Sunday, 6 March 2016

Little Brothers

Little brothers bring up such fond memories. 

They are the jewels in our crowns and the pains in our arse!

Love and annoyance perfectly entwined as only your sibling would know. 
Bound by families, circumstances and era, yet, each so vastly different.
You have been there, together, all the way.
Through thick and thin, highs and lows, side by side or apart. 

Tit for tat, a pinch and a punch, a snicker or a look.   
Fart jokes, code names, shit heads and friends. 

I have two enormously huge "little" brothers.
Each their own and together one.
I'll admit,  I wasn't the kindest, fairest or greatest role model of a big sister. 
I most certainly gave my share of less than sisterly love. 
My two younger brothers copped a lot, and they had fun giving it back. 

Our siblings get the best of us. 
They get all of us, the good, the awesome, the ugly and the down right shit. 
and they are undeniably a part of us. 

It is here, within our families that we learn our first experiences of relationships, ourselves, life and love.
In all its mess, pain, beauty and fullness. 

It's my middle brothers birthday today and it is for him that I write this post. 
I had no idea of what I wanted to say, yet as the words hit the page I can feel where it's going. 

It's leading me into those unhealded parts of myself, waiting patiently for the light. They are ready, I can feel that they have been for years. I just like to hold onto things. 
They are Ready for release, ready for forgiveness, ready to let go and move on. 

The wound of which I speak of is firmly associated with my middle brother and his arrival into our family. My uncle had died tragically in a car accident only a few short weeks before. 

The complete cycle of life: death, birth and change all in a few short weeks. 

I didn't cope well.  

I was hurt, angry and scared and that's pretty much where I stayed, for decades. 

A fact that I was completely unaware of until recently. 

When we are ready, the truth heals.  

This hurt, I took out on my brothers and those around me and in particular the brother who we welcomed into our family at this time - the bright, cheeky shit of a gorgeous light Nev. 

So Nev,  

From your once bitch of a sister. 

I love you and I have something I would like to say. 

Something I need to say for us both.  To heal old wounds, release the past and move forward in love. 

its simple and profound and goes like this:

"I'm sorry, mate".  

I'm sorry that I took my emotional hurt out on you 

It took a while, but you succeeded in leading me to the unhealed places within myself. 

In that cheeky, always right, shit of a way that you have. 

My brothers truly are the jewels in my crown, they are also the very best pains in my arse. 
Because in every moment they take my shit with a smile and then continue to lovingly challenge me to be a better version of myself. 

Saturday, 5 March 2016

I have skeletons in my wardrobe.

I have skeletons in my wardrobe, hanging prettily.

I have skeletons in my wardrobe, draping peacefully.

I have skeletons in my wardrobe, speaking quietly.

I have skeletons in my wardrobe waiting patiently.

Disguised by their beauty,

Disguised by their value,

Disguised by quality

I simply couldn’t see.

The beauty of their souls looking back at me.

Spring cleaning, de-cluttering, throwing out and letting go are not new terms.  We hear them daily.  Different phrases of similar meaning, all coined towards a singular, greater message – “Let go”,  “Kiss it goodbye”,  “The past is gone, you don’t live there anymore” and “out with the old, in with the new”.  Be it jobs, relationships, clothes, experiences or things we are encouraged to say goodbye, fare the well and move on.   

Then there’s spiritual surrender, forgiveness and releasing the past.  

Clear space, make room, be at peace and shed our skins all for moving forward into “the new you”.

I got it, well, theoretically, I did.   I preached it, I practiced it and I lived it.   Yet, somehow some things stayed firmly wedged.

I easily let go of the surface layer, happy to part with the top soil.  Yet underneath that pretty surface, a quadruple layered concrete bomb shelter held a rock solid, stead fast grasp on the past.

I love serendipities.   The more than coincidences that sneak up on us with childlike humour screaming “surprise”.   They give us fresh eyes, a damn good shake up and a new way of seeing.  There’s nothing like a good “boo” to shock you into the here and now.

My serendipity came in the form of my most hung onto skeleton.  Hidden deeply away from view in our bottom bedroom and a sleepover cleanup.   My daughter is having a friend over, and I needed to clear the spare room for their most welcome adventure.

