Friday, 30 September 2011

Day 260

I've put my life on hold for too long. I reckon it's time to kick myself up the backside and restart this 365 thing properly. I can't promise great images, but I can promise that I'll do my very, very best to post a photo every day.

Here's today's effort, a Hipstamatic shot of some grass flowers down on the bottom paddock. Spring's well and truly springing here, which is lifting my spirits no end!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Day 259

Here are a few photos I've taken over the last few days. I spotted this pot of pansies while I was out and about in town. It and dozens of other pots like it were decorating a boarded-up shop. It's a community project called 'vertical gardening'. I've never heard of it before, and I found it really inspiring.

I stumbled on this quote today, and it resonated so strongly with me that I decided to make an image out of it. This image uses the bleach bypass effect, which is a quick way of cleaning up the tones of light-coloured things, including white paper and 'white' skin.

I bought these stones at a garden centre a few weeks ago, and wrote the words on them myself. It was tricky, because the pen nib was too thick, and I was still suffering from the post-traumatic shakes. The words I wrote describe the qualities I need to cultivate in order to move forward with my life. I've written them on stones so that I can keep reminding myself of their importance, and so that when I'm having trouble embodying a particular characteristic, I can literally hold it in my hand and form a connection with it that way.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Day 258

I've not posted for a while because I've been feeling really low. I don't feel like doing anything right now, and that includes getting the camera out. However, when I spotted this rainbow the other day I couldn't pass up the chance to take some photos.

This image is a composite of nine shots. It's my favourite photo so far of my little house. I also like the fact that Pookie's in it. I'm going to miss them both.

Iain signed the division of property agreement last week, so the house is now officially mine, which is both a blessing and a burden. I feel like I'm in limbo at the moment. I can't wait to get back to the UK and move on with my life, but I can't do anything until the house sells, and that, of course, is something that's entirely out of my hands. I've had eight groups of people come to view the house, but no potential buyers yet.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Day 257

This is a new photo of Scully, my 'pet' sheep's skull, with an old photo of flowers superimposed over her. I've always been interested in the juxtaposition of decay and growth, and the concepts of metamorphosis and resurrection, and they seem like a particularly apt subject area right now.

A couple of friends wrote to me this week mentioning the 'A' word - anger. It was only after I read what they wrote that I realised I've not written anything about anger yet in this blog. It's an emotion I don't feel very comfortable expressing, but I've certainly felt plenty of it over the past few weeks.

Anger hit me for the first time on the third day after Iain left. The feeling was so strong I was afraid I was going to get completely eaten up by it, so I asked my brother for advice about what I could do to work through it. He suggested writing a letter to Iain that listed everything I felt angry with him for, and then burning it. I spent an hour writing the letter. My hand was shaking so much and I was writing so fast, my handwriting was barely legible. To avoid having to write 'I am angry with you for...' at the beginning of every sentence, I set out my grievances in a numbered list. There were 75 of them. About half of them were habitual things rather than just one-off events. And some grievances went way back, to twenty or twenty-five years ago. I never realised until I wrote that letter that I had been bottling up so much anger for such a long time. It wasn't a very nice thing to discover about myself. One of the many, many life lessons I need to take away from this experience is that I need to learn to express my anger (non-destructively, of course), rather than suppress it. Reading back my list of grievances, I came to the sickening realisation that our marriage had not been anything like as happy as I had always told myself it was. So I can add self-deception to the growing list of personal failings I'm beginning to recognise in myself.

Writing the letter was very cathartic, and burning it afterwards was a nice symbolic touch. As I watched the smoke rise into the sky I could feel anger's hold on me lessen, and I could feel Iain's power to hurt me any more start to melt away too.

When we started building the house, we moved out of our rental in town and moved into the yurt, and we put most of our furniture in storage. When Iain left we'd still not got round to taking our stuff out of storage, so on Monday I rented a removals truck and, with a little help from eight of my friends, cleared the storage unit and filled two sheds with stuff - one with stuff I want to take back to the UK with me, and one with stuff to sell on Trade Me, which is New Zealand's equivalent of eBay. My 'homework' over the next few weeks is to put a few items every night onto Trade Me, and gradually reduce the 'to sell' pile.

Anyway, I've wittered on for long enough, and my yoga mat is calling me. I am so grateful for my yoga practice right now. 

Friday, 2 September 2011

Day 256

I've decided I'm going to take things easy with this blog. I'm not going to commit to making a post every day at the moment. Instead, I'm going to make a post when I feel inspired to, and only count those days towards my 365 total. I'm sure that gradually I'll begin to post more often, and who knows - after a few months I may be back to making a daily post.

I've had a really tough week this week. I had to meet up with Iain in town on Monday to go to the bank and sort out our finances, and I found it very upsetting to see him again. He seemed cool, calm, collected, and genuinely pleased to see me. Somehow, that made it much, much worse. Wednesday was the most difficult day so far. It would have been our 20th wedding anniversary. 

Plan C (keeping joint ownership of the house and selling it together) wasn't working for me. I told Iain this, and explained that if he wasn't prepared to buy me out (Plan B), then we'd need to either go back to Plan A (I get the house) or else we'd have to get the lawyers involved. 

Iain agreed to go back to Plan A, so I'm currently in the process of getting the mortgage and the deeds transferred into my name. This means I've got an awful lot of work ahead of me, and I will have to put my new life on hold until I can sell the house, which, given the current state of the housing market, could be a very long time. But on the plus side, it means I can break off communications with Iain, and begin to heal emotionally. And, of course, in the end I'll be better off financially, even taking into account the considerable expenses I'm taking on, which include making the mortgage payments, and paying thousands of dollars for the landscaping and fencing that needs to be done before I can get the house 'signed off' with the council.

I spotted this unusual cloud formation yesterday evening around sunset, and I just had to go outside and snap it with my camera.