Saturday, April 30, 2016

000 #atozchallenge

"‘How does that sound?’ said Cassy. ‘Is that what you want? Will that prove that I care? Will that be enough for you Angus? What else can I do?’
Those were probably rhetorical questions, but even if Cassy expected him to answer he wasn’t going to attempt to fight her fire with fire. He needed an extinguisher. He thought about calling triple zero. He thought about hugging her. He thought about running away. His head pounded. He knew he would have to allow her to fully expel her rage, but he feared what extra vitriol may spew out.
‘Is that what you want Angus?’ His silence was addressed tersely. ‘Is it? Is that what you want from me to show that I care. Isn’t this enough?’ She gestured to the pot, then threw her arm towards the living room. ‘Isn’t this enough? A home. A family?’ Then she started to cry.
Still in shock, Angus watched the warrior disintegrate into a little girl. Cassy shrunk right in front of his eyes, shriveling into ragged grief. ‘What happened to us Angus?’ Explosive sobs. ‘Where did we go?’"
Lovesick chapter 9

Triple zero is the number for emergency services in Australia. Dialling 000 will connect you with a person who will ask whether you want the police, fire brigade or an ambulance.

Unfortunately, I had occasion to call triple zero for an ambulance last year, on successive nights no less. My problem was severe abdominal pain which was eventually diagnosed as being the result of a kidney stone. It was subsequently removed by the champion urologist, Dr.Paul Kovac.

Emergencies are frightening and disturbing, but at least in the case of a crime, a fire or an accident you can call for help and it will come. Emotional emergencies aren’t in the scope of triple zero services, except when they escalate into violence. I wonder how many of the calls the emergency services receive stem from emotional emergencies, or mental flip outs. The guy who was arrested near Braidwood in NSW, two days and 3 hours drive away from Bundeena where his partner had been found dead courtesy of being beaten with a cricket bat, was probably having some sort of emotional crisis.

Our emergency services generally only deal with problems, but I wonder how can we prevent such problems in the first place. Is it possible? Maybe triple zero should also give people access to crisis prevention services.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Yearning #atozchallenge

"Angus finished typing and leaned back on his chair, a huge sigh deflating his lungs. It had taken eight months for him to conclude the story he had initially begun on a whim. Perhaps it had been a subconscious yearning to try to make sense of his feelings. A reflection on the greatest mistake he had ever made: cheating on Cassy. Tyson had read his first chapter and almost exploded with anger, shocked and bewildered not only by the content but also by Angus’ stated intention to publish this record of his opprobrium.  What was it exactly, that Angus was attempting with these disturbingly honest words?"
Lovesick chapter 55

To the best of my knowledge there are only three words in English which have the ‘earn’ combination of letters; the sound of which is more typically represented by the letters ‘urn.’ Due to the fact that the A to Z Challenge is nearly over, and I have run out of deep philosophical musings and profound metaphors (at least for the time being), I am going to attempt to link these three words. I may be about to draw a very long bow, but it won’t be the first time.

Yearn means to want or desire. It is stronger than want, and probably more forceful than desire as well. The other two aforementioned words are ‘earn’ and ‘learn’. Both of these words suggest work. In the case of earn, we have to do something to get something, for example we have to work to earn money, and we have to work to gain knowledge, that is, to learn.

So how does yearning relate to work? I don’t know. Maybe you have some ideas. If so, I’d love to hear them.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Xerothermic #atozchallenge

‘What do you want Angus?’ said Joanne in response to Angus pushing open her door and poking through the narrow opening he had created into her space. She maintained a focussed indifference to him even as he entered slowly and approached her desk. Without looking at him she repeated her question.

A galloping heart tends to make the mouth dry and consequently clumsy, but Angus steeled himself. Direct. Confident. Assertive. That’s what he needed.
‘I figure flattery won’t work, nor will small talk or sweet talk. If I ask you out for a drink or dinner, you will refuse, probably with some insulting comment about the ridiculousness of the suggestion, so it seems I’m left with only one option.’
Lovesick chapter 17
Oh, come off it! Everyone has to stretch things a little when we get to ‘X’. I already talked about pornography so ‘XXX’ is out. The most boring and obvious choice would have been ‘x-ray’, but I’m hardly going to go for the obvious because it’s not my style. Xenophobia is a cool word, but I did that last challenge, and racism is not a theme of my current WIP. Xenon is a colorless gas and a xylophone is a musical interest which lacks sex appeal, or any appeal in fact.
Xerothermic means hot and dry at the same time, like Angus in Lovesick as he approaches Joanna with an offer she won’t be able to refuse…he hopes.

