Monday, 22 March 2004

Intuition is a fabulous thing. I am quite a gut person. I get strong feelings about things and tend to make decisions based on intuition. I did a personality test recently which confirmed that I make decisions intuitively rather than by weighing up evidence. The description of my personality type pointed out that if I try to make decisions based on logic I may make the wrong decision and that my intuition is a much safer way to go.

This raises interesting issues. Often intuition has been seen as the realm of women and has often been connected with negative views of women such as being overly emotional, prone to hysteria and irrational. I

I wonder whether the value society puts on being rational is overrated? Maybe we should feel more free to make decsions based on deeper feelings and senses while also considering the facts and evidence. Then we are using all parts of ourselves, not just the parts that have been valued more. Interestingly, my fiance is also an intuitive person, so it is not just women who have this type of personality.

I feel much more confident in my decision making ability now that I know that intuition is a valid way of helping me make a decision.

Friday, 19 March 2004

I start the 40 hour famine tonight. I have a very busy weekend but I haven't done it for a number of years and there is always a reason not to do it. I hope I cope okay. THat sounds so yucky!! there are people in the world who don't know hwere their next meal is coming from and I am winging about not coping? Pathetic! But it does raise some important issues. I have grwon up expecting certain things in life such as being able to eat regularly. It does not enter my mind that that is not actually natural and not really normal for most of the population of planet Earth. I think I have to be careful not to make direct comparisions between my life in a wealthy and peaceful country and the lives of those less fortunate. I want to live with an eye open to those in need and not take my life for granted but I cannot make my life like their's. I think I want to be part of the solution of redistribution but that is such a fraught issue.

I had a really good discussion with a friend yesterday who has travelled through Africa. He has seen terrible development situations where organisations have completely disrupted the local economy and community through their programmes. I argued that that may be the case sometimes but not all organisations are like that. But we did agree that the "development industry" depends on poverty for its existence and much like the police force, their aim should be to make themselves redundant.

I am no expert on this and very aware of my ignorance but when two thirds of the world are poor I guess I want to try to grapple with how to deal with this in my daily life. Hopefully the money I raise, little as it is, will be used to help a community affected by war.

Tuesday, 16 March 2004

When I read through my last few blog entries I realised it is not suprising that I feel on edge and rather stressed. My fiance is moving into our new place on Saturday. We have stuff in three different locations which all needs to be co-ordinated to one location. Big job but I can't wait to have our own space, even if I won't be living in it for another 4 weeks.

I am sooo over being engaged. I am sick of organising stuff. Why does deciding you want to spend the rest of your life with someone equal becoming a manic, diarised control freak?
My relationship with my diary has definitely changed over the last few months. I used to stare longingly at the pages, willing the distance between the present and the future would be shorter. I filled in lists of things to do each week and tried to fill evenings and weekends with stuff.

Now I feel like I don't have enough time. Everything has suddenly gone mad with busyness. Not just our wedding but other people's engagements, work stuff and moving. I never used to use my diary much but now it feels like the line between sanity and chaos is held in that small, spiral bound notebook. Now I dream of a boring life, of an empty social calendar and weekends where all there is to do is sleep and do housework. I would get bored after a week but at least I wouldn't be having anxiety attacks!

At the weekend I baked a batch of cookies. I don't think I have done anything more therapeutic in a long while. Yeah for being a homemaker, at least for an hour. Don't know how I would handle it full time. I wonder whether Martha Stewart being jailed has reduced the pressure on women to have a perfect home, family, marriage and life? I hope so. Maybe we can reclaim the home as a home, not the domain of stress and inadequacy.

What a bumble of thoughts!!

Friday, 12 March 2004

Thought I was having a heart attack yesterday. I had bad chest pains on the left hand side of my chest and down my left arm. Turns out it was an anxiety attack. I find it interesting that I don't consciously feel stressed but I must be. Maybe I have become so used to the stress levels I feel that I am unaware that I am stressed. I wonder whether our modern lifestyles actually trap us into a high stress way of life which we then accept as normal? I think once I am married I want to be more aware of my stress levels and to more actively manage them. I don't think avoiding all stress is realistic or even that healthy but continued stress is a recipe for disaster.

Thursday, 11 March 2004

Last night I had a rather real encounter with domenstic violence. The woman living next door to my fiance has been having problems with an exboyfriend. He turns up under the influence of a number of substances and yels and threatens. Last night I heard someone trying to get in. All the lights were off in the house. He was yelling. She had asked that if we heard anything we would call the police. So we did and they arrived and she promptly lied to the police and said everything was faine. I guess that's what's called battered woman syndrome. We could have been entirely mistaken about what was going on but I don't think so.

It is so sad that this woman doesn't love herself enough and is so frightened that she feels powerless to change the situation. What can we do about men who treat women like this? How can we help boys to enjoy and respect women?

It is such a vicious cycle.

Wednesday, 10 March 2004

Had another migraine yesterday. Sooo frustrating and it puts everyone out at work. You can't just leave 30 kids with nothing to do! Hopefully when I go to the doctor they will give me some kick ass drugs and can shed some light on what is triggering them.

This week has felt like swimming through porridge. No matter what I do a can't seem to get ahead. The list of jobs to do at work just keeps growing and I can't even knock the first ones off the list. Time for a late night at work I do believe

Tuesday, 9 March 2004

Homemaking, nesting. Oh so anti-feminist but it is what I yearn for at the moment. We have just found a flat to live in once we get married. Under a house which is surrounded by bush. One side is dark and against a bank so when you look out the window it feels like you are in the kiwi house at the zoo. However the bedroom and one side of the lounge are light and have a peaceful view down into a bush clad valley. It is about a ten minute drive to work and close to the ferry. Very quiet.

I want to make a home for myself. I am sick of staying temporarily. Even quite stable flatting situations are just temporary and at least with getting married we will have a home which is our relationship where-ever we go. Hopefully this place will be home for about 2 years.

Oh and it looks like we can go away for the weekend. It is so wonderful that time and space is given to us just when we need it. Sometimes God is suprisingly generous with foolish people like me who burn the candle at both ends and then moan about it.

Sunday, 7 March 2004

Well 6 weeks to go till I get married. I can't wait. I'm not really nervous at all. The logistics of moving and things are what worries me. I am excited but also aware that this is such a big step in my life. The thing I am not happy about is the exhaustion. I am stuffed. With work and organising things and a lot of driving I haven't had much time for sleep. I feel like I need to get away but that is an impossible dream. Too much on between now and the big day.

I have been thinking about the whole 'bride' phenomena. I do think it is a really special time for me but also for my fiance. People are often saying to me that this is my time and that I should let other people do things for me and pretty much that I can have what I want. I don't really subscribe to that but I do think it is a really special time of transition. This is especially so because we haven't lived to gether yet and so we are not just getting married but also moving in and starting our life together rather than just as boyfriend and girlfriend. THis is something which wierd to so many people. There is also the important step of leaving Mum and Dad. I have been faltting for the last couple of years but I moved home to save for the wedding and also to spend some time with Mum and Dad before it is no longer possible. It feels like the reight thing to do, almost a tradition even though very few people do that now.

I am finding being at home with them tricky but it is helping me to realise that I am different and plan to do things differently in my life.

This week I have helped organise the 40 Hour Famine at my school. I am really excited about it and have decided to do it myself this year. Many people believe development organisations are problematic. I understand that feeling but I believe World Vision and other organisations like it are doing an amazing job at helping people take control of their lives. It is inspiring to see how passionate the students are. If only I could be so enthusiastc and react to need in such an open and generous way.