Marrying a divorcee

Ladies…take it from me…marrying a divorcee has its pit falls. You will be blindsided by pre-existing emotional and psychological damage without even realizing it. A divorcee is a complicated creature.

Spinsters have these grandiose notions of marriage. You look forward to the exciting journey of ‘togetherness’. You imagine you and your spouse encountering difficulties together, and holding hands through the newness of the union.

Now imagine a spinster marrying a divorcee who already gained his stripes. He already walked the walk and ended up with the t-shirt. All those grandiose ideas you had of holding hands goes out the window because your divorced spouse is sitting back pre-empting the pitfalls before you even have the chance to conjure their existence. Each time you stumble at the hurdle, he is not jumping them with you, he is off on the sidelines cheering you on: “You can do it hunny! And if you can’t then I totally understand!” How are you supposed to feel? Do you feel alone in the marriage? Do you feel duped? Do you feel like your dreams of ‘togetherness’ has manifested into a journey of ‘oneness’?

Yup! Welcome to my club…and it sucks!

For nearly two years of married life, my husband and I have spoken at length about these issues. We have dissected every detail and analyzed all the feelings. We have agreed on more than one occasion that a divorcee does come with past baggage. The divorcee  approaches the new marriage with a ‘know-it-all’ attitude. He is quick to get offended. He is quick to link current frustrations to past ones. He is quick to find similarities in both situations. He is constantly worried that the same cracks will appear. He is always looking for ways to ‘fix’ the relationship before any signs of distress manifest. All of these behaviors, and thought patterns, have a detrimental affect on the emotional and psychological fragility of the newly married spinster.

As unmarried women, we have no idea of what lies ahead. We are not aware that explosive situations between husband and wife can rear their ugly head. We are blinded by the romantic infatuation, we are completely smitten with our other half – the other half of your soul – the person who is meant to complete you in every way. We say our vows and make promises to each other that no matter what, we are both in this together, forever, no matter what. You look forward to waking up next to our best friend. The one who will have our back, who we trust. He is the one who will be our support. The one who will protect and provide. The one who pledges his unfaltering love on the basis that is me and him against the world. Then you realize you married a divorcee and all of those grandiose beliefs you are one big fucking illusion!

A divorced man can tell you he loves you. He can tell the world you are the only one for him. You will be the apple of his eye, and his heart has never seen such joy. But guess what?  None of what he SAYS, will stop his mind from THINKING about what ‘could be’. He can’t help watching silently like a thief in the night, waiting for signs…signs that it is going to fail. He can’t help what he thinks. He can’t help making comparisons, and seeing ghosts where none exist. A divorced man is scarred. He carries the weight of his demons on his back. He carries those demons into his new marriage, even when he knows he shouldn’t. He spots problems before they form. He conceives tragedy when none exist. He walks with a double edge sword, failing to understand why he is cutting himself. He  thinks he is being smart by protecting his already fragile heart. He tells himself he will not be the one to get hurt again! Little does he know that HE is his own worst enemy.

If he is his own worst enemy…then we cannot be the ones to blame for being active participants in a game we know nothing about. How are we to understand the rules of this game, when only one player has the instructions. How are we to build a NEW life together when the ruins of the old life still exist.

Additional Reading: https://www.marriage.com/advice/counseling/six-challenges-of-second-marriages/

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Happy Wife, Happy Life?

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Guess what fellow bloggers? Hubby and I had another LONG chat yesterday and we unearthed something quite valuable. What I have to say may not be a sentiment shared by most…but for us, it really shed some light on the grey area that has plagued me, and I am sure countless others like us.

We have all heard the saying Happy Wife, Happy Life… but what does it really mean? What makes the ‘wife’ happier than a cohabitating partner or a long term girlfriend/fiancé? What makes ‘life’ that much more special for the wife than anyone else who is in a committed, long-lasting relationship? Is it really a piece of paper that makes everything so gloriously ‘happy’? Is it the rings that make everything better than before? If that is the case, then why does a man feel so obligated to ensure that no matter what, even after the last wedding guest has left the building, he has to ensure his wife is always content? Why is the husband made to feel like it is his job to ensure his wife’s happiness? Shouldn’t she be gloriously ecstatic that she has the man of her dreams – forever! What could be happier than that??