Nearly there folks. Maybe we should do the alphabet in reverse next year. What do you think?

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Women #atozchallenge

With a wistful smile, Tyson drained the remains of his schooner, sighed and said. ‘I am an idealist. What can I say? A dreamer. A romantic. It’s not a crime is it, to want things to be the way they could be? The way they should be.’
There was nothing more to be said. Angus was a dreamer too, like his old mate, but he dreamed of different things. He imagined a perfect woman, a perfect relationship which was so good that he no longer felt even the faintest flicker of desire for another. Physical and emotional intimacy. He wanted to be wanted, and if he found a woman who wanted him, he would be satisfied. Which one, if any of the women, he was now so vigorously pursuing would fill this role in his life? And was that all he was looking for? Someone to play a part? Someone to fit in with what he wanted? Was there such a woman who would cater to his every wish? These ruminations sounded increasingly selfish, each thought another oily slick covering the surface of the cesspool.
Lovesick chapter 11

The story of how Hazem El Masri and Arwa Abousamra met, fell in love and got married is a fairy tale worthy of retelling. A chance meeting at a football ground in Sydney, Australia, between El Masri, a refugee from Lebanon who became the most prolific point scorer in the history of rugby league, and Abousamra, a migrant from Palestine, ignited a relationship which both considered to be destiny.

They had each found the One. Many people believe in soul mates and perfect matches. With an ideal partner in mind, they either wait or actively search for Mr or Mrs Right. The cynic in me says ‘good luck with that’. The truth is there are no perfect people so there can be no perfect matches.

Most relationships only survive the rollercoaster ride of life through hard work and a dedication which at times may border on bloody-mindedness. Both must continue to strive for the highest good of the other, but how many completely selfless people do you know?

Hazem and Arwa separated after thirteen years of marriage. They say they parted friends, but they parted nonetheless: no happy ending. Sadly, there are far too few of them.

Share your fairy tale romance. How did you meet the person of your dreams? Or are you still looking?

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Vengeance #atozchallenge

"When I think about Belinda and the Coven and how they, I mean we, have been trying to force you down the road of vengeance, I feel guilty. I really do. I could tell that you didn’t want to be that kind of person. I could see it all over your face. I still can. You love Angus and you would have him back at the drop of a hat, right?’
Finally invited in, Cassy found herself struck dumb. It was a tough question: the kind that causes the most elegant of silver tongues, the most accomplished of public orators, to stutter and mumble. Did she still love Angus? Would she take him back? If to err was human and to forgive was divine then she would need a miraculous conversion into a deity. Forgiveness. Easy to say, hard to do. Nice word. Potent word. Terrifying word.
‘Am I wrong about that Cassy?’"
Lovesick chapter 37

Revenge is not a good idea, but people throughout history, when wronged, want to strike back. Forgiveness and grace are too hard. When you’re hurt you want to lash out, to pay back. It’s natural, but that doesn’t make it right.
Vengeance is an ineffective way to right a wrong, and often only leads to escalation which results in more people getting hurt. Revenge cannot undo what has been done. It does not heal. It is not justice.
Vigilantes are often warned by authorities not to take the law into their own hands. The greatest authority in the universe, the Lord God of Creation, also does not want people exacting revenge. “Vengeance is mine,” says the Lord, “and recompense, for the time when their foot shall slip; for the day of their calamity is at hand, and their doom comes swiftly.” Deuteronomy 32:35. Paul also admonishes us in Romans 12:19: “Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God.

Have you ever taken revenge? Have you ever had revenge taken out upon you?

