Wednesday, December 29, 2010
It's almost a New Year. This is a wonderful time of the year for a lot of people. New beginnings, new hopes, high intentions. Goals set..... One of these for a lot of people is finding a new relationship.
This time last year I was single. I had ended a "nearly there" relationship because it wasn't good for me. I knew what I wanted, I just didn't know how to find it. What I did know is that liking who I was first & foremost was the most important aspect of finding "him". So it was with a spring in my step and music in my ear courtesy of my iphone that I walked to the gym. It was New Year's Eve. I was going to one of my oldest friend's homes that evening. Was taking M - my ten year old son - and hanging out with J & C - and their two adorable girls. I didn't have a date. I was fine with that. I was happy. In love with life. I would have liked to know someone special but I knew that sooner or later I would. It was just a matter of when. But the point is I was comfortable with myself - and excited rather than daunted by my single life.
Then "it" happened. I was wearing my ipod in a pocket device, secured by a velcro strap on my hip. Walking down a hill in Teneriffe my ipod decided to take a journey on its own. Perhaps it was objecting to the Matt Kearney tune I was playing. Or maybe, just maybe some other hand was at play. We will never know. But my ipod went flying. Down, down, down the street - heading straight for the storm water drain. And I was running after it like a crazy woman - calling out "don't go in the drain, don't go in the drain.". It went in the drain. Sitting there trying to retrieve it - once establishing that it was not smashed, I was, I admit, putting in out there that I wanted help. I do not admit to flagging down cars, as S will say I was. But anyway when a 4WD pulled up, reversed and released a cute mid to late 30s guy, with that three day growth look that I liked, I wasn't complaining. He told me he was an engineer and "used to design these things". I was only mildly impressed. I just wanted my phone, I didn't care how he got it. After attempting to unscrew the drain he realised he could just lift it up. I didn't mind. I admit in the time he was taking to assess the drain I was coming to some more conclusions about him. He was cute and he was nice. I had no idea if he was single. In fact I thought he was married. He just kind of looked settled. He looked, I thought, like someones dad. But no - I didn't look for a ring and I didn't see the baby seat in the back of his car. I just went on instinct - and, as usual, it didn't let me down.
As I thanked him for my precious phone and walked away to the gym I can remember thinking that at least he knows which gym I go to. He could always have joined... But he trumped that. He drove across (on the wrong side)the road, beeped his horn and called out to me just as I was about to walk in the door. He was a bit shy and embarrassed (which I liked) and apologised for being "tacky". He asked me "if I was dating anyone" and then gave me his card. It was up to me to call him but I thought as he had gone to a lot of trouble - risking traffic infringement and all - that was the least I could do.
There is more to this story - and I'm willing to tell more - in other blogs if you like. That was the last day of last year. This year has been a good one. S & I moved in together a few months ago and our boys are happy, we hope. It's been an interesting ride - and there are still more to come. I am no longer single - but am equally as excited. I wasn't looking that very moment but I was ready for when it came. That is serendipity. Be ready for the unexpected. And make friends with your iphone.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 12:20 PM
Sunday, August 8, 2010
We are moving in two weeks time. I'm savouring my peaceful Sunday serenity and wishing I could bottle it to take out of the cardboard box on moving day. It is going to be hell. There is no way around it. Two houses moving to one. M & I have lived in this apartment for nearly three years. Two years and 9 months if you are wanting specifics. It has been my haven and my salvation. If that sounds dramatic or cliched I apologise, but it's true. I left an unhealthy and unhappy relationship 2 years and 9 months ago and needed to find somewhere where I could be me again. To forge a new relationship with myself and my son. To be independent, and strong, lovely and lovable - again. I feel that I have achieved this. This apartment and I will always be friends. I will drive by and think fond thoughts and laugh at some of the memories, and cringe at some of the others. In growth there are always minor disasters and embarrassing situations. And I am definitely not adverse to them, as my friends will attest.
But it is without regret that I am leaving. Like a good relationship, it has been a mutual decision. Shortly after S & I discussed moving in together, and finding a new place with new energy and space, my apartment started to give me signs. Things started to fall apart. The taps in the bathroom, the cupboards, the dishwasher - all need repairing. M has outgrown his room. My apartment has gently been nudging me to leave its cocoon like status and go out there again. Take a risk. Live with someone you love. Scary? Yes. Comforting? Also. Exciting? Definitely.
