A fireplace & a hedge-trimmer

Monday, it seems, is my day of reflection, of posting, and being here.

I feel emotional with how much I could say today, throwing caution to the wind and putting it all out there.

How much of my story do I share?

Who is reading it and actually wants to know?

I guess in a way, it was here to help me in my journey, and it is just a bonus if it helps somebody else out there struggling or feeling the way I have felt.

Blog post number 3.  If you read my first one, That Girl, this is where it sort of came from.  Things are about to get really honest

5 months ago, my marriage officially ended.  There I have said it.  The decision was made a couple of months prior, but 5 months ago we spoke to our kids, and my husband moved out.

I never thought I would be that girl from a ‘failed’ marriage.

I never thought I would be that girl doing everything on her own.

I never thought I would be that girl learning how to do things I never even needed to consider until now.

I always knew I had it ‘easy’ to not have to worry about yard work, and babysitting, and cooking on my late nights after training, household repairs and maintenance.  What I didn’t actually realise was how many of my female friends DO whipper-snip, and mow, and poison, and chop wood, and run fireplaces, and hedge trees, and operate power tools.

So here I am, all of a sudden navigating through the emotional challenges of a marriage separation, learning how to do all of these new things, at the same time as realising that so many others know how to do all this, and have been doing all of this, and I don’t, I haven’t.

Cue feelings of uselessness, hopelessness, laziness… all of it.

I didn’t have to do it, so I didn’t.

It was my idea to have a fireplace installed a few years ago, and here I am pressing the button on a reverse cycle air conditioner because I couldn’t face the fireplace.  I had friends offer to come around and help me chop wood, to lend me an axe, I had a friend buy my a block splitter.  But I couldn’t do it.  But my son (9yo) was starting to complain he wanted it, so I knew I needed to talk myself into doing it.  I didn’t want to have to deal with one more thing that I “should” know how to do, but didn’t.

So off I went today with my block splitter.  And I am writing this as the fire burns away in the background, getting ready to warm our house tonight.  Today, I ticked off another role that never used to be mine.

Don’t get me wrong, initially, I sucked.  Can I hit the same spot twice?  Absolutely not.  I filled up a wheelbarrow of pieces that were already ‘useable’… and tried a bit more.  And then went inside, almost in tears.  Why do I find all of this sort of thing so hard and overwhelming?  But then, I went back, and I was okay, it was enough, I got through it.

Overwhelm of learning and doing and being responsible for all these tasks I have never had to worry about.

Feelings of patheticness of why it all seems so hard for me, and why so many of my friends have been doing all of it for years and I am just useless.

Yep the words and self talk was/still can be BAD.

And it is something I am working on every single day.

One thing at a time.

Is it a priority?

Does it need to be done?

I am also SO SO SO blessed and lucky to have handful of friends who are helping, offering to help, calming me down when I am losing it, always there, so I haven’t been left with a to do list so big I can’t handle it.

Why the hedge trimmer?

Because today I watched as a hedge trimmer wouldn’t start.  It would sound promising, then boom, dead.  Again, and again, it went on.  And I realised, sometimes this is exactly how I feel.

In more ways than one, it can finally feel like I am running okay, but then I just die in the ar$e.

I am like a hedge trimmer.

I don’t like labels, I don’t like stigma, I don’t like being a statistic.

I don’t like failing.

I was that girl who had what seemed like the perfect textbook life.  But life isn’t a textbook.  It isn’t black and white.  And it is definitely not always as it seems.

My passion for speaking my truth, for living my truth, for judging less, and understanding more, has grown exponentially these last few years as I have battled internally parts of myself I have tried to ignore.  We don’t know what others are going through.   We don’t know what others are learning.  We don’t know how others are feeling.  Showing up during COVID and all of this happening behind the scenes, has been the. hardest. thing. I. have. ever. had. to. do.  Showing up when I was suicidal, when I was watching client’s fall away, of knowing I couldn’t do anything more than the bare minimum, cut me deep.

For the last 12 months I have been quiet on social media, my presence stepped back, my business stepped back, because I could no longer be authentic, I couldn’t do it anymore.  I was in survival mode.  I couldn’t share my story, my struggle, in a way that made sense.

I had to trust.

In what I had created.

In those who surrounded me every day.

I turned inwards.

I slept most of the days.

I needed to drop back on so many things so I could face the biggest challenge of my life so far.

And I needed to learn patience, trust, understanding, forgiveness and so much more.

My hardest battle.

My biggest lesson.

My greatest gift.

Life turned me upside down.

And for months, I didn’t think I would be alive today writing this post.

Be kind, always.

Amanda xx 

PS.  THANK YOU to the clients who stuck by me, are still here, supporting me, understanding, and being patient as I fell apart.  You saved me more than you know. 




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