Monday, April 25, 2016

Undulations #atozchallenge

"A look of resignation creased Tyson’s face. ‘You don’t love Cassy and you don’t want to try to love her.’
‘I love her, but I am not in love with her.’
‘That’s a distinction I understand but don’t accept. It’s not a reason to quit a marriage. You understand the highs and lows of life, love and marriage. Feelings come and go. You can’t be riding the high of romantic love non-stop."
Lovesick chapter 11
The first time I rode Superman Escapes at Movie World on the Gold Coast, I didn’t breathe for the three and half minutes it took to be catapulted and flung around the track. I’ve never been back, and I probably shouldn’t go back.
I could chase the thrill, but the pursuit of pleasure is not my chief occupation.
When my sister informed me my dad had been diagnosed with terminal cancer, I can’t describe how awful I felt. I don’t want to experience that again, although I probably will. I could try to avoid it, but that isn’t possible. The evasion of suffering is not one of my life goals either.

Life is rarely a flat, straight highway to the horizon. Most of life is neither high, nor low; it’s mundane, but there are always ups and downs, twists and turns. Sure we would all prefer the non-routine times to be enjoyable, and it’s great when they are, but sometimes they aren’t. Fun is good and necessary, but we can’t have fun all the time. We can chase happiness and excitement, and try to avoid sadness and hurt, but life inevitably contains all of these things. Love, likewise, is both pleasurable and painful. Live wisely and considerately, and be thankful.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Trust #atozchallenge

"In Angus’ mind these furtive afternoon meetings were the beginnings of an illicit affair, the foundation stones of trust and familiarity which would enable them to participate in a very risky and immoral game. Afrooz did nothing in the early weeks to discourage this thinking. In fact, in the evenings after their afternoon rendezvous, they would chat on Facebook. These chats started very innocently, but in time, and on several occasions, when they were both alone in front of their respective computers, their chatting became flirtatious. Angus remembered one time when he and Afrooz pretended to be neighbours and he went to see her to ask for some sugar.
            Hello Neighbour.
            Hi. Lovely day today.
            Yes. I need to borrow some sugar please.
Okay. Come in.
Let me see. I have to reach up here to get it.
Can I help you?
Yes. Come and help me. (wink)
Is that better? (smiley face)
Like this.
That’s good. (smiley face)
Ah, I’ve got it now. Thank you. Here you go.
That’s enough thanks.
Have some more. I want to give you more. (wink)
I want some more.(wink)
Here you go. Oops, I dropped it. I’ll have to bend over to pick it up.
Are you looking at my ass? (wink)
Yes, is that okay?(wink)
You didn’t really come here for sugar did you? (wink)
No. (smiley face)"
Lovesick chapter 1

Ah such irony, from our beloved anti-hero Angus. He speaks of establishing trust with a married woman whilst destroying the trust his wife has placed in him. Trust is a funny thing.

It’s automatic in children, a natural outworking of the bond which develops between them and their parents and carers. As they grow, particularly when they begin school, they are taught selective trust. Strangers are not to be trusted whereas police officers are. They also absorb attitudes of trust, and are progressively more trusting as they become increasingly independent. Trust only transforms into an issue when it is breached. The lesson learned, reinforces the selective trust concept, by confirming that some people can be trusted and some can’t.

Sometimes our mistrust is warranted, such as when someone has betrayed our trust. When I was fifteen I told my parents I was staying at a friend’s house and would not be going out. I went out, and the first they knew of it was when the police called to say I had been found in possession of a stolen car. One of the consequences of my breach of trust was that I was grounded for several months. I was no longer trusted to do anything other than go to school and come home again.

At other times, we don’t trust people simply because people we do trust have told us not to. There also occasions when something inside us warns us not to trust. On occasion we decided to trust someone even when we have doubts, and the results are mixed.

One of the X-Files catch phrases was ‘trust no one.’ While that reeks of paranoia, it is certainly true that we cannot trust everyone, and even those in whom we do place our trust may let us down. To borrow from the Old Bard: to trust or not trust, that is the question.