But back to the moving. I'm looking forward to the weight loss and muscle tone! Last time I lost 4 kgs and gained definition to my calves that I didn't think possible. I suppose I was mentally stressed and emotionally then though - that is always a weight loss supplement you would find hard to sell. The physical aspect will be there again though. This apartment is on the top level of a brick 70s walk up and there is no lift. S's house has precarious stairs that I'm terrified of killing myself in my high heels every day in - let alone carrying cargo. The new house will be relatively easy at the other end - I hope. Although deciding what goes where will be another issue.
S and I are both Aquarians. In other words, we are both.... opinionated and stubborn. In the most part, we have similar tastes and definitely similar values. Taste in movies are generally fine, TV, humour, food, wine, holidays.... all good. Music we struggle but have some ground.... Some....
But the time bomb is our art. I have this one particular piece that I adore. It is I suppose akin to the way I feel about this apartment. It makes me feel happy, secure and very excited about the future. It is an anchor for me - a reminder of what has come and gone and what's important for the future. S hates it. I can't work out why - but he does. He says it's too pastel. Which is fine - he is entitled to his opinion. Except if it prevents me from bringing it with me. S also has a painting which is a bone of contention. I don't love it - but I will accept it as S bought it at the time of our meeting and it too represents a lot of things. Trouble is that it is fairly abstract to the point of obscurity. It is difficult to know the gender of the couple in an intimate embrace. Luckily S & I believe they are male and female as we are in a heterosexual relationship. Unfortunately we cannot agree on which one is male and which one is female. S keeps trying to convince me of his point of view but he can't and won't. I am quite happy in my viewpoint and feel just as strongly about it as he does. But everyone else we have brought in to try to adjudicate seems to be of the consensus that it is gay porn art - gender debateable.
So we are in the situation where my expensive, beautiful painting that I bought from a female Russian painter's exhibition is in jeopardy. And the loving, sexy, intimate piece bought by S is widely considered to be... well not really representing us? I refuse to fight. Lucky for me I have bargaining power on my side. Gay porn in the bedroom surely equals pastel balloons in the living room.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 5:24 PM
Sunday, July 25, 2010
I don't know how my siblings and I didn't kill each other. Four children - and one TV for a long time.. My parents either could foresee guerrilla tactics being surreptitiously practiced in bedrooms, or just got tired of insisting that the ABC was cool - and upgraded to three TVs in my teenage years. The black & white one in my brother's room didn't really count though. His room reeked of his rugby socks and the TV operated similar to the juke box on Happy Days.
These weird limbo days before S & I move in together seem to revolve around who will be watching what and where we will be watching it. Much like Tony and Julia, S has had to surrender to the Master Chef phenomenon and knows that there is more chance of Kevin Rudd staging a coup d'etat and storming The National Press Club than there is of anything else been viewed at 730pm this evening.
For the most part, S & I have the same taste. Altough I know he sacrifices a lot for me, like Friday Night Football, not to mention Mondays. And I have loved the new programmes introduced to me, just as sharing Mad Men has enriched our take away & red wine nights. I knew he would love it. What's not to love? But there isn't just the two of us. A ten year old and a two a half year olds' taste is somewhat....pedigree? Thomas The Tank Engine and Merlin can drive one slightly insane, not to mention Dr Who, which still freaks me out. Seriously freaks me out.
So the blending of families will mean the blending of tvs and taste. Give and take. That's my motto - although this is damn hard. Having lived on our own for some time there are little idiosyncratic viewing habits that will have to be ditched, or exposed. Watching Neighbours will no longer be able to be passed off as "I'm just doing it so M can talk to me about current issues that it so responsibly exposes". This guilty secret has been outed. I like it. And can't take credibility from the fact that I don't watch Home & Away. It's like saying I didn't inhale. No one buys it.
So healthy viewing it will be. Only watch things that you would not be ashamed to watch with George Negus (I struggled to think of a better social media barometer - help here would be appreciated).