In rearranging and reorganising, I opened the back room wardrobe and there she was.  The big black garbage bag of “I don’t want to know”.  A beautiful white satin gown of luxury lace, delicate buttons, hand embroidery and 80’s puff sleeves otherwise known as My Deb Dress.   The item that I had lovingly and begrudgingly carried around for 20 years, hidden in a giant big black garbage bag, left to die a slow death on the rung of countless spare room wardrobes.  

I’ve carried this baby through relationships, moves, children and way to many life experiences. Firmly shoved out of sight, out of mind, tightly kept in the back of my psyche all because it was all simply too hard.

My dress was beautiful, it was significant and it was loaded with the emotional attachment of the memories of that time.  Memories all too hard and painful to remember and for many, many years a source of a great big case of self beat up.  

My Debutante ball was beautiful.  I have fond memories of dancing, friends, a father daughter waltz and of feeling beautiful.  It was also emotionally catastrophic -  young love, guilt, shame and regret all firmly imprinted, entwined and reflected in beautiful white satin.

Here this dress has hung in my wardrobe, silently reflecting the emotions I have spent two decades avoiding, waiting patiently for the time when I was ready to forgive and let go.    

Clarity, clear and true.

The external reflection of my inner world.  

My wardrobe is delicately lined with emotional skeletons.  The full showcase, runway worthy collection of unfelt emotions reflected in gorgeous, beautiful and expensive fabric. Italian wool, leather, sequins and to die for boots all reflecting a big case of I don’t want to know.

In that moment I saw it all.  I sat on my bed and cried.  I gave myself full permission to remember and feel those events.  To own the emotions, to see the circumstantial nature to it all and to fully release the past.  In a way I surrendered it to something much greater than me.   I honoured those involved, said my personal I’m sorry and let it go.

The very next morning, I unhung my dress, big black plastic bag included, said my thankyous and donated her with love to a local charity.   No reflection, no attachment, only peace.  Lesson learnt, task fulfilled, both of us ready to part ways, move forward and release. 

There are many other skeletons still hung in wardrobe, hidden in cashmere, sequins and stilettos, awaiting their own personal release.

The dress I wore to my dads second wedding – emotional maelstrom.

The dress I wore to my nan’s funeral – emotional loss

Others each entwined with attachment in their own way.

One by one I release them with a prayer of thanks and forgiveness.

I’m cleaning out, I’m letting go.  

The past, I don’t live there anymore.  

What skeletons hang in your wardrobe?

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Stop competing, Start dancing!

The truth hurts, or so they say.

We don’t particularly like it.
We don’t particularly want to hear it

and we like owning up to our truths even less.

Truths are uncomfortable; we get all squirmy and irritable.

They reflect something about us, that we usually don’t want to see.

They change us,

They have a great way of changing everything,

and they are always here to stay.  

Yet, somewhere inside we already knew.

That niggle, that itch, that knowing that things were off.

That sense that there is something that you’re not quite getting

There, but you can’t quite see it.

Then that thing that you couldn’t quite see, becomes clear and hits you at full speed,

out of nowhere, knocking you flat, smack on your arse with a great dose of clarity.

Yep, that’s truth.  

Now what’s my truth, you ask?

What truth did I see?

to so greatly unsettle me?

Gabby Bernstein and her beautiful lecture on relationship truth.

A lecture on repeated behavioural patterns in families.  

Behavioural patterns picked up through childhood, that stay with us on a never ending

cycle of repeat all throughout our lives.   

I listened with interest, but not fully aware.

I couldn’t quite grasp it, it stayed just out of reach.

Addictions, relationship addictions, behaviour addictions… yeah ok, but, nah

…. Not quite getting it.

nothings really jumping out at me here.

So I let it absorb and process for a while

Let’s give it a week.

Just wait.  There’s more.

A course in miracles states that “no one can fail who seeks to reach the truth” and I

was seeking. 

I was asking, I just wasn’t sure of exactly what.

Then Wham!

Freight train, full speed out of nowhere and I’m flat on my arse with a full dose of


Some truths are so vivid that inside we feel the shatter.

The illusion breaks open and truth say “Hi”

Now for the truth.  

The full uncomfortable, belly squirming truth.

I’m addicted to competition.

I’m a competition junkie

and I compete with just about everything.

Yep, that truth is really pretty.

Gotta love owning up to that one.  

