am an acquired taste and I can be intense. I can be mean and bitchy and ego driven. I can be selfless and wise and so loving.

I am all.

And I make no apology for that.

Fear & New Opportunities

When we let go of something that no longer serves us, no longer brings us happiness, it creates space for new things and new people to come into your life.

There is always fear when we make a change to our life. It doesn’t matter how small or large that change may be, fear of the unknown and the what if always lurks.

Liz Gilbert, author of Big Magic, recounts the way she handles fear and I’ve found it useful. We can’t ignore the fear, so we acknowledge it. She uses the metaphor of taking a drive. She tells fear to sit in the back seat, so it is acknowledged, but she tells fear to keep its mouth closed – it has no voice – and she does what she needs to do, drive her car.

Sometimes, too, it can help to write yourself a permission slip. Brene Brown is a huge advocate for writing yourself a permission slip. The act of giving yourself permission just makes it a little easier to do what you need to do for yourself.

Fear is useful. It keeps us humble. We just can’t let it control our lives. Fear keeps us small. None of us are small. When we aren’t living our best life, we can’t be our best self, and that robs the world of what we were put here on Earth at this time for.

When I left teaching, I was scared and sad. I loved being in the classroom. I thought I would die at Reddall, teaching the grandchildren of the children I had taught.

Letting go of a stable and secure income was difficult. Terrifying. I’d only ever really known teaching. But, it became infinitely more difficult to stay somewhere where my values no longer aligned with my employer’s values. I was sooooo unhappy. I hated going to work. I had to change.

I left gradually. I built a business up. I had enough stability in that to leave teaching.

As a result, I have more energy, my passion for life is back, and there is space in my life for new things. I’m 47 and feel a youthful zest for life that I haven’t felt in years.

Change is scary. Change is necessary. We ALL deserve to feel passionate and happy in life. You have to be vulnerable and you have to leap into the unknown sometimes.

Letting Go: Failed IVF, the Investigation, Fear and Control

Hi. My name is Tina and I am a recovering control freak.

As a child, I felt so out of control so much of the time, that as an adult I have tried to control everything.

I figured that if I had control, life would be good and I would become blissfully happy. I have spent my entire adult life controlling or trying to control everything. I have never really just let go.

Until now.

Thank you, Uluru, for your sacred healing energy that infused a trust for the divine into my soul. I am still, still. There is a calm and a peace in my depths that tranquilises any fear or anxiety that may arise.

I am very zen.

And as a result, obstacles are dissolving.

I only know this because I know the other side, too intimately.

For the best part of five years I tried to control falling pregnant and having a baby. When I did fall pregnant, my fear of not having control expunged the foetus from my body.

This was an opportunity to learn a strong lesson, that I failed to learn. The lesson was that I needed to trust the higher powers, whatever and whoever they are. I needed to trust the flow of life and the contract I made with myself prior to my birth into this incarnation. I needed to trust, full stop.

I then didn’t trust my family and friends to be there for and with me, and I tried to control that too. And so, I was alone.

Fear is a great controller. Broken, from failing to control everything, fear seeped into the wounds and kept me bound. I couldn’t move forward, or even see behind me. There was just the moment, and not in a zen way.

Failing at pregnancy, I turned to fostering. Again, trying to control, I wasn’t enough; my reason for fostering wasn’t enough. I was confused and broken, belittled and worthless. Again.

All the while, I was being bullied at work, reliving aspects of my childhood I thought I had resolved years before. I was used by people whom I trusted. I was belittled and betrayed. I tried to fight back without conflict, with understanding and compassion I told myself, but really, my fighting was fear manifested. I tried to control from a very weak and inauthentic place, and that resulted in poor choices.

The fear resulted in a ten month long investigation. Ten months of fear and anxiety, and a strong, visceral reminder that I control nothing. Subconsciously this fed the I am worthless narrative I had been telling myself my whole life. My desire and need for control was really just me trying to feel like I was worth something and trying to prove that to everyone else.

“I’m pregnant, look everyone. I belong. I am normal. I am one of you.”

“I’m a head teacher, look everyone. I belong. I’m normal. I am one of you.”