I have become less trusting over the years which in some ways is a good thing. On the other hand it makes me a little sad to think we live in a world where trust can be such a rare and precious commodity.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Sex #atozchallenge

“Her friendship became valuable to him, even as he struggled with the sexual attraction he felt for her. Had he been able to distinguish between the person and the woman, Angus may have suffered less emotional trauma, but he couldn’t. He was needy. Hungry for attention and for sex, and she was impossibly desirable. Unselfconsciously seductive. Worse than his lust affection cocktail for her was that the feeling was mutual. The problem was Afrooz was not willing to go all the way down the road on which they had started driving. She wanted to drive for a little while, then U-turn back to the beginning, park the car and let the engine cool down, before commencing the journey once more.”

Lovesick chapter 1

Sex is an obvious choice, for the letter ‘s’, especially in light of the strong sexual content in Lovesick, but I’m actually experiencing a strange reluctance to talk about it again. However, it’s a big deal, isn’t it? It’s hard to deny the influence and impact of sex throughout human history.

Okay, I’m feeling pretty laid back tonight as I write, so I’m going to attack this topic from a different angle: the procreative angle, as opposed to the recreative angle. I recently heard it referred to as a horizontal recreation in the great Australian film, Gallipoli. Anyway, I digress.

The point is if no intercourse occurred we would not be here. Male/female coupling is required for the propagation of our species. I respect people’s right to choose not to follow this pattern, (both hetero and homosexual couples), but if everyone chose not adhere to the playbook, then where would we be?

Just something to think about, and another possibly vain attempt to stir this pot of controversy. I am unashamedly in favour of traditional procreational sex. How about you?

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Run! #atozchallenge

"We all must flee from reality at some point in our lives for it is a monster which easily, and with evident relish, crushes and devours us. Our methods of escape are as varied as the beautiful diversity which characterizes our personhood. Some run away to dark places where the threat of shame forces them to cherish secrecy and fear exposure. Others run to the light and luxuriate in acceptable types of relaxation, pleasuring themselves with permissible pursuits. No matter the condition of the path nor the destination at its inevitable end, we make gods of all for we are fallen people who delight in ignorance and rebellion. Constantly avoiding, or worse deliberately eschewing the true source of peace and happiness for pathetic and often dangerous counterfeits." 
Lovesick prologue

It takes courage to stand, face and fight the enemy when running away is easier. It takes perseverance to run the race of life when quitting is easier. Whether you are running towards something, or running away from something, it is hard. Running hurts. It’s demanding.

I run for my health, and although I’ve been doing it for years, and have managed to maintain a modicum of fitness and keep my weight under control, it is still painful; it isn’t fun. I need discipline to do it, but I have a reason to continue and so I do. In life I persist through pain as well because I want to get to the finish line knowing that I ran hard.

Running in one direction necessarily means running away from another. Some things and some people in our lives will be left behind. Regardless of intentions, and irrespective of other people’s perspectives, sometimes we need to run away. Sometimes, running away is the wisest course of action we can take. Sometimes.

Have you ever chosen to run away? How'd it turn out for you?

Photo source and recommended further reading:

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Quiet #atozchallenge

"‘I haven’t heard you laughing.’
‘I’m laughing on the inside.’
Then she turned to look at him with determined inquisitiveness. A disquieting pause preceded her question. ‘Are you sure everything is all right? After we talked this morning, you seemed a bit upset.’
‘Not at all,‘ he lied. ‘It’s all good.’
He wanted to spin the interview on its head, turn the spotlight back on Cassy. A surge of vindictiveness surfaced and stood ready to ride the wave of his next words. As it waited, perched in acrimony, Angus hoped there was no corresponding change in his face.
‘You accused me of having an affair and I denied it so we’re all good.’
‘I didn’t accuse you.’
‘It sounded like an accusation,’ said Angus, steeling himself for the argument. ‘What would you call it? You asked me if I was having an affair. What would you call that if not an accusation?’
Cassy stared at Angus, her skin flushing on her cheeks and neck."