Let me explain how I came to see this truth of mine.

I love Zumba. 

I regularly attend on a Tuesday night.

I even have my very own favourite spot – front and centre.

Tonight it was hot, sweaty and crowded.

I had a lovely mid teens bouncy and energetic girl beside me. 

She truly loved her Zumba too.

We danced, we shook out our moves and we had fun.   

Something inside me niggled.

I kept watching her, matching pace with her and this driving factor wouldn’t let up.

Go harder, be better, no matter what, be the best.…. huh 

Lead the way, go better, more, more… I have to be better than you…. Niggle

No matter what, I’m going to be better than you….. wham!

Freight trains at full speed, destination…. me

A little voice inside of me, looked me straight in the eye and said, almost pleadingly.  

“stop competing and start dancing” ……. Please.

Freight train to nowhere… smash.

There it was, front, right and bloody centre.  In all its uncomfortable glory.


Behavioural patterns running on endless repeat, picked up in childhood, passed down

through families…… Familiar addictions…..

wham  …..  That seriously hurts.  

Yep, I’m addicted to competition.  

I have to compete, there is a part of me that is always in competition. 

Competition for attention. Always

Competing with something or someone, somehow.  

Competing for love, affection and self-worth.

Our whole family is one big pattern of competition,

Generation after generation on repeat.

Clarity and truth often come with a great big dose of Fuck.

Competition, competition, competition, my whole life, and my whole family summed

up in one bloody word.

Competition and a full no stops barred dose of Clarity   

I’m an addict.  I’m a competition addict. 

Truth, yep,

Uncomfortable. Yep.

Squirming yet, greatly.

Irritated – maybe.

Now what?

The best bit.

Seeing it

Because only once we see something can it be healed.

Fully knowing it, fully owning it.  Fully taking responsibility and changing it.

Consciously letting it go

12 step program anyone?

and the most loving road to recovery.

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Christine Clais, Thank you

There is an ancient saying of origins unknown, that states “when the student is ready the teacher will appear”. 

Until today, I had no idea I was a student.
Until today, I had no idea I needed a teacher,
Until today, I had no idea there was even a lesson, and,
Until today I had no idea that I was already the most willing of students under the most loving instruction of a truly extraordinary teacher.

Who is this magnificent teacher you ask?  Is it a yoga teacher? A life coach maybe?  A herbalist? Or a practitioner?  This, most gorgeous and loving and purely unexpected teacher goes by the name of “The French Facialist” and the lesson, self love.

To love oneself is an act of true courage. 

To see beyond the veil of self doubt, judgement, hurt and criticism.

To see beauty in every moment

To forgive.

I first met Christine Clais aka ‘The French Facialist’  in September 2015 as the recipient of a competition prize pack.  Incredibly, I had won a photo competition earlier that year, with the major prize being a French themed pamper weekend in Melbourne.   This prize was all courtesy of a very prominent international skin care manufacturer.   Now, up until this day I was a splash your face with something in the shower every now and then, kind of skin care mum.  I rarely paid any attention to my skin, accept to criticise it and see its flaws.    Add into the mix the fact that somewhere in my teens and early twenties, I had picked up some really strong judgements about the beauty industry.  Now in my late thirties, and with these beliefs well ingrained, I ignored beauty products, treatments and its offerings completely.

I was firmly rooted in my judgements of the whole industry.  Then boom,  here I am, spending a weekend in  Melbourne completely immersed in moment after moment, gesture after gesture of beauty, skin care and self love all lovingly provided, arranged and delivered by the skin care industry.  Talk about questioning your beliefs.

This prize was so far our of my comfort zone, it was truly incredible.  Each moment seemed to melt away my contradictory beliefs about beauty, skin care and most incredibly what was an act of self love.  I truly believed that by ignoring and rejecting the industry I was being loving and accepting of myself.   I was giving myself permission and allowing my most natural body to simply be as I was.  Yet here I was completely immersed in living a weekend completely the opposite of that belief.   It was exciting, scary and sooo adventurous, and in no way something that I would ever have done of my own accord.   A whole weekend of putting your views aside and allowing yourself to be shown a new way of being.   Wow.      