Bring on August and blended TV and save me from myself. But tonight I am going to indulge fully in Master Chef, knowing that the rest of the country (bar S) is right there along with me. I just went to Coles and my regular Sales Assistant was dressed bizarrely in chefs hat and apron. I have refrained from calling these guys anything like Check Out Chicks/Charlies since I have found myself riding the same buses and socialising in the same wine bars as these diverse men and women. This is what happens when you live in the same little pocket for nearly 3 years, you start to be on familiar terms with everyone. Anyway, I found myself in a heated debate whilst he checked through my vegetables and toilet rolls. He is adamant that Callum should win for the very reason that I think he shouldn't - he has stuffed up so many times. I, on the other hand, firmly believe that Adam will be crowned the winner (providing the crown will fit over his bun that is). I walked away shaking my head in disbelief but also quietly acknowledging his argument. Perhaps it was his chef's hat that gave him that unexpected air of authority....
So I will think of my dressed up Sales Assistant tonight as I am watching my beloved programme. While my beloved will be wresting the remote from his two & a half year old's precious grasp after the 11th episode of Thomas The Tank Engine. Everyone happy? Not overly as I don't get to snuggle and share. But some things must be sacrificed. Just ask Julia and Tony. Not to mention poor old Kevin. I wonder what he'll be watching tonight? My bet will be on Master Chef, with a prerecording starting an hour early.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 4:11 PM
Sunday, July 18, 2010
My boyfriend says I hate the cold. I don't. I love it. If I'm in bed snuggling. Or in front of a fire with a beautiful glass of Red. Or in a cosy restaurant with good friends - and that Red again.... Seems to be cropping up a lot doesn't it? Which leads to my next point. Winter indulgence......
It's harder to be naked in Winter. And easier not to be. But I'm training myself not to think that way - otherwise come Summer one tends to be in for a nasty surprise. So I steam up the bathroom (somewhat akin to putting Vaseline on the lens) and take a good, long hard look at myself every morning and night. I am brown in Summer. Let's just say I'm a paler shade these cooler months. Tans make you look thinner. Everyone knows that. So what I am doing is forcing myself to be truly honest and to try to like my body - white and all.
It's harder to do things in Winter. It's harder to get up. It's harder to be sexy. It's harder to put those gym clothes on when those flannelet PJ's are just so damn snugly.... I notice it with kids too. They don't want to get dressed. What is the point? They don't care what people think.
I have to confess (and this is a biggie - I'm sure I will feel better once its out there), there are times in Winter when I secretly wish I was a bogan. I think they are on to something with their flannys and Ug Boots. Seriously. I read somewhere the other day that Ug Boots are selling in London around the 300 Pound mark (where do I find the pound symbol on my laptop - can anyone tell me btw?) Now this is confronting. It's getting expensive to be a bogan. In Winter anyway. Not sure if prices are hiked on thongs (both types) in the Summer or tattooists decide to set up shop permanently in Ibiza - for an obvious plethora of customers and to let their hair (streaked of course) down themselves.
The other thing about bogans is that they don't seem to give a toss about what other people think. I like that. Also - have you noticed how many of them are stick thin? But now I am really going off track - or tracksuit - seeing we are on a theme. I don't want to be a bogan. I just want to dress like one. Sometimes - sans tatts and the obligitory pack of Winny Reds. I am advocating the classy bogan. Think Lara Bingle. Although not sure about the class there... But I bet she doesn't look bad naked in Winter. Russell Crowe? But only on a good day. You have to admit he's incredibly articulate and he is teaching all those football players to play chess....
Anyway - I will try to maintain some element of class and body consciousness this winter. If you see me on the street, however, in a pair of uggies and gazing longingly in the window of a chocolate shop and carrying brochures for some Spanish getaway- please forgive me. I am just going with the times. I'll worry about demisting the mirror in September.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 3:36 PM
Thursday, May 20, 2010
I work in Recruitment. My previous job was a Matchmaker. Similar roles really. I find jobs for people - I find love for people. Two massively important missions in life. Two massive responsibilities. Two long processes……
The process of applying for and landing your dream job is not a small journey. It requires research, diligence, lots of shoe polish and the art of negotiation – and that’s just for your Recruitment Consultant!
Although it’s got me thinking. Recruiting a love interest is a whole lot harder than getting a job. You would think. But do we do enough due diligence?