Let me ask you this…Wonder if a woman wants more and expects more? Wonder if a woman feels let down by such an anticlimactic finale? Is ‘Marriage’ really the grand finale?

Think about it carefully… women spend copious amounts of time wooing, courting, doing the feminine dance of love to attract their mate. There is flirting, texting, calling, dating. There is playing hard to get, getting to know and falling in and out of love. There is disastrous relationships that end in tears and broken hearts, and one night stands that are drunken mistakes. There is a lot of dissecting of conversations and giggling in corners. Admit it ladies…we work DAMN hard to capture the hearts of the men. We spend hours seeking guidance from our friends and looking for approval from our mates. We oil, rub and powder our bodies with heavenly scents and ensure that there isn’t so much as a thread in the wrong place. We eye our competition with venom as we vie for the winning prize. On occasion we admit defeat and swear that we shall be back to win the crown, looking better and smelling nicer. We arrange meetings to deliberate strategy and game plans. We keep our eye on the prize and nothing gets in our way.

We work hard to land the guy we know will be our future. We have already envisioned the wedding dress and the honeymoon getaway. We are prepped for the moment that will change our lives forever – the prized possession. The winning trophy. The biggest win of them all. Marriage!

We know that marriage is the grand finale! It is where hopes and dreams go to live happily ever after. We want that. We have always wanted that. But why does it feel so final? “Is this it?” Now that I’m married, is this it? What happens next? Is there anything else to work towards? Is there anything else to look forward to? What happens now? Do I just ‘settle down’ in my role as ‘wife’. Am I to simply BE happy with my role and my life because this is what I longed for?

After spending all those years as a girlfriend, aspiring to take on the role as wife, have we put too high a price on a title that we truly know nothing about? And now that we are wives, are we ‘happy’ with the prize we have been spent our lives prepping for? Are we ok that our husbands feel it is their duty to make us happy? And by making us happy, even if they feel miserable, do we accept that it is all part of winning the most coveted prize?

As a girlfriend or long term partner we NEVER for one minute expect our men to make us happy! We were the ones constantly ensuring their happiness and their comfort. We would be the ones to go the extra mile and put in the extra effort. We would paste fake grins to our faces and pretend to love the same things as them. We would hide our reluctance to interact with their friends or partake in their idea of fun. As the girlfriend, we knew we had more to lose.

Are we more scared of ‘losing’ than we are of truly committing?

As the wife, the role is reversed. We walk around with our chests puffed out brandishing our shiny rings knowing that its the mans turn to work hard to keep us comfortable. The man better pretend he loves our family. He better smile graciously at the party surrounded by our friends. He better make us happy…because if he doesn’t, then he will be sorry (wink wink).

Does the triumph of ‘winning’ the prize eventually lose its shine? Do we become complacent with the finality of marriage?

I HATE HOMEWORK!!

 

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“I HATE HOMEWORK!!!”

That is NOT my kiddo shouting that from the rooftop…that’s me screaming it across the neighborhood as I run from the house in terror!

I hate who I become during homework sessions. I hate the wide eyed beast who stares back at me urging me to have a couple glasses of wine to numb the pain. I hate having bad thoughts about my child, the school and the teacher! I hate ripping my hair out in clumps because I can’t gouge out the eyes of my kid instead. I HATE HOMEWORK!!

Finland has the right idea – preserving the sanity of the parent, and the peace of the home environment, by ensuring no outside work infiltrates their airtight fortress. Why in heavens name can’t the rest of the world follow suit?? They would be doing a great service to mankind – and our children’s ears would be free from colourful curse words.

I am convinced my neighbors think I was born under the ass of a donkey . I clearly have no decorum. I do not respect myself, my child or my husband once I start cussing about the damn homework. I am like a tin of Pringles, once I pop, I just cant stop! By the way,   the neighbors are such lovely, quiet people. Never hear them or see them…except on the odd occasion when our paths cross as we head to our cars. Funnily enough, they never look overly thrilled to see me. Now that I think about it, the quick “hello” they give always looks like its done out of terror, and not because they are being “friendly”. Oh well!

My hubby thinks I cuss too much. I keep telling him that I have a lot of shit going on in my head because I am a woman, which means I get stressed very easily. What the hell does he want from me…I don’t ask him to do the homework, so he needs to cut me some frigging slack. My husband is concerned that my cussing is a sign that I am stressing too much. What he doesn’t understand is that my cussing IS my stress relief! A couple “Fucks” here and a couple “Shits” there (not literally obviously) is like breathing a sigh of relief. Cussing releases that ‘feel good’ drug, dopamine, and once all the cussing has been expelled, then you can light a cig and bask in the afterglow.

