Blogging In May

Some people are blogging every day for the month of May – ahem, Em – me? I’m only just barely making the cutoff for getting in ONE post this month! Why? Oh where to start. How about with 2 x 2600 word papers for uni? And how about a child-free, 3 night, 4 day trip to visit friends in Auckland? And how about coming home from Auckland, thinking both papers were FINISHED (something I was determined to do to enjoy the time away and not stress) only to find your final draft for the first one due DIDN’T.SAVE. There are not enough F-bombs in the world, let me just tell you.

Thanks to an incredibly understanding and generous teacher, as well as a trial of a data recovery software program and some more brain-straining, I can say that both papers are, again, FINISHED. What a weight off my shoulders. Now all I need to stress about get through are the two final exams in a few weeks time and on to next semester which will hopefully be more enjoyable and a bit easier.

So instead of making this a whiny post about how much sanity time has been sucked from my brain lately, I’m just going to share a few pics of our trip to NZ and ask this…WHY do Kiwis move to Australia in droves? NZ is one of the most beautiful countries I’ve ever visited, bro. Apologies for the pics being all over the place and not in order. I’m too lazy to rearrange them. Seriously. Also seriously, Xanax is some serious shit. It got me through 2 flights (which were incredibly smooth anyway) without incident, not even so much as one white knuckle, but I also barely remember anything from my travel days and I slept 12 hours after I got home (5:30pm-5:30am). I can’t believe people are allowed to take that shit every day.


View toward Auckland from the Michael Joseph Savage Memorial Gardens


View to the east from the gardens


Sitting area at Mudbrick brewery restaurant


Friday afternoon drinks on our friends’ deck


On the ferry headed towards Weiheke Island


“I’m on a boat!”


Chillin’ on beanbags in the back yard of Cable Bay brewery


Keeping warm at Mudbrick brewery before dinner


View back over Matarahui Bay from Mudbrick brewery


Inside the restaurant at Mudbrick


Morning from my friends’ deck. Such a peaceful place.

Linking up with Jess for IBOT because, well, it’s been way too long, and because it’s the best blogging community out there. And because I’m grateful I haven’t been kicked off TeamIBOT for not linking up for several weeks.

Oh Roma

It’s hard to explain in words. It is something that has to be felt. That feeling of comfortableness. Of awe. Of familiarity, even though in all your life you have never been in this place before.

It’s the feeling of wanting to stay. The feeling of being wrapped in a giant, warm, cozy blanket. It’s seeing everything for the first time, but feeling like it’s old hat, like you know it like the back of your own hand.

It’s having never been interested in history, until now. It’s feeling like a minuscule dot of sand on a big white sandy beach, when you think of what has happened in the place you are standing. When you realise just how many hundreds of years have passed since these giant, breathtaking structures were erected. And how.

It’s eating the best pasta of your life and drinking table wine off checkered tablecloths. It’s closing down hole-in-the-wall bars with fellow Aussies you met on the train, and having the staff sitting and talking with you, making jokes in broken English.

It’s finding out that in a few short months, you’re going to be parents.

It’s talking about ways you could come back and live for a few years, and completely immerse yourself in this ancient city.

It’s visiting Rome and never wanting to leave.

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Linking up with the always lovely Always Josefa for Conversations Over Coffee

Conversations over coffee - always josefa

My Mental Health: A Team Friday Linkup

I thought I should link up with Team Friday today for a few reasons. One, it’s been a while since I’ve linked up. Two, the lovely Stacey-Lee is gracious enough to host, the least I can do is support her. Third, and mostly, because the idea behind Team Friday has been such a massive part of my life the last 7 months, I need to keep this going.

People ask me if I am still on my “health kick” or still on my “diet”. I try to explain it’s not a kick, a fad, a diet, a passing phase. It is my life now. It is my routine, my regular, my habit. Physically, I comes leaps and bounds in the last seven months. Physically I am trimmer, stronger, fitter.

Mentally, well, that is another story. I thought I had come a long way. Turns out I’ve probably really only come a short way. I am happier. I tend to worry and stress far less about things out of my control. I think I have a much more positive and thankful outlook on life in general.

But I’m still suffering from anxiety. It started after my dad passed away, I think. I thought I had worked on it, made progress, but this week I’m severely doubting that. I have a phobia. A genuine, panic-inducing, fear. Of death. I thought I was afraid to fly, but I think that’s just a transfer from the true fear. I love my life. I don’t want it to be cut short. I want to grow old, be a grandmother, enjoy much much more time here. I wasted too much time not being happy. But the irony in all this is that my fear is stopping me from actually enjoying things. We’re about to leave on an 8 day South Island holiday and I’m so exhausted from the stress about flying, I don’t know how I’ll enjoy the actual holiday.

I have moments, brief and fleeting moments, where I am ok with it all. But for the most part I am gripped with fear. My palms sweat, my heart races, my stomach ties in knots and my chest tightens. My legs don’t want to work, I can’t focus on anything and I would do just about anything to NOT have to get on the plane. More irony. My father wouldn’t have been able to step foot on a plane even if it wasn’t going anywhere. Did his fear transfer to me when he died?

I hoped we’d be on a big plane, but we’re not. It’s the same size as the plane we went to Melbourne on. Surely a bigger plane would be needed for international travel? I think I feel safer on bigger planes. I don’t know why. But then how can I even start to question such an irrational fear?

The mind is a strange, strange and powerful place. For now I’ll attempted to subdue it with drugs (thanks Doc!) but maybe it’s time to start looking at a long-term, drug-free solution to this problem.

Linking up with Stacey-Lee at Get On With It Already for Team Friday
And Mama Grace for FYBF