What job requires family and friend approval before the probation period is up? Have you ever had to strip naked for 3rd interview? Unless you are working in the Porn industry then I think probably not……
It’s funny. Because in both roles I have been handed lists of requirements or Job Descriptions. Recruitment is an easier match. After hours investigation is not a requirement. I never have clients rejecting a candidate due to their bad taste in bedroom linen (just as a side girls – red satin sheets are not a good advertisement for your chastity) or a candidate rejecting a client due to the size of “shoes”.
If you think about it - there are so many boxes to tick when looking for a soul mate, its amazing that anyone ever gets together – let alone stays with someone for a lifetime.
But the thing is – when it works, it works. In both cases. Finding the right job is so incredibly important. We spend so much of our life at work. And then thinking about it when we are not even there. It has to be “the right fit” on so many levels, economically, socially, intellectually. It has to correspond to your overall ambition and direction.
Wow! Transfer all that to a partner and it sounds like a relationship yeah? Add on all the extras and TA DA! There’s your wish list for a relationship.
I am not advocating a cold, clinical process in looking for a relationship – far from it. The romantic in me would not stomach it. Cover all bases sure – but don’t underestimate the power of intuition. Be gentle with your applicants – but don’t stray too far from your Job Spec. If someone seems dodgy then they probably are. Their manipulated CV
will probably be revealed as forgery sooner or later. “She is just a friend babe. You are just being neurotic” or “I have only ever had sex once in my life before you” will be discovered sooner or later. Reference check people. Reference check.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 7:40 PM
Thursday, May 6, 2010
There are many ways to be inspired. I'm sitting here right now - knowing all the things I should do - write that script, go to the gym, do that proposal, fold the Mt Kosciusko of a clothes pile in my bathroom, send in my son's high school application blah, blah, blah. I know I WANT to have these things done. I'm just finding it hard to motivate myself to do them.
Okay - let's go through my list. Write the script. Peter Helier has a movie out this week called "I Love You Too". He inspires me. He started writing this script 8years ago. Now I don't want to wait that long. So I will take his 8 and raise him 1 but I'm devouring his tips and day dreaming my little (well not so little as I can't motivate myself to get it to the gym) butt off. Day dreaming is easy. Day doing is so much harder.... so I'll download some new music. And get my ass into gear....Will finish this blog, go to the gym and then work on the script.
That's 2 down, 17,000,000 tasks to go. I won't bore you with the rest of the list - but let's just say I have to answer to my boyfriend tonight as he's coming over for a lamb roast (just another task on my list but not a biggie - I like cooking) and he is inspiring. Now this is very different to being a tyrant. I've tried dating them. They don't work. I used to have a boyfriend who would poke me in the back to correct my posture all the time. He told me I would look thinner if I stood up straighter. Apart from being excruciatingly embarrassing, I bruise easily and a purple and white spotted spine doesn't look so hot in a bikini, as you can probably imagine. His comments about my weight also discouraged any body sculpting exercise or diet programme. I was either too thin or a bit moon faced when I was with him - the in-between phase obviously appearing during one of our many "breaks".
People either make you feel good about yourself or they don't. S does. We talk about everything (my avoidance tactics don't wash with him) and he seems to get the little idiosyncrasies of my personality and he motivates me in ways that others have failed to do dismally. He uses humour and intelligence to get my competitive and creative blood flowing. But most of all - he leads by example and is just a great guy who supports and loves me for me - but doesn't let me get away with being slack. Plus, I want to go to the gym cause S makes me feel sexy, therefore I want be sexy. Simple really!
A girl I used to work with was getting married a few years ago and I remember her telling me a conversation she had with her fiance. She told him that she loved how he "made her want to be a better person". Apparently he shook his head and said "No I don't ----, I make you want to be you". Now how much more motivating is that than someone who keeps moving the goal post and basically saying "I will love you when... or "I will marry you when you do this..." or even worse "I will have sex with you when....."
We are all fragile beings, and so hard on ourselves. This been said - choose your partners and your friends wisely. Those people that you constantly find yourself defending with words like "but she means well" or "he doesn't mean to put me down" really are not doing you any good. There are so many amazing people to meet and know in this life. If you have to take an honest look at your friendships and reevaluate then sometimes you just have to do that.
