I am amongst Warriors

‘To those Warrior Chicks out there, creating new lives and living their dreams. You’re beautiful; stay that way inside and out. You’re strong; always know you have that back up. You’re wise; let that be your center point when you doubt yourself. You’re brave as a fleet of men going into battle hardened by life, empowered by experience in being a woman. Stay that way forever.’ Lxo

I was inspired today to write this to a woman who is off on an adventure. For some it may be an adventure of a lifetime, for her it is her life. A leaflet from her book should be used in a guide on how to be a strong woman. But can I tell you she is not the only one. There is another woman I know who from a casual glance would seem that her life is easy, carefree and without worries. She has worked hard to maintain that façade but behind the scenes there has been destruction, loss and sadness.

I have the honor of having an international sisterhood, made up of woman from all walks of life, but with one common thread, they have turned their weakenss’s into strengths.

Here are some outstanding examples.

Maxine, a woman who lights up the stage each night as she plays to a crowd. Her strength and weakness are both entwined as she is playing to her lost love and that is her closest connection. Her strength to go on to leave a crowd wanting more is her power to fulfil her sadness in to love. I have learned from her.

Jules, who turned her corporate life in the cement jungle, to yogi extrodinaire. Travelling the world bringing her yin with her yang, but that is a life that requires strength in yourself to be alone and be at one with that. I have learned from her.

Shashanna, who went into battle with the biggest beast of them all, Cancer. All I can say is FUCK you Cancer…and she did too. Her daughters are her accompolishment, her drive and her reason. I have learned from her.

Om, the beautiful single Mom. She sets examples that are positive and sacrifices herself daily to be the Mom and the Dad. Strong in character but soft in heart, the base line of what being a single Mom is. I have learned from her.

There are opportunities everyday to meet these woman, take time to do it. Learn from them, but do not fear them. For they are different, you will feel it. Their strength can almost be overwhelming, they don’t mean it. I for one do not want to miss another moment. If I had I would have missed out on learning how to dive, how to be a skier, how to save a life, how to be a Mother, a sister, how to be a woman, how to love and how to heal.  Each of them has a strength that has been created by the weakness’s that they have had to overcome. Learn from them.

Today when I realized that a wonderful creature had taken flight to fulfill her destiny, I was so proud of her.

I am proud of all of you and maybe we don’t hear that from each other enough. So if anything comes from this, learn from me too. For there is another woman I know who from a casual glance would seem that her life is easy, carefree and without worries. She has worked hard to maintain that façade but behind the scenes there has been destruction, loss and sadness. Learn from me.

I am that woman. Warrior Chick

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I Am the Why

I Am the Why

A rock group, movie star, screen writer, comedian and famous musician walk onto my mats…but I don’t know this yet. A Mother, a cancer survivor, a bride to be and a divorcee all sit on the same matts.

A father who has lost his first child, a man who is about to make his first business deal, a boxer who is training for his first fight and an unknown artist share the same goals. From pole dancers, editors, lawyers, pilots and house wives, my mats have many stories.

The mats are met with many types of individuals that are there for one purpose and one purpose only, to find their why.

Why? Why train? Why work so hard? Why get up and sweat with a stranger to achieve a goal that is elusive at the time? Why do we do put ourselves thru this pain threshold or for that matter why do I?

Here is Why: Training isn’t just about the physical, no it is much more than that, it is about the mindset.

I do the training and I am the trainer. I have walked in all of these amazing humans footsteps with them. I have found that each of us are connected to our external goals as well as our internal struggles. Men and woman alike.

Everyone is the same when they walk onto my matts and there in lies the beauty of training. You are not your pain, your beauty, your loss, your achievements or your struggle. You are the why in what you are doing in that moment for yourself. All doubts leave, all worries are forgotten and you are there for just you.

The individual stories and hard work of my clients are Oscar-winning moments of their lives. I cherish every moment being apart of their growth and no matter what stage of life or goals they have been thru, I know that they have worked thru some amazing odds to shine as brightly as they can. What makes these individuals different from you?

Between their why and yours, they have found that the why is the love of themselves. They have realized somewhere along the way in one of those lightbulb moments that time is needed for themselves to rediscover new things, new goals, push boundaries and live without fear or judgement.

In that time and space all traps of society are forgotten, worries are replaced with endorphins and sweat is your friend.

To be there for yourself means you are better out there in your field of dreams. Your why becomes you and it shines from within.

My mats have a lifetime of stories from the ages of 5 yrs to 75 and thru all the years there has not been one moment that I haven’t felt blessed to be in the company of such awe-inspiring humans.   You are my why and I thank you all for allowing me to be apart of your journey.

And I leave you with this, that undiscovered artist, holds exhibitions all over the world. That rock group has hit the top ten in the Uk and Australia, that actress has just walked the red carpet and the screenwriter just got his first signing of a movie. The bride to be is now pregnant, the cancer survivor is a mom of 2 and kicking it everyday, the divorcee is in a new relationship, the pole dancer is about to get married, the pilot is now a solo and the Mom of three feels empowered sexy and strong.

I am the WHY.

 

#rubyrose #theveronicas #starfire #cancer #philnichols #barricuda #dennythetrainer #fightingyourdemons #sweatsmileswear #iamthiswoman #boxchick #trainer #marriage #fitness #mindset #thailand #boxcamp #boxculture #rawartwarriors #welcometothejungle

 

 

Cogitation’s on Dengue; A letter to Our Lady.

 

 

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What started off as a bout of food poisoning had actually spiralled into what would now be my third bout of Dengue. On last count there were 5 strains with the possibility of now a 6th. For those that have never had the experience and I for one do not wish this on anyone, it is an experience which gets into your head.

