Red wine, honest opinions and #adulthood

Alright, it’s time to be real. I think I’ve been doing too much of ‘trying to make it look like I’ve got it together’ and not enough of ‘where the bloody hell is the wine cause I got no clue how I got here’. I don’t. I really have no idea how I landed myself here. Life is good, man life has so many wonderful things in it that I almost have to remind myself not to be too happy because it’s annoying and always ends in not being happy. So I’ve just ended up being horribly grumpy and emotional while I try to work it all out in my head like a #adult.

I’m an adult. I’m about to make my first purchase of shares and I’m talking home loans and life with someone and all those big terrifying things I said weren’t on the table when I found myself in a tormented ball of ‘I have no friggin clue!!’ last year.

So we can get this straight, life is terrifying. Terrifying in such a way that makes me forget to eat lunch and leaves me holding my breath for multiple minutes at a time.

But it’s terrifying because it’s good.

I wouldn’t be terrified if I wasn’t in a great relationship. But I am terrified because right to my very core I hold this deep and pretty understandable fear I’m going to be left right when it matters. I’m scared of putting all my dreams, ideas, and hopes into life with one person because what if, on the odd chance, it happens again and I am in fact left to create another dream and another life…by myself. I’m not afraid of being alone in life, but I am certainly afraid of losing someone I love, having to recover from that, and also losing the dreams we had together. There is not a single day that goes by that I am not afraid of that.

But I am brave and I do have courage because 95 per cent of the time I’m able to remind myself it is ok, and it can and will work out. I have to have faith that yes, it might be a similar situation, but I am going to be ok. I’m might get hurt, there is always that chance, but I will recover. But man how amazing would it be if it actually did work out?! But I will not lie and say that I’ve let myself be 100 per cent excited…or even 70 per cent for that matter. I squish that excitement like a little ant eating my honey because I know very well that that excitement, the fall from that blissful hope, is incredibly damaging. And that makes me a bit sad.

And then there is talking about home loans is a whole new monster within itself. I mean I’m lucky I can even have that conversation, so being terrified of this is a good thing, it means life is good. But many people, myself included, would probably consider looking at buying a section and building a home and starting a small business with the first few years of being with someone to be nuts or ‘rushing’. And hey I won’t judge you for that opinion. But I definitely think there are times in your life when you have to look at opportunities and think ‘can I live with myself, without regret, in 10 years time if I don’t take this now?’ Maybe. But I’m pretty sure I’d be quite pissed at myself for not doing it when I could.

Here’s the thing I’ve learnt and learnt in spades over the past few years. It. Never. Goes. Your. Way. Especially when you really want it to. But, it does always go the way it’s meant to go, when it’s meant to go.

Was I pissed when I lost money and couldn’t sell Pip (horse #2) for over 6 months? YES! Was I incredibly anxious about selling Mardy when I needed the money 3 weeks out from my flight overseas? Yep. But he sold, right at the right time. Pip sold too, and no it wasn’t what I wanted and it didn’t happen when I wanted it to. But it was by far my most valuable life lesson and taught me how to dig deep and just deal with it.

‘Shit happens’ became my life motto and I apologize for the swearing but there’s really no other way to put it!

I’ve spent a lot of the past few years being angry about life, being upset, recovering. I’ve been incredibly mad about my health condition, I hate the fact I have to live with it every single day of my life and it’s like this constant shadow sitting in the corner. I’ve been upset about losing a grandparent too soon from something that was treatable. I’ve been pissed about heartbreak. I’ve been sad about the death of animals. I’ve had to look back and face some average decisions and deal with that part of my life. I’ve dealt with things just not going my freaking way for months and months on end. And I’ve had to look at exactly what it is that makes me, me.

And I definitely found it.

Sitting in the back of a tuktuk. Learning to communicate in different languages. Seeing people in little mud homes with absolutely nothing to their names. Standing on the top of a mountain in the Austrian Alps. I definitely found what makes me, me.

I think though I’ve at times, especially lately, let that slip away. I’ve gone back into my ‘trying to make it look better than it is’ bubble and I’ve attempted to put on a ‘brave’ face.

But that’s exactly how I cracked in the first place.