“I’m a foster parent, look everyone. I belong. I’m normal. I’m one of you.”

Years ago, at a crossroads professionally, I went to a medium. She acknowledged my crossroads. She told me my two alternatives. Promotion at work, or book signings as a healer and teacher.

Fear, manifested as control, kept me bound, until the investigation and then India. Prior to the investigation, the universe had started to untie my bounds. I had paid my deposit for India. I had completed many natural healing courses. I had registered a business name and received an ABN.

Last year, paradoxically, I had my worst professional year and my best. I was amazing in the classroom; I was exemplary. I was an amazing mentor slash healer. I loved teaching and being with the kids. But, my life and my soul fell apart.

I was forced to relinquish control. I needed to find trust that I was being redirected. I was coming home.

But, in the midst of anxiety and fear, I couldn’t see this. Almost a year after the investigation concluded, I can see it. Clearly. And today, I can feel it. Freedom. Bliss. Purpose. Fulfillment.

I am a healer. I am a teacher. I am a writer. More than that, I am me. A recovering control freak, a survivor of childhood dysfunction, and a braver scaredy cat.

🙏🏻🦋

The Lesson I Refuse To Learn

I am too wise for my own good, she says with a chuckle.

I am able to understand lessons, able to know that they are to be learned, trust that they will be, think I have learned them, except for one in particular, that sort of extends into two. Might just be one. Wise, humph.

I taught in schools for four days last week. As a casual working in a school, you are generally on all day, and in primary schools, all day plus a duty, giving you about 50 minutes off during the day. And in teaching, when you are with the kids, you are on the whole time. There is no break or processing time.

I also ran my business every day, and was almost grateful for the cancellations this week. My business hours, with travel, are long. I generally start between 3 and 3:30 and arrive home by 8:30, a couple of nights I finish by 930. And all day Saturday, seven clients. I love my business; it does not feel like work unless I am working in a school too many days.

By last night I was exhausted. I was asleep on the lounge early and slept straight through to 7:30 this morning (I’m usually awake by 6/6:30). I had no desire to get up and fought with Sammy for just a few more minutes taking me to 8:30.

It will be a slow day here. I’m being kind to myself. That lesson I have learned. I will only do what I want to do.

The lesson I haven’t learned is balance. But, I have learned that in my case, that lesson extends from trust. I can only practice balance when I trust.

I possess a fear of not having enough money to live on. School holidays are coming and I am travelling just before and just after the holidays (bad planning), and am focusing energy into fear that I will not have enough money to pay bills. No sooner do I earn money that it feels like it is gone, so I keep working when it is offered because there have been so many times this year when it wasn’t offered.

And so, because I fear I have not enough, financially (I am abundant in riches everywhere else in my life), I seem to never have enough. Funny, I know that the energy we feed is the energy we receive. I exhaust myself fighting against the fear lol.

I never really possessed this fear/lack of trust when I was teaching because I had a stable income. I hope to leave teaching permanently so this is a lesson I must learn (and to do that, I probably need to remove the pressure I put on myself).

So, I am working myself into the ground. And, I am not feeling the liberation that should come from that, because there is no balance. Learning to trust is difficult. I trust the voices I hear that tell me it will all be fine, but struggle to let go and release into that.

With the exception of last night, I have been meditating every night.

Meh.

I am very quiet today, very still. There is no panic or fear. I am too tired lol. I am happy in my stillness. I am not sad. I am grateful for a rest day. And, I am grateful that I head to Uluru on a road trip/meditation retreat on Wednesday. And I trust that everything that needs to be done before I leave, will be done. Even though I am working again tomorrow.

A cycle of unnecessary thought. I think I need to go back to my chanting of abundance mantras. I didn’t feel this fear as acutely then.

There we go, asked and answered. I am truly a work in progress lol.

Rubbing Against Old Patterns

I am writing a book/book proposal; working hard to manifest last new moon's intentions. I have always wanted to be a writer. And, I am.

I am grateful for this platform in this technological and connected age. But, I want more. I want books in print, partly for ego, if I'm being honest, but mostly because I have something to share. I completed a Masters degree in Writing to support the manifestation of this dream. I started this blog to support the manifestation of this dream. I went to the Writer's Workshop to manifest this dream.

