10. January 2015 (Draft – images coming)

Day 254 Thursday 1st January 2015
A new year begins, hopes and dreams converge and motivation is high. May today be the start of a year full of love, passion, creation and fulfilment.
Grateful today for new beginnings

Day 255 Friday 2nd January
Feeling very grateful for a good days work in the garden. Potted the roses and herbs into bigger pots, trimmed the suckers from the plum tree, partly weeded the vege garden, fixed the chook fence and dug up some pavers. Thank you Sam for mowing the paddock and a huge thank you to Karen for not only helping me in the garden but also getting a heap of washing and other housework done too. Love you both to bits

Day 256 Saturday 3rd January
Jessica – 29 years ago I was lying in a hospital bed holding the most perfect baby girl I had ever seen.
I fell completely head over heels in love with you and I swore to God I would be the best mum ever; I would never yell at you or get angry or hurt you in any way.
How naive I was.
I have yelled, I have gotten angry and I have hurt you and for those times I am and always will be so very sorry. But there is one thing I never did.
I never stopped loving you.
I never stopped being immensely proud of you.
I never gave up hope that one day we would be friends as well as mother and child and my hopes have been realised.
I saw this photo today, taken of you and your sisters and my heart swelled with love. I am so grateful that you came into my life, I am so grateful that your sisters followed and I am so grateful that the three of you are so close. I wish I could have been with you today but I know that you are surrounded with love and I hope you can feel the presence of my love for you as you read this tonight. I love you my sweet little dove.
Happy Birthday

Day 257 Sunday 4th January
Grateful for Internet images

Day 258 Monday 5th January
Getting in early today
I watched this video and it made me cry. It made me cry because I believe I have raised two boys who would react the same way as the boys in this video and for that I am immensely proud and extremely grateful. Sam is already a man and I have watched him control his anger and walk away so many times when he could have used his fists instead. Nicholas is still growing and I hope he watches his brother and learns from him too so that he may become the gentle man that I see in Sam now. Love you both so much

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=935640966457578

Day 259 Tuesday 6th January
Today I am grateful that I have been writing these posts for 258 days as it reminds me to hold on to what is important in life and to let go of what is not. It would be too easy to complain tonight but I won’t as I’m sitting under a beautiful moon, it’s peaceful and quiet and I am surrounded by love. Life is good

Day 260 Wednesday 7th January
Grateful that my children know I would never turn them away
Heartbroken…
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH
When you choose to have a child you sign up for ANYTHING that might happen. You don’t have the right to say, “I didn’t sign up for this, Gay, Lesbian, Bi, Trans, Intersex shit”.
These are OUR children
I’m so sorry Leelah, I’m sorry that we let you down and I’m sorry that you felt you had no choice and no chance.
RIP Leelah Alcorn

Leelah’s Last Words – “Fix Society”

If you are reading this, it means that I have committed suicide and obviously failed to delete this post from my queue.

Please don’t be sad, it’s for the better. The life I would’ve lived isn’t worth living in … because I’m transgender. I could go into detail explaining why I feel that way, but this note is probably going to be lengthy enough as it is. To put it simply, I feel like a girl trapped in a boy’s body, and I’ve felt that way ever since I was 4. I never knew there was a word for that feeling, nor was it possible for a boy to become a girl, so I never told anyone and I just continued to do traditionally “boyish” things to try to fit in.

When I was 14, I learned what transgender meant and cried of happiness. After 10 years of confusion I finally understood who I was. I immediately told my mom, and she reacted extremely negatively, telling me that it was a phase, that I would never truly be a girl, that God doesn’t make mistakes, that I am wrong. If you are reading this, parents, please don’t tell this to your kids. Even if you are Christian or are against transgender people don’t ever say that to someone, especially your kid. That won’t do anything but make them hate them self. That’s exactly what it did to me.

My mom started taking me to a therapist, but would only take me to Christian therapists, (who were all very biased) so I never actually got the therapy I needed to cure me of my depression. I only got more Christians telling me that I was selfish and wrong and that I should look to God for help.

When I was 16 I realized that my parents would never come around, and that I would have to wait until I was 18 to start any sort of transitioning treatment, which absolutely broke my heart. The longer you wait, the harder it is to transition. I felt hopeless, that I was just going to look like a man in drag for the rest of my life. On my 16th birthday, when I didn’t receive consent from my parents to start transitioning, I cried myself to sleep.

I formed a sort of a “fuck you” attitude towards my parents and came out as gay at school, thinking that maybe if I eased into coming out as trans it would be less of a shock. Although the reaction from my friends was positive, my parents were pissed. They felt like I was attacking their image, and that I was an embarrassment to them. They wanted me to be their perfect little straight Christian boy, and that’s obviously not what I wanted.

