Open letter

an open letter of sorts.

It doesn’t take that much neglect for things to quickly deteriorate, does it? I’ve learnt that the hard way. Multiple times. (Which would suggest that I didn’t learn it in the first place…)

Something that I do know is that I don’t want this little rascal of a passion project to end up on that list too. So, with that in mind, please excuse me for a minute or four; I have a little note to write on the back of a piece of scrap paper.

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To my darling blog,

The past month of my life has been… unique. (Yes, that was deliberately diplomatic.) Although it has been quite emotionally draining, its being so has been a good thing, for it is hard to progress without change, n’est-ce pas? (more…)

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an open letter to a former friend.

When your close friend becomes an acquaintance.

ImageIf our relationship was depicted in latte art, this would be us. (Image: Bad Latte Art)

Here we are once again. You and I.

Seeing you, it’s like going to the dentist – an occasional appointment which you begrudgingly force yourself to attend.

It’s an obligatory ritual in which we go through the same steps as last time: assess the situation, clean with that pointy thing which I don’t really like, clean with the toothpastey thing which is comparatively better, then rinse! My dentist is a lovely, lovely woman – she is caring, intelligent and pragmatic. We make small talk about our lives and her adult children, whom I know.

Except you are not my dentist and my teeth are no cleaner after having seen you. (more…)

to my sweet peach.

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Fun fact: the literal translation of au revoir is “until we next see each other”.

 

The week ahead is going to be a big one. Really big. Sad big.

See, I’m leaving a job I adore – out of choice – because I want to pursue a job which is more career-oriented. I have been nannying my little girl for close to two years and my lord have they been brilliant. I’ll still see her family on a regular basis, but I feel heartbroken knowing that this is our last week together.

Being a nanny can, in some ways, be mildly petrifying. Not only because you have the responsibility of looking after a little life, but because whether or not you want to, you know that you will be influencing and shaping that little life. And frankly, I don’t always have my sh!t together. Frightening stuff.

So, I want to write an open letter to my little girl… my sweet peach, darling girl, bubble, rascal, honey bear, roo roo.

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My darling Roo,

This is our last week together, bubble, and I don’t want Friday to come. 

I know we’ll still see each other often (minimum once a fortnight as promised), but I know that my new job will not bring me the immense joy which I receive when I’m with you. I won’t be paid to laugh, to go on adventures, give you hugs, to sing in the car or do weird science experiments together – but you know I’d do all of that for free. Anyway, I won’t be paid to do your washing anymore either – so I guess there are one or two perks.

I don’t think that I am necessarily an exemplary or well-qualified role-model, honey bear, but I’d be ignorant to think that all of the time we’ve had together hasn’t left an imprint upon both of us. Some of those things I hope you haven’t picked up from me (we won’t go into them now), but I do hope that you have learnt some helpful things from our time together…

  • I know you bemoan the fact that I am constantly onto you about a) chewing with your mouth closed and b) not using your fingers to eat instead of cutlery, but there may be a time when you are about fifteen when you’ll go out for dinner with your friends for the first time. Very grown up. During dinner you may observe that some of your peers are talking whilst eating and have their elbows on the table and you may feel a tad awkward watching them. Look, it’s not life or death, but basic table manners are an important social skill – and that’s why we bother to correct yours now.
  • It’s good to do things which aren’t on screens. I know you love playing on your iPod and iPad, but there are lots of things which are as, if not more, engaging, stimulating and fun which are not made of pixels  – like your hula-hooping, drawing and singing. You may even find that life is more fun when you lift your eyes from the screen. (And yes, I need to do more of this myself).
  • There have been times when you’ve encountered mean people. It sucks to be hurt and rejected by others, sweetheart. I hope it helps you to remember something that we’ve discussed together: we can’t change that person, but what we can do is to ask ourselves “what can I learn from them?” And what we can learn is to not be like them. To quote one of my favourite books, The Bike Lesson, “This is what you should not do, so let that be a lesson to you.”
  •  It doesn’t matter whom you love, darling. It’s fine to love girls or boys or no-one. If you do end up married or in a long-term relationship later on in life, that’s lovely – but having a partner does not make you any more or less valuable a person. You will always be loved immensely by mummy, daddy, your friends, family and I.
  • I know you can be cautious about trying new things, peach, but if you don’t try new things how will you ever find out whether you like something? When you do try something new remember to be kind to yourself – it’s unlikely that you’re going to ace it straight away. You need to practice and persevere. In saying that, it’s important to know your limitations.  I know you’ll smash the green monkey bars and be ready for the pirate ship ride at Luna Park one day, honey.
  • Something which I’ve learnt over the past six years is that perfection, in my opinion, is not truly attainable… and if something is “perfect” it’s probably not going to be much fun. Perfection’s pretty boring. My advice? Don’t chase after perfection – it will leave you disappointed.
  • You are wonderful just the way you are, my love. There will probably be times in the future when you wish you were shorter or you didn’t have glasses. You may wish that you were more popular or smarter than someone else in your class. Everyone has different strengths, Roo, and we each have our own character – that’s part of what makes life interesting. Imagine how boring it’d be if we were all the same! You have been blessed with a wonderful sense of humour and a kind, generous heart and they are things which I didn’t and couldn’t ever teach you – this is innately who you are and I hope it never changes.