Lovesick Chapter 21

"‘Anyway, I remember Samantha invited me to her place and we sat on her bed, with the door open of course, at her mother’s insistence, and we talked and listened to INXS and Split Enz. I asked if she wanted to go for a walk in the nearby Camelia Gardens. After gaining reluctant permission from her mother we walked there from her place and found a park bench in a quiet shady corner. Suddenly I became nervous as though the change of location and the shaking off of parental supervision might require something more of me. I wondered if she expected me to do anything, and if so, what? The silence was weird and unnerving…"

Lovesick Chapter 27

Despite the presence of the prefix dis-which normally denotes a negative, quiet and disquiet are not opposites. Quiet is a nice adjective (oh no not ‘nice’ again) whereas disquiet, a noun, is not a good thing-unless you like feeling uneasy.

The two words are however related in an interesting way: Quiet is external and although it mostly relates to silence, people often speak of seeking peace and quiet. Disquiet suggests inner turmoil, in other words, a lack of peace. If quiet, that is, a lack of noise, is desirable, then disquiet is a lack of internal quiet. When people speak of feeling peaceful, they mean they feel quiet inside.

I told you it was an interesting relationship. Do you know any other examples of such relationships?

Monday, April 18, 2016

Pornography #atozchallenge

Image result for images of pornography
"When I first heard the term 'blue movies', I didn’t know what it meant. I had no idea what they were, but I did know that they were films which women and children did not watch. They provided entertainment for men in converted garages who drank cases of beer as they laughed lustily and conspiratorially. I learned that women disproved of this activity but tolerated it in order to keep the peace. They accepted the necessity of men amusing themselves with the exploitation of women, and they endured it through gritted teeth with a world weary resignation.

That my father had a stash of strange smelling magazines in the bottom of his wardrobe was a curiosity to me: black and white images of nakedness which neither aroused me or repulsed me, but merely interested me. I didn’t understand sex when I began to furtively peruse those magazines, did not even know what the titles Ribald and Bawdy meant. I had no idea why people took their clothes off and allowed themselves to be photographed in strange positions, connecting to each other awkwardly. I read the accompanying stories without understanding."

Lovesick chapter 12

"Nobody was directing my course in matters of sexuality. My dad was more absent than present, and his best example of manhood was his affection for pornography, carousing and late night boozing. I heard about most of that from loud conversations between my mother and father whenever he arrived home at some ridiculous time of the morning. I figured out that was what men did, and how women reacted to it. They complained but they had to endure it because that’s the way men were. That’s where it went wrong. That’s when I saw male female roles demonstrated in stark and confronting technicolour."

Lovesick chapter 20

For those of you who think pornography is harmless and even helpful in some cases, you are wrong. The size and profitability of the sex industry is a damning testimony of fallen humanity. Society's obsession with sex is a cancer. What God created as an expression of love and intimacy, has become so twisted it is barely recognizable as the beautiful thing He intended it to be.
Think pornography is okay? Think again.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Obsession #atozchallenge

"I have never been so fascinated by a wall, and yet it is not the wall as such which seduces my interest. It is blank and on it I project images of Chao-xing. I’m completely useless now, caught as I am in possibly the greatest obsession of my life. I have been sitting at my desk for twenty minutes and I haven’t done a thing other than switch on my computer and stare at the wall. A benevolent paralysis grips me, retarding my enthusiasm for everything that is not her. I can’t shake it and worse than that, I have no desire to escape the clutches of this mad fervent desire. Although it is lusty and desperate, I now know that I have fallen in love with her.
Unwise. Foolish. Idiotic. Insane. I am all of these and yet I don’t care. In fact, in this twisted state of mind, I would proudly wear such labels regardless of the disapprobation of others. Do I now care so much for Chao-xing that I care nothing at all for anything else? Falling in love was a choice, an inevitable consequence of my pursuit of this exotic and enigmatic woman, but it has rendered me numb for the duration of every moment without her."

-Lovesick chapter 26

In his mid teens, my son James was obsessed with Metallica. My daughter is currently obsessed with Zayn. My stepson has recently recovered from a Transformers obsession. My fiance is deep in a Facebook obsession/addiction. I,on the other hand, am not currently infatuated with anyone or anything. (heavy emphasis on currently)

Tending to be fads which wax and wane in popularity as they float on the fickle tide of human interest, most obsessions are generally harmless, even amusing. These short term infatuations are quite natural and should be seen as a normal part of human behaviour. However, there is a definite point at which these ordinary, albeit excessive interests, become dark and dangerous.