 

 

And yes, people die from it.

Looking back the signs were all there. One would think after having it twice before I could have read myself better, however hindsight is a great thing and Dengue has it’s own rule book. It is here where you have to go within to come back out.

I am a catholic woman, who raised three children in the faith. Actually, I did this the opposite way around, I was baptised years later but that’s another story.

I don’t necessarliy go around singing kumbaya, but I have a deep faith that I carry around in my little pocket. A faith that I reach out to express my gratitude and in the more obvious cases when times are hard. Everyone has their own way, thank God for that. In Thailand where I currently reside, there are the breathtaking temples, incense, candles, barefeet and quiet chanting. All of us who reside here respect the traditions of the Buddism culture and that in itself always calms me.

For me, I too pray quietly, I send out good thoughts, I talk things out in calmness and then there are times when I just write in prayer. Yesterday was no different.

Please remember, Dengue is a disease that gets into the darkest areas of your mind, the ones you thought you had already conquered. It’s probably one of the biggest tests mentally I have ever had to endure. And as I write this I just realised I am also a little superstitious, as I just knocked on wood that I wouldn’t succumb to a 4th ‘experience’.

The stages of Dengue are hard to diagnose as the same symptoms of food poisoning or a bad flu could easily be mistaken for them. It is only when you are three quarters of the way in it, and you start to realise that water looks like molten lava and food looks like one of those horror movies where you think it’s rice and it moves around like maggots!! Then and only then, you realize the twisted tale of what you are about to succumb too.

Each strain is unique and cleverly designed to mess with your head. Externally you feel weak, loss of appetite and desire to drink fluids, head swelling and headaches that never leave the back of your eyes to entering the final stages of  body rashes and then the grand finale…the nightmares.

Yesterday the nightmares were so extreme, I decided I needed some external guidance to deal with my internal hell and so I wrote to the most non-judgmental woman out there, Our Lady.

This is my letter to Our Lady,

I am confused and I have to admit angry. The selfish side of me always wonders why I am in purgatory, why so much pain and loss. But the worst, why so much guilt when I know others have trespassed me?

Where to go from here? The stones I am unturning are not leading me to good fortune but just more hurt. I am assuming a more sensibe person would stop unturning those rocks and just step on them and walk forward, maybe even crush a few along the way.

Here I am again, short of money, short of sourcing and low on energy.

In truth, this year has been the hardest so far, so many realisations of what has been lost, of friends who were fairweather. and most of all of people taking advantage of our compassion and empathy. It has hurt us financially on so many levels, but most importantly on our emotional bank balance.

But I guess you have been thru all of this. How did you overcome such obstacles? In words they are grief, loss, fear, hardship, anger, trauma, how did you rise above all this and become so, I suppose, so Saintly?

If you were to sit down here with me now, this is what I would imagine or maybe even hope you would say to me, woman to woman, mother to mother, warrior to warrior.

Lisa, you talk of letting go, but you haven’t had the courage to fully understand what letting go means.

To let go is to free yourself, not of your love for others, but of your reliablity on their love to make you who you are. You my love, are not made up of them, they are made of you.

In my experience I could have died there right beside my son and willingly, but that was not my purpose. He had his road to walk and yet I was the one who gave him legs.

You have both given your strength, compassion and patience to all those that have crossed you and you will again. Only this time, like I have done for myself, you must rise above self. Look beyond who you percieve yourelf to be and see how others see you.

The rest, or sickness that you are going thru is the finality of your test. You have shown great strength and so many people need you and your courage. Be courageous now and let happiness in. See your beauty that goes beyond a mirror, see what your husband sees in you and shine out. Your cracks are merely the light trying desperately to get out.

Trust is what is holding you back. I am asking you now to trust me, trust what I am putting across your path is knowledge that you will need for your higher purpose. Your life has always been one to give hope to people to shine when others couldn’t. Let me reflect on your past (only for a moment) to show you your present.

You were a child that had to raise adults and make them feel better about themselves, so too was your soulmate.

You were chosen to lead your village across your country as their representative:so to was your soulmate.

You chose a man who was always going to create madness for you but you thought you could save him, your soulmate made the same sacrifice.

You train in helping the sick, the weak, the fat, the uninspired and those with low self esteem, again, so too does your soul mate.

You have the power in you, it is about facing your higher self now and asking you to rise up, heal first and regroup. The courage is in letting go, self belief, realising that no matter what you do not everyone is going to like it, even the ones you love the most. Trust me on this one.

You do it anyway, because that is your purpose-Not your purgatory!

You are loved xx

I wrote this 3 days ago, in the midst of the nightmares and just re-read it. To some this may seem a little crazy, but as the writing points out, ‘Not everyone is going to like it, even the ones you love the most,  do it anyway’.

I am this woman

#ourlady #thereturnofdengue #trustinthyself #talkitout #writeitout #notalone #inmypocket #trainer #purpose #alittlecrazy #whoisnt #sacrifice #detoxdengue #loveconquersall

About

 

 

I am change

The measure of intelligence is the ability to change‘…Albert Einstein

I read these words this morning out loud, as they popped up on my newsfeed, ‘The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.’ And it resonated so deeply.

I realized that after reading that quote, I might now have to consider myself up for, all ego aside, ‘The most intelligent human out there!'(just kidding…long way to go)

Why? Because, I have faced the majority of fears on that list. Some I won, but most I lost. And here is the measure of ones ability to change, I am now ok with the losses and have accepted the choices that I made. The idea of change for me used to be scary, as change is usually related or brought on, in my opinion by a fear based scenario.

