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BY Amanda

09/01 Direct Link
I nearly didn't manage to complete last month and found myself questioning why I am continuing with 100words. There are so many other things that demand my attention at the moment, and really, would the world be any the worse off if I stopped? The obvious answer is probably not. But, I'm loathe to break the commitment. I'm not sure why, but, I find myself back here again, my fingers tapping at the keyboard, in the same automatic fashion that my car appears to reach work. And so, I say, welcome to September. I hope you are a good month!
09/02 Direct Link
I applied for a new job today and over the weekend I'll put in†an application for another job. I'm tired of being treated like a commodity. I am met by angry looks and cold indifference if I dare to take any time off, and it seems to take weeks to soften the relationship again. I'm finally out of motivation and energy! No one should have to tolerate that when they are sick or go on annual leave, and I'm tired of it! There's no point in meeting this head on, I'll lose. So, it's time for a change.†
09/03 Direct Link

We read books together, had numerous cuddles, growled fiercely at each other (because that's what dinosaurs do) and he fell asleep holding my hand. Such are the joys of being a grandma to a 3 year old. You can sneak the occasional extra lolly in with a knowing wink. You can be a lion one minute and a dog the next in the wonderful world of make believe that only feels legitimate when no one but the two of you are around. Then you sit in wonder looking at the cherubic countenance that you know won't last past sleep.††

09/04 Direct Link
Having the boys around has been really fabulous in the run up to Father's day. We hid†our shopping in brown paper bags behind our backs when we went to meet their dad in the shopping centre; snuck them in the house; and then spent a delightful half an hour laughing as we struggled with sticky tape that acted more like a magnet than an adhesive.†We rushed around when he went out so we could write in his card with "best handwriting". I hope they never forget the joy of giving. Some days life is just awesome!†
09/05 Direct Link
It's been a challenging day and one I'd rather not repeat. The boys were forced to go back home today. It seems if you are only eight years old, being frightened doesn't count as a reason not to go home. Legally, they require at least bruises! It sucks!!! Hopefully, she has had a fright and will be on her best behaviour for a little while and these poor little mites will get some respite. I hope so! Being a grandma has it's drawbacks. One of them is that you have no real power. You get to love but not fix!
09/06 Direct Link
The house is eerily quiet today. Strange - I've been longing for peace so I can concentrate on assignments, but, not this kind of peace. I'd hoped for the "let's take them to the playground to let off some steam" kind of peace. The toys, now packed back away, are a testament to the children's absence. D copes by talking to friends. I cope by focussing back on study. At least I'm achieving. I would have to do this work anyway, and the situation is what it is. I can't change it. But the house is very quiet now they're gone.
09/07 Direct Link
I decided to look up today. Being sad can make you look down - literally. We don't even realise we're doing it half the time, but we have the tendency to look at the floor, or our feet when we are feeling blue. Today, I decided to just look up. I saw trees, sunshine, a blue sky, soft, gentle clouds and noticed a bird in a nearby tree. I can't change my life, but I can choose to look up and balance the picture a little. I'm glad I did. There's a comfort in the constancy of the beauty around me.
09/08 Direct Link
The saga continues. The ridiculous lies, visits to lawyers and frustrated, angry outbursts. The house might have been quiet a few days ago, now it feels filled with frustration and rage. The emotions are justified, but sadly serve no useful purpose. I can't explain the wisdom that comes with years of experience, it just makes me sound cold and unfeeling. I don't know how to soothe an unsoothable hurt. Will I ever? Probably not. There are no magic words, I wish there were. It is clearly inappropriate, unjust, unfair, unkind and just plain wrong, but it is what it is.
09/09 Direct Link
I once saw an episode of MASH where the theme was that it didn't matter if you didn't feel like you were getting anywhere, the trick was to just keep moving. More and more that seems to be applicable in my life. Too often we try to evaluate our goals on a daily or weekly basis. When the progress is understandably slow we become discouraged. Four years ago I started the long journey to become a psychologist. Now†I can see the fruition of my first†hurdle in that process being achieved. It has been worth the wait!
09/10 Direct Link
I declined an invitation to be out the front of a crowd and attempt to circle my foot and draw a 6 in the air at the same time. The two have to be carried out in the same direction (seriously, try it). The compere first tried a little gentle persuasion, then elicited the help of the crowd for further encouragement and then made remarks throughout the rest of the evening when I stuck to my refusal. No, should be enough! If you're comfortable doing that, then that's great, but I'm not. It just†isn't my idea of fun.
09/11 Direct Link
I'm once again incredibly grateful for friends. When times get tough there is nothing like chatting with a friend. When times are happy, they are the first I turn to and share it with. They are as much family as my family. I'm blessed with more than my fair share of kind, loving, precious friends and I'm extremely grateful. My life would be so much poorer without them. The last couple of weeks have been pretty challenging. It's been wonderful to have people who care about me and my family around. They've been such a wonderful support. I'm realy blessed!
09/12 Direct Link
Monday has come around too quickly. Yesterday was taken up frantically trying to finish as assignment I thought I had another week to complete. I discovered late on Saturday night that it was due today!!! Eeek!!! And so yesterday is a bit of a blur. I now need my Sunday back to rest and recouperate and as it's Monday that is now a futile exercise. I'm not sure how people who work 7 days a week manage. I need, really need, a day off. It recharges my batteries and brings things back into focus for me. But not this week.
09/13 Direct Link
I hate moral dilemma's. What do you do when someone else has stuffed up and there is a reasonably severe consequence? It's not like I could hide it.† I really hated having to reveal it. Unfortunately as it delays the arrival of new staff, I have no choice. It's not like I can cover it up. People will notice when they don't arrive. It's not personal. I'll try as hard as I can to help you fix it, but, it is a problem and neither of us can fix it to the point where we can pretend it hasn't happened.
09/14 Direct Link
I could write a thousand words and they would not hold anymore power than these two simple ones. Thank you! Thank you for being there, for being kind, for understanding. Thank you for being constant, for being compassionate and for taking time. Thank you for being the example I need, even if it isn't the example I always want. Thank you for helping me become better. Thank you for enjoying the good times with me, and for helping me through the bad times. Thank you for not judging me, thank you for loving me in spite of me. Thank you!
09/15 Direct Link