Christine’s facial was a truly transformational experience.  With each gentle caress, my rigidness in thinking, beliefs and judgements softened, changed, shifted and ceased, forever.  I resisted, I cried and then finally, I allowed her to love me, I surrendered to the compassion of her touch, to feeling deeply beautiful and finally to the gift of healing.   I left Christine’s facial that day in September, forever changed,   My views of the industry completely diffused, nonexistent, proven false and eager to explore this new way of being. 

I now regularly visit ‘The French Faciallist’ as a gift of self love to myself.  Each visit is different and each facial reveals a new layer of myself.   The barriers to self love are receding and the view is most superbly spectacular.  I truly value self care and the deeper act of self love.   When friends are feeling low the words “oh go get a facial” flow from my lips with genuine compassion.  To my surprise they often tell me later how much of a difference that hour makes.

At my most recent visit, I came to realise that I have been ignoring myself for a very long time.  I have been ignoring my emotions, my needs and quite often denying myself self love.   Unconscious patterns repeated over and over, over a very long time and my skin is a very big reflection of that.  

Our skin is the external representation of our inner self.  It is the part of ourselves that we show to the world and how we feel about our skin, is a direct reflection to how we feel about ourselves.  There are many different representations of this, some may hide it, some may want to change it, others may have problems with it and a few truly love their skin.  I simply choose to ignore mine and this pattern is true to so many other areas of my life.    

I thank Christine with all the love of my being.   Because of our simple, chance meeting and her beautiful presence in my life,  I can now see.

I move forward in love and I make a new promise to myself today.  

I make a new promise to my skin and to my self.  

I promise to love you, to look after you, to be compassionate with you and to listen.   I will not ignore my most beautiful self and its extraordinary to know that all of this started with a most simple photo.  

Christine Clais.

Thank you. 

Thursday, 11 February 2016


I’m finally making changes in my life! 

Some little, some big and some of the more profound “Wow, I never thought I would ever do that” assortment.

I’m cleaning out my wardrobe – I’ve put on weight – I’ve stopped compulsively online shopping, I’ve even made a start on saving some money and I’ve started saying “No”.

These changes may seem relatively small, yet each one represents an integral part of my life where I felt completely stuck.   I longed to change, I could see the behavioural patterns.   I would even go as far as trying to change them, succeed for a while, then, over time, slowly revert back to my old ways.  I lived firmly on the roundabout of self-guilt, self-punishment and feeling a failure.

Each of these changes, however small or momentously huge represents an area in my-self, where I felt “not good enough”, “a failure”, “not allowed” or “a mess”, “maybe even completely fucked up”.  

It represented and area of past hurt where I, (feeling unable to cope with the emotions at the time) completely ignored them.  Instead choosing to deny and repress the hurt, shame, guilt, blame and all the ways that I felt I was somehow unlovable.

These unexpressed emotions stayed with me in the form of behavioural patterns that I continued to repeat, over and over and over in every area of my life.

These behavioural patterns were well disguised, very clever and for a long time I believed they were of help.

They looked a little like this

-   Believing that I always had to be strong – “You’re the strong one”, “you have to be strong”, “we need you”.  Basically meant that I ignored everything.  I ignored myself and my needs in every aspect of my life completely.  I became a gym junkie and got really strong, I once described to someone in the gym when they asked me why I worked so hard “that it was because I wanted to be so tired that I couldn’t feel” ….. now that’s a dousy.    I believed that being strong meant ignoring everything in my life.  I completely misinterpreted the meaning of strength, and as a result I lived in ignorance to myself.    This pattern was on repeat in every area of my life – ignore my emotions, ignore my finances, ignore my health, ignore my physical pain, ignore my hurt… on and on and on…..

-   No,  didn’t exist in my vocabulary – I constantly took on the role of being the saviour.   When underneath it all, I didn’t want too.  I longed to say No.  I longed to scream it from the top of the highest mountain. Denying this feeling through guilt or feelings of “I have too” caused feelings of resentment etc which I then took out on myself – self-punishment 101.

-   I would shop online constantly – browsing ebay for stand out bargains which I couldn’t afford and ignoring that I couldn’t afford them.  – people said nice things and were nice to me when I wore cool clothes and it gave me a high – a five second release from ignoring myself.

-       Being a victim – I had a shit childhood, this happened, it’s all because of this…  actually it’s not.  I am just choosing to feel that it is.

