Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Double d's

Do, or do not. There is no "try". - Yoda,
in the movie "The Empire Strikes Back"

  • Don’t look back in anger.
  • Do Live in the moment.
  • Don’t forget to take the time to smell the roses.
  • Do unto others as you would have them do unto you…seriously!
  • Don’t drink and drive.
  • Do your best…even especially when you think it wont matter.
  • Don’t assume its always about you.
  • Do something out of character once in a while; surprise yourself!
  • Don’t forget to flush – literally and figuratively.
  • Do yourself a favour by trusting your gut instinct.
  • Don’t underestimate the wisdom of a child.
  • Do a cryptic crossword and expand your logic.
  • Don’t look a madman in  the eye.
  • Do your daily chores and kegels at the same time.
  • Don’t define yourself by stuff or even worse…money.
  • Do physical exercise for your wellness.
  • Don’t forget the difference between want and need.
  • Do some things the old fashioned way.
  • Don’t blame others for the consequences of the choices you make.
  • Do what makes you proud and joyful.
  • Don’t wear white high heels…ever.
  • Do things for others anonymously.
  • Don’t lie to yourself.
  • Do rather than do nothing.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The versatility of C…see?

Gosh! Look what I found waiting for me over here!

I have seen this on my travels around the blogosphere so imagine my surprise!

Thank you Katherine

Muito Obrigada, Merci beaucoup, Baai Dankie
Seize the day I say (actually I didn’t say it first but you know what I mean).
The weather has taken a turn for the worse; the thunder and lightning variety, so wrapping up with my laptop and catching up is called for.
Suffice it to say I have more than a bit of catching up to do on my climb up the alphabet ladder so methinks it will be a good idea to combine today’s letter …C…with the conditions attached to this nomination.
And this is what I have to do:
1. Thank and link to the person who nominated you.  P
2. Share seven random facts about yourself.
Okay… here goes…

  • Cape Town… seems the right place to start this randomness; this is where I say I come from when asked. But it was not where my childhood was spent. I was born in Rhodesia now known as Zimbabwe and raised for 12 years on a farm just outside Bulawayo. At the age of 12 the family moved to the city of Salisbury now known as Harare. I was sweet 16 when the family packed up and flew to the latitude of 34 degrees south.
  • Comedy theatre… a passion I left behind when I moved away from Cape Town. I was introduced to the world of amateur dramatics when a friend asked me to work backstage as a Prompt. I don’t know if a star was born but a love for theatre and things cultural certainly found its rightful place in my life and a hidden talent emerged. My favourite role? Playing ‘Olive’ in the female version of ‘The Odd Couple’ (the Jack Lemon part).
made with love and care by Moi!!
  • Cooking… a passion I discovered in my new hometown. I think it proved the theory of time and place. I’d always been able to cook but hadn’t bothered much until the move away from Cape Town to join my newfound love (meh) included taking over a floundering restaurant. And thinking about “walking the boards” I think my restaurant became my own personal stage…service time was like curtain-up and the customers seemed to love it and the holiday makers returned time and again. The food wasn’t half bad either J These days I relish making Curry, folk go weak at the knees at the mention of my Chocolate Mousse and any catering I do will involve the creation of canapés!
  • Calamari as in a calamari Cook-off competition! Did I mention the restaurant was floundering… as in no passing trade… no customers? Well, the promise of summer brought with it the “bare foot festival” of which the cook off was an event that all the hotel and restaurant chefs entered. Chefs! I decided to enter as a means of promoting the Café … just to participate mind you, not to compete… well, I walked away with first prize for my winning recipe as well as first prize for the design of the stand (I guess my set designing experience from the theatre really helped me here!!) and thus came into my own as a Restauranteur.
  • Colonectomy. Colonoscopy. Colon cancer. Far too many damned C’s in there! I thought there could be nothing worse than a colonoscopy. I was wrong. Seriously, I cannot stress 2 hyphenated words enough …check-up… get one! Now! Two years of constant indigestion and the need for a medical clearance certificate forced me into the specialist’s rooms whereupon I had a gastroscopy – that is by far the worst procedure – after which it seemed rather cowardly to continue resisting the colonoscopy. It was nothing! A week later I was being wheeled into theatre and five hours later my colon was considerably shorter. And do I think about the years of resistance and how maybe the pain and suffering of this operation might have been avoided by having had the scopes? Hell yeah!
(mind you with an anaesthetist as cute as Mcdreamy it wasn't all bad!)