And this week, I found myself rubbing up against the same old conditioning that has plagued my life: fear.

That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not unique enough.
That I have nothing new to say.
That no one is really interested.
That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not good enough.

Fleeting thoughts, not deep enough to upset me. And, real enough to paralyze the free flow of my writing.

I combat these thoughts, this fear, and keep doing it anyway. This is what is different now. I push through in spite of the fear. I haven't given up. I continue to torture the words, forcing them into uncomfortable positions, making them do my will.

And then Saturday morning comes, I watch some inspirational videos, and I remember to trust myself, and I remember to trust the universe (or God), and I remember that every path I take leads me closer to my enlightenment.

And I hear the higher voice reminding me to be authentic, telling me not to do what other books have done, do what you do best Tina, and I recall a message I received last week from my long term friend and sister, Crystal, and she was already reminding me of what I needed to do. It took me a couple of days, that's all, for my mind to catch up and trust.

That pesky voice who lives in fear, man, it comes at the worst times, and it inhibits growth and movement, and I forgot to acknowledge it and tell it that I hear it, but it has no power here anymore, because it found a different way to get in. It didn't come in and stop me from starting, it waited until I was in the writing groove and then it struck, mercilessly. It camouflaged itself, and it has taken a couple of days for me to see it for what it is.

But I see you now, fear, little f, and I am telling you again, you don't live here anymore.

And so mote it be. Vanquished.

Time to write.

The Power of Fear 

We all experience it sometimes. That feeling that things could go terribly wrong if you do a particular thing, make a particular decision, or even leave the house. It usually starts with an unsettling in the belly, then you scrunch your face in some way before finding any reason, many reasons to say no, or not to do it, or not to go. And deep down you know that you are deluding yourself, but our ability to justify our fear surpasses that feeling. 

Now that I’ve had some time to process things, I’ve noticed that I’m becoming more conscious of how I feel and behave when I’m experiencing fear. As a result, like Liz Gilbert, I acknowledge the fear, apply my twenty seconds of courage, and start. I still talk the fear out of me because fear is strong and stubborn, and just because I start something doesn’t mean fear sits back and acquiesces. 

It’s hard. Life is hard. We have all been hurt. We’ve been battered and bruised. We all know how hard it is and how long it can take to recover from defeat. We all know the shame that we have felt when we have failed at something, or embarrassed ourselves in front of others, and the guilt if we haven’t quite measured up to the expectations others gave for us. 

All of these things create a soul memory that comes to the fore when we feel challenged, or unworthy, undeserving, and basically, just not good enough. We create a narrative and dialogue that then justifies this sensory fear of the unknown. 

I think I have lived a lot of my life in fear. I think that fear has stopped me from doing a lot of things. But I have also experienced many times when I have been able to override that fear with courage. 

And I have never been disappointed when this has happened. 

Two days ago, terrified, I climbed over some rocks and snorkelled. I loved the experience. But it wasn’t immediate. When I first put the mask on, fit the mouth piece into my mouth, and put my head under the water, I could fear my breathing which scared me. This caused me to tighten my chest and foolishly embrace the fear. I brought myself up and asked Mel if it was normal to hear your breathing. Of course it is. So, when I went back under the water, and I felt the fear, I told myself to trust and to relax, and my breathing settled. From there I was able to allow myself to dive under. 

And that wasn’t the only fear. I then feared that I looked like an idiot and that I wasn’t using my legs properly. 

And then I told myself that it really didn’t matter. Who cares what You look like when you are living such a blessed life? Like, really Tina, pull your head in. 

It was only then that I could focus on the beauty and the freedom of being underwater for extended periods of time, of seeing the fish and ocean life functioning and living in their natural state, of feeling the cool water rush against and embrace it as the body glides through. A feeling of divine liberation, of connection at every level: the physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. 

And yesterday I snorkelled again. No fear. Not even for a second. The body and mind knew and understood and remembered the delights that awaited it. And, I could then see the translucent stingers before they stung, and I could leave that section of water. 