A few years ago I decided that I was only going to have people in my life that let me breathe - that make me happy and motivated but remain true and real. I can honestly say I have done this. There is no one in my life who is "toxic" anymore. I have the most inspiring girl friends. Incredible mothers, career women, creative beings, stylish, intelligent, fascinating creatures and so beautiful inside and out. In small and huge ways they motivate me every day through the way they live their own lives. They are also so genuine and true in their encouragement and support of me.
It's hard to be inspired or motivated when you are tired or down, I know. It's also hard to be inspired when someone tells you to be. I know I can be incredibly annoying if I've had a glass or two of wine and I get all excited about something and want to spread the love. Luckily I have such divine friends that I know a slight eye roll to the left tells me to "shut the *&^% up as Lucy here who is not a friend of yours but mine wants to kill you"> That's about when I go home, secretly hoping that at least Lucy will think about something I said but really knowing that the overall memory will be of an over excited drunk girl.
My friends know that this comes from a place in me that wants everyone to be happy and to embrace life. They also know though that people have to find their own little Michelle-From-The-Biggest-Loser in their own heads.
Nature, friends, family, Australian Story, movies, song lyrics, children's honesty whatever they are - try to bottle them and take it down like medicine when you need to. With a spoon full of sugar - not a poke in the back.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 12:20 PM
Saturday, May 1, 2010
In primary school there was a saying that used to get thrown around the playground quite regularly; "Jealousy's a curse, pregnancy is worse" You had to kind of sing it though and give curse and worse two syllables each for emphasis. I guess in our little catholic hearts we equated falling pregnant to mortal sin so this phrase or taunt was fairly powerful. I can't remember saying it myself (I would like to think that I was possibly more original - and nicer than that!) but I do remember it being said to me.
We had strange little fights back then. Friendship groups were shuffled and changed and best friends guarded and treasured. How ridiculous it was to be jealous of your best friend staying over at another girl's house for the night and yet to this day I can remember the pain and anxiety still.
For some reason I escaped competition and rivalry over boys. Going to an all girl's school from year 4 onwards didn't really give me much opportunity although some girls still "went with" boys from The Christian Brothers school down the road. Riding past Stephen Leydon's place on my bike was the closest I got to a primary school relationship (looking back I was a little stalker. I can remember planning what I was going to wear!)
It was not until my adult years that men really featured as a jealousy issue. But by then it had become something else. All akin to attracting the "bad boy" and the "wrong guy" I seemed to take great pleasure in making men jealous. I thought this was what you were supposed to do. My immature heart told me that they must really love me if they got so jealous. More fool me. It didn't mean they didn't -but it certainly wasn't proof that they did. My behaviour was annoying. And theirs out of control.
Jealousy is a curse. But it comes from a place within all of us that is related to our self esteem and ego. Shakespeare talks about "green eyed" jealously through Portia in The Merchant of Venice
How all the other passions fleet to air,
As doubtful thoughts, and rash-embraced despair,
And shuddering fear, and green-eyed jealousy! O love,
Be moderate; allay thy ecstasy,
In measure rein thy joy; scant this excess.
I feel too much thy blessing: make it less,
For fear I surfeit.
And again about "the green eyed monster" through Iago in Othello
O, beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on; that cuckold lives in bliss
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger;
But, O, what damned minutes tells he o'er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves
I suppose the colour green is associated with sickness, possibly because the skin takes on a slightly yellow/green tinge with serious illness. It is a sickness. An overwhelming and disabling one.
I have had friends in relationships that seem to thrive on jealousy. It is exhausting to watch and to cope with. Especially when you know how much love is there and that the jealousy is pointless and unwarranted. Yet they play it out with each other. Testing and taunting, probing and baiting. And fighting and screaming.
To be in a good place in your relationship with yourself first eradicates the need for proof of adoration of others. Don't look for ways to prove to your partner that you are admired by others. They will see that for themselves and be proud of that but they don't need it shoved in their face. Look for partners who are confident and self assured enough not to have to have you by their side 24/7 proving your love to them either. It works both ways. And unfortunately most jealous people have trust issues because they themselves are not faithful or strong in the committed stakes.