In Lovesick, Angus develops a very unhealthy obsession with Chao-xing. Observe the signs and be wary of obsession rearing its ugly head in your life. When you see it, make a better choice than Angus did, and kill it; before it kills you.

What have you been obsessed with over the years? What are you obsessed with now?

Nice #atozchallenge

"The cigarette is very nice, soothing. The ease with which I have fallen back into addiction is unsurprising and does not bother me. Something about the action of inhaling, feeling the burn at the back of the throat and the constriction in my chest, followed by the leisurely exhale of smoke causes a very pleasant, if momentary delirium."   - Chapter 34

"Perhaps she doesn’t want me to quit, otherwise why keep seeing me? She could simply say no. Is she just being nice? Is she playing with me? Is she using me to assuage her loneliness or to amuse herself? These are all possibilities which I must consider, but ultimately what difference does it make? If she doesn’t answer my questions, and I am learning fast how unwilling women are to answer ‘why’ questions, I am left to speculate and be fascinated by the riddle."
Chapter 26

"He might have suspected sabotage, but as he and Joanne had shared, according to Belinda, some non-professional interactions in the workplace, he would have been left with the helpless feeling of not being able to explain where those files had been. The immediate relief of finding them would have been very quickly replaced by the agony of ignorance.
‘Aren’t you pleased Cassy?’ asked Belinda."
‘It was a nice trick.’
Emma smiled wryly and glanced purposefully at the other members of the coven. ‘You feel sorry for him, don’t you?’
‘No,’ snapped Cassy."
Chapter 35

"‘I guess I could come over after work on Tuesday.’
There’s little enthusiasm in Angus’ voice and I know he’s inwardly cursing me, but he’s a nice guy and he doesn’t want to make trouble. I realize I’ve overlooked this weakness of his, and brushed it over with complimentary epithets. Angus is a yes man. He is afraid of confrontation. Always worried about disappointing people, so he says yes all the time, and apologizes profusely even when contrition is not only unnecessary, but actually inappropriate.
‘Thank you for making time for me.’
I’m baiting him now, and why not?"

Chapter 36

I use the adjective nice sixty times in Lovesick. It may well be an overused and bland word for which there exists a plethora of synonyms, but it's still a pretty nice adjective.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Men #atozchallenge

"I, like every other woman I know, have feigned girlish excitement over bare chested men with oiled and rippling muscles- especially firemen. I’ve glanced lower and wondered about the size of their penises, but it’s never serious. I don’t think penises are very attractive. Actually they are quite ugly and at times frightening. I liked Angus’ penis because it was his and he shared it with me. Only me, or so I thought anyway. I loved how it stiffened at my touch, and glowed as I masturbated him…"

Lovesick chapter 38

The fascination many women seem to have with shirtless fireman amuses me greatly. I’ve seen the calendars filled with male models, semi clad in firefighter’s uniforms with their gym engineered six packs. I’ve heard the giggling and the saucy comments. Cowboys are apparently popular as well, although I think this is more for other men since Brokeback Mountain. 

Most women probably think it’s equally amusing to see men reacting to female models, or just female bodies. I’ve often thought that men enjoy the visual appeal of women, more than the other way around, but I don’t know. It’s true that men are more visual, or more easily stimulated by what they see when it comes to sexuality, generally speaking, and it’s also probably true that many, if not most men, don’t stop at mere appreciation of beauty. They have connected thoughts. Do women do the same?

If you have ever uttered the phrase ‘he can put his slippers under my bed’, did you mean it? Were you really saying that you would sleep with a man just because he’s good looking? I hear men say things like that about women all the time, albeit more crudely. 

