“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
- Maria Robinson
Due to my recent change in circumstance, I figure it's time to give this blog a shake-up. This will still follow me on my quest for happiness (hey, I'm getting there!) but it will also become somewhat of a 'how-to guide' for Solo Mums. I'm not promising everything in here will be upbeat and joyous, as we all have bad days, but I will strive to turn everything into a positive (as I am currently attempting in my life also).
I struggle with labels. I hate being put in a proverbial box. A lot of my issue with my new-found single-mumdom is due to the stigma attached, which is purely inside my head! I have never been on any kind of benefit in my life before (apart from the generic Student-Loan-related funding) and really cringed when I had to go into Work & Income and ask for assistance. I like being self-sufficient, but the reality is I do need financial help. I have paid my taxes and worked my butt off in the past, so I should have no worries about raising my hand for help... but I do! As a stay-at-home-mum with very few career prospects in my town (apart from minimum-wage or ridiculous hours) I will need that help; for now, anyway. I plan on studying for a Bachelor of Teaching, but have unfortunately missed the intake (due to relationship-induced lethargy) so have to wait until next year to start. It is probably a good thing. This gives me a chance to sort my head out, awaken my brain from baby-fuddle, and get my life back on track again.
Through starting this blog I have rediscovered my passion for writing & journalism. As a child I wrote a weekly 'newspaper' (although it was basically just a flyer) for our family, I also created my own 'radio show' on my tape recorder (basically I just recorded me talking/interviewing family members on a cassette tape) and when my grandfather gifted me his old Video equipment, I filmed myself doing various skits/reports etc. In this respect I am torn. I have studied film & television (as you no doubt read in my previous posts - because I am sure you have all read every single one!), but there is no real future for this career in Taupo. Teaching would be the practical choice, and it is something I keep coming back to... But (as my parents will no doubt attest) I have never been particularly "practical"! This is another positive attached to the delay in enrolling. I still don't know 100% what on earth I want to do with myself!
Anyway, I digress. I will post below a couple of "tips" that I have found extremely useful in the past week, that will hopefully be able to help someone else out there in a similar situation. Feel free to add any extras to the list too (via the comment section) as I'm always on the lookout for grief-suppressants!
- Get out of the house:No matter how crap/vulnerable you are feeling, have a shower & throw some clothes on. Fresh air is GOOD. Even if it's just going to a friends house to have a good cry over a cuppa (or wine, depending on your taste!) it really does make a difference.
- Exercise:This doesn't necessarily mean going to the gym, as that costs money which is precious when you're single with-child! I find that I feel infinitely better if I start my day with a walk. Even if you're not the most athletic person (like me!) every little bit helps to get that blood flowing!
- Do something for you:This can include taking a long hot bath, painting your nails or (if your budget can stretch that far) meeting a friend for coffee in town. Yesterday I brought a pack of (albeit cheap) hair dye. I feel transformed! There was a moment that I thought I had dyed my skull and hands instead of any hair, but it actually doesn't look too bad (from the front, anyway!). It is amazing how much better I feel having nice hair!
- Don't mope:Tears are good. It is not healthy to bottle up emotion at all. But it is also not healthy to sit around all day running over "what-ifs" in your mind. This also ties in with #1. Get out. It's hard for me, as my son is so completely hyperactive that he tires himself out so quickly, thus still needing 2 sleeps a day. But I plan my day around those naps, and while he is asleep I try to keep myself busy (whether it's blogging, vacuuming or doing washing etc). Sitting around blaming yourself for what has happened is not healthy!
- Everything happens for a reason:I am a firm believer of this. I believe that if something is 'meant to be' then it will. If I was meant to spend the rest of my life with the father of my child, then he wouldn't have left us and he certainly would have tried everything to make it work. Perhaps in his mind he thought he had. That, for me, is not enough. I am meant for greater things than "fighting" for something that I didn't even break. I am meant for greater things than "making" him see what he is missing, in the hope that he will come back. I am most certainly meant for greater things than completely compromising who I am as a human being!
- Take all advice with a grain of salt:Over the past week I have received so much advice. The majority has been positive and supportive, but a large section has been detrimental to my state of mind. I am a firm believer in counsellors, and I plan on taking full advantage of the 6 Free Sessions offered by Relationship Services. I cannot wait to have an unbiased ear to talk to. Someone completely neutral to the situation, who will not judge (openly, at least!) or confuse me any further!
I could actually go on all day, but the list is getting away from me a little here! Most of all my biggest advice is: Be true to yourself. I will not be changing my core values and priorities for anyone, not matter how damn spunky they may be! I can't believe I used the word "spunky", I must be getting old! Also just be careful who you talk to. I have a few close friends who I have shared the exact details with, everyone else is getting the generic "it's better to know now, it's for the best...etc" line. I do not want my dirty laundry aired over facebook. I am rising above all the petty game-playing and emerging from my cocoon as a fierce, powerful and strong butterfly!
Over & Out.