So they took me out of public school, took away my laptop and phone, and forbid me of getting on any sort of social media, completely isolating me from my friends. This was probably the part of my life when I was the most depressed, and I’m surprised I didn’t kill myself. I was completely alone for 5 months. No friends, no support, no love. Just my parent’s disappointment and the cruelty of loneliness.

At the end of the school year, my parents finally came around and gave me my phone and let me back on social media. I was excited, I finally had my friends back. They were extremely excited to see me and talk to me, but only at first. Eventually they realized they didn’t actually give a shit about me, and I felt even lonelier than I did before. The only friends I thought I had only liked me because they saw me five times a week.

After a summer of having almost no friends plus the weight of having to think about college, save money for moving out, keep my grades up, go to church each week and feel like shit because everyone there is against everything I live for, I have decided I’ve had enough. I’m never going to transition successfully, even when I move out. I’m never going to be happy with the way I look or sound. I’m never going to have enough friends to satisfy me. I’m never going to have enough love to satisfy me. I’m never going to find a man who loves me. I’m never going to be happy. Either I live the rest of my life as a lonely man who wishes he were a woman or I live my life as a lonelier woman who hates herself. There’s no winning. There’s no way out. I’m sad enough already, I don’t need my life to get any worse. People say “it gets better” but that isn’t true in my case. It gets worse. Each day I get worse.

That’s the gist of it, that’s why I feel like killing myself. Sorry if that’s not a good enough reason for you, it’s good enough for me. As for my will, I want 100% of the things that I legally own to be sold and the money (plus my money in the bank) to be given to trans civil rights movements and support groups, I don’t give a shit which one. The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren’t treated the way I was, they’re treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights. Gender needs to be taught about in schools, the earlier the better. My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say “that’s fucked up” and fix it. Fix society. Please.

Goodbye,
(Leelah)  Alcorn “

 

Day 261, Thursday 8th January
I grew up in an environment where beliefs clashed. I had one parent who truly believed that being a mum was enough and another who believed that nothing I do would ever be enough. I’ve struggled my whole life with this. Part of me was happy and content raising my five children and enjoying all the little “enough” moments, part of me felt that I needed to be doing “more” to be accepted as a functioning member of society.
I volunteered in various ways over the years to try and fulfil the “more” aspect, I’ve worked, gone back to Tafe, then to Uni and I have no regrets about any of this as it has helped me to grow in confidence and maturity.
What I do regret is that I allowed the “more” aspect to undermine the value of the “enoughs” that I experienced every day for 29 years.
Looking back and looking forward, I see now why my father was so wrong.
Yes, I think we all need to contribute in some way to the greater society, but in no way should this become a priority over our first job.
I am a mum. It has been a huge responsibility, it has consumed every waking (and sometimes sleeping) moment, it has brought me more joy, pain, hope and fear then I ever could have possibly imagined and it has been the most rewarding career I could ever asked for.
When people ask me now, “What do you do?”
I hope that I will look back on this day and say,
“I am a mum, I do other things too, but first and foremost I am a mum and that is enough.”

Why being a mom is enough – http://findingjoy.net/why-being-mom-is-enough/

I’m talking about simply being a mom.

I’m talking about getting up in the morning, slapping your face with water, looking in the mirror, sighing, brushing your teeth (maybe), and picking up that toddler and wandering into the kitchen and pouring cereal in bowls, rinsing dishes, kissing the top of their head, and waiting for your coffee to brew.

There isn’t much glamour.
There is you. You giving of yourself. Minute, by minute, by minute, by minute until those hours add up to create a day which adds up to create a week which adds up to create a month which adds up to create years which add up to create a life. A beautiful life filled with ordinary enough mom moments.

Somehow in this mixed up media world of things to do and places to go and dreams to follow the beauty of simply being a mother is completely lost.

Being a mom is enough.

It’s enough, I say.

Sometimes we want to look to those big things and use them as a grade for success. We look at the cool science fair projects where our child got the blue ribbon. But, honestly, we miss the hours of interacting and holding glue sticks and looking up things and laughing side by side. We want the trips to Disney or American Girl Doll and discount the time spent in the backyard. The bar of success and joy and happiness gets pushed so high by culture that the little things, the enough mom moments, are lost.

Do you know what matters?

This.

The other day my 15 year old came to me and told me she missed me. Missed me? I couldn’t believe it. I was a bit incredulous, actually. I told her about the trips to the movies, the trips to the yogurt bar (are those places ever cheap? I mean, seriously, $24 total for four containers of yogurt with a variety of too heavy toppings? End rant.), shopping together, getting Starbucks, and all of that. She looked at me and told me that’s not what she meant. She told me she just wanted me present during the day.

Little things.