The peace and tranquility that comes from a healthy and loving and freeing relationship cannot be underrated. It's a joy. Of course insecurity and little nabs of jealousy are going to sneak in every now and again. But learn to control it. There has been documented evidence that jealousy can lead to temporary insanity. The rage that is fuelled by unsubstantiated or real betrayal is dangerous and monstrous. Sometimes we let our mind travel to ridiculous and crazy places. The only way back is through health. If you find yourself going to that horrible, painful land, go for a walk. Listen to soothing, classical music & to the laughter of children. Like yourself. Love who you are. That is the monster's kryptonite. Send that khaki coloured ogre back to its boring and dark cave and skip merrily into the moonlight.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 3:58 PM
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
I have a theory. (Well I guess you have worked out by now that I have a few theories & the former sentence will probably be carved on my gravestone) Okay - but I have a theory about men. (well - don't get me started). Right. I will try again. I HAVE A THEORY ABOUT MEN'S MATURITY.
There - I can be specific now and will immediately jump to a broad, unqualified and somewhat contentious claim. I have a theory that men start maturing at aged 33. I have run with this one for a while. And while a few (predominantly male) eyebrows have raised and twitched, no one has come out actually advocating strongly on the negative team. Of course this is a generalisation and of course there are exceptions to the rule. But on the whole, from my own "research" I have found this to be largely true. I am not entirely sure where I picked the number 33 from (no - I really don't think Jesus dying on the cross has anything to do with this.....) but it does seem to be the magic number.
I have interviewed literally hundreds of men and women on the subject of relationships. The last four years of my life have been dedicated to finding out exactly how men and women think in regards to their own past relationships and where to from here with regards to future partners. I am pleased to say that on the whole - both men and women seem to learn from past problems and do enough self reflection to at least have the intention and emotional intelligence to try to "do better next time". Even those who have been cheated on, lied to and just generally treated like crap seem to have really gone through some kind of re-wiring process before they want to move on. Well at least those that came to see me did. And if they hadn't - I told them to go away and do it and come back a year later.
What I did find most astounding though was men's absolute and overwhelming conviction that they wanted to have children. And I have found that after the age of 33 (on average) this is more and more common. It is almost as if a light is switched on in men at a certain time and it is near impossible to turn it off. When men are on a mission to procreate (and I mean to actually be a dad - not just do test runs) then it is seldom that they give up on this till they have found their suitable mate.
Scientific Studies show that men's hormone levels are drastically shifted by fatherhood. For instance, when men are expecting the birth of their first child, levels of cortisol and prolactin (the same hormones of attached mothers) are seen to increase rapidly in the males system. Also,a father's testosterone level drops by about a third(on average) in the first three weeks after his child is born.
The levels rise or fall depending on how much time the male spends with the pregnant mother. The more time he does spend - the higher the dosage of the sex hormone he receives.
On the other hand, high levels of testosterone are associated with "incompatible non-nurturing behaviours," as one researcher put it. If your man is off the scale with his testosterone test, the theory goes, don't count on him being the one to wake up at 2am for the nappy change or singing the little one to sleep with personalised lullabies. They'll be too busy fighting other men in bars or in the office and seducing other women. Sorry. Not me thats saying it. It's science speaking.
There's also some very exciting evidence that fatherhood can change the male brain. Yay! Men can get pregnancy "mushy brain" too! Not quite. Typical. It seems to make them smarter, sharper and more well rounded. A 2006 study found enhancements in the front brain of men after childbirth. The neurons in this region showed greater connectivity, suggesting that having young children could boost the part of the brain responsible for planning and memory.
This obviously helps when trying to locate your own particular child in an overcrowded playground. As opposed to the guy with the high testosterone levels who is probably chatting up the blonde at the slippery slip and doesn't see little Lucy dangling precariously from the monkey bar.
Research has shown that fatherhood also increases the brain's reception for vasopressin, a hormone that has been shown to prompt animal fathers to bond with their offspring. They found this out by injecting it into prairie dogs and watching what they did next. Imagine if you handed that out at nightclubs - all the fathers and future fathers would leave the building!
I am still seeking theory to back up my 33+ claim. I'm sure it's there somewhere. But my research coincides with my suggestion to women that it's better to pick the nice guy over the aggressor if you want a good husband. The bad boy at the bar might be fun and exciting for a while but not so much fun in the wee hours of the morning when your feet are freezing on the floor of the kitchen while you are heating up the milk and they are out doing the same thing they were doing when you met them.