‘But who am I now? ‘and better yet, ‘Would the past recognize me and accept these changes?’ or would I fall into a heap and revert back to that which broke me in the beginning. This is a question I was asked last night by my husband. He was commending me on how much I had grown and all that I had had to adapt to, and then he hit me with, ‘What if one of your past fears was to walk up to you right now, could you remain the person you are today?’

My husband and Albert Einstein’s quote made me have a look at who I am today as opposed to say even a year ago. For the most part the real reason for such dramatic changes in my life were to be fair, all based on fear.

I decided to check out the top 10 fears for the human race and low and behold, I found myself in almost all of them.

I want to thank them actually, because they are what forced me, most time while dragging my feet and fighting against these scary new challenges . To finally accept that which was no longer meant to be for me. In that moment of hesitation in not wanting to change, I was allowing this to become my, ‘measure of intelligence’.  Thank you Einstein!

The list went like this: #fearofflying #fearofheights #fearofpublicspeaking #fearofthedark #fearofintimacy #fearofdeath #fearoffailure #fearofrejection #fearfofspiders #fearofcommitment

I have to admit here that fear of flying and spiders isn’t it, for one I travel heaps and two after living in Australia for over 20 years spiders are my least concern. But the others, they dramatically shaped me and my heart.

It was only after, long after, that once I had fought thru those fears ,did I reflect and admire at the beauty in what those changes had done for me.  I had learned from the experiences, whether they were great or horrific and I respect the woman I have morphed into.

The woman I AM today.

I would like to thank and summarize these fears, and by doing so realize that I will face them again only this time, I hope to be more knowledgeable, less judgemental, more open and less hardened, have a deeper sense of forgiveness and learn to let go.

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And to answer my husband, I can only say, ‘I am waiting, I am fearless, I am flawed, I am change, I am ok, I am ready….

I am this Woman

#change #choices #belief #fear #myjourney #mychange #loss #iamthiswoman #don’tlookback #doorisalwaysopen #bringerofchange #alberteinstein #ilovealbert #myhusbandrocks

 

 

 

 

 

Who would want you?

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Who would want you?

I had left my husband months before, tried to leave rather. I was back in 4 hours after the pleading and begging over the phone, the endless promises of, “ I will change!’ I knew, deep in my heart that wouldn’t happen, but the reality was I was a 40 something woman, a mother of three and had a responsibility to try for the sake of the family.

But how long is a piece of string? How long do you keep your life on hold in the hopes that one day all those promises will come true? And better yet, How do I set an example to my young daughter that abuse is never ok? or to my sons that treating woman badly is not OK? As they were getting older, they too were questioning my belief systems. For I wasn’t practicing what I preached, not even close.

‘Just get us out of here,’ my daughter pleaded one night. I had just turned 40, my 40th birthday party was in true form to the standards we had all grown accustomed to and let him get away with. He had gone from belittling the guests, to hitting on woman, to abusing his kids and finally to throwing out my presents and smashing the rented glassware.

As my daughter stood behind the door, slightly ajar, I could see her tears and her fear, “Why do you put up with this!”….Why indeed.

I was doing it for them I thought, I was trying to keep it together for the sake of the family, for the fear of being alone, broke, lost, lonely, used up. Then I realized I was already those things when I tried to look at myself in the mirror.

Yet I had tried bloody hard to keep it all together. I tried when the bottles of wine would come clanging up the driveway, I tried when he threatened the kids, I tried when his vicious words would keep pouring out nonstop abuse…I tried when he would pass out every night, I tried when he would spit tones of inadequacy…lord knows I tried. For 19 years I tried.

How long do you stay in an abusive marriage? What is the code of conduct? I tried thru marriage counseling, I tried to keep the kids on their best behavior, I tried to keep my house the cleanest it could be, I tried to be Suzy homemaker (even though my name is clearly Lisa), I tried passiveness, I tried loneliness, I tried giving up friends, and when I realized how hard I had been trying, I changed a few vowels around and came up with TIRED!

I was so tired. Tired of the eggshell floor, tired of the accusations, tired of not being allowed to grow because he couldn’t, tired of my children watching abuse and thinking it was the norm.

That’s the key thing with relationships; each of us will grow at different times. Not always at the same time, but if you are truly meant to be in that friendship/relationship then each one of you has to acknowledge that change is inevitable. Each day I change, a new wrinkle here, a new white hair there, nature tells you, you are changing.

I could have tried to hold back the changes, but Botox and boob jobs were never going to be for me. He insisted if I was to have the above, then he would love me more. Actually he would always love me more if I changed for him the way he wanted that change.

Who is anyone to tell you to change for them? Change is for you; you are not on anyone’s time frame of how you should change.

4 months later I was back in the same position. Sitting all business like with his sister, a 30 something, single woman with only her career and her endless degrees of paperback knowledge to contend with. After I had explained the circumstances, tried to make sense of this existence and how it had to stop. This modern day woman of the world had this pearl for me, ‘But, honestly Lisa, Who would want you? You have 3 kids, your over 40 and face it, you come with a lot of baggage! Not words of, as a woman you shouldn’t stand for this, or I am ashamed that you had to go thru this. No, there was no sisterhood support, actually she just shrugged and kept with her line of thinking…’Who would want you?

I thought about that for about 2 seconds, to be honest the cold had now set in and at the same time a burning rage. My eyes set straight ahead knowing my next steps. In my heart I was looking for me, I had been lost trying so hard to be everything for everyone else that I wasn’t interested in who would want me!!!

I was interested in if I would want me, if I could look at myself in the mirror and be proud of that woman who was changing. Changing from a young girl on her own, changing from a newly married woman to a mother of three. I wanted my changes to be appreciated not held onto like a bonsai tree. I was interested in my children seeing a woman stand up for what was right. If I wanted anyone to, ‘want me’, it would be them.