I’m not a perfect person, my life is far from perfect. I’ve had some incredible wins and also some incredible lows. But I’m here. I made it. I’m figuring out where I want this career to take me. I’m excited. And I’m learning to be excited and make the most of what I have.

I’m learning to play the cards I have in the best way possible, rather than looking at my neighbors cards wishing I could have that hand.

As I learnt in a 4 hour long card game on a 20 hr boat ride through Laos to Thailand, it is never the hand you have, but what you’re smart enough to do with that hand. A good hand helps, sure, but it doesn’t mean you’re going to win.

So yeah…keep’n it real, yo.

Too cheesy? Yeah I agree.

Anyway. I just wanted to get back to the crux of it. It’s pretty easy to get carried away in a whirlwind of baby photos, engagement announcements, weddings, new jobs, travel on Facebook and just in general! And those are all incredible, amazing things…but sometimes it’s easy to forget everyone struggles and it’s never perfect. It’s just life.

And everything that comes with life is pretty sure to keep it interesting.

But if you’re anything like me, you’re going to get to the end of the week and think ‘damn, I’m glad I began this love affair with red wine’. You also might be drowning in files and paper work on your desk, wondering when the last time it was you washed your hair, and desperately wanting it to be sunny for more than one day so you can actually breathe in air that hasn’t been recycled through the heating system several times.

*Sigh*

Till next time.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Doomsday prep

I survived two days in Auckland…just. Turns out a cold coffee with ice in it is a ‘cold brew’ in Takapuna (North Auckland) but an iced Americano in Manakau (South Auckland). It’s the same damn city guys, can’t you at least agree on what to name your cold coffee?! I also nearly died because drivers there are just…well…I nearly died. The motorway is fine, people kind of know to look out for others (though with four crashes in the stretch of motorway that runs from one side of the city to the other might suggest otherwise), but outside of that it’s every man for himself. I nearly hit a kid too on a crossing who thought that instead of stopping to check the cars were far enough away to ACTUALLY stop, he just walks out without looking, on dusk, in dark clothes, on a wet road. I stopped.Thankfully.

So with my heart in my throat 90 per cent of the time I was there I’ve concluded I felt safer on the busy streets of South East Asia than I do in Auckland. None the less I am home safe, back in Tauranga, where the drivers are equally as bad but there are far fewer of them.

As I was driving between the two cities (it’s a three hour trip in average traffic) I went back through the Waikato (where I used to live). Man I miss it.

The Waikato is very foggy, most people hate that. I love it. There’s nothing cooler than living at the top of a hill looking down at all the fog sitting in the bottom of the valley. It’s mystical in the coolest of ways.

I’m not missing the cold though.

However, I do miss the fashion. I have no idea how people in Tauranga don’t freeze. No one wears coats?! This time of year in Hamilton I’d be in boots, a scarf, gloves, and a coat. Not here. I’d just look like a weirdo if I wore a scarf AND a coat. But I can’t feel my fingers so I think I might just have to be unfashionable and start rugging up and watch all these weirdos freeze.

The first frost of the year is here (for Tauranga anyway, the rest of the country south is probably already well used to these) and I had to get the ice off my windscreen before work.

The best part though? My car started. Dad was very convinced it wouldn’t once it started getting cold because the battery has a mind of its own. I am of the opinion it’s not a problem till it stops working all together. And on that day I will be late for work and probably be very upset and it will be all my own fault.

None the less, I am trying to prove that it will be fine and it will make it through.

I know it’s at least three years old since I haven’t bought a new one since I got the car…it really is on its last legs.

I have one week to go before my exam (I call it dooms day)…but I have passed all the assignments for that paper so far, so I have a small amount of hope that I may go down in a small blaze of fire rather than a large one.

Shrug.

I’m tired from my Auckland training and I’d love to say that I’m taking the afternoon off to chill out…but I’m not. I’m going to study my butt off to catch up after missing a lot of study time while away training.

One. More. Week.

Then I can crack open my lovely $45 bottle of wine I splashed out on and enjoy it while having a spa. It was going to be a bath, but I feel like I might want people to join me in this wine drinking and it’s a bit hard for them to all join in a bathtub.

Actually don’t try to imagine that.