  • Calheta is a municipality on the southwest coast of a Portuguese island. Ironically it is situated on the latitude of 34 degrees north (!!) and is where I now live! And if you stay on that latitude and keep going lto the eft it arrives in Los Angeles where my brother and his wife live; where I lived for a while. On its way there it more than likely also bisects that bloody crop circle in Texas where I lived existed stayed for 6 months. Moving here was not as easy as just getting on a flight and arriving.  Sure our family has been coming to the island for over a decade and we now own property here, but to stay longer than the standard 90 days required Police clearance, Medical clearance (!!) and copious letters of recommendation and motivation, all duly translated. And it didn’t stop there, getting that stamp in my passport just gave me permission to stay here long enough for my permanent residence application to be approved or denied. More pieces of paper! Clearly the Champagne flowed 3 months later when the approval came through.
  • Curly hair. Naturally curly auburn hair to be precise! The bane of my mercilessly teased childhood but ultimately a blessing that set the adult me apart from the arbitrary!
Right… that’s 7 and hopefully suitably random… what next…
3. Pass the award along to 5 new-found blogging buddies.

Well I am sure all 5 have received this award time and time again but you know what? Bite me! The common denominator with this particular quintet is their collective way with words. Brilliant, witty, hilarious, inspiring - all entirely different; individuals.  

So without further ado here they are: Annabelle (I think we might have been separated at birth), Sunday (I have immense admiration for your endurance) (I also want your dog!!), Mommakiss (the new Fanny Flagg), Mynx (what can I say, you personify versatile!) and Semi True (yes I can relate!).
Now here’s the thing y’all, here’s another C word… CHOICE. You have the freedom to choose whatever you want to do with this bit of bling. You can do the 7 bits of randomness if you so desire… or not… this is more just my way of leaving a mark on your mantelpiece!
This has been fun.
Now ‘scuse me whilst I go pour myself a glass of Chardonnay and then...
4. Contact the winners to congratulate them. P
(that of course was HOURS ago when Blogger was in a coma!)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Be... just bee!

Today's B is for Boundaries.

Boundaries give definition to who a person is.

Ideally a person needs to know what and where their boundaries actually are and then be able to communicate them to others, right? Right.
In fact even Robert Burney thinks so. He says:

"It is impossible to have a healthy relationship with someone who has no boundaries, with someone who cannot communicate
directly, and honestly.
Learning how to set boundaries is
a necessary step in learning to be a friend to ourselves.
It is our responsibility to take care of ourselves - 
to protect ourselves when it is necessary.
It is impossible to learn to be Loving to ourselves without owning our self -  and owning our rights and responsibilities as co-creators of our lives."

I thought the dorkus and I were two people destined to be together but you know what got in the way? All of the above...
I dont mean to sound bitter but really, having lived the fairytale and having had it take me to hell and back in the proverbial handbasket, I'm just a tad hesitant when it comes to folk who are so called 'destined' to be together. Destiny just seemed to take too much damned hard work.
But let me not digress.

After finding my girl panties and climbing out of that hand-basket I made a decision. I decided that I wasn't going to feel that bad ever again. Ever.
And to achieve this nirvana I would have to walk my own talk. I have forgotten how many times I've uttered the words "The only way to change someone's behaviour is to change your own."

So I looked inwards instead of blamefully outwards.
I looked at all the men I have had relationships with; men whom I considered to be completely different from each other. Crapola!
From this new perspective they were all practically identical.
That would make me the common denominator then, right? So who was I?
Why was it that on one hand I could be really successful at so many things in my life, yet when it came to the most significant relationships I felt worthless? Oh don't get me wrong, it wasn't all doom and gloom with the dorkus, with the others, but I had to find out why this one had dissolved into a heap of nothing. I had to work out why, when it really mattered, why I had an almost inevitable inability to be able to speak my mind; my truth.
I had to work out why I have always been able to fight other people’s fights but not my own; why I could passively avoid conflict and yet be inwardly seething.
Clearly my continual tension, discomfort, irritation and anger were all clues to the fact that something was askew within my significant relationships…even the ‘destined’ ones!

So I picked up my spade and bucket and jumped into the sandpit of introspection and guess what I dug up? As far back as I could remember, right back to that little girl from way back when... especially when... then there was another common denominator that had shaped lack of voice.
I wasn't just a shy child; I was a child who has been silenced from the inside out...seen and not heard. I was a child who was fearful of speaking out, speaking up...fear of consequences...lack of boundaries.

But what boundary developing skills does a child have? In most cases none. Our parents are there to filter and nurture these skills.  Having an overbearing, dominating father and a passive mother who jumped to his bidding, and still does, certainly did not help.
Okay it wasn’t all bad. I mean in my quest for approval I have run not one nor two but three successful businesses; I can get up on a stage and give award winning performances; I have many friends who love and adore me but heck, ask me to fill out a blog profile and I am speechless!

And just how often do we justify not speaking our truths for fear of hurting another's feelings? Often! If we man up we'll admit that we avoid doing this for fear of consequence; fear of disapproval or rejection. Right?
So much negativity is thrown at the word "no". Whenever we do say it why do we feel the need to justify it?
Oh and lets not forget that other fabulous habit that comes with the territory of lacking boundaries…taking every comment or situation personally…sigh... How often is this about the other person? How much of what they say or do is a reflection of their own issues, challenges or boundaries (or lack thereof) rather than mine?