I am convinced the teachers are secretly out to get revenge on parents because they have to put up with our bratty kids all damn day. They sit around the staff room planning on ways to fuck us up. I am not sure why they have to be so evil, considering they get gifts on Teachers Day, Valentines, Christmas AND the last day of the school year! These teachers are spoilt rotten as far as I’m concerned. I have decided that the teachers ain’t getting shit from me this year! Then again…I am sure I could find a shitload of unfinished homework and wrap it up with a big bow. Hmmmm…

Don’t get it twisted, I know there will be unfinished work left over from school…but why the FUCK does it have to come home??? Why cant it stay at school where it belongs. The kid ain’t going anywhere and neither is the school. Homework doesn’t need to follow her home like a stray puppy! If the school could adopt a more family friendly approach to academics, I think my relationship with my neighbors wouldn’t be so strained. My kiddo would think I was super cool and my hubby would stop stressing about my over-usage of curse words.

With all of this homework and additional stress, when do kids find time to be just that…kids? When do they get to play and enjoy being outside instead of spending more hours concentrating on even more work? When do I get to enjoy being a mom? When do I enjoy spending time with my kid? I have my own work to do, but yet, I have to come home after a long day to do even more work. At which point in the evening do I get to de-stress and relax? And my hubby wonders why I fucking swear so damn much!

Cut the parents some slack, and understand that school life, just like work life, should be a separate entity from home life. Relationships can blossom and bloom in a more wholesome environment where outside stresses are no longer playing an integral role in the destruction of the family unit.

By the way, have you heard….

I HATE HOMEWORK!!!!

 

 

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Annoying habits or cute idiosyncrasies?

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Do not get it twisted…I love my husband dearly…however there is some real shit that just grinds my gears! I swear I silently curse him throughout the day for stupid shit that I find annoying, irritating or just overboard.

Remember I told you that we talk ALOT! Yeah, which means his poor brain has to process a ton load of shit. We know men cannot multitask to save their lives – but somehow my dearly beloved feels that he can do that and more! Men…you will never have the same skills as a woman and if you so much as even attempt it, you will fail epically…and piss us the hell off!

Hubby and I talk. We talk about our past, our previous relationships, growing up, our family, travelling, what makes us tick. We talk about our dreams and our ever evolving relationship. I am the strong silent type, so all this talking about “feelings” can really piss me off sometimes. Not to mention, that after I have spent hours discussing my family life and past, I will inevitably have to REPEAT everything AGAIN because he doesn’t remember a word I said a few weeks later! Why do men have brains like sieves!?

I consider myself a neat and organized person…on the outside. Don’t you dare open a draw or a cupboard because some random shit may just attack you. Hubby is the total opposite – contrary to what you would believe about men being nasty pigs. I don’t know why this would annoy me so much – but it does. I guess I’m so used to my organized mess, to actually be confronted with ‘order’ makes me think “anal retentiveness and OCD”. It is good to be neat and tidy and know where everything is without panicking that lizards and spiders and a few rabid rats might be lurking around – but its a completely different story if everything looks like Martha Brady moved in.

I know the shit that bothers me doesn’t bother other women and that’s cool – this aint a competition – this is my opinion and frankly, in my marriage, my opinion matters. LOL. Yeah fucking right! I’m spouting out my ass and relieved to have a forum within which to get my anal retentive issues out in the open…don’t judge me! LOL

My husband really is awesome – because even though he does shit that annoys me (without  realizing it), I can always count on him to fix crap in my car, around the house and generally take care of all the shit I just cant be bothered with. Its not a matter of I can’t do certain things…I simply choose not to because I am lazy as fuck!!

Listen, if I can’t even keep a simple blog then there has to be a lazy gene somewhere in my body which grew into a damn gremlin by the time I became a mom – my mantra is “I cant be bothered“.

Fuck! I just had another eureka moment…quite possibly my mantra (which has turned into a habitual routine) is affecting my sex life! Oh man….I gotta go….need to have a chat with hubby and dissect the meaning of this revelation!