So life is happening. People are happy, people are getting married, having babies, getting cool jobs. It’s happening. And I’m happy to be part of their stories. It’s fun. I even like crying babies now. Apparently I do have a maternal instinct. Not sure I want my own one any time soon. But you know, at least I like other peoples now.

And on that note I’m off to achieve at least something today from the office before I head off at lunch time to frolic about in the sun for approximately 5minutes before I find myself back inside, cowering from the cold, studying.

Yaaaay…

Over and out.

 

 

 

 

Honesty

I really need to stop having these 11.30pm sudden brainwaves for blogs, they are highly disruptive to my sleep patterns! Never the less, since I went to all the effort of reaching over and turing my computer back on I better follow through with my potentially tragic blog post.

I began this blog three years ago because I wanted to be honest. You know that kind of refreshing yet cringe worthy honest you don’t find many places now? Yep, I wanted to be that. And I feel like I did that almost too well at some points. But lately I’ve been really dropping the ball. There are several things I usually leave off the table when it comes to blogging: my relationship, my family, my job.

Mainly because: I still want to be in a relationship, I actually enjoy talking to my family, and it is also necessary to continue being employed. Ok so the last one is a little bit of an over exaggeration. But I thought it was about time I started sharing some of the tough parts I tend to just avoid on here…because they’re life. It’s all part of life. And what point is there in having an honest blog if I’m never honest?

Long distance relationships suck…really suck. We only live an hour apart so it’s actually not that long distance. But after nearly four years there are some things I’ve come to love and come to hate about it.

It’s easy to end up with no social life because you spend most weekends at their place, or yours if they actually make it that far (stab stab, I promised myself this would not be a bitch session), you find yourself acting like a control freak because you don’t want to see their friends during the little time you have with them, sometimes it’s kind of nice having separate lives and not having to speak to anyone in the evening, ‘moving in’ is not as simple as just shifting to their apartment – it’s actually a rather large decision and requires up rooting your entire life, going out for a lunch date feels weird, you get to make the most of time spent together, when things go bad they’re not just around the corner, but you have two of everything so your over night bag doesn’t need repacking every weekend.

So after a chat with my homeopath tonight it was established I have a personality which tends to attract the whole ‘responsibility thing’…I like to be organised, I’m fairly reliable if you don’t want to get somewhere on time, so generally speaking I’m quite good in a ‘motherly’ roll. The problem with that is the other side of my personality imagines disappearing with no waring when I feel large amounts of pressure to act consistently like a grown up.

After a fight with my boyfriend over what’s important in our lives, bloody rugby, and feeling like I constantly mother my sister and also feeling like I’m stuck on this treadmill going faster than I can run at work…I kind of feel like I want to crawl under the covers and never come out.

Because part of me also knows it’s my fault!

I am that ‘person’ for some people, and I try to be that person so that people need me, and it’s not just limited to people, I never let anyone else ride my horse for six years for crying out loud! I like to be needed. But I often forget I need to let myself just be me. And just enjoy being me.

This year was about being unapologetically me…and I think I lose sight of that often trying to be everyone else’s person. I get lost trying to keep up. But I can’t. I never could. Sometimes life just has really good little reminders for me.

I need to let go, I need to let people stand on their own two feet, I need to allow myself to be angry when I’m not ok with things, I need to find who and what I want to be as a journalist.

I need me more than anyone else right now…and I think I’m slowly getting there.

So here is to honesty, and more of it to come!

Please fasten your seat belts and prepare for crash landing.

All by myself

My boss has been away for the past week (nearly two actually). I’m still sane, well as sane as I was before she went away. Any kind of sanity is quite debatable…but for the sake of this post, let’s just say I’m sane.

While the last paper in her absence is still to be published and it could very well be a disaster (it shouldn’t be, but for the sake of ‘touching wood’ I’m covering all bases), I feeling like I actually did ok. I’m an organiser, I love lists and calendars, and appointments more than I love chocolate. But being two people for two weeks does make my head hurt a little.

The thing with getting a paper to print and writing stories for it is more challenging than one might think. I picture myself as that person who stands in front of an orchestra and waves a wand. One of the most hair-raising blood boiling parts though, is the damn phone. That thing never stops ringing! I have resisted the urge to do the ‘pick up slam down’ on multiple occasions. I also think I may have pissed off a PR person when I said no they couldn’t see the article before it went to print, and I didn’t even feel bad.