Exams are looming. From now until mid October I can predict†my environment. The days will blur into a sequence of text book chapters and journal articles;†each accomplishment†ticked off my board - hopefully quicker than the days are being ticked off! The outside world will feel like it no longer exists and I will find myself genuinely surprised that people are talking about anything other than the upcoming exams. (I tend to forget that not everyone is studying). My current affairs knowledge will be even more pitiful than normal as my focus hones on examinable knowledge.

09/16 Direct Link
I sometimes wonder whether my friends and family really understand how precious they are to me. I feel so blessed. I can't imagine my life without them. It would certainly be much sadder. I'm hoping to spend some time with my grandchildren tomorrow and am really looking forward to it. They are such a delight! Ironically, I told my boys that I wasn't ready to be a grandma, and I worried when the children were first born because I didn't have a surge of emotions. Now, they are so dear to me just the thought of them makes me smile.
09/17 Direct Link
One of my favourite pastimes is cruising down the Port river. The children and I spend a wonderful couple of hours searching the horizon for dolphins. We are rarely disappointed. This time we saw four. The boat is big enough for the little ones to run around and play and for adults to tag team keeping watch over them. Precious time out with the wind in our hair, the sun on our faces and the sound of children's laughter all around are just the tonic I need. I'm reminded once again of just how fortunate I am to live here.
09/18 Direct Link
I lead the music at church. Music is like life's breath to me.†It can take me to another world or inspire me to look deep inside myself. I'm†not usually an overly demonstrative person but the right piece of music can make me laugh,sing or weep. The poignancy of the hymns are especially emotion provoking. Unfortunately as I am in front of the congregation I miss the privacy of being able to hide and shed a tear. Today, despite feeling on show, the tears would not be stifled. I sniffled my way through an entire hymn.
09/19 Direct Link
As I got up for work this morning and began the usual 5.30 am routine I found myself with the familiar longing for end of term. The knowledge that it is just a few weeks away fills me with both dread and delight. I have been studying long enough now to predict my reactions at certain times during semester. This part of the semester is about enduring to the end. It's that final spurt of energy to cram as much knowledge into this protesting (and ever ageing) brain as I can while craving for the anticipated†break to come.
09/20 Direct Link
I am a justice of the peace. It never fails to amaze me how people can assume, that because I am a justice of the peace who happens to work in a hospital that I am there at their beck and call. The amount of people who come into my office clutching a rheem of documents to be certified without any prior notice, and then are offended when I suggest we should make an appointment are staggering. The idea that I might fit this service in around my work seems to evade them. That this is a courtesy; beyond them.
09/21 Direct Link
My office door has a number of†quotes and sayings on it. I hope that they will be an inspiration to all who pass. They teach the life lessons that I wish I had the courage to teach but don't. They talk of kindness, compassion, empathy, humour,and tolerance. They do this in one-line succinctness that leaves the reader pondering and reflecting. It is one of the ways that I feel I contribute. I hope I do it unobtrusively and it makes a difference. Life is too short to amble along without making a difference in anothers life.
09/22 Direct Link
There's a story I heard of a woman trying to explain what it was like to have a disabled child. She likened it to planning for her whole life to visit Italy but ending up in Holland. Neither are bad, one is just very different from the other, and when you have had your heart set on Italy, Holland is something of a shock. There have been many "Hollands' in my life. In fact the only thing I can predict with accuracy is that it probably won't turn out as I planned. Somedays that's exciting, others it's a little scary.