Often I tell you… often and muchly!

And amazingly I’ve discovered just how often a person had no idea I felt a certain way. For example…my brother…loves and adores me, right… but I have always been the butt of his jokes. A.L.W.A.Y.S
In fact when he and my Dad get together it’s a real comedy fest! However they have now learned that this hurts me; that I don’t actually find it funny being continually thrown under the bus..never have. They now think twice before saying things. And if they forget and ‘go there’ my silence fills the gap that I would have normally jumped into with some jocular rebuttal; one upmanship. Okay to be honest my Dad's not handled the change in my behaviour that well so we have a lot of silent moments, but hey, that's his business to mind and not mine.

So when I said I didn’t mean to sound bitter, I really meant it.
It’s been a trip journeying back and redefining the lines. The fun is now deciding which crayons to use to colour in the gaps.

Monday, May 2, 2011

it all begins with an A

 “More powerful than all poetry,
  more pervasive than all science,
  more profound than all philosophy are the letters of the alphabet,
  26 pillars of strength upon which our culture rests.”

There has been an abundance of challenges in the blog world; 30 days of this, 30 days of that. The one that that I caught the ..erm..tail end of was an A to Z challenge over here

I like the idea of committing to a discipline and I like the concept of this one as the alphabet theme leaves it open to interpretation and application. And yes it would be nice to be linked up with others who are doing the same thing to see what word they choose on any given day, but what the hell…there are hundreds to scroll back through over here

“Writing is a system of human communication that works through the use of visible signs. The beginnings of writing are inseparably connected to those of art,
and one must never treat them as separate entities.
All letters are signs, and all signs began as pictures.
The alphabet is the source.
When one considers the immense power of mans spirit,
it is amazing to think that it could not have developed without the alphabet.
How clearly we are heirs to this process…the links in a chain.”
Freidrich Nuegebauer

Ap-pre-hen-sion       - anticipation of adversity or misfortune; suspicion or fear of future trouble or evil.

This noun beginning with A was my theme-word for today.
Why? Well a little over a month ago when I was back in Cape Town for a short visit I decided to have a mammogram. Having had my first scan a year ago I had no feelings of trepidation arriving for this 8am appointment; I'd not previously endured that much joked about discomfort of having ones boobs slammed between a pair of frozen bookends. Sure it is uncomfortable for a brief moment, but really, all that fuss.
So I thought. Four hours, five scans and an ultrasound later I had changed my opinion. Although to be fair, the standard ~turn to the left, press, turn to the right, press, return to your cubicle and wait for your result~ procedure was quite bearable, as it had been before.
It was the waiting.
The cubicle.
The delay.
The not knowing what the delay was for.
Hearing your name being bandied about for a call back not once, twice or thrice, but four times.
By that time I was starting to snarl at the radiographer.
And still that was not enough.
I was instructed to return to the confines of my 90 x 90cm cubicle to wait until I was called for.
I requested a magazine refresh.
Eventually I am called to have my very first ultrasound.
The medical folk are all staring and the screen like they are watching their favourite soap... the bold and the boobiful perchance...
The nodding and the frowning is not calming my frazzled nerves.
So what now?
Now we need to remove the source of all our frowns.
And how does that work?
Well, we send you for another mamogram (another one??) this time with a needle (a needle???) so that some dye can be inected to mark the spot and then we find an available breast surgeon...
Whoa!! Surgeon? As in hospital, anesthetic, theatre?
Shit! This is now a Friday and I am supposed to be flying long haul on Monday... I try to explain through tears
Aah...much excitement...where are you going?
And that's when it hit me...HOME. As ghastly as this whole morning was turning out to be, it was in that watershed moment that I knew that the lovely little island that I had moved to a year before was indeed my new home.
And I couldn't wait to get the hell back here either!
Which I did... armed with all my scans and this morning was the morning that I started the procedure of having things attented to by the doctors here.
Ergo the apprehension...

"Apprehension, uncertaintly, waiting, fear of surprise, do a patient more harm than any exertion"
Florence Nightingale

Harm? Well if that's the case then I need to have a theme-word do-over!
by Bianca van der Werf

  1. the act of anticipating or the state of being anticipated.
  2. realization in advance; foretaste.
  3. expectation or hope.
  4. previous notion; slight previous impression.
  5. intuition, foreknowledge, or prescience.
That'll do. Especially number 3!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

May Day...Mayday

Clean slate
New beginning
Starting over
New month
Thirty one days of possibility
But you're still you
“Wherever you go, there you are”
Will your May be different?

Monkey Man hosts the 160 Character Challenge