THIS IS TURNING ME INTO A MONSTER.

But I’m coping just fine. Some people read ‘self-help’ guides, other see counselors, some drink wine. Me, well I tuck myself into bed with whatever I found in my fridge to make dinner with, and watch a programme where the main character is a conqueror.

And by that I mean someone who’s able to cope with life 95 per cent of the time in a comical kind of fashion but falls apart the other 5 per cent.

It gives me some relief to see other people fail and get back up again or to struggle with life in general but still be kick ass at it.

I think one of the cruelest things I’ve done to myself is buy a really nice bed and live in a house with a view. It takes some serious will to actually leave it some mornings. I mean, it takes more will than not wetting my pants when I drink two liters of water before a five hour drive.

Never the less, I am here. I’m dressed. I didn’t bring my snuggly blanket. I’m even wearing heels and makeup. think I’ve mastered today.

I’ma run away now

Being an adult is hard. There are times when my brain screams: WINE but my heart (and stomach) scream chocolate milk (the kind I can drink). Aside from the usual bills and unsuspecting things that need paying for when you really don’t want to pay for them, I’m learning there is more to this finance game. The first point of learning is credit cards.

I’ve had one for roughly three months now. It’s my saving grace and my monster under my bed. That little puppy clocked up nearly my limit after a series of ’emergency’ spends. They were legitimate…birthdays, my desperate need for a massage, the fact the food in my cupboard disappears as quickly as my butt gets bigger (and that’s a decent amount lately). It’s not easy you know keeping track of how many times I insert that card into machines…

Anyway. I’ve got the spending aspect of it reasonably under control and I’ve paid off most of the debt. But now comes the burning question: is the card I’ve got really the right one? I mean, I’m planning an overseas holiday. A big one. One that involves lots of flying. So perhaps an airpoints card would be the way to go? I’m thinking yes.

But then there are so many guidelines and hidden things that I just can’t get my head around. I’ve gone ahead and applied for one anyway, I mean, I might as well?

My next big thing with adulting and travelling is how to actually book a trip. I mean, most people would probably find this easy. But when you’re escaping for nearly four months of your life to a country you know little about, then flying, bussing, training, and possibly boating to several more in that time…it gets a little daunting. This is why we have travel agents. But then which one do you chose? Do you just rock up and lay it all out there like ‘plan my trip for me kind servant’ or do you ask for a quote in the most polite way possible and agree meekly to whatever they offer?

It’s scary.

Adulting is scary.

I’ve got grocery shopping, which includes death stares to small children in my way or who are misbehaving and top notch trolly dodging and grocery snatching, down pat. I’ve got paying my bills on time sorted, well by this I mean I can pay them all within two months depending on the penalty for late ones…rent, power always on time. I’ve even managed to master the art of call centres and saying no to telemarketers or those people who turn up at the door for money.

I can get to bed on time (most nights) and I change my sheets once a week and do the washing twice. My car is even full of petrol most weeks.

See, I’d say I’m mastering it.

Yet for some reason, I still feel rather unable to swim in a very deep ocean called ‘growing up’. What steps to take next in life? When do you move up in a job? When do you want more money? When do you take up new hobbies? When do you decide your work pants are too worn out and you need new ones? How on earth do you plan a trip? At what stage in life am I meant to be ‘moving forward’?

There are always these impossibly big questions.

Life never stops. Well, it does, but by then it’s a bit late.

People are getting married, having babies, are on their way to their dream career. Me, well, I’m still looking at online flights wondering if I should just board the next one and get the hell out before I really do grow up.

Just kidding. Kinda.

Lovely little home…or not.

I know you’re all sick of me blogging today. Three posts is far too many. But this is my version of procrastination.

I’ve been feeling very homey lately. We have a nice vegetable garden, and a pool, and a shed. And we have a fully stocked fridge and a lovely little house. So it’s hard not to feel happy about my little home.

But there have been some problems with my attempts at domestication. Actually, to be quite frank, I suck a little bit at it.

Our garden for starters. Spinach shouldn’t be hard to grow. But we’ve managed to let one whole lot go to seed, the second lot we scorched in the hot sun and then I drowned it, and now I think it’s just given up all hope.