So how did I change these patterns?   I took a leap of faith in the direction of Tamra Mercica and the spiritual teachings of Wayne Dyer, Eckhart Tolle and Byron Katie.

Tamra, I worked with personally in a one on one program and then again through her life changing remarkable relationships course.   ( 

Tamra is not a life coach, she is a return to self.

Tamra’s teachings taught me how to listen.   To pay attention and to question. To listen to my inner voice, pay attention to my feelings, emotions and behaviours and to question my thoughts and beliefs about everything.  When we pay attention – we begin to listen to our inner voice.  

We learn from a very young age to deny our self, to deny self-expression, self-belief, self-love and the very nature of self.   All the while replacing it with a whole range of self-deprecating behaviours.  

We learn restriction, we learn how not to express ourselves in the ways our bodies ask us too.   We deny self and all the while punish ourselves for it.   We eat, exercise, medicate, distract and try just about anything to not feel what is our most natural way of being.

Giving my-self permission has allowed these behavioural patterns to simply fall away.   To naturally dissolve and simple cease to be. I am allowed. I am allowed to feel, I am allowed to cry, I am allowed to follow my heart.  I am allowed to say no and I am allowed to be.  In listening to my inner voice and allowing whatever is occurring in that moment.   This change from restricting and ignoring to listening and allowing has meant that I simply have no need of these old patterns. 

Change then flows onto every area of my life.  I’m cleaning out my wardrobe because I am allowed to let go.   I’ve put on weight because I am allowed to listen to my body’s needs.  I’ve stopped compulsive shopping because I am allowed to love myself and I’ve started saying no because I am allowed to listen to my inner voice and choose for my-self.

Change is natural, it is the very nature of the universe.   I’ve stopped resisting change and like the stream, I’m allowing it to flow of its own accord.  I don’t need to drive it, I simply need to get out of my own way and allow it.  I’m allowing my life to rebalance and I’m letting go of needing to believe in “should be’s”

I once believed strength was found in resistance, now I know, the greatest strength is found in simply allowing things to be.  

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Recently I avoided a friend!

Recently I avoided a friend. I avoided someone who I consider to be a very close friend. Someone whom I love and cherish and thank for being a part of my life.   

It wasn’t an active, oh shit!, turn tail, run and hide in the toilet, kind of avoidance.   It was a more natural; just let it happen, kind of avoidance.  An, oh my friend is here; I’ll catch her later, and then go about your day, kind of avoidance.  An, “oh, she’s gone and I missed her”, “I’ll catch her next time” kind of avoidance.       

This going with the flow and allowing kind of avoidance is new for me. It stood out.  It stood out as being something different and a very clear and very defined change.  Previously, I would have run straight over, presented myself and announced everything that’s been happening in my life. What changed? When did it change? Why did I now choose to just allow a meeting to fade away, instead,  choosing to go about my day over making an effort to say hello?  Here is someone I love, who I haven’t seen in months and I simply allow that meeting not to happen. Wow.

“Because I don’t feel like justifying my ego”, says my heart.  “Because, I don’t feel like defending myself, inflating myself, explaining myself and justifying reasons for defending myself”.   Up until now, that’s exactly what I would have done.  I would have marched over, said my hello’s, you look greats and then blurted out my life, all the time trying to inflate my ego and in the end I would walk away feeling, well feeling pretty un-amazing.  Instead I simply wanted to be – I wanted to be here, enjoy the activity and simply allow life to happen without explaining, defending or justifying anything.  

Wayne Dyers message in the movie the shift, changed my life.  He speaks of simply allowing life. Of allowing the universe, god or love to live through you.  Of allowing your live to be lived by something greater than yourself and recently I have felt the truth of this message.   When something doesn’t flow, feel right, uplift and energise you, it’s a signal that its out of flow.  A signal to change direction and simply let it be.   When we try to control things, we are going against the flow of the universe; instead we are expending our own energy, swimming upstream against the natural flow of life.     

I am truly grateful to this friend; she has in so many ways changed my life.  She will always be my friend and I hers.  I see now that it this meeting wasn’t avoidance.   Instead, I was allowing her to give me another of her most wondrous gifts.   Understanding and recognition.  Recognition of the shift in myself, recognition of my new understandings and that I am simply allowing our friendship to be whatever it needs to be, and you know what.   That’s ok.