Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

As a kid I loved Cyndi Lauper…’Girls Just Wanna Have Fun‘, ‘She Bops’, ¬†and the classic ‘Time After Time‘.

I woke up yesterday, after having a weird sleep. I’d been stressing over work in my sleep, had woken to stressing over work, and had fallen back to sleep to only have nightmares about…you guessed it! Work. Anyhow, I woke up in a state of weirdness, and grabbed for the dog for my morning cuddle. I then stumbled out into the lounge room to find Denis with his headphones on, playing soccer on the x-box, and a clock displaying 11.30am. Sheesh! I must have needed a lie in! And do you know what was really weird? Denis had let me have a lie-in! Bless his cotton socks ūüôā

Anyway, after the trauma of the night and morning I had experienced, I decided to throw routine to the wind…Well, actually – I had already told Denis before I’d trundled off to bed the night before that I just wanted to have some fun. So – that is what we set out to do on Saturday. Forget the house cleaning. Forget the grocery shopping. Forget normality…we set out to have some fun (and since I obviously needed some therapy, the ocean was the direction we headed in).

My driver - thy name is Denis

My ‘driver’ – as he calls himself (he has watched too much of Jason Statham in ‘The Transporter‘) – hit the coast road…one of the many in Western Australia…and it was just what the doctor ordered.

After a minor hiccup, which saw my right leg forgetting how to walk in the middle of a car park, resulting in a twisted ankle, grazed knee and cut hand Рand possibly lost humility Рwe found a place to settle down in the sun (The Monk, Fremantle), to wine and dine (the fall was BEFORE the wine).

Janine plus Vitamin D and a glass of wine

It was a lovely afternoon out. We took the SLR camera and had a play around. We had some lovely food and beverages in one of my favourite towns in the world – Fremantle. We explored the markets and picked up some incense from one of my favourite shops in the world – The Blue Buddha (as well as freaking out as I was drawn to a stone called Kyanite which – as the story goes – ends up being JUST WHAT I NEED now!).

I'm feeling happy

And we ended the day at the South Mole, Fremantle, walking, exploring, laughing (with Denis teasing me about spraining my ankle again on everything, including the rocks I was insisting on crawling over), and taking pics. Oh, and Denis picked up some fresh prawns and cooked him dinner. Bless him again.


Monday Photo-day: Food Around the World

Apart from the amazing landmarks, architecture, art, scenery and people, there is always one thing that is memorable when travelling – whether it be for good, bad or ugly reasons…and that is food!

Here’s some of my most memorable meals from around the world (and I had many more pics but for the life of me I don’t know where I stored them!):

Prawns in Singapore

Hot Choc Lindt Cafe, Melbourne (courtesy of my good friend Carly)

Stuffed Prawns, Fremantle

Yummy Dessert, England

It’s just way to hard to go on a diet when there’s so much good food in the world.

That terrifying feeling of contentment!

4th Course: Cheese Course

Image by ulterior epicure via Flickr

I realised something on the weekend that caught me by surprise. I was dusting, sweeping, cleaning – generally catching up with some cleaning…something I really have neglected lately as I’ve been so incredibly busy…when I experienced¬†a moment of contentment. Oh – I had also raked leaves earlier that day, and the day before my partner and I had gone shopping for a dish washer (our first ever!).

But I digress. My moment of surprise came when, as I was cleaning, I thought to myself ‘I think my party days are over.’ And…I was fine with that thought…Woah.

It’s a huge moment for someone who has been known by many to be a ‘party girl’. From my mid-teenage years, I loved a drink, I loved to dance, and I loved to have a good time. That continued on and off (more often on than off) into my early 30’s. The last few years I’ve struggled with the whole buying a house and settling down thing, and have had a few moments of letting loose. When anyone mentioned the word ‘contentment’ to me I was one to scoff in their faces. ‘Content – pah!’ But today, at 33 and a half, I suddenly feel content not to hit the town to dance myself silly and write myself off, only to spend four days recovering.

