or Posts as the case is for me.
I realised the other day that it has been a long time since I wrote something for me, for my own blog that is.
I have been writing and being published in places like about bullying.
about life with an invisible illness.
I have also been the subject of a story on .
Writing for myself is a challenge that I struggle with especially as the kids get older and read the things I write. While they are not the subject of my writing it isn’t always easy for anyone to read about how mum is struggling. I have been “micro blogging” or blurting out my thoughts on instagram and facebook but overall I haven’t really been writing as much as I would like.
I have been trying to work out why that is and mostly it is because I am finding that I am self-censoring because in the words of a beautiful writer Glennon Doyle “Oh, we’re not doing THAT here.” The problem with self-censoring is that it means that what I write is not the real me, it feels inauthentic and hard so consequently the writing doesn’t happen. I will give you a little example of some rawness that is real in my brain and why I keep these things to myself.
On the weekend Mr Haze and dear friends saw Fiona O’Loughlin’s comedy show Gap Year. She was funny, raw, self-deprecating and dark in places – for me I found my mind wandering in the dark places. When Fiona shared about a time that she was exposed to ice (yes the drug) and how it made everything just numb. The good, the bad, the ugly it all just disappeared. You could audibly hear the audience take a big breath at that point collectively thinking oh goodness you can’t be telling us that, you can’t do ice, thank goodness you came to your senses and got out of that. My brain’s first thought however was wow, that sounds great, to be able to numb it all out would be fantastic. Now, it was a fleeting second, it wasn’t a rational thought and it was NEVER going to happen because well let’s face it I do live in the world where I understand that ice is really, really bad, even if in that moment the idea of numbing out all the pain of life did sound really appealing. And just before anyone who knows me irl panics I am ok, this was just a thought, I have spoken with my psych about it and explored it and it is NEVER going to happen. This is just a good example of some of the “Oh, we’re not doing THAT here.” thoughts I have that are kind of not socially acceptable to share.
So apart from having random “Oh, we’re not doing THAT here.” thoughts what is happening in my world.
Life is still a continuing struggle for me (clearly see above!) though each day I get up, I get dressed and I get on with doing something. I have a couple of writing projects in the pipeline that I try to do a little bit on each day. In saying that life is a struggle I need to remember I have come a long way as well.
The challenge as I have said is that there is my story and then there is how me just blurting that out for the world would impact others. While I try to navigate truth-telling and being authentic at the same time as being considerate to all the others around me. I continue to write things down so that when I do work it out I have something to work with.
I got myself a little job and I say little because it is a casual role that relies on storm and tempest for me to get any shifts and invariably they collide with other things we have on but I have had a few shifts about one a month so that is something and a huge shift in life for me. Leaving the safety of my home, mixing with people that I don’t know and don’t know me and remembering “Oh, we’re not doing THAT here.” can be incredibly exhausting. I am also incredibly proud of a little publication that I put together you can read it here. I am currently working on the next issue due out in a couple of months.
The kids are growing and doing all the things that teenagers do. Yes you read that right we have three teenagers now and wowsers that is a whole new roller coaster ride isn’t it. This is another challenge because of course teenagers don’t really like to be the subject of blog posts (understandably it is their story not mine) so while the antics of life with teenagers could provide plenty of fodder for writing, walking the tightrope of how to talk about life with teens without talking about it is certainly a challenge.
I have been reading Sarah Wilson’s “First, we make the beast beautiful” it is fantastic. I was very dubious at first because of the Quit Sugar empire, so I had a pre-conceived idea of what it might be like. I can report that for someone living with anxiety like me it is a good read. She gets it (I think mostly in part because she lives with anxiety and other mental health issues) so Sarah writes from the perspective of lived experience, which is a breath of fresh air when it comes to books about anxiety.
I have been listening to podcasts including The Hot Flush, No Filter, One thin lady & One fat lady and a list of others. I listen to podcasts to quiet the noise in my head. Apart from all of this life is just hanging in there.
I have been attending a few functions with some amazing women whom I admire. My favourite’s this year so far have been Jessica Rowe, Lauren Dubois and Chezzi Denyer.
And an amazing night out with some wonderful women to see the taping of an episode of Andrew Denton’s new show Interview.
I will leave you with the thought that maybe we should do that here because, maybe just maybe if we were all a little more honest about how we are really doing then maybe we wouldn’t feel as alone. I am going to try to write more regularly with more truth-telling to lead the way. Oh and if you haven’t heard of Glennon Doyle here is a good place to start.
6 Replies to “It’s been a long time between drinks …”
I’m that my kids think my blog is the most deplorable thing out there so don’t go near it. However I get the whole censorship thing, I find myself doing it. Why? No idea but it has to stop. Glad to see your post xx
I am not sure if the kids read it, like truly read it but the boy child did like the post on fb … hopefully he skipped over the bit where I thought taking ice was a good idea!
Cathy I can’t even find the words to describe how I felt reading this. I find your openness and honesty encouraging, enlightening, and welcoming. Having read your blog post has helped me feel more acceptable because I kind of relate. Saying the things that ‘we don’t say here’ is actually what makes your writing so relatable. I seldom say the things and I am not a writer (as you can tell!) so I don’t do that either. But I do think and feel the things.
You’ve said the kind of things that many of us (or is it just me? And you?!) think but just can’t say, for fear of making a stuff up or worrying someone. We just keep them tucked away, we’ll I do anyway.
Thank you, thank you so much. And I’ll be looking out for your blog posts to read more, and relate more.
Thanks Shirley … that is really the thing isn’t it when we are completely honest and share our stories allowing ourselves to be authentic and vulnerable invariably others will say me too. It is hard to be vulnerable but if it helps just one person to know that they aren’t alone then that makes it worthwhile. Big hugs xoxo
You inspire me so much Cat! Thank you for not being afraid to share your story (or maybe I should say thanks for taking fear along for the ride and sharing anyway). I’m so glad you’re ‘doing this here’ and wish for you that the writing and sharing brings waves of healing.
Much love. Sandra Xx
Thanks Sandra it is always a little bit worrying when I write and put something out into the world especially when it is a “not doing that here” type post. Yet, without a doubt it is only ever support not condemnation that I receive so you would think that I would leave that self doubt at the door but I don’t seem to be able to do that.
Much love to you xoxo