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Do we change for “better or for worse” after marriage?

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Ok so after a year or so hiatus, here I am – finger at the keyboard getting ready to churn out invaluable lessons, insightful anecdotes and fun facts.
Guess what – who the fuck am I kidding! Really and truly! Do I honestly believe that I am some know-it-all who has all the answers about parenting or marriage, much less life…I don’t think so! I’m trying to figure this shit out like the rest of you!
Since I do NOT have the answers, what I will do is try to share some of my more interesting interactions with my husband and my kiddo, which will hopefully give you better insight into this crazy rollercoaster ride called “marriage and kids”.
Ok so a little background…I have been married 1 year 7 months 5 hours 25 minutes and 7 seconds…but who’s counting right?! WRONG! Of course, I am counting…why the hell wouldn’t I count! It feels like we have been married 15 years for God sake! Why does it feel so long? Because we have done enough talking to last us the rest of our fucking lives! I do not think any other couple has talked as much as we have about every damn thing! No stone has been left unturned in our home and only God knows what else we have to talk about – but somehow, we still find more shit to dissect and work on.
Who the hell knew that marriage could change the dynamics of a relationship in such a short space of time! We dated for precisely 1 year and 29 days before we were officially man and wife. By the way, we eloped! Yes…we left our kids behind and ran off into the sunset to get married. Thinking back, I am wondering if that was really the right thing to do…hmmm. That’s another topic for discussion at some point.
Anyway, back to the meat of the matter. Up until we got married we were crazy rabbits – if you get what I mean… wink, wink! We simply couldn’t keep our hands off each other. To be honest, even I was getting sick and tired of my wily ways, but somehow, I just couldn’t get enough. Some might say I was trying to “quench my thirst” and others might say I was head over heels in love with my new beau *BIG GRIN*.
I am not sure how or why everything changed but it did! As soon as that marriage document was signed and the last bit of champagne was drunk, my passion died with the glowing embers of that beachside bonfire.
Fellow wives, I ask you this… “why is it that after marriage, you lose your mojo or your willingness to participate in sexual relations with your husband?”
I know this is an age-old question men have been asking each other as they drown their sorrows (yet again) in their local bar. Each of them looks mournfully at the other knowing full well why they are each there – without saying a word. On occasion a phone is passed around as they each laugh uproariously at some video depicting a fellow man suffering the same way they are. Their laughter never incites conversation after. They simply silently return to their inner turmoil and idle banter.
Ladies, why do you think we “change”? Why do you think we no longer engage in the sexual antics that first enticed our beloved men?
My hubby and I have discussed this topic at great length – duh! And he admitted that it is not a topic that is discussed among his friends. It is simply a topic that is known and treated like a joke – “married men never have sex anymore”.
My hubby and I agreed that maybe it is because the pressure is now off. Once a woman has landed the ultimate prize, she no longer has to keep trying. She relaxes into her new title and forgets everything else that goes with it – “cook in the kitchen, a whore in the bedroom”. I ain’t too sure what other women’s reasoning is, but I sure as hell know mine…
I’ve put on weight. I don’t find myself as attractive as I was before. I am wearing my new size called “comfort weight” and no longer feeling sexy in my naked skin. I am tired – tired of talking so damn much! We dissect every little thing I feel emotionally drained afterwards. He sees me shaving my legs, smells my morning breath, and knows my most intimate habits (using the damn bathroom!). There is no more mystery. There is no more intrigue. There is no more “trying to make a good impression”. There is no more effort.
I know MOST women will launch into me and say, “but that is what is so great about getting married! No longer having to try to hard to impress anyone. Now you can be yourself – warts and all!

Guess what ladies…clearly that ain’t working for some of us because we are trying to hide those fucking warts with the lights off now! We have become the butt of bar jokes and our lack of sexual enthusiasm is being made fun of in comedy sketches circulating on cellphones around the world! Clearly this is an issue that is personal, but an epidemic at the same time. We all have our reasons why we change, but somehow, we are hardwired to REACT in the same way…don’t you think?
As I said, I’m not proclaiming that I have the answers, nor do I have solutions. What I do have is a whole lotta questions that will hopefully engage some inciteful responses, or cause the next WW3! Who the hell cares. Whatever happens I wanna shake this shit up! Welcome inside my head and my life ladies and gentlemen…it’s gonna be a WILD ride!