Like stopping my crazy busy mom and work agenda to look at the graphic design she made on the computer and really looking at it and trying to appreciate her talents. It’s about me taking thirty minutes to play cards at the table with them and not checking email constantly on my phone. Email can wait thirty minutes. They cannot. It’s in not worrying so much about the laundry and instead just letting that go and being thankful for a family to do laundry for. Just being there. Cooking together. Laughing. Giving of myself in the simple things.

Mom things.

The things that don’t get celebrated on Pinterest that much. They’re the just a mom things that I write about and celebrate. They’re the things that most people probably won’t see.

They don’t see you stand in the bathroom and gather your resolve every morning. They don’t see those of you who mother alone without much support. They don’t see the trips to the car back and forth and back and forth. They don’t see you counting to ten a dozen times before noon. They don’t see you look at the bank account and sigh and try to figure out how to make three meals with what’s left in your pantry. They don’t see you walking into the principals office, doctor’s office, friend’s house and defending your child.

They don’t see bandages placed on knees. Kisses on foreheads at night. Pillows pushed just the right way and blankets tucked to the perfect demands. Laundry folded and folded and folded. Tears that sting your eyes as your keep going. Dinners prepped over the stove. Times of laughter over silly things. Hair brushed and pulled back into pony tails. Prayers over wandering teens. Prayers over little babes. Nights spent sleeping in a chair holding a sick child. Days where the house is a wreck but you’re reading books. The brave smile on your face when you’re weary.

Those things matter.

Those things are the little things that add up and and up and up.

I say those things are enough.

Don’t be weary, dear mother, in trying to keep up with a supermom agenda.

There is no supermom, really – that whole supermom who has everything together is just a fallacy. There are real moms. Real, authentic moms who admit that they don’t have it all together but keep on fighting. Scared and tired moms who keep fighting. Moms who are overwhelmed by keeping up with littles all day long. Moms like you and me who sometimes feel lost in a world of outward accomplishments.

A mother isn’t based on external perfection. A mother is the person, the woman, just like you. The woman with little ones in her care that she loves, and sometimes wonders how she loves them because they’re driving her batty, but still she does. She fights, gives, prays, works, and doesn’t give up even when she wants to throw in the towel.

That’s you. Today. Tomorrow. Yesterday.

I say that is enough. 

It is more than enough.

You are amazing.

~Rachel

Day 262, Friday 9th January

Grateful that I chose not to place flowers on my own grave. Hope is an amazing feeling xxoo

Day 263, Saturday 10th January

I get it too.
Miss you mum and thank you for believing in me xx

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10152567163946701

Day 264, Sunday 11th January

Have had a lovely day today… Caught up with dad for his birthday, out for lunch with Karen and a couple of great friends and then hanging with Jessica for the arvo and trying to work out a pattern for Miss Tully.

Day 265, Monday 12th January

Pride cometh before a fall.
Grateful for loved ones who reach out to catch me

Bantamus Life never goes as we want , especially when we try to take total control, rather than let fate and actuality do their thing … we are all but human, and everyday is a promise of some tiny new thing to learn or achieve …

will throw another curve ball thought … is it pride or is it a lack of willingness to let go and feel a little vulnerable ? or let go of a little bit of that control ? let someone in just that shade further ?

Annie Both probably. When you’ve been independent for most of your life, admitting you need help can be a tad uncomfortable

Thank you, I know this but am shocking at taking my own advice lol

Bantamus *cough* ah ha … but that can also be an expression of love and trust in the other person, that you are prepared to allow the relationship to keeping evolving, go to even deeper levels, to build even more trust, to give them the opportunity to care for you in the way they feel is right, for them to express their love to you in a deeper way.

(disclaimer: that’s not to say relationships stall or are in any form of trouble; in any relationship, be it friendship, professional, personal) we all try to keep elements of control and boundaries.

Those dark little recesses that are our personal corners and what makes us us; and in a comparative statement you might call them the little things we liek to do alone, such as hobbies

Day 266, Tuesday 13th January

Grateful for a fun day with Jessica making baby clothes and getting to hang with my girl Karen.
‪#‎givesthebestbackrubs

Day 267, Wednesday 14th January

3000 words, not a bad effort for one day’s work if I may say so. Grateful for opportunities

Day 268, Thursday 15th January

Grateful my loved ones are safe and sound tonight

Day 269, Friday 16th January

Grateful for my bff Terye. Was lovely catching up with you and the kids. Miss you all so much, including you Greg, Matt and Miss Olivia, can’t wait to get over the water again xxoo

Day 270, Saturday 17th January

Grateful that I managed to save my tomatoes before they all came crashing down. The wind had uprooted stakes and 7ft plants were bent over in half. Fingers crossed

Day 271, Sunday 18th January

Oops forgot to post yesterday as I had to drive to Hobart straight after our monthly luncheon. Had a wonderful lunch at The Beach Hut in Ulverstone with a great group of friends, including children of the human and canine varieties lol. Looking forward to the next one