I left the next day, quietly packing my bags. He and I had spoken the night before in a long stand off. Reasoning was difficult, there were never going to be enough words, once a loyal person is pushed and the indifference sets in, there is no going back.

He had 5 key statements in desperation to make me stay, for this change to not take place.

1.If you leave me I will kill you

2.If you leave me I will kill the children

3.If you leave me I will kill you and the children

4.I will kill myself

5.Let me take you out for dinner and everything will be alright.

To answer her question, ‘Who would want me?

I’ll tell you who would want me… even though my losses have been high, I can finally look at myself in the mirror and know that change is inevitable, that being smothered, abused and disregarded is not what you are here in this life for.

I am here for me! Once that had been established, once I could honestly be me and sit in my skin, the who comes, the wants arrive, the love flows and you realize that piece of string is yours alone to measure.

I have changed again, a little older, a lot more under my belt, and I am with an amazing man who has watched from beside me those changes take place. In fact he encourages them, loves the fact we are changing, sometimes together other times encouraging from the sidelines.

I am this Woman.  Who would want me?  I would x

I AM just like you

 

 

 

 

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I am just like you.

In fact I am you. I am 18 going to college and working two jobs, I am 27 with my second baby on the way, I am 32 with my third baby arriving, I am 42 going thru a divorce and custody battle, I am heading towards 50 and starting to be comfortable in my skin. I am you and you are me. That statement above is my life in decades to this day. I too, like you have had a multiple number of excuses to not be healthy, to not look after myself, to put others first and to not make time for me.

Reading them back, even I can see that they are legitimate reasons to not being able to find the time. I have real life issues, just like you. What I want to do is show you how you can take an excuse and turn it into an opportunity to change your perspective.

Years ago, too many to mention, I became a Personal Trainer. At the time I was in my mid-thirties entering into what would be considered a younger persons environment.

As my client list grew and word of mouth started to increase my business, I found myself opening my first studio in Australia, which I named HOTBOD. This wasn’t a grandiouse place, by no means. The space was no bigger than 100 metres by 50. Just large enough for a skipping rope and a towel.

In my years of experience of being a trainer I have found that the hardest part for anyone trying to maintain a balanced existence is being consistent. So many things get in the way, important things. Illness is usually the predominant factor whether self inflicted or the common cold. To be able to rock up for your own life is hard.

It is actually easier to have an excuse than to make a date or a time for you. And these excuses are by no means an accusation that your lazy, what you have to own is that they are a realization that you didn’t think enough of yourself to take time out for you.

I have to say I am renowned for putting myself last and everything else first so I suppose that is my excuse and I work on that daily. I am not alone in that. The majority of my clients have always been majority women and we are a funny bunch to say the least. And not in the haha funny but in the huh funny. We want everyone in our life to be happy and will make those sacrifices accordingly, the first being not present for ourselves.

We have many obligations in our life, family of course is always to be number one. Next is work as that keeps the family going and second, third, fourth hell all the way to twenty and everything else in between we are obligated to.

School drop offs, concerts, after school activities, husbands, friends, house maintenance, cooking, shopping this endless list of life. Sometimes you can feel like a used mop, after being run across the floor and then squeezed out only to be dipped back in the murky waters again yet hoping for a shiny surface. But you won’t get a shiny surface if the water is murky. Murky water just keeps getting murkier, in order for a clean start one must change that water.

There are society standards blazing at us, gossip mongers being haters and everyone keeping up with the Jones’s whoever the hell they are their standards are by far unachievable and they have a lot to answer for. Must be hard to be a Jones, just saying.

Set backs are the norm, consistency is the hard part. Please do not beat yourself up over this, we are all in the same wash.

My husband and I designed a course years ago in Australia called the 32B Free Challenge. The course consisted of 3 weeks, training 4 times a week inclusive of our detox and our metabolic nutritional system. It was a success, not only in the turnout, but most importantly in the results. The theory is it takes 21 days to rid yourself of old habits and instead replace them with positive and motivational ones.

The response was fantastic in that I watched shy women turn into strong inspirations to their friends and families, I watched men throw their first punch and lose 14 kgs. But it went on to do much more as those that were apart of our fitness journey went onto become successful trainers, crossfit owners and body builders. How awe inspiring is that to know that we had touched their lives and motivated them to have fitness and a positive attitude thru our courses.

32B Free had been designed for you, the inconsistant globe trotter, whether your globe is four streets between the school drop off and the grocery store to home to travelling 13 countries in a year. Trying to maintain being in shape,is to be your biggest challenge.

Can’t we have it all, my head screams. Others make it look so easy. I myself have been accused of making it look easy. Please note anything in life that looks easy isn’t. Fact. Follow any sports person, any great chef or for me a trainer who is heading into her 50’s and yet still gets asked why I look only in my early 40’s. All of us will say it was sacrifice, hard work, passion and support, and here’s the big one, being lonely.

I believe why 32B Free worked was because we took that lonliness away, we created achievable goals and others to work towards. And we laughed, cried, smiled, sweat a lot, but we swore alot more.

Fitness, a group of like minded people pushing me on got me thru depression, fear and opened the door to happiness and freedom. Maybe we can sweat, smile and swear together someday, I would really like that.

I am just like you. I am that Trainer. I am Hotbod. I am 32B Free.

