There are many joys being locked in with a teenager for an extended time. Extra Lockdown 3.0 has given me the time to go on exciting endeavours like delving through my junk mail folder and scoring lovely new online connections. I received this beautiful comment on a Facebook post:
I must confess and thank you so much my friend request. Although I translated to your language and hope you don’t mind, you are beautiful? My new best mate is clearly a high ranking, good looking Army General based in Texas.
I’m filled with happiness when complete strangers with expertise in marketing or real estate sales in their bios try to add me as a connection, and nothing makes me feel more soothed than the comments written by professional networkers on Scotty from marketing’s LinkedIn posts.
I’m revelling in reading long essays by conspiracy theorists with obvious expertise in epidemiology commenting on health professionals’ social media posts; relaxing reading that I highly recommend in the middle of a pandemic.
I’m deeply moved by the inspirational quotes obviously written by Gandhi, Jesus and that lady influenza who promotes yoga pants on Instagram. I feel so motivated now that genuine celebrities are following and messaging me on Twitter. I am focused on success instead of endless hours of TV watching.
And I’m humbled that I’ve secured a large sum of money from long-lost distant relatives in far-flung places who only want what’s best for me.
I can’t tell you how exciting it is to know that I can buy healing anti inflammatory lollies from one of my online mates who did extensive research on YouTube. Honestly, I can’t tell you.
Like, I’m really, really, really like energised by social commentary online, like for reals totes legit like, as the people I gave birth to love me to exclaim regularly in front of their friends in enclosed public spaces while I’m hitting the chardy. Sorry. Like I forgot about the pandemic pandemonium for a second there.
No really, I’m thrilled by your business opportunities, I haven’t left the chat permanently, I’m just having a nanna nap for a couple of years.
Hellbent on making a success of my spring into summer self-improvement program, this week I looked online for inspiration to kickstart my new attitude. I noticed that Hollywood stars like Mark Wahlberg are a wonderful source of realistic life goals. Marky Mark is a busy man: an actor, father of 4, restaurant owner and car dealer. He recently posted an hour by hour Insta story of his daily workout and routine:
2:30 a.m.: wake up
3:15 a.m.:breakfast — “I start out with steel oats, peanut butter, blueberries and eggs for breakfast,” Wahlberg says. “Then I have a vanilla latte protein shake, three turkey burgers and five pieces of sweet potato.”
3:40 to 5:15 a.m.:work out. The actor posted videos of himself doing reverse lunges, vertical presses and overhead presses for weight training.
5:30 a.m.:post-workout meal
He goes into detail about everything he eats: “At 8 I have 10 turkey meatballs; at 10:30, a grilled chicken salad with two hard-boiled eggs, olive, avocado, cucumber, tomato, lettuce; at 1pm a New York steak with peppers; at 3:30 grilled chicken with bok choy, and att 5:30, a piece of halibut, cod or sea bass.”
After his workouts, Wahlberg has a session in a cryotherapy chamber, kept at 150 degrees below zero. Apparently the cold removes inflammation and can improve sleep.
He has family time at 11am and 5:30pm., and picks up his kids at school at 3.
The 46-year-old says, “The only way to be the best is to keep working like you got nothing. Keep getting after it, and be more and more aggressive, more and more focused every day. I have more drive and desire now than I ever have.”
I couldn’t find the paragraph where Marky talks about washing his kids’ dirty undies. smashing the patriarchy and helping homeless people, so I’m sharing my social influencer, intensive single mother schedule to help my huge list of followers:
2.30am Lie awake and think about all the bills I need to pay
4.45am Rage about the misogynists who are still in government
5am pray I’ll have the money to pay the rent
6.36am Answer phone call from nursing home about mother’s missing pants
7.53am Realise I’ve over slept, yell at kids to get to school
8.18am Stare at cranky face in bathroom mirror
8.19am Sudden realisation that is my unrested bitch face
8.44am Accidentally throw chicken neck in the cat’s water bowl
8.47am Drive kids to school, late again
Throw lukewarm coffee and over ripe fruit in gob while at traffic lights
9.29am Get to work and make some kind of hideous flavoured tea
1.33pm Realise lunch is in fridge at home, hope blood sugar doesn’t fall too low. Pray there is cake or biscuits in the tea room
3.18pm Steal bite of colleague’s meal, one hour before finishing
3.38pm Hope kids got on their overcrowded school bus
4.28pm Slump home low in energy. Read emails from teachers about youngest child’s unfinished homework. Jump to conclusions
5.59pm Hurl dinner in oven, leaving plastic wrap on frozen pizza, wonder why kids complain about taste
7.21pm Nag teenagers about bedroom floor-drobe, junk food wrapper rubbish removal, overuse of Snapchat