Day 272, Monday 19th January

So I’ve just got home from Hobart after a long, exhausting and slightly stressful day. Sam went well with his army application so things are moving forward with that, just needs to get rid of a bloody tattoo on his finger lol. Nicholas is home after being away for a month in Melbourne, no thanks to Jetstar for 2hr delays due to engine trouble (WTF – not feeling too keen on flying these days) and my sinus headache has finally started to settle. Feeling grateful that Nick is home safe and sound, for hot showers, my own bed and Baileys Irish Cream

Day 273, Tuesday 20th January

Have had a lovely dinner with family tonight for Sam’s birthday. Grateful for love and laughter

Day 274, Wednesday 21st January

Grateful for a very productive day, 4500 words and nearly ready to be submitted to start the editing process. Fingers crossed

Day 275, Thursday 22nd January

Feeling very grateful that my trip to the dentist only involved a filling and not the loss of another molar

Day 276, Friday 23rd January

Happy 15th birthday Nicholas. Love you sweetie

Feeling grateful for wisdom and insight gently given and grateful that I’m not too proud to hear it from someone who is nearly 30 years my junior

Day 277, Saturday 24th January

I am so grateful that we both see the soul on fire residing within us. Love you babe

— with Karen.

Day 278, Sunday 25th January

Have had a fantastic day with Karen, Abby and Nicholas down at Montezuma Falls. A few huge downpours while we driving there and back but no rain to speak of for most of the walk. Beautiful spot especially with all the rain
Now I’m going to try to stand up and go have a shower lol

— with Abby and Karen

 

Day 279, Monday 26th January

Went and saw ‘Wild’ with Karen today. Great movie that left me crying in a good way. Afterwards, Karen’s boss asked us to help with picking up hay bales. I’d forgotten how much my body appreciates hard work. Feeling good and grateful for a full day of love, laughter, tears and good old-fashioned sweat.

 

Day 280, Tuesday 27th January

Today I am grateful for 18 years in the company of an amazing young woman. I will miss you more than you realise baby girl. Good luck, God speed

“The breaking of so great a thing should make a greater crack.”

William Shakespeare,
Antony and Cleopatra

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Day 281, Wednesday 28th January

This morning I am so grateful I got up early to watch the sunrise. I have had cuddles with Angus, a visit from a little frog and just as I was about to head in I received an email that gave me a great laugh. It was an invitation to go camping/bushwalking and the following excerpt brought a big smile to my face

“Some people have expressed their reservations about joining us because of one or more of the following issues:
Snoring – snoring is a disability, as is insomnia. Snorers can share a cabin, non-snorers can use earplugs.
Composting toilets – the second review below describes the toilet as clean and well cared for. Toilet paper is provided. We provide hand sanitiser.
Sharing a room with people of the other gender – there are two cabins. If I get a booking from one other man and six women we can have a men’s cabin and a women’s cabin.
No showers – we take portable fuel stoves to heat water (and cook on) so you can always have a bucket bath if you like, or drive 15km down the hill to use the coin-operated showers at the commercially-run campground”

Have a lovely day everyone

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Day 282, Thursday 29th January

Grateful for old friends who haven’t let the years or the miles come between us. This one’s for two amazing friends who I personally think are frikkin awesome.
Narelle and Sam

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Day 283, Friday 30th January

It never ceases to amaze me how many times we see this in life. That it is often those who have the least, that give the most. Seeing this video tonight reminded me of how often I have been on the receiving end of someone else’s generosity and often that someone was a person who had very little of their own to give. And it’s not just financial generosity that I’m referring to either. Time, effort, a listening ear, a helping hand have all come my way at different times and many of these things have come from people who are struggling with the lack of the same thing in their lives.
Today a friend told me how much my gratitude posts have been helping her of late and how much she appreciated them. We talked about the journey I have been on this past 282 days and how much I am learning from it. I don’t think she realised how much it meant to me to hear that some of what I am learning is also helping someone else because there have been many days when it’s been really hard to find something to be grateful for. Today is not one of them.

http://www.sunnyskyz.com/inspirational-videos.php?vidid=1701%2FHe-Gave-A-Homeless-Man-100-And-Followed-Him-To-See-How-He-Spent-It-You-Won-t-Believe-This#mwrWZXAAOrQeu7ED.01

Extra: Jane McGonigal – gamer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfBpsV1Hwqs&feature=share&fb_ref=share

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Day 284, Saturday 31st January

Today Karen and I have been together for 8 months. Some times I’m amazed at how quickly that time has flown by and other times I find myself reeling from the fact that we still act like lovesick teens in the first throes of love.
(not complaining at all lol)

She is my rock and I am hers, she understands me in a way that no-one else has ever done and I am very grateful to have her in my life.