My ‘shyness’ I think was a fear of judgement, of not being good enough, of not being normal. Now that I’ve let go of that label, I seem to have let go of the fear, for the most part, and am more open to meeting new people. Realistically, if they judge me but I like me, what does their judgement matter. 

It doesn’t. 

And if I fail whilst I’m living, what does that matter. At least I was living and not just existing safely, and at least I tried. 

Yep. Fear limits and restricts us. It stops us from being wholly authentic and wholly alive. There will always be excuses to not do the things we truly feel that we are being called to do, don’t let those excuses stop you. Find a way to live your truth. Find a way to be your true blessed self. Don’t rob the world of the opportunity to know you as you truly are. Your gifts are necessary for the world to flourish. 

Slowing Down and Trusting

I’m finally slowing down and feel more normal. I have let go of the stress of not working and am just letting it all be. 

I will have enough money when I need it. I have already stopped spending for the sake of having something pretty and am considering every purchase – will it serve a need. It’s taken almost a whole month to get to this point of calm. 

Transition is hard. Jumping is hard. Trusting is hard. 

Letting go of control is somewhat liberating. 

Yesterday was Saturday. When I work full time, come the weekend I am exhausted and just want to sleep. I end up sick and end up with more migraines. The body screaming to me that I’m not living the way that I am supposed to. 

Yesterday I woke up, drove to Collaroy (a place I’ve never been to) and had lunch with A friend I made whilst in India. It was just perfect. I wasn’t tired. I was able to enjoy it. And I did work a little last week so it’s not like I’m in holiday mode. 

I need to develop writing and meditation rituals, but for the most part I am achieving a sense of balance. I am making better food choices. I am going to bed at reasonable times. I am just living better. 

The choice for a gap year felt right, right from the start, but my mind conjured up demons in the form of overthinking money, when I have always believed that money will always be there when you need it and that has never failed. A gap year sounds wonderful, and it is, but it is also the time that our demons confront us to battle. 

It’s important to be patient, strategise and then slay those mot#*^ #*%~ers. 

Hehehehe. 

Crisis of Confidence

I finished last year on such a high. My Indian experience truly transformed my life by empowering me to integrate the different aspects of self and identity roles. I was unable to return home and not make significant change. This was a process. By following the signs and saying yes to different opportunities, I finally opted to take leave from permanent full time teaching this year. A massive decision. My identity as a teacher has sustained me for many years. 

During the last four weeks, my identity labeling has shifted. I am now considering myself as more than a high school English teacher. And man, that is terrifying. 

But today, interestingly and ironically, Mike Baird has resigned as Premier of my home state, New South Wales. He has cited the necessity to spend more time with his family as his main reason. I hope there isn’t a scandal waiting in the wings because his reason has impressed me. 

As a people, we seem to have surrendered the important things in life for work, addiction, fear. It doesn’t seem that many of us are living our best and most authentic lives. Most people I speak to feel a yearning, irrespective of how small, for something different. And most of us use fear as a reason for not seeking it. 

I am feeling that fear every day. I am so worried that I won’t have enough money for all of my adventures, then not enough time for everything I want to achieve. Bloody fear. It won’t stop me from walking this path. I have paid many deposits for a variety of travels and have paid in full my flights to Perth and Minnesota/Las Vegas. I will write my book and I will empower my business to do what it needs to do, but I am scared. 

Today I pulled out a Butterfly Affirmation Card and I giggled: 


I have faith that all will be well and that I am exactly where I am meant to be. I just want to acknowledge out loud that it isn’t easy. I am hoping that disclosing it will calm my mind and pacify my fear. 

You have to laugh. 

Mike Baird answered questions at the end of his resignation speech. The journalists attacked him, expectedly. Why did you promise to continue as recently as December last year? When did you make this decision? Where were you? Why are you doing this? 

It takes courage to stand against expectation, to walk a different path, your own organic path, to put yourself first, to create a new reality for your life, but I think it costs the soul more if you don’t. 

Kudos to Mike Baird today, for his resignation has reminded me that my choices are right for me. As a result, this upcoming year of transition, transformation, and discovery will continue to permit growth, and enable me to live fully and authentically. 

Scared but infinitely blessed. 