09/23 Direct Link
It's been one of those days when a break was needed. I knew I should have been studying but even if I had sat at my desk, I may have looked at the words but nothing would have actually stayed in my head. So, instead, I called a friend and went to see a movie. The fact that I sat there fighting the feelings of guilt about sitting there doing nothing dampened the enjoyment slightly, but only slightly. I wonder what I will do when there are no more exams to study for and time is once again my own?†
09/24 Direct Link
The break last night was a smart thing to do and I have spent an extremely productive day studying. I have found that if I dictate my study notes, my voice recognition software will transcribe them for me. I record them as MP3 files and then replay them in the car, at work and generally every other waking moment, except when I'm dictating the next set. It is a very effective process that is helping me get through massive amounts of data in a relatively small amount of time. Hopefully, it will all sink in. I really need good marks!
09/25 Direct Link
I feel like I have blinked and gone from January to nearly the end of September. Once again I find myself echoing the all too familiar words "where has the year gone?" I've completely given up on a traditional Christmas this year. The cakes should have been made months ago and there is no hope of making a decent one now. To be honest, I'd settle for a vegemite sandwich and some quiet time to get ahead with study. I don't think that would be a terribly popular choice though, and so I will no doubt indulge in the festivities.
09/26 Direct Link
I'm struggling with trying to fit in 100 words this month. Although it is a very wonderful opportunity for some kind of self-expression (even though if anyone were brave enough to read it they would probably be bored out of their brain by the common theme of†focus about workload) I am struggling to fit it in. As a result I end up writing late at night on whatever I can find and transferring it later to the website. It probably makes little sense to any reader and I'm starting to think that this month is a futile exercise.
09/27 Direct Link

I haven't missed a month since I started 100 words and stopping now feels like failure, so I've decided to persevere and finish the month. This is more an exercise in determination than creativity now and I'm not sure if it's good or bad, I just know I feel compelled to finish. Having said that, today Iíve absolutely nothing in my head worth writing about. It is too full of psychology and sociology and there's no room for anything other than academic blurb. Unfortunately tonight it all feels like blurb and that's a good indication that it's time for bed.

09/28 Direct Link

Three more days to go.... Three more days to go.... Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go....Three more days to go.... Just three more days to go

†Oh, and if you were in any doubt...........

Just three more days.... †and this monthís entries are all finished

09/29 Direct Link

Two more days to go.... Two more days to go.... Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go....Two more days to go.... Just Two more days to go

†Oh, and if you were in any doubt...........

Just Two more days.... †and this monthís entries are all finished

09/30 Direct Link
It's been a mammoth effort to finish this month as the last couple of days entries testify to. For the last few days there has been absolutely nothing worth writing in my head and the trend continues today. Will this be the end of my association with 100words? I doubt it, but time will tell. In the next 17 days I have 2 major assignments and an exam. My lecturer advised us that if we know the text book (ALL of the text book) we might pass! At least when I'm finally†a psychologist I'll really understand pressure and stress!†