I AM Married to a Royal Marine

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I AM married to a Royal Marine

I hadn’t really taken in the whole impact that I was married to a Royal Marine until the shit really hit the fan. A Royal Marine has 3 Rules they live by:

1)Buddy first, self last

2)Laugh in the face of adversity

3) To walk where others fear to tread

September 2012 was an interesting time. Actually that was the year that we married in Chaing Mai in Thailand. We had been on a sabitical in a Bhuddist Monastery for our honeymoon, as you do, and over those days were kept in separate dormitories as well as eating areas. We were not allowed to make eye contact or pass messages to each other.

Every morning at 4am a gong was rung and all those staying in the monastery would make their way, bleary eyed to the community hall and begin the day with a yoga stretch, then a vegetarian breakfast followed by a structure of working meditation.

To not speak for a whole day was difficult, by day two I was completely batty yet by day 3 the monkey chatter in my head had calmed down. I am far from a yogi and getting into sitting meditation I did find quite hard, however I really enjoyed the walking meditation.

It was during the walking meditation that I started to feel that something wasn’t right. The day had been overcast and humid, yet whenever I closed my eyes all I could see was yellow. Bright yellow, as if I had been staring into the sun and there was that burnt impression behind my eyelids, but when I opened my eyes to check again, there was nothing but dark clouds.

That evening we finished up our basic meal, washed and then headed back to the hall. My thoughts were still with that intense color and why it was still physically upsetting me, but I wasn’t able to talk with anyone let alone My Royal. As we took our places within the hall I could sense Denny now staring at me, which is completely against all rules. I broke protocol for a few seconds and looked at him, his eyes were urgent and he put up his hand, 5 minutes he mouthed. I knew what he meant, I had felt it too, and yet we hadn’t spoken…something was not right.

6 months earlier

Our honeymoon had started with the intention that we would go offline for a month. It had been a hard year, leaving the kids, divorce and the horrible daily emails and hate mail that was a constant barrage. 6 months before our wedding I had been in court trying to gain access to my children. The judge that day had said the case was too complicated and that I would not be back on the family courts roster until another 6-8 months. That nearly killed me, full stop.

I laid in my bed for days, I even looked at our 11th floor apartment and thought what the hell just jump!! Denny knew it was bad, but he is also a Royal and that means you do not sit around and wait for shit to keep happening, you make shit happen. By Boxing day of 2011 we were on our way to Dubai, he wasn’t going to have me lying around, depressed and miserable over a situation I now could not even comprehend fixing.

As a trainer I have always been fit, but as the loss of my children and financial dramas unfolded so to did my fitness. I was training, all the time actually, I was breaking and didn’t care. We arrived into Dubai late that evening and Denny was to start work the next morning. There was no time for him to show me around, I was left to my own devices to explore.   We lived in a hotel suite, just a few blocks from his office, on the top floor was a gym. Instead of exploring the city, I went right back into my training head. After a week or so, my injuries were still piling up and yet that was the only thing I wanted to hold onto. As week one turned to week two, Denny took action. ‘I want you to get fat, I want you to heal your body and learn to be who you are in this new skin’.

First of all, who says that? And second of all, how do I let go?

And so it began, dinners out, big Iraqui lunches and a complete ban from the top floor!! He indulged me in any thing foodie, he was on a mission. 8kg later I had a fuller face, my injuries were lessening and I was starting to find my smile.   He took me skiing again, yes Dubai has an indoor ski resort!! If you ever get the chance to visit this place it is a Disneyland for adults, dubachery and anything you can think of you can get. After 6 months we headed to Thailand and with my now fully formed booty, regretfully realizing I am now in the land of smiles and string bikinis, we started our life.

Monastery

After my five minute warning, instead of sitting down I excused myself and headed to my dorm. It took me less than 5 minutes to pack my meager bag and head to the main office, there he was My Royal, already waiting. If you haven’t spoken for a few days let alone a week you will find that you have lost your voice. It actually is a bit of a strain to speak and form words.We walked out of the monastery, silent, both looking into each others eyes, the emotions were raw and not tangible to put words to.

‘Somethings not right’, I finally voiced. ‘I know, I felt something strange when we were walking, and I know we have to get back to our island. We booked into a hotel for the evening and the next morning were on a boat back.

As we made our way to our villa I dropped off our months worth of laundry, picked up some supplies and headed home. As we hadn’t been online, and wanted to share our recent marriage to our family and friends, we picked up our computers with the intention of seeing what had been going on in a month.

The first Fb message was from my sister in Canada, the message was ominous. It read, “Lisa, I don’t know what is going on, and it’s either a sick joke or it’s real, but your daughter has just posted, ‘Dad, rest in peace’. She went on to say that the post was then removed and her page was taken down. That feeling from the monastery came back again. My heart sunk, My Royal took action. He called our good friend in Australia, who immediately said let me go to the family and check things out.

Two hours later a message had come thru, my ex-husband was dead, the family was accusing me of his death and they had taken my children to the police to confess to disavow me as there mother. Like I said, when the shit hits the fan.

We were on the next boat out, actually it’s a boat, a plane and another plane to get off the island. Too be honest I don’t remember much of the journey back, only that the Royal beside me was stoic, strong and calm.

As we arrived into Brisbane we were both very aware that I had been threatened with being arrested by the police. My in-laws had sent a message thru our friend that they were accusing me of being a drug mule and a murderer…..yeah, let that set in, oh and the kids were now to be with my sister in-law, she will be a better mother they had said.

It took me a week to locate my youngest, and when I did, I made a decision that I wasn’t giving him back. They had taken my children, tried to hide their father’s death and now were blaming me of murder. Well to the rap sheet I was going to add kidnapping!!

In the days after it was a flurry of passports, screams from my older children and threats. To this day I can not even imagine what they had to go thru, the loss of their Dad and then the annihilation of there Mother. The older two had chosen but my youngest wasn’t having any of it.