I’m just curious about the distance between our words and our thoughts, and between our thoughts and our actions. Perhaps you could shed some light on the topic.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Lustance #atozchallenge

"‘My point is,’ continued Tyson. ‘You are a fool because you keep chasing the buzz of lustance.’
‘Lustance is not a word.’
‘It is now. Lust and romance.’
Angus smiled. ‘Lust and romance together? Aren’t they sort of incompatible?’
‘Generally, but in cases like yours, they are more like two sides of the same coin. You confuse the two effortlessly, subconsciously. You want the fairy floss buzz of Eros and the intensity of Venus.’
‘Yeah,’ said Angus without further comment. Tyson was right so all he could do was agree. Through all his relationships with women from the first stirrings during puberty, through all the high school years where everything was new, and experimentation was normal and thrilling. The first kiss. The first tongue kiss. Holding a girl’s hand. Feeling her breast. Putting a hand inside her knickers. These arousing reminiscences brought a smile to his face which Tyson noticed with some displeasure.
‘I’ve stirred your imagination now, haven’t I?’
‘Why is it so strong? Why does it dominate? Why does it rule us?’
‘Because we allow it to,’ said Tyson. ‘We surrender to it.’"
Lovesick chapter 11

Enough said I reckon, but let me ask you this: Have you ever confused lust and romance? No? I find that hard to believe, but maybe I’m the only person in the world who has ever permitted his genitals to make important decisions.

Are ladies afflicted with lustance as well?

Kids #atozchallenge

"‘Çan we home now mum?’ says Bailey suddenly.
A quick affirmative nod does the trick, and furnishes me with the opportunity to escape mum’s silent scrutiny. ‘Yes,’ I say with something resembling enthusiasm. ‘Let’s get going. School tomorrow.’ I stand. Sam apparently misses the message. He’s licking sauce from his fingers while reaching for another chip with his free hand. ‘Come on. Let’s go. Get your stuff.’
‘We don’t have any stuff mum.’
‘Right,’ I say, wondering why they don’t have their bags with them. ‘That’s easy then.’
I shepherd my neglected children towards the front door, but they soon gain their own momentum, and forge ahead".

Lovesick chapter 38

As much pain and devastation as separation and divorce causes for the two involved, it is their children who are the real victims.

My parents first separated when I was 12, then they split again when I was 17 and that was the end of the marriage. The house was sold, and I went to live with my dad, while my sister went to live with mum. I got on with the business of life, but it took many years for me to get over it. Even today, the repercussions of the divorce are still felt keenly in our family. Mum and dad have never quite figured out how to get along, even though they have now been divorced for longer than they were married.

The impact is now felt by their grandchildren. I accept the reality of the situation, even though for a long time, I imagined, I dreamed and hoped that my parents would reconcile. My children and my sister’s children know no different. They were born, like so many other children, into a fractured family.

Sadly, I did the same thing to my children when I left my wife. The cycle goes on as we are try to find peace and happiness in the midst of pain and brokenness.

Are you divorced? How’s it going? Have you managed to move on?

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Joy #atozchallenge

“Weddings were for girls, the stuff of dreams and fairy tales. He just wanted to marry Cassy, so the details of the wedding did not concern him. If she was happy, he would be happy, and the planning stages brought her an unbridled joy which would only be matched by the occasion itself. Even the cost was not his concern as Cassy’s parents insisted on paying for everything. Their eldest daughter was getting married and they wanted it to be fantastic. They wanted to give Cassy whatever she desired and damn the expense which was fine with Angus.
The venue was Holy Trinity Garrison Church in Millers Point. Designed by Henry Ginn, and built in 1840 by Edward Flood, Garrison Church held its first wedding ceremony in 1843.

Cassy looked like a goddess in a silk wedding gown…”

Lovesick chapter 21

No two life events epitomize hope and pure joy more than a wedding and the birth of a healthy child. Most people dream of the moment they marry the love of their life and the enormity of making a lifelong commitment usually takes a backseat to the absolute thrill of the occasion, and the prospect of the wonderful adventure which lays ahead.

The wedding itself is a moment which seems to take forever to arrive, then passes too quickly. The promise of decades of joyful togetherness shines brighter than the sun. At my wedding, I was so happy, I forgot to enjoy myself, and although I remember the event only as a blurry instant, I have never forgotten the joy.

To those of you are approaching this momentous occasion, I wish you health and happiness, and to those who are married, I hope that joy still characterizes your union as it did on that brilliant day when you said, ‘I do.’

Share your wonderful wedding stories.