Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Cogs going around

Yesterday an unsettledness grew in me that I could neither explain nor contain. It sparked and ignited into a smoldering agitation that ate away at the contentment I had previously been feeling on the second day of the school holidays.

It wasn't anything to do with the kids. In fact we have had a great week thus far, and I have truly enjoyed their company. No. This was something else. This was something I have felt before; a kind of festering that bounces off my insides like a moth smashing itself against a glass door in an attempt to fly toward the light.

Today, I tried to arrest the feeling; send it away; forbid it to pester me any longer, but it remained and distracted me, forcing me to analyse its origins.

In my minds eye I was an awkward bird, with broad wings like those of a pelican. The bird rose from the dry red earth; dusty, bedraggled and bewildered. Inwardly I acknowledged the image with an sub-conscious whisper - "Ahhh, Phoenix rising", though I knew not what it all meant.

When Ashley returned home from work, he noticed something in me and asked what was wrong. I didn't know and therefore, didn't want to talk about it. I needed time to reconcile the restlessness with words and rationale, but it was to no avail and I could not look Ashley in the eye.

Later that night, after the kids were in bed, we talked. "I feel like I am in the wrong place", I said. In truth, I had been struggling or more to the point, I had been missing Canada. I keep finding myself harking back to useless thoughts of "this time last year..." and this time last year the blossoms were out and there was a sense of relief that the long dark nights of winter were almost over; the promise of long summer nights; the rhythmic ping of baseballs connecting to bats and the low hum of neighbourly lawn mowers that, to me, is strangely comforting, for it signals a time for flourishing and for growth.

I miss Canada. I REALLY miss it. Having returned to my homeland, I understand that this place, this country, the earthy essence in which I was born, bred and breathe, well it courses through my veins where ever I am in the world and I will never lose it. It is in my blood and I carry it with me with each heart beat and in each breath, and now there is a longing for what I have given up; that place in the north, with its tranquil watery beauty; its healing green hues and earth toned birds that glide silently and serenely upon those chilly arctic winds.

We left Canada for reasons to do with work. Ashley was terribly unhappy and his work was consuming him in such a way that it was affecting our daily lives and our ability to connect as a couple and as a family, but while Ashley was longing for Australia, a place where he had known peace, I think, in hindsight I had found mine in Canada. Our respective Canadian experiences were not the same. Being at home with the kids, as isolating and as lonely as that was on most days, I did have a freedom that he did not. I was able to connect with the land and with nature. I loved nothing more that pulling on a warm coat and strolling along the beach alone, or getting down to the bird sanctuary with the kids or driving to a favourite spot with my little family and having a moment of perfection; present in Gods beauty anew. I miss that. It wasn't yet embedded in my soul. At the moment I am going there in my mind and I see it clearly, but I just feel a longing. I have had these underlining feelings for a while, but reconciled that I was here, not there, so get over it.

We are also still trying to do this house up. We are onto our bedroom and more painting is just not exciting me. There are lots of things that I am not happy about with the house, but hey, Rome wasn't built in a day, so I just have to gain perspective, be patient and slug away at it. We tend to be a bit gung-ho when it comes with renovations and the like, as if it should have all been done yesterday.

I need to get back into the fitness. I haven't had the time to do a whole lot. My window of opportunity is very small 6:30 am - 7:15am and it has to be before the kids get up - that just ain't happening at the moment and with Ashley going overseas for work, as of Monday for three weeks, I am going to have to cut my losses, continue getting my walks in with the kids and dogs and wait until school goes back when Missy enters full time kindy, so I have kid free time to devote to the gym and to fitness in general. And then there is the big one....DA DA DAAAAAA - work.

I have not been in proper paid employment of any serious nature for 12 years! Sure I worked in my Dads bakery while studying at uni. I did prac. work while finishing my social work degree. I have done volunteering here and there, but even still, over the past six years, my primary role has been Stay At Home Mum. I am not dissing that role at all. In fact I feel lucky that I have been able to stay home that whole time. I know many women aren't in a position to do so, and may otherwise have liked that choice. I am happy that I have been there for my kids and helped instill a solid foundation for them, but in the meantime, I have totally lost touch with the working world and I just feel completely overwhelmed with the idea of trying to hack out some semblance of work place experience of the type that an employer would actually find useful. Anyway, this is it. Despite all the other side distractions I have mentioned, it is the desire to work that is stirring in me like dragon awakening from a centuries long slumber. Next year Missy will be going to full time school and I am really feeling the pull to consider my options in what I want to do. I even dared scan the employment websites yesterday, and got excited by a trainee position for an international recruitment company - I reckon I would love doing that type of thing, and think I would be well suited to it. Then today I went into the bank and was served by an older gent who was wearing a tag that said "in training" on it. My first thought was "oh, they were hiring." My second thought was "I could do that. Imagine the possibilities...". My third thought was a jealously misguided "Bastard".

The good thing in all this is the fact that I am considering what I want. I haven't done that in a very long time. The passion I felt for the old direction in my life (prior to children) is forever changed; snuffed out by circumstance and time. But I now feel that search for passion stirring once again. I don't know where this will all lead, but the possibilities are endless and that in itself is exciting.


jeanie said...

Hmmm - what a thinking post.

I am really sorry that your family has not metamorphosized (bloddy little squiggly red line - what is the spelling?!) into what you had dreamed when you were so far away. I actually know several grumpy old men like that, and some of them are in my extended family.

It is great that you had that connection with Canada. I know the unsettled feeling of not really being "home" - I have had it on many occasions. On pollyanna days, I find how to make where I am such, on dark days nowhere can I sense the pull of where I want to be.

I understand the working one - it is not so much the "having a job" but also "having a purpose" - and while being a SAHM is a very admirable purpose indeed, there are many goals out there unscored.

Good luck in finding it all wriggle down into place - and lots of hugs.

monkeyinabox said...

I am sum up your feeling of emptiness or something missing in two words:

Canadian Accent

The Brave said...

Ha Ha Monkey. My ears do prick up to those around town, but honestly there
are enough of them resounding on the kids tv shows that they'll do.

Tracey said...

Oh I can hear those cogs turning, turning... What I wouldn't give to be able to meet up over a coffee and have a damn good long chat. Some of what you describe resonates with me - as you can imagine (the restlessness about work for one... and albeit in a slightly different way, the sadness that the extended family isn't what you wish or need it to be..) And you have it all compounded a hundred times over by the complicated process of transplanting yourself - again.
Like me you recognise how much those endorphins could help your frame of mind - just why is it so bloody hard ?
And with your other half going away for 3 weeks... I know that feeling also - all too well. Yell out (email me.. do you have skype?) if you need to scream...

Kathleen said...

What a thinking post, indeed! I can certainly understand missing in a similar clime, I can't imagine living anywhere would crush my spirit. I wonder how much is missing it, and how much is just disappointment that you came home and found things no better than before. Perhaps when you are more settled, and maybe when you find that dream job, you'll feel more yourself. I hope so. You are such a special young woman,and while I'd love it if we were neighbors again, I hope things work out for you there.