We arrived at the airport late a few days later, enroute back to Thailand. My 11yr old was so desperately just wanting to get on that plane. My Royal, thru the whole thing was still there standing strong, taking in all of our pain and trying to shield us from whatever came at us.

Denny went thru customs first, he was wearing a long sleeve button down white shirt and pair of jeans. My son and I were next in line to go thru, as I approached and the officer looked to our passports, he asked me kindly to stand to the side. My heart sank, Denny and I had had this conversation the night before, if I didn’t make it thru then we weren’t in a financial position for him to fly back in again. I watched him pause outside of passport control and out of the corner of my eye I could see 3 officers heading towards me and my son.

They grabbed me, and I grabbed my son…we were both crying, scared of what was to happen to us next.

But what happened next no one saw coming, for the officers as quickly as they had grabbed me were now running towards the passport control line.

All I could make out was a white long sleeved shirt, with a passport in his hand and the other over his heart.

‘I come in peace ‘,he said, and I am not leaving without my family’.

That my friends, is a Royal Marine.

I AM Married to a Royal Marine

 

 

 

 

I have Faith not Fear-The Gift of Gratitude Part 2

 

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Excerpt from the novel, I AM this Woman

I pray, to myself, everyday actually. This isn’t a new thing, I have being doing this since I was a little girl. Not really knowing who or what I was praying to, but just talking to someone who didn’t judge me or ask anything of me…just putting my thoughts out there into the ether. As I got older and the world around me got a little crazier, to say the least, I started inquiring about faith, beliefs, others religions and what that meant to people. The majority would say it was their place of peace, of comfort and community.

When I was finishing my arts degree I met a young lady who was proudly Greek. I was on my own at the time over Easter and she had asked if I would like to partake in their midnight mass. Curious and excited to dress up I walked up the path to her and her communities Greek Orthodox Church. There were hundreds of people, beautifully turned out and tables laden with food. Glowing candles were held in our hands as we walked the streets for the Easter Passover. Children giggling and glowing that they were up way past their bedtime. But there was something else, there was a feeling of oneness that is very hard to find and connect with.

Needless to say I didn’t become Greek Orthodox, but that beauitful spirit of that night never left. The prayers were done, the mutual greeting and shaking of hands and then we were back off into the world of competition, daily grind and lonliness. If there was ever a time to convert I suppose it would have been then.

I have been to many churches since that time, in fact all of my children have been baptised and have received the Holy Sacraments within the Catholic church. They were given a faith, something I wanted very much for myself. A place in the time of a storm that will open it’s doors and not question why you are there.

My strength comes from my core belief in my faith, the one that has always been in my little pocket. I take it out when times are hard and because I have been doing this for so many years it is like breathing, you know your doing it but you don’t question it.

My family never baptised me, it never dawned on me that they hadn’t, it was only when my first sibling arrived and he was baptised that I questioned it.

When I asked about it the response was, ‘We thought we would let you decide when you grew up?’ Being a child of the late 60’s, maybe this was her breaking free from society and along with it, burning bras. Whatever the reason it left me feeling not as grounded or connected as those that had been, those being my siblings. It was like their own private secret society and I hadn’t been a thought into that process.

Years later on I fell in love with a man of great faith, he watched as I attended church with my children, as I happily agreed to go to Easter Mass. He showed me the sacraments and the reconciliation as well as taught me that the church is dark, and clouded within it’s own dramas. This we all know, I for one have questioned many times why those men need to wear fuchsia hats and more diamonds and gold than Elizabeth Taylor, God rest her soul.

As I travelled and lived abroad I watched all different faiths, and their customs. When living in Dubai the Mosque call to prayer would sing out five times a day, it was a slight hum and actually became very comforting that they would take the time to just reflect. In Scotland, Sunday Mass was always a huge turnout and the Priests were knowledgeable, aware of the world’s strife, and openly aware with the dysfunction of it’s institution. It was refreshing to say the least and it made me remember when I was little and it was simpler, to just be at one with your thoughts, worries, concerns and hopes.

Living in Canada there was a strong Indian community, the elders would dance and chant and smudge (burning sage), I loved it, I love all of it. We need grounding, a community and a moment when all is right with the world and our world within. To observe so many faiths from within I have been very blessed. Currently I live in a Buddhist country, and on my wedding we lived in a monastery for a week. That was a week of getting back to my own base, no words were spoken, no eye contact was made, and the eating area was separated into male and female areas. By the 3rd day the monkey chatter in my mind had stopped and I could see.

One day I would like to visit the Vatican. Why not, it’s all of our history. I am married to a man who sees no borders of any religious type. It is refreshing, he is Catholic and loves his faith, but in truth he loves them all. He has studied the Quran, and he once tried to become a priest at the age of 14. He stands for his faith yet sees it’s faults, but they all have them. Like people, faiths can falter.

My own baptism eventually happened for me. I wanted to be apart of my children’s community, of my husbands love, and what had clearly been a search for me for many years. Years before when I was in counseling with my high school, the councilor when hearing of what I had been thru asked, “How do you get up every morning and be able to smile?” I looked at him, straight into his eyes, “Because everyday is a new day, you just have to believe that, you just have to have faith”. I too was 16 when I announced that out loud. At 47, that thought process has not changed.

I have had a great deal of love and support sent to me after writing, ‘I am just waiting on a train’. I thank you. I am grateful for this, and grateful to the people that have been my strength. There is one though that has been here, thru all of this. Thru my nightmares, my losses and when I just couldn’t get out of bed. When all I had was getting lesser by the day, he still stood there, on guard, fighting off the wolves.