Men do grow up. They just have to want to. And believe me - most do. I'm thinking of inventing a kind of RHT. (Random hormone testing). Before you girls decide to get married or hook up long term - or even waste your time trying to "change him" - ask him to pee in a cup. If he's got the hormones you want - go for it. If he doesn't - tell him to grow up and come and see you in a year.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 10:07 AM
Saturday, April 17, 2010
As far as I am aware, no one has fully deciphered the meaning or machination of dreams. In all the research I have done (wow Freud is heavy!!!!) no one seems to explain it better or more concisely than my son M. M told me a few months ago what dreams are. He said that they are a mixture of "memory and imagination". That kind of blew me away as I think he's right. I'll go one step further though and add the subconscious to this and I think we might be on to something.
How many times have you woken up and felt in awe of what you had dreamed but had no idea of how you could have possibly dreamed it? People, places, even feelings long forgotten suddenly come to the surface and make you start questioning their significance in your waking life.
Of course this leaves out the whole notion of prophetic dreams - which my friends will know I sometimes claim to have. I have thought about - this a lot. It is not the dreams that are prophetic. It is just being more connected to your core/soul/inner intelligence - what ever you want to call it - that allow you what seems at first to "see the future" When really what it comes down to< I think, is just being more conscious and aware in my daily life and living well and with direction and well being. This allows my powers of perception to be more accurate because I'm not clouded with self doubt or worry. Therefore the way forward and little nuances of life are more clear to me. So of course it makes sense that this will be reflected in my subconscious and transferred to my dreams.
The brain never sleeps. It just has shifts. I see the subconscious as the night shift worker. When you wake up to to do the day shift - the secret night work has been done without your knowledge or input. It's like turning up to the office when the cleaners have been in during the night.
While this all sounds pretty profound and deep - the reason I have been thinking so much about dreams this week is because of the diverse nature of mine. My subconscious is part of me - very much so. And who I am is a mixture of so many parts and roles. But the core of me is feminine. Ridiculously so.
The other night I woke up in a panic. I woke my boyfriend, S - or stared at him so long that he had no option than to wake up. My eyes must have been burrowing into his scull. I told him in hushed and urgent tones that I "had had a nightmare". He was immediately loving and protective. His arm when straight around me and his words were soothing and gently inquisitive. His male brain had probably equated the word "nightmare" with Tsunamis, earth quakes, war time torture techniques or 12 hours non stop shopping for women's apparel and home wares. So my answer "It was horrible. I was going to a party and trying on clothes and....... (it was really difficult for me to get these words out) I was.... fat!"
Needless to say he laughed so I went on to be more vivid, "I looked like Monica from friends when they were reminiscing about her teenage years and put her in a fat suit". He got it. He is intelligent and empathetic and he understands women. He also knew it wasn't the time to get amorous. I was still visualising myself as a giant Raggedy Ann Doll with a KFC fetish and was not feeling overly sexy.
Let's get something straight here though. I wouldn't say I was a shallow person. Not at all. In fact the day before the nightmare (I still defend the right to call it a nightmare) I had had such a profound and beautiful dream about one of my friends that I had text her at 6am to tell her about it. Now H is a good friend (hence being able to text at 6am) and the dream was right up her/my ally. It was quite spiritual and meaningful in only ways she and I and those close to her would understand. I won't go into it here as there is SERIOUSLY nothing worse than people who tell you all about their dreams - and I have used up my quota already I think. But I'll just touch on it so as dreams ARE the whole point of the blog so at least I have some leeway. At the end of the dream I put H on a bus. I told the bus driver to look after her and made him change the number of the front of the bus and stood by to watch him do it. The number was 39. She drove away and I watched the bus go round a windy cliff road and called out to the driver to take care of her.
H emailed me yesterday to say that the number 39 means "You are being helped by the ascended masters, who are strongly encouraging you to work on your life purpose right now. "
Now H is very much on a life course at the moment. And while I do not profess to be an "Ascended Master" (God forbid) I was obviously tapping into her journey and spiritual path. To balance things out though - it was the very next night that I had the nightmare and the Paris Hilton like hissy fit over body size and HIDEOUS orange striped jeans. I cannot tell you how disgusting they were - and I was looking for a black polo neck woollen jumper to go with them (??????)