No – over the last few weeks – especially – I have found myself enjoying such pleasures as whiling away hours in Ikea, putting up blinds with my man, airing out the house, and sitting on the back patio drinking a glass of wine whilst my dog plays with her new toy.

I know it’s partly an age thing, and it’s also partly to do with my new mentality. You could say that I’m ‘maturing’ like a fine wine or a good cheese?

Today I CHOOSE to eat

I’ll admit it, I’m in a bit of a funk.¬†There is no reason. Everything is pretty good really. I have a job, a loving partner, a beautiful dog, amazing family and friends and a house. I’ve travelled, been to university, been given great opportunities in life, and I now have enough money to buy myself and people I love nice things. I want no sympathy.¬†I’m just feeling low, and it’s all because I’m feeling fat.¬†I’m find myself sitting here the biggest I’ve ever been and I can’t get used to it (although the blessing in disguise it that I grew boobs – not everyone can do that naturally at the age of 33!).

I’m 33. I was an Australian size 8, and am now a size 12. I am not a little girl anymore. I do realise that my metabolism is slowing down (supposedly what happens as you get older). I’m also not going hard-core at the gym anymore (for I was¬†like a woman possessed – which in itself wasn’t healthy – and my muscles have now been given time to ‘relax’ – eek!)

I am also eating.

‘Eating’ you say. ‘Everyone eats!’ Well, everyone should eat.¬†But from early in life I habitually denied myself food. To put it bluntly, I starved myself.

The earliest memory I have of this is from primary school. I used to throw my school lunches away because I was being teased for being fat. This progressed into my teens, where I was skipping meals to¬†have a flat stomach as it was ‘more attractive’ and I was fat. In my late teens I started working out at the gym and eating properly – but my obsession then gravitated to over-exercising and going out on the town binge-drinking. That stopped when I had to give up the gym and move into a place of my own. That is when full-on depression set in, as did agoraphobia. I hated myself. I didn’t like my body. I¬†didn’t want to eat, and I didn’t want to live. I just wanted to sleep. Of course,¬†I knew I needed to eat, and I did – I just didn’t eat properly. I don’t believe toast passes as a sustainable and nutrition filled diet.

I was stuck in a vicious circle – in order to¬†eat I¬†needed to go to the shops to buy food, but when I finally got over the fear of going to the shops where there were people, I would find myself on the brink of tears, wandering the aisles distressed, dizzy, and so confused that I didn’t know what to eat.

This settled down as I entered my first relationship at the age of 23. It became harder to skip meals when I moved in with my boyfriend, but it didn’t stop me from trying. And with my erratic blood sugar levels, I was susceptible to fainting and mood swings. I wasn’t a pleasure to live with.¬†Eventually he realised that if my moods changed, he had to feed me. So, he started cooking for me. And I started eating.

At this stage I had started anti-depressants, was sleeping way to much, and had put on weight (on viewing the photographic evidence of me at this time – I wasn’t fat). I just didn’t feel good – I believed that I was the ugliest thing that existed. The fact that I had a boyfriend who adored me didn’t matter.

And then I went overseas for 9 1/2 months, travelled, worked, ate, explored, socialised, lost weight and felt truly happy for the first time that I could remember.

On coming home, initially I was on a natural high. I started seeing someone who was a lot of fun, and completely different. Unbeknownst to him, I had actually slipped back into my old pattern of skipping meals, and I was also drinking way too much. I had also started taking laxatives to give me that flat stomach look, and because I was having sever stomach cramps (I now know that I have IBS).

Predictably, my depression came back with a vengeance, and I slipped into the good old not-eating mood cycle again.

Hot Chocolate

Lucky for me the guy stuck by me Рhe realised what was going on. To this day he tells me off (nicely) when my mood starts to change, questioning if I have eaten or if I need to eat. He has also helped me to realise I am attractive, beautiful, sexy, and a woman (it only took me 33 years).

And for the record, I’m not fat – I never was. But who cares! More than anything, shouldn’t we be happy and healthy, as what is life without it?

So today I choose to eat.


Note to readers: I have only touched on child-hood bullying in this post, with no intention to trivialise the issue. There is just so much to write on that subject, and I will do that in future posts.