After our coffee date that day, he gave me a limited edition of his first book, ‘Fighting Your Demons’. He then told he was going to head out for that day and just left me with that book. His concerns were that I wouldn’t want to see him after reading it, as in there was a whole lot of truth within those pages. And so that is exactly what he did.

I read it, twice. Inside was a life, a big one. I am not sure that any one person I have met before or since has met with one if not all of these experiences. Later that afternoon, there was a knock at my door. He had a fresh haircut, a packed bag and said so, “Your coming with me, because I am on a journey and I am moving this way quick, can you handle it?”

‘Yeah’, I prayed to myself, I got this.

I AM this woman, who are you?

https://www.amazon.com/FIGHTING-YOUR-DEMONS-Mastering-Courage-ebook/dp/B01HLYVF0Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1467256246&sr=8-1&keywords=fighting+your+demons#nav-subnav

Have Faith not Fear

LXo

I AM just waiting on a train

An excerpt from the book I am this woman…..

 

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Just a few weeks ago I discovered a hidden SMS message on FaceBook that had been sent to me over a year ago.

I can tell you now, looking back on the discovery(hindsight is golden) that it was one of those ‘movie moments’. You know, when the train doors slide open, and you have a choice, to get on or not. The choice of getting on from the audiences point of view is obvious, but instead we seem to choose to stay on the cold lonely platform. I am guilty of  choosing the latter too many times, this time I was getting on that train.

I was in the middle of checking emails and not being the most-savviest person on the planet with my iPhone skills, I had overlooked a whole section of SMS’s. There were about 15 in the bank, but only one caught my interest. The message was written with a shy tone, cautious, but yet direct.

It was from my first husbands, first girlfriend and fiancé.

They had been high school sweethearts over 25 years ago. I had never met her before in all of my time in Australia, nor being married for 19 years, and to be honest, never really heard much about her. Like all high school romances, I had thought it was left in the pages of their yearbook.

I don’t know why I didn’t see  her message before, maybe the timing wasn’t meant for me to see it then but a few things were at play that day. Let’s just say the stars were all aligning, but not in a glorious Milky Way moment, more like a catastrophic parade of meteorites heading for Planet Blonde.

I recognized her name from the past, and then realized that maybe she hadn’t known ‘our ex’ was no longer living. I felt obliged to contact her, and of course a little curious as this was literally a blast from his past, and from all accounts, nothing to do with me.

However, the second reason was because her words were chillingly close to the bone, as to how accurate her description of what had happened to me over 19 years of marriage, reflected in what she had claimed to be her experience.

Her name was A, she typed thru messenger. She hoped I was all right, that my daughter was ok, and that she had been concerned all these years for my safety. She had hoped he had turned into a good man; and the last line, ‘she had been plagued all her life worrying for me and what she hoped I had not gone thru’.

The surreal part is I received this in late 2015, yet he had died 3 years previous and secondly a lot of work has gone into my growth and moving on.So why now, why after all these years did it have to come back.  I had managed to put all of the past behind me. But here is the rub, the past can’t be put to rest until you deal with it…all of it.

So, with a heavy heart, I have to bring back the past in order for me to succeed in my present.

Please note, I AM not a victim, I AM a survivor, I AM that daughter, I AM that divorcee, I AM that widower, I AM this strong, I AM a body of those experiences.

If this is not spoken about and I AM not able to share my experiences,as dark as they may be then how can I help someone out there who is going thru the exact circumstances and is overwhelmed in their isolation and can’t see their way out?

Maybe that SMS was a sign to say hey, you have had plenty of time to let others know, to help those when others doubt them.  For I have been doubted, called a liar, blamed and yet still had to grovel for those peoples affections.  Yes, it is hurtful to read but not as painful as receiving it.  And without my truth, that this happened to me, then how are we going to stand up for ourselves and say, enough is enough?

I to have had all this pain and not to be able to show others that pain just equals more pain.  Hurt people hurt people, sad people share sadness all the time.  I am here to share knowledge, personal experience and how to grow from it without the guilt or societies branding.

So please, bare witness, but don’t bare sadness, or despair, read for hope, truth and knowing that we are not alone.

My Living Hell

I was groomed from an early age. Trust has never been my strong suit.

Groomed from an early age by my uncle Herbie, from what I can recall 8yrs old to finally having the strength to stop him at the age of 16.

My mother knew, I told her over many years; her response was to get drunk and chase me with an axe thru my bedroom door, beat me or burn me. I have all scars to prove it, outwardly and inwardly.

Thankfully my stepfather had put locks on my door only a few weeks before the big finale, or it could have gotten really ugly. I left that day and didn’t look back for nearly 25 years!

To say my childhood environment reflected what was going on behind the scenes was the sinister part, for the house was always clean, there was food and I was clothed. My mother’s attention to detail, her fantastic taste in design and her immaculate presentation of her many houses did not reflect the pain.

There was pain, a lot of it. From beatings after school, to burns on my body, my mother’s drunken ranting’s were always followed with beatings, pulling hair, being punched or kicked. Accusing me of sleeping with her second husband, let’s just say the list does get bigger but you get the general idea. And the end result was always the same; she couldn’t remember that she had done it. Here is where the ‘blame game’ starts. I felt responsible for every punch, every bruise and every grooming experience. I blamed myself for the treatment my ‘family’ gave me. After all it was me who made them do what they did, right?

I know, I don’t look like anything could have happened to me. But it did, they did it and then  I blamed myself for it happening…every single day. But I left that behind; I put it in my past and just walked away. Dusted myself off, and made way for my future, a bright one. I wanted my life to be so bright like a glowing ball of sunshine, that anyone who came near me would feel my radiant glow of love and not want to hurt me. I wanted that so much.