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Climbing back onto the horse.

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I’m total shit at blogging. Blogging requires some amount of dedication, and at least a topic to write about on a continual basis – I have neither!

So here I am totally stumped trying to figure out what to write considering I have exhausted my last topic which were my adventures as a holiday rep in Europe.

Everyone says I write well and I should consider writing a book, but considering I can’t even write a 200-word blog, I doubt I have much hope of writing a damn book at this rate.

I had a eureka moment last night while enjoying a rather luxurious shower – I was cursing my husband in my mind, and then it hit me…I should blog about marriage! Who doesn’t love reading about another women’s perspective on the woes of marriage. I know I love reading blogs about people who may or may not be in the same boat as me – sometimes it offers fresh perspective especially if it isn’t that self-righteous, sanctimonious shite! The type of self-righteousness that makes you feel inferior and the worse human being possible, much less the shittiest wife to ever walk the planet.

Let’s get real folks – we are all human and we have good days and bad days. We suffer from stress, over eating, anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation, acne, cellulite, belly fat, insecurity…just to name a few. Sometimes we really do suffer from consecutive headaches and yes dammit, some of us do bleed longer than 5 days. Cut us some slack for Christ sake – we aren’t robots nor are we blow up dolls who can be flung about in all directions…we might break something!

I think I might be on a roll here now that I have put finger to the keyboard – my cogs are whirring and I got a lotta shit to talk about. You can either stick around or not…whatever you decide is cool. Just know that if you choose to read what I have to say, it will be raw, honest and downright dirty.

Looking forward to getting back into the blogging saddle!

YEEHAAAAW!

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The Chronicles of a Rep in Ibiza and Charlie the cat

 

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View of Santa Eulalia from the apartment balcony

My favourite destination in all my years being a holiday rep was Ibiza!

Prior to going, my only image was of huge nightclubs, dancing til dawn , Sean ‘P Diddy’ Combs, Paris Hilton and tons of other celebs who frequented the island during the height of summer.

Ibiza is the one place that would be considered a reps dream destination! Who doesn’t want to drink and party until sun rise…or watch the world’s BEST sunset sipping sangria with hundreds and thousands of people from all over the world? Ibiza is pure heaven…and I recommend any newbie to consider a placement there at least once in their career.

All of that partying is truly wonderful…all of that sunset-watching is enjoyable…but there comes a point where all of that becomes monotonous and all you really prefer to do is rent a dvd and snuggle up with your cat….

As a rep you are definitely NOT allowed to have a pet in your accommodation. It is one of the rules that is clearly stipulated…right next to “No smoking” and “NO chewing gum” in uniform. But there are ways to get away with smoking in uniform, or chewing the odd gum or two…and strangely enough, there are ways to get around the whole “pet” thing too. *cue mischievous smile*.

During this particular season, I worked in Santa Eulalia in Ibiza and it was a great location that was a little bigger than a village, but smaller than a town. It was a mix of modern, contemporary and old. It had a great marina, cute little beach bars, fabulous restaurants from Thai to Italian, unique bars and overall, it had a wonderful feeling about it. Because there wasn’t anywhere for me to live that particular season, I had to share an apartment with the team leader in the area. For anyone who doesn’t already know this, the team leader accommodation is literally 1 step down from a manager’s accommodation…so yes…for the first time since becoming a rep, I was living in what most would call the “lap of luxury”. A 6th floor apartment overlooking the marina and the sea, within easy walking distance to all my hotels and amenities – and close enough to KFC/Pizza Hut so they could deliver!! Thats right people…KFC delivered!!! Talk about landing in paradise! My dreams had come true that season for sure – I got Ibiza as my placement (which, along with Cyprus, was damn hard to get), I got the area where I wanted to work…and as an added bonus, I got to live in a fabulously furnished apartment with a proper kitchen, comfy sofas, a TV and DVD player and the perfect view! Oh….and did I mention that the DVD rental store was 2 doors away from my apartment – right next to the little shop where my roomie and I bought all our snacks and drinks for our continual movie nights? Yeah…thats right people…I WAS IN HEAVEN!!!066

Finally having an accommodation that felt more like “home” instead of a prison cell, was certainly a refreshing change. But as anyone knows, a home never feels quite right without a pet. Do not get mistaken, I was definitely not going to go out of my way to break any rules by purchasing a pet…and I certainly was not actively looking for one under rocks and in bushes…but if one happened to stumble upon my path, I definitely wasn’t planning on thinking too hard or too long about calling it my own.