🙏🏻

New Zealand Blog thus far

Sunday, 10th January, 2016.

Our last day of just sailing for five or six days; tomorrow morning we will be at Bay of Islands in New Zealand. We do not have a shore excursion booked but rather decided to just get off and explore. I am looking forward to that. The last time (and only other time) that I was in New Zealand we did not come this far north. It was in July 1998 for Airds High School’s Band Tour. And every time I think of the tour I instantly associate the memory with rebellious piercing behaviour (nup, can’t let it go Trace and Mel – hope you are both reading this bit – and Gida, I haven’t forgotten you either).

Ah, memories … like the corners of my mind …

I set myself some homework whilst I was cruising. I have decided that signs can always be read in two distinct yet opposing ways, rendering them unreliable when you are relying on them for some answers. I have decided to keep stock of the signs and see which side is heavier at the end.

I have almost finished reading Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly. I spent most of yesterday reading, digesting, percolating, and today needed a break from it. I have highlighted it and made so many notes, setting myself mini-tasks to do as well as highlighting sections that I think would be great for professional learning for school (bad enough I set homework and tasks fir myself on holidays but to also be focusing on setting other people work – atrocious hehe). And Sara, I think you would enjoy reading this book; it’s one of those books that make us better thinkers and ultimately, even better people (like Liz Gilbert’s Big Magic).

The water is a divine blue today, almost purple. I have taken a photo of it against the pale blue sky but I don’t think the photos do it justice. I could do worse than my current workstation too. They change the day in the lifts every day. At first, you have a giggle and think it is cute. By Day Two, it is a necessity. Time is not the same on a cruise as time at home. Trace and I wanted tickets to one of the ice shows so we had to set the alarm this morning, with the change in time due to travel, we were robbed of sleep. But we got our tickets. Oh, and the alarm was set for 8.

I slept reasonably well last night. The motion of the ship swaying is soothing; however, yesterday morning I awoke after a restless sleep due to an insane dream. I have always wanted to surf. I am completely uncoordinated so this is a highly unlikely goal of mine. It is the freedom, and the being at one with the water that I crave. You know when the wave curls over and the surfers glide through the hole (pipe?), well my dream had our cruise liner going through that at an amazing speed (yep, was a gigantic wave) and we were at the front absolutely loving it and yahooing our way through. From both sides we were being inundated by buses, cars, and all sorts of other unlikely things, some forcing us to pull on the brakes and slow down very quickly; fortunately, we never hit anything. It was excitement actualised for me. Loved it. James was convinced it was a premonition for a tsunami that would wipe us out.

I think not.

I’m dodging around Brene. At the moment it has raised more questions than answers for me. The questions it is prompting centre around my motivation for becoming a foster carer, as well as pushing me to focus on the purpose of my life: what do I want to achieve and what do I want to spend my time doing.

Part of the questioning process is forcing me to think about whether I am hiding within the fostering, trying to belong to a world that I have never felt fully connected to (I have always regarded myself as different, a bit of a freak – I being the key word there). Am I more scared of being normal or of being abnormal? Am I defining my life and my successes by what I am not rather than by what I am? As a foster carer, will I be able to achieve all of my goals or am I restricting my ability to achieve all of my goals? Which goals are more important to me? Have I grieved my infertility (for want of a better word) journey? Is fostering a balm for that wound? As I said, more questions than answers.

But at least I am finding the courage to ask them.

 

Monday, 11th January, 2016.

 

When remembering the day and date, even from yesterday, requires real concentration.

I woke at 7.30 this morning to a phone call. Tracey asked me if I was awake (yep, I am now) and ordered me to go to my balcony.

By the time I unlocked and pulled open the door, what had been happening outside of her room was happening outside of mine.

The tender boats were being dropped and the pilot was being picked up. But most importantly, a pod of five dolphins was playing in the water.

The majesty!

The balconies of the boat were lined with people oohing and aahing.

  
The view here at Bay of Islands (I keep going to call it the Bay of Pigs) is phenomenal. I have never been this far north. It’s gorgeous. The horizon line marks the purple water we came in from and the water here, shallower, is back to blue/green. Hills face us on this side and rocky outcrops pepper the water, not quite icebergs.

Tracey said that in the inlet ahead of us, masked by the hills, there is another bay with houses cutely lined up as far as you can see land. I wasn’t awake when we came in. Dark clouds are rolling in from behind the hills and the sun is gallantly fighting them off, gallant but futile.

We do not have a shore excursion booked here so I am looking forward to a couple of hours of beauty and exploring. Off to breakfast …

   
 The sun won. On our way back to the ship in the tender boat it became very obvious why New Zealand is known as the land of the long white cloud. Straight ahead of us, spanning the entire length of the horizon, like a curtain, was a long white cloud, protecting Paihai (pie-here) from the rest of the world. Paihai, place of the Waitangi Treaty, is beautiful, picturesque, gorgeous, worth visiting, should be on your bucket list. I would come here again. The Australian equivalent would be Airlie Beach in Queensland but the Maori are treated much better here than the Aboriginals in Australia. There is a true and consistent acknowledgement of Maori heritage and culture here, decades ahead of Australia. Or there appears to be.

Today was the first time Tracey has set foot on the soil of her homeland in thirty five years, and the first time Dave and the boys have set foot on foreign soil. So appropriate that Tracey’s introduction of her homeland to them is their first overseas journey. We had to mark the moment with a photo. They were all under very strict instructions to let me off first so that I could capture the first steps of the family moving forward together. Needless to say, two of the four (I’ll leave it up to those of you that know them to work out which two) “forgot” to follow my instructions. After some quick and firmly barked instructions the photographs were taken and the moment marked.

   
 Tracey managed to coerce me into having a couple of formal photos taken on the ship last night by emphatically stating that when I die I will need a variety of photos in the obligatory powerpoint/film for my funeral. Yep, she did. And yep, it worked. Similarly, today’s photos will become iconic in those times for them too (I hope).

I seem to be getting back into connecting and attuning with crystals. Today I was drawn to Opalite (a man-made stone: opal dust in glass) at the markets here (real markets). This stone encourages one to explore within and all around to learn that even the most unimaginable life goals can be reached, they do not just have to be dreams and Opalite brings peace to all, it is a very beneficial stone to keep in areas where peace and serenity are needed. There are more, equally pertinent. I am going to start using crystals and stones again. I have decided.

Oh, and I got burned; sun definitely winning. Our shuttle bus driver informed us that this is the place that the impact of the ozone layer is felt most acutely. I had read on our information that the UV rate is 8. I probably should have looked into what that actually meant … oops, my bad. Thankfully I brought aloe vera gel.

Tonight after dinner, ice show and then comedian (adults only) – Gordon someone. Last show here before he disembarks and heads to Australia for a tour. Now I have forty five minutes of reading before I shower for dinner.

   
    

 
 

Nervousness

I have received contact from Fostering Young Lives; about to confirm my appointment times throughout December and January for the continuation of the application process to become a foster carer. 

And I am so nervous. 

The unknown does that. Insert nervous giggle. 

I am sure that I could be a good foster parent. I think I have resolved most of my issues as a human being. At least enough to make healthy decisions regarding parenting responsibilities. 

I think I am nervous because whilst I feel I will be accepted as a carer, I know nothing beyond that. And there is always a fear that I could be a bad carer, that it will be way too hard, and that maybe I’m not ready to sacrifice the freedom of my life. 

All big questions, and funnily enough, the same questions and fears I had throughout my IVF cycles if I became pregnant and carried successfully to term. 

My logic says that the fears and questions are sensible, even healthy, and so if I am questioning but continuing the process, then it will be okay because this is the path that I am meant to be on. Realistically, the path that I continue to choose to be on. 

I really am grasping my life and giving it a good shake. 

And it’s empowering more than nerve wracking. But the nerves are there. So many unknowns. 

Will I be at my school next year? Will I start my business by running my first workshops next year? Will I become a foster carer next year? Will I be successful? Will one happy? 

What I do know is that life is incredibly short. And none of us know what tomorrow will bring or when we will take our last breath. And that it is our individual responsibility to be the best we can be and to live the best life we can live. 

I feel that I am succeeding in trying. 

Fear is not crippling me.