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Away from the desk - May 2014

08 May 2014

Outside of work, I am a busy single mum. I have two incredible boys I love dearly, who treat me like a servant. I work full time, and in my spare-time cook, clean, sort out disputes between my children, try to stay out of disputes involving my parents or friends, fantasise about getting fit, and plan meditation retreats and hikes in New Zealand.

All this takes place in the time it takes my single friends to work, shop, think deeply about such things as what brand of watch to buy and where to invest their money, take exotic holidays and drink themselves into oblivion on a fairly regular basis.

This is not to mention the stay-at-home mums who drop their kids off at school before hitting the gym for some serious pilates followed by coffee and  a low-carb breakfast. Do I sound bitter?

No no no no no … far from it, but I do at times feel like I’m on a very fast, very stuck merry-go-round controlled by a manic clown with runny eye make up. But I digress …

Funnily enough, over the past few weeks, I got my wish. I injured my back during a brief encounter with a potted plant I was throwing around on my driveway. One of the discs in the my lower back got aggravated and remained stubbornly out of place for a good solid week.

What I got for moving pot plants was enforced rest on the my sofa, being unable to move, reading whatever books were within reach at the time of being seated, texting, finding out what my smartphone can really do, watching TV, gazing into the air and CRYING – yes, lots of crying.

It seems like the very act of doing nothing has enabled me to do a hell of a lot of self-indulgent sooky  processing that I quite simply had never had the time to do.

Because I live in a household of boys, it took quite a lot of explaining as to: a) why was I crying; b) what could be done about it; and c) when would I stop? I also copped quite a lot of “that’s not worth crying”.

When it did stop I felt like a new woman, and even better now I’ve been back at work a week.

But hey, hasn’t the weather turned?  Taking a lunchtime walk now requires more than having the right gear on hand, and an optimistic frame of mind. It requires STEELY DETERMINATION, and an IRON WILL.

So cold is the wind that I wish I really had gone out and bought that winter coat I waxed lyrical about in an earlier column. Follow through Maria, Follow through!

So it was with some trepidation that I stepped out today for lunch with my work colleagues at the revamped, refreshed and very retro Savoy Hotel at the top of Bourke St. If you haven’t been, and you have a thing for the 70s, but you love modern food (think “pulled” meat ) then you are in for a treat. There’s even an original vintage cigarette tray running around the bar, and something about the spaces inside – the distance between the tables, the set of the windows – that’s very 70s.

I’ve gotta say it was well worth the very brisk walk up Bourke St. Followed by the very brisk walk back. And I had no carbs, having used extreme SELF DISCIPLINE to leave the sourdough bread that encased my half of the steak sandwich I had on the plate. Cue halo here.

If you are at your desk, and you are a woman, you may be interested in a website I was introduced to today by a friend (thank you Mikey) called “Everyday Sexism”. It’s a site for people to bring their experiences of sexism – however large or small it may appear – to a public forum.

Posts can be anonymous or named. What struck me is the number of young girls who experience unwelcome sexual remarks or even physical assault from boys or men. It’s very real and very confronting but really worthwhile, so check it out.

Til next time, enjoy the time away from your desk!
X Maria

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