8.17pm Eat whole block of cooking chocolate while trying to manage 417 emails
9.03pm Drown anxiety with flat leftover wine from fridge
10.47pm Shout, “turn the music down, you’ll wake the neighbours,” repeatedly at five minute intervals. Chug down cold tea
11.25pm Reheat mashed potato and eat too fast
Midnight wake up freezing with no covers on, youngest child and cat have stolen all blankets
12.19am Wonder why Trump is still in the White House
1am Promise myself I will be more focused and hardworking tomorrow, walk to work, write lists of gratitude, achievements, life goals, brainstorm ways to monetise our appealing life with sponsored Instagram posts, plan kitchen cupboards, write thank you cards, drink organic kale smoothies, start Xmas shopping months too early, achieve my potential, push kids like a tiger mother, monitor internet usage, start a Facebook page for our cat and hope followers will pay vet bills, write crowdfunding appeal to get car back on the road, develop impulse control and do Pilates three times a day
1.18pm wake up dribbling on list, decide to rewrite one day
Before I send my kids back to jail, I want to make sure I’ve achieved most of my school holiday goals. Checking my list while lying on the couch under a blanket, I’m very happy to report that I’ve managed to attain most of my school hols KPIs:
Cat eating leftovers
Too much sleep
Vegemite toast for dinner
Excessive social media posting
Leg hair I can plait
Water bill low from lack of bathing
Fights with teenagers
Experimental cooking failures
100s of pyjama couture selfies
Growing list of forgotten dreams
Hours wasted talking to cat
Dry winter skin from sitting on top of heater
Kids undereating because of overuse of technology
Washing piled high
Life lived through my children
I know I sound smug, but school can now resume with my brilliant mothering skill set intact
My oldest childhood friend is about to turn 50 and realising I have elderly friends has made me think about what I’m going to do with the rest of my life. Middle age can be about making time for personal growth and wondering what sort of human you want to become in the second half of your life. Once my kids have moved out of home, I want to inspire people, live well and have fun, so when I grow up, hopefully I’ll still be young enough to:
Care about my fellow humans like Sam Newman
Be open-hearted like Prune Macsween
Dance like Peter Garrett
Have the compassion of Miranda (Not Really) Devine
Pop pills like Ben Cousins
Manage my hair like Donald Trump
I am officially an old bag. Today I turn 50 and I’m trying hard not to whinge. For it is a privilege to be 50. My friends who died of breast cancer in their 40s would love to be where I am. And so would the kids who were robbed of their mothers.
The beautiful sick kids I’ve met at the hospitals I work in who left way too soon didn’t get to be adults at all. And the families and friends of my darlings Veljko, Mark and Anthony who died in their 20s would love to know them in their 50s. Those guys would have aged like fine wine if they’d had the chance.
I don’t feel that different, but I look in the mirror and I see age creeping up on me. I was born on a Monday, “Monday’s child is fair of face,” but my face looks like it needs more sleep. And my knees creak from all the stilt walking, gymnastics and dancing drunk in stupid high heels over the past 35 years. I can still have fun with my kids, my best friends, the families I meet through my work and I share great love with a beautiful heart. But there are things I’m worried that I haven’t done yet. Maybe I won’t get to live in New York or drive across Africa. Maybe I won’t be brave enough to sail across the world. Maybe crazy life goals are in the past. Maybe I won’t sing with Kermit or be the next teen superstar.
I share my birthday with fabulous people like Twiggy, Jeremy Irons, Frances Farmer, Mama Cass, Daniel Lanois, Nile Rodgers, Jimmy Fallon and Alison Sweeney from Days of Our Lives, darling. Today is also International Talk Like a Pirate day.
At 50 I’ve realised that the cocker spaniels I’ve had in my life may be the only dogs I own in this lifetime as I can’t afford to buy a house.
But 50 brings great rewards. I can sing, dance, laugh and love, I have fabulous kids, and I’ve given up people who drain me of precious energy. I have no time for those who don’t contribute to improving our world. So hit the high seas for some hijinks you swashbuckling scoundrels. I’ll be wearing my new earrings that cost a bucaneer. 50 is swell.
At the end of 2015, I had a lot of goals for 2016:
More corporate tax paid
Less foreign aid cuts
More cake eating
Less Michelle Bridges
More real people
Less Insta famous twats
As we approach a new season, I thought I’d update my 2016 resolutions. Losing weight and being more productive are so 2012. Why not try these achievable ideas instead?
Raise my cholesterol
Stare into space, at least three times a day
Say ‘I’ll do this later ‘ more frequently
Spend more time on social media looking at photos of strangers doing things I want to do
Be more envious of others (see above)
Remove kale, coconut and slow pressed juices from my home
Wait for something to happen