Friday, December 2, 2011

One Step Closer

After a manic morning of fights about "put your pants on" and "how many times do I have to tell you the same thing?!" I dropped my whirling dervish at preschool and took the little one (2) with me to the Parklands where I was meeting my lovely ladies.  I call them my lovely ladies because they are.

About four months ago I joined a dance group.  Not because it was a good dance group, more because I am a dancer who has not danced in more than a year and I, my body and my ego suffer because of it.  So I joined the dance group at the Benevolent Society where they run free activities for women and supply childcare.

There I have met a lovely group of women of which I am the youngest by a good twenty years at the very least.  None of them are or have been professional dancers and yet in dance they find a soul satisfaction.  As with every other experience in my life, the lessons are many and not obvious at the outset, but they reveal themselves through natural attrition.

In the case of these lovely ladies the lessons have been this.  Through over fifteen years I have attended and ran adult dance classes.  The adult dance class tends to be a very pressurised situation, with a high amount of expectation and judgement placed on the self, others and the class.  With ideas hot in participants minds like, "I'm going to be a dancer" or "this is how I'm going to get fit", "I'm so unco' I can't get these moves" or "everyone is looking at me and laughing", the disturbed internal voices gather an invisible fever pitch that is quite honestly exhausting and sometimes hard to ignore.  Immediately through my new experience of dance with the older woman - lovely ladies - I noticed the absence of this energy which was replaced with a calm and acceptance.

Over several classes I just sat back and observed, the gentle approach to getting the moves, the attitude of the teacher who praised her willing students for just taking part.  I concluded the difference between the younger and older woman who dances is this.  The younger woman tends to be outside of herself, not really experiencing the dance, but more concerned with how she looks, how she's performing and how other people are perceiving her.  Whereas the older participant (50+) was more internal in her motivation, she was clearly dancing for herself in every way, the other concerns where not non-existant, but they were passing thoughts rather than real concerns.

It became really clear to me that this was ideal, to truly dance for yourself, with no concern for anything outside of yourself.

So this morning as we danced in the park and were only briefly glanced at by passersby, I lifted up my arms and embraced the sun filled sky and I was present.  Present as my arms reached towards the sun, present as my balanced wobbled on the uneven grass beneath my sandals, and present as I smiled at my angel baby who patience watched her mother dance from a nearby stroller.

So it is funny the paths I walk and the moments I take, and the wry smile that crosses my face as I dance to funky town with my lovely older ladies with tinsel in their hair.  I remember bigger stages and thinner dancers who were no more talented or beautiful but ever so more self conscious than these.  And I know with a certainty who was truly happy in that moment, and what letting go it took to get that way.

Friday, July 15, 2011

The moments in between

My grandfather celebrated his 90th birthday yesterday. A momentous day; we had planned a lovely quiet luncheon at the local rowing club on the river, but instead I found myself huddled over his large vulnerable figure as he lay oddly huddled to one side in the hospital bed.

I had got the "guess what happened?" phone call this morning as I was getting ready to leave. It was my aunt telling me that my pop had had a fall and they think he may have broken his wrist.

"how are you pop?"
"awww terrible chris, awful".
My pop a male and therefore general over reactant to pain, winces. This time it's extra hard, and keeps on getting harder as Alzheimer disease tightens it's grip on his sanity. Every couple of minutes he's not sure why he's in pain, where he is, or who all these people are. He can't make out unfamiliar shapes in his broken eyes that fell victim to macular degeneration some years ago, nothing he sees makes sense, but he still tries to.

Happy birthday pop! A wry smile brushes across his lips... Yeah real happy.

My uncles and aunts passed through one by one , while I take turns with my younger cousin chasing my youngest daughter up and down the hospital corridor.

It's funny, these times are the nothingness of life, and yet in the scheme of things, they are what family is about, they are when love fills in the gaps.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, June 10, 2011


I had the most pleasant experience this morning and I thought I would share the love.  Firstly update...(seem it's been like 100yrs since I posted last).  This is the abridged version.

  • Relationship turns verbally and physically violent
  • Counselling which works, just not the way I thought it would.
  • I leave with child and 3 mths pregnant
  • Go O'seas
  • Come Back, have baby
  • Living with Mother
  • More Counselling

Present day:
Single Mother of two, living with mother, going to counselling and parenting her booty off!! (Oh and still studying for degree).


Anyway back to the pleasant experience.  I've been here for almost two years and have been looking at this child friendly cafe from the outside looking in for a long time now, so I heard there was playgroups there and kept meaning to drop in.  So today I went to the playgroup (with child of course).

It was lovely, good coffee, lovely people, safe and secure setup with a lovely little free morning tea of fruit and cake for the kids.  I was really chuffed.  So here's the love.

The Playgroup is run by Uniting Care Burnside.
Location: Yummy Cafe, 80 Woodhouse Drive (Cnr of Woodhouse and Copperfield) Ambarvale
Time: Friday Mornings, 10am-12pm

They also have a speech therapist in attendence every second week and for more info contact Margaret at North Campbelltown Family Centre on 87963222

They have other locations and days so call for more info.  My 18mth old had a ball!!