As luck would have it, this one fateful morning I headed to my usual duties in a hotel which had approximately 4 guests, and it was here that I simply sat and stared at the walls hoping and praying for the time to end. As I saw the time drawing to a close, I breathed a sigh of relief and quickly packed up and rushed out the entrance. Lo and behold, there he was! He was the sweetest, friendliest cat you could ever imagine. He was just sitting there, waiting for any random person to show him affection…so I obliged. Now of course, I did not immediately think about claiming him as my own since cats have absolutely no loyalty, and this cat probably wandered off because he was tired of his owners. I petted the little creature and I headed off in the direction of my next hotel – not giving it another thought.

After the usual afternoon siesta, I made my way back to the hotel where I had seen the cat – and as I walked up the stairs of the entrance there he was again. Just sitting there, looking all lonely and sad. I bid him hello, gave him a courteous rub on the head and walked into the hotel. My interest was piqued now…why was this cat hanging out at the entrance of this hotel that barely had any guests in it…especially any guests that would even give him the time of day. Strange I thought. And even stranger when I asked the reception staff if anyone knew who the cat belonged to and all of them said they didn’t know. Hmmmm.

Once my shift had ended I knew what I had to do…I was going to commit the ultimate sin…I was going to kidnap the cat! I knew that this was what I had to do…the cat was probably looking for a new owner…and I decided I was up for the task! I scooped the cat up, and since I didn’t have a box, I stuff the cat into my work bag…which was pretty tricky. The cat was very friendly on the ground…but funnily enough he did not take too kindly to being kidnapped and stuffed in a bag that was certainly not suited for catnapping purposes. Now this is where it got really tricky – the walk from that hotel to my apartment was a bit of a distance – about 20 mins to be exact. Try adding extra weight to that distance and having to fight with a wriggling bag and look normal in the process…that 20 minutes felt like hours! The other part of the plan I forgot to factor in was that I had to visit one more hotel before the end of my evening shift. YUP! A cat screaming from my bag, trying to act normal and praying to god that a manager didn’t decide to “pass by” had me on edge. I was obviously NOT about to finish my duties for the evening…instead I was headed back to the apartment with my furry captive and help him settle into his new home instead!

How I managed that 20 minute walk without appearing insane I am not sure…how I made it into my apartment building and in the elevator without encountering my neighbours I have no idea…and I have no clue what was going through my mind when I finally sat on the sofa and opened my bag to release my captive. All I knew is I was SUPER excited for my roommate to come home so that she could meet our new pet for the season!

Yeah…good question…how was I so sure how my roommate (my team leader, by the way) was going to feel about breaking the rules and having a cat…in an APARTMENT on the 6th floor?? Yeah…potato patato, tomato, tamato…who cared! What was there not to love about a purring ball of fluff!

Thankfully when my roommate returned home that evening she was so excited! We set about naming our new friend and eventually decided on Charlie. Charlie was our new pal and he accepted us as his new owners, friend and family. Charlie was a well trained apartment cat. He had no desire to run through the front door and make a bolt for the outside world. He was happy chilling on the sofa or perched precariously on the balcony ledge…which really made my stomach lurch. Even when the other reps came around, they were totally not bothered about Charlie either. It was as if Charlie was meant to be with us…and that was the routine of our summer season. 098

Now, the downside of any season is that it must come to an end…but before it does, certain things can occur:

  • Your roommate has an accident and the manager comes to visit
  • The owner of the apartment is selling it and must show potential buyers around

 

Ahh yes…the 2 most agonizing occasions, especially when one has broken the sacred commandment between rep and company, which of course means the company has broken that rule outlined by the owner of the property! I knew I was well and truly FUCKED! Now any sensible rep would probably have done the obvious…thank the cat for the happy memories and wonderful cuddles and then dump its ass on the street and hope that another kind soul finds it. Well, I did not do that…instead I bribed the cat with food and snacks and locked its ass in my wardrobe and prayed that it did not get frightened and start mewing. As my luck would have it, it started mewing and I started coughing! I think the owner of the apartment thought I was a frigging nutcase…or seriously ill…he did grab his potential buyer and bid