The problem was though; that my past was still there and my first hand knowledge of ‘love’ was that it came from either a fist or a fuck.

The lady at the other end of that SMS was not to know that she had opened my Pandora’s box. Please note, it wasn’t her fault, she has had her own battles all her life, and I hope she can be at ease now, and know that I am thankful for her strength in reaching out.

I was 21 when I married. Looking back a child bride. He was from the other side of the world, a world away from rejection, ignorance and plain hate. Or so I thought.

My next 19 years were to be a repeat performance of my childhood. Physical and emotional abuse. The thing is bruises heal but words; words stay forever in your mind. And he was great with his words.

But one day those words didn’t hurt anymore, the sting in them was still there, but the indifference to them had set in. I was realizing my self-worth in the phrases of a childhood nursery rhyme, ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me’.

And so I left, again. I AM that mother who left her children with that hu-MAN, this will always be my guilt and sadness. At the time all I could think about was my survival and once that was established, then I was in a place that I could save us all. Sadly it hasn’t been that way.

Since this woman contacted me, I have had to regroup and look at all of my actions that led me into these situations.

I AM not accountable to those steps that were laid down for me by those who failed me in my past. I take great responsibility in creating new steps, with big giant leaps.

I chased those demons down and fought thru it, but not without help. Help came in strange ways and also in undeniable, downright spiritual ways too. As soon as I had decided that enough was enough, those train doors started to slide open and the boogeyman wasn’t there anymore.

I AM now well informed about what I will stand for in my life. Who I let be near me, and how I want to be treated. Simply. With Love

The night before I left my yet again abusive situation, I sat down outside on the steps and wrote down on a tiny piece of paper what I wanted out of my life. Not what I owe someone, not what I can do for them to make them happy but what I needed for me to fulfil my journey.  I realised that if you are truly loved, then the above doesn’t happen to you, if it is happening then get the hell out.  Find a way.  It’s all scary, but the scariest part is that you could still be there.

Dear Lxo

I AM in LOVE, I AM strong, I AM happy, I AM a rebel, I AM a traveller, I AM empowered, I AM a cougar, I AM raw, I AM an Artist,  I AM that Mother and my door is always open.

I AM this WOMAN, and the past is now just that…

My 11 Affirmations to Warrior Heaven – Forever Strong in Love †

 

**If you are a victim of #childabuse, #sexualassault, #parentalalienation, #domesticviolence #incest #mentalabuse #physicalabuse please reach out, to someone, anyone, me….

The more we  can bring awareness and stop the taboo of talking about these subjects the more the ‘System of Silence Stops.

LXO

 

I am wasting time

I am wasting time

I have been burning daylight a lot lately. And when I got down to the crux of why I had been dawdling the only precious commodity that one can never get back (time)I just hung my head in shame and thought, ‘I don’t know’ and the next response ‘What a waste of time’.

We could call it limbo for many reasons, or call this nothingness reorganizing myself, I know we are all guilty of it. Lollygagging on how we look, what people think, what we should say, as well as whiling away the time on people who you know deep down don’t care whether your around or not. You were given gut feelings, trust in them!

That’s the hard realization, when your life changes some people just can’t come with you and instead of them being happy for you, you become shunned like a bad member of the flock. But the very worst procrastinator of all for me has been self doubt on past destructive emotions like jealousy or frustration, not good enough. For the record these have absolutely no place in my life. And is not on my list of time dilly dallying anymore.

Somewhere I got it all backwards, talked myself into thinking that if I spent time on those that didn’t see me or wished they would give me their time,that maybe I would be enough. Maybe they could rise up and feel me, hell I even prayed for their kindness and love. That ended

I especially find myself losing a lot of time looking at the right hand screen on my Face Book page. You know the signal, where it shows who’s on line and who is not. The sad fact is, that that little green dot consumes a lot of my time, it represents someone I love dearly. I turn that Face crack on in the hope that the green dot is still glowing and my heart skips a beat to see that the light is still on. Like a ship lost at sea looking for the light house, when it flickers on I know they are there, waiting, watching and so for this, this is not a loss of time. This is a mother with her only contact to her blood by a dot on a screen.

So I made a promise a few weeks ago. I am choosing to spend my time on the following . Albeit I had to go thru some hoops to get to these realizations, and with any change comes some heated discussions, some goal posts moved and moments of reflection to make hard decisions. And as always there was the usual toss between being my usual pig headed strong self and the other being the humble eyes wide opened character. With all that emotion out of the way, I have no time to waste…here is where you will find me wasting light in 2016.IMG_0236.jpg

I am going to waste time on my husband and love him like it was my last day on earth…everyday. I am going to waste time with my friends and drink red wine and eat fabulous food while the sun goes down on our tropical island we all call home. I am going to waste time motivating people. I am especially going to waste time having a lingering kiss on the lips of my King. I am going to waste your time to, I will waste it by giving you a hug, or winking at you. I am going to be the biggest time waster by listening to you, and enjoying our time we waste together.

 

While I am at it I am going to waste time boxing, staying fit, having massages, loving my job, meeting people from all over the world. I am going to waste time learning two new languages-concurrently ( I didn’t say successfully), I am going to waste time learning how to dive. I am going to waste time having dinner parties and paddle boarding. I am going to waste time making art again and writing like I can recapture time again. I hope I have encouraged you to waste time also. Life is too damn short.

And If it so happens we get wasted together, then mission accompolished, because we didn’t while our time away , instead we embraced our moments in the presence of everything. Like good time wasters do xxxx