My subconscious was advising me that I was no spiritually enlightened guru. It reminded me that some of my deepest fears are of developing very bad fashion sense and/or an eating disorder.
So, unless people also want to know about the latest Allanah Hill catalogue as a side issue, I don't think Deepak Chopra has to worry about getting another day job.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 1:02 PM
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I put on my watch today. That may sound like a bland statement. In isolation it is. Like telling you I put on my underpants (alright that's not so bland). But I haven't worn it for around 6 weeks. I'm not sure why. Sometimes I just don't want to know the time. But in this life it is essential to live in sequence with others. My son has to get to school on time, I have to be at work at a reasonable hour, and most importantly -my beauty appointments have to be met!
It is interesting that I chose today to think and write about time. My boyfriend asked me last night what my next blog was to be about and I said "time". And then today Anna (our Premier) decided to twitter about it as well. (Don't you love how our pollies are so media savvy now. I wonder if Kevin would accept a Facebook requst from me?:)
It seems we may have a referendum (again and at last!) about Daylight Saving and splitting our state into two time zones. I'm not going to get all political here but I am all for it!
My first memory of Daylight Saving was on a holiday to Sydney as a child. We stayed at Manly and at night after dinner we would walk down the Norfolk Pine Tree lined promenade and buy ice creams. The notion that it was 8pm at night delighted and energised us. Not just the children either. I can remember my parents being carefree and childlike themselves.
This was obviously not just about the extra hour of sunlight. It was holidays and they were trouble free and void of responsibility. I wonder how much time would affect us if we were always this way?
Lately I have found myself regretting, minutes after, not listening to my son more. His stories and insights are amazing and his "old soul" astounds me continuously. And yet I hurry him up with his mouthful-of-toothpaste-philosophies and say "Yes, that's right darling" vaguely when we are driving to school because my mind is elsewhere.
How am I going to get that time back? Can we have a referendum on lost time for working Mums? Get the Government to give us flexi time to make up for our lack of enjoyment of our children? I think not.
It is up to me. I want to live in the now and not regret. Sure - I want to wind the clock forward next summer. I want that extra hour to exercise and sit out on the deck with treasured friends. But I want to stop winding the clock forward in my daily life.
I've taken off my watch again tonight. I will probably put it back on tomorrow. But now, after I have finished this blog, I am going to be timeless for a while - and look into my son's eyes when he is talking to me instead of scanning the room for something he ought to be doing before bedtime.
I am starting Daylight Saving now. Regardless of what the Queensland government does to win votes. I'm adding one hour more to my day to just "be".
Posted by Janie Bentley at 7:13 PM
Monday, April 12, 2010
So it seems fitting that my first post is on a grey, muggy, Monday morning. Why? Because my point of discussion is how to be nice - when you don't feel like being nice.
I had an interrupted sleep last night - and it wasn't to do with staying up late watching-"Underbelly" Although it did make me slighly uncomfortable and unable to completely relax once it was over. The scriptwriters seem to be having a bit of a laugh in some areas. Sorry guys. There is just no way that particular girl didn't know how to do "that". Her boyfriend didn't seem like the hand holding type.
Anyway - my point is that I'm feeling kind of crap today but am fortunate that can work from home (in my boyfriend's t shirt no less). It was hard being lovely in the wee hours of this morning. While I'm not being "beastly" (I so love this word - it makes me feel all Keira Knightly - but just for a minute and not when I see myself in my boyfriend's t-shirt) I am not being exactly radiant either.
My phone conversation with the t-shirt owner this morning could have been warmer. Whilst I strayed from actually being horrible - I did allow for some thoughts to enter my head that would have travelled through my brain - through my iphone - and all the way around the corner to his house - then to his body and up to his mind. Where it is probably still sitting. Actually I know it is.
Relationships are tricky. They are wonderful - but the navigation of the egg shells has to happen. Just don't stomp on them in the fragile hours. Monday mornings are usually pretty awful. It is easy to be friendly & flirty on a Friday. Being mushy & magnanimous on a Monday is just a bit harder.
Posted by Janie Bentley at 8:39 AM