I’m sorry for all of the times when I’ve been impatient or self-centred. (See: the list of things which I hope you don’t pick up from me). You are probably unaware of it, but you often bring out the best in me. When I’ve had down days I’ve been able to drive over to your place knowing that just being with you would lift me out of my rut. That’s the kind of person that you are. And I’ve spent the past year and nine months thinking that I’m the luckiest girl in the world to have you in my life. 

See you on Tuesday morning, peach. I love you very much.

Your Alexie x

prosecco.

An open letter.
From: my feeling-sorry-for-myself-this-morning self.
To: my beverage-consuming self last night.

Good morning, peach.

Hey. 

So. Let’s chat.

Must we?

Yes. Definitely.

Wait. Which Alex is which? 

I’m not sure. I guess it feels like I’m going to be the school principal and you’re going to be the recalcitrant, rebellious student. Is that ok?

Yeah, whatever. Let’s just get this over with.

Now, Alex –

My brain hurts.

I was talking. Do you mind not interrupting?

(Glares.)

And there’s no need to glare at me, thanks.

(Continues glaring.) 

Yeah, so about your brain hurting. Perhaps, just perhaps, you need to rethink your approach to house parties.

Uhh. Why??

Well, we could start with that ‘brain-hurting’ thing you mentioned. The one where it feels like you’re slowly spinning in dizzy circles.

(Raises eyebrow haughtily) Mmmhmm? Well, perhaps it was worth it, thank you very much, you killjoy.

Note your use of the word ‘perhaps’. Ok, if not the head, how about the nauseated stomach?

Nothing that Vita-Weats and green tea couldn’t fix.* 

Or you could have had something a bit more interesting for breakfast.

Whatever.

Ok. How about the fact that your clothes are covered in dog hair?

I love that gorgeous canine, ok? And he’s old and he isn’t going to be around forever, so I think that he and I have established that it’s ok for me to use him as a pillow when I stumble in at 3am. The clothes? Yeah, I’ll have to pick each hair out one by one, but that dog pillow is worth it.

You don’t have anything better to do with your time than to pick each individual dog hair off your clothes? Wow. You’re fun.

Shut up, you. You evidently have nothing better to do with your time than to berate me.

Touché… but how about your suede heels?

Ok. I do concede that I will, from now on, avoid wearing suede heels to house parties. Thankfully, they are black and thus, they shall be relatively easy to clean.

You don’t say. They’d be beyond help if they were beige.

God forbid. I’m not that much of an idiot, thanks.

Good luck with the green stain on them, by the way.

I have no idea what this is. Actually, I think it could be an avocado dip… which I didn’t even eat. Let’s move on. Anything else you want to add from up there on your high horse?

Oh, yes, actually.

FFS.

Shame about your gorgeous bracelet smashing.

Yeah, actually it is. Do you have to remind me of the fact that I’m going to have to get it repaired RIGHT now?

Did you find all of the beads?

I think so. It wasn’t even my fault. Well, ok. I kind of tripped. Well, I thought that I could steady myself on the (closed) door behind me. But, as it turns out, it was open. And then my poor bracelet took the impact. I think I may have landed on it. 

(Raises eyebrow) Not your fault? Right. Yeah. Totally.

(Crosses arms across her chest.) Well, it wasn’t deliberate.

Ok. And how about have to pay for a taxi ALLL the way home because catching a bus was going to be too much like hard work for your non-sober self?

Yes, not ideal considering my current financial state. Thanks for the reminder, you cow. But it’s just $50. Not ideal, but not the end of the world either. It’s better to get home safely and to hurt the bank account than to not get home safely in the name of saving some money.

Oh, aren’t you virtuous. Well, look out world: Alex is the fountain of all wisdom.

At least I’m not as infuriating as you.

At least I’m not a bad friend.

Ouch.

But it’s true, isn’t it?

This is really unnecessary.

Oh, but I think it is, in fact, very necessary.

(Silence.)

You really hurt her, you know. She may not be one to wear her emotions on her sleeve (or her face like you do), but that doesn’t mean that what you did didn’t hurt her. Because it did. And you really went too far.
Poor form, Alex. Poor form.

(No rebuttal.)

What the hell were you thinking, Alex? Sometimes you act like your relationship means so little to you.

That is not true. I love her to pieces.

Well, act like it, dammit!

I’m really sorry.

Don’t say that to me. Say it to her.

Ok.

One last thing.

Oh, shut up.

I promise it’ll be the last thing I say.

(Sighs with exasperation.) What? What now??

See you next weekend?

(Raises her hand, clenching the first, second, fourth and fifth digits.)

Alex x

* As an aside: I do wish that my anti-nausea remedy was more interesting, but Vita-Weats it is.