Thank goodness there’s not such crime as cruelty against plants.

We have plenty of tomato’s, this year I haven’t nearly killed them (yet)…but they won’t turn red. We have green tomato’s. And a lot of them! Our broccoli came back from the dead, I’m not sure how. And I simply cannot grow basil, I kill every single plant. And I’ve been through about six just this year.

Never the less, we have something of a garden and I feel like I’m a good little home body because of it. So in celebration of our lovely home, we bought a pool. Just a small one for a few adults to sit in during the baking summer months. Oh, but can we actually put up the relatively simply pool? Nope. We’ve had to empty it once already and now it leaks every time we take the hose off the attachment. And the filter makes a funny noise. It seemed like such a simply task, I even read the instructions!

And washing! I try so very hard to hang it out before work, and make sure the loads are small, but do you think I can for the life of me remember to actually put it out? Nope. So it ends up washed about three times before it even makes it to the line.

I shouldn’t be allowed to be a grown up.

I’m eating a smoothie for dinner tonight and I’m going to cook up some gluten free pasta and smoother it in basil pesto (what’s left of my basil plant) for an afternoon snack…because cooking actual food just seems far to grown up for someone who can’t even fill a pool properly.

I think a run, a smoothie, and bed is the perfect solution to this ‘adulthood’ issue I seem to be having.

My real world is taking steroids

One of the benefits of being a journalist, I work well under pressure. There is this line between stressful, and then just to the point most people would declare insanity. Somewhere between the two is where I function best. My motto in times like these: ‘Well, I’ll just have to be organised’. When I say organised, I mean my life planned out at nearly two months in advance currently, with some things having been planned three months in advance. But there are always varriables, and I really don’t like varriables.

Since I have already declared insainty aproximately 15 or so years ago, I feel I have learnt how to embrace it, which is possibly how I managed to sleep last night.

Let me explain.

I have 6 weeks to foal a horse, continue trying to sell a horse, move house – this means actually finding one to move into, magicing up the money to then move into it, finding a house that fits all my stuff in it, and then organise at least three strong men to help me shift and cars to tow the trailers. And work two jobs.

Well I don’t have to, I just like to punish myself even further for actually coping so far.

The reason for two jobs, is because I haven’t sold the horse and I have to foal the other horse. That’s all cool and stuff. I just wish my body would just suck it up and stop trying to get sick. I do not need a day off, I need to organise.

My to do lists, I think, may take over my life and consume me in my sleep. People often say ‘welcome to the real world’ I think my ‘real world’ has been taking steroids.

I turn 21 at the start of November, currently I avoid looking at that month on my calendar, I’m afraid all the things happening will leap out and suffocate me.

You ever get that feeling where the world is actually suffocating you? Yep, I have been repeating ‘breathe, deep deep breathing. It will all be ok’ to myself over and over today.

I have discovered we have this pink bag in the office, when you put envelopes in it, they get magically posted. I love this part of being in an office.

So there you have it. My life is actually insane. I am going insane. I also have to take another blood test for my thyroid. It’s not going to be good if my breathing doesn’t keep up!

I think I might need to go for a run tonight…

Cheerio!

Then the smoothie fell

Right, once I’ve blogged I’m sucking it up and throwing myself into my job to take my mind off my ever impending doom that is my inability to cope any longer with emotion.

The year before I left for Hamilton is a bit of a strange one. I can’t really talk about it, not because there are any particular secrets, but because I actually can’t remember most of it. And no, I was not drinking. I’ve never been able to figure out why I can’t remember things that happened that year. I have little snapshots of particular moments, mainly the really hurtful ones, but no normal memories. I’ve heard of people doing that when they suffer a type of trauma, but that’s what confused me even more about it… I didn’t go through trauma?

But people perceive trauma differently.

There was a lot of anger and a lot of yelling. A lot of hate, and certainly not a lot of understanding that year. Between several different people. I shut down when I can’t explain things. I shut down when I can’t cope with an emotion or lack the understanding to deal with it. So, I shut down.

As I do each week, I caught up with an old ‘friend’ from the past. So far, it’s been really good for me to work through things. But, there was always the risk it would drag up the wrong things and the hurt would start all over again.

Then the pub played the stupid song. The song we listened to over and over and over again. I normally have no issue with it, I listen to it every now and then, it’s a good song. But then I said something wrong. And he wasn’t happy. Then we started talking about grandparents. The song, the glimpse of the past disapproval when I opened my mouth and should have thought it through, the grandparents. I just could not keep it together any longer.

You know in the movies when the room starts spinning and their heart races and they suddenly run out because they just can’t handle it all and their chest is closing up and their breath is getting shorter? Yep… that was exactly it… except I burst into tears instead of running out. I think, looking back, running out would have been a much more preferred option.

I was emotional, I tried to say sorry for saying something I shouldn’t have. And then it just fell apart. The anger, the hate, everything I thought we’d got past was right there.

So, then my heart decided to throw this huge hissy fit. I’m tired due to lack of sleep. And I’ve lost all my beta blockers to tell me heart to calm the hell down.

I also managed to jam my little figure in the draw this morning… then spilt smoothie down my entire front, floor, desk, paperwork, and chair at work.

I think… and I don’t often actually do this… I’m giving up on today. We’re just not getting along.

I’m going to take a few deep breaths, change my clothes, do an interview or four, and have a cup of tea. Then I’m going to hide from the world until I am ready to cope again.

#wellthat’sjustlife

Like a headless chicken

I want to hide. The kind of ‘hide under my blankets because there are monsters under my bed’ kind of way I did as a small child.

Not that I ever believed monsters lived under my bed. My imaginary friend Sammy lived under my bed. He was a good friend. Actually not too sure when we stopped being friends.

Anyway, the reason I want to hide. Being editor makes me want to cry. I mean, I like being in charge, I’m just that sort of personality, I like having control. But I really don’t like people being mad at me.

Apparently you get that a lot when editor. Or at least I do? I swing between ‘I want to scream at you because you’re an awful human!’ to ‘I want to cry and run away and say I’m sorry a million times’.

Thankfully, I’ve managed to control both and have settled for a polite yet ‘the shit is happening this way’ sort of tone.

I have realised the reason we are told to write to a 12-year-old audience since being editor. Someday’s I really do shake my head and lay it on my desk with a ‘are you actually serious?’ sigh as I read some emails. Most people are great… it’s just those small few.

On a positive, I got to visit the zoo yesterday. I haven’t been to the Hamilton Zoo in a very long time, it’s fantastic! I am a little bit in love. I think I am going to go on a trip there when I find a spare moment, for a proper look around. When I say spare moment, I really mean sometime in the next two months and it will be booked in advance because that seems to be how life works lately.

I shouldn’t complain.

I had a fantastic weekend up the mountain with beautiful weather and fresh snow, along with great people. I have slept just over eight hours for the past four nights, so I am starting to feel a little more alive…

Nonetheless I am developing a slight fear of people.

Right, I’d better get back to doing stuff.

Cheerio.

Day one: this is life now

Petrol stations are good places to meet men, apparently. I don’t know if I just look particularly sexy washing my windows or if the way I grip that petrol pump is something special… but it has to be the number one most awkward place to be hit on. Of course I don’t know the quality of these men, however this has happened on several occasions, and almost only at the petrol station. Being hit on is a nice confidence boost, standing awkwardly trying to avoid eye contact and conversation with said men, while willing the pump to pump just a little bit faster, is just not much fun at all. 

I’m not sure if the concerned, stressed and exhausted look is something people are into now-a-days, it could be the professional look too, yes, perhaps. Either way, I am worn out. Day one of job: good, long, and well, over. My feet are killing me and I want to avoid humanity for a wee while, but I think with a few more days under my belt I will begin to really enjoy it. Adjusting to so many new environments at once, that is too overwhelming to be overly excited about anything. It is a great job with lovely people and an exciting and manageable workload. There is just a lot to get used to.

The nicest thing though, buying groceries without having to worry obsessively about the price of every single product, and coming home knowing I don’t have to do anything until tomorrow at 8.30am. There is something unbelievably exciting about that. No more assignments, ever. 

I think an early night is in order. 

This is life now, this is normal and this, is going to become routine. That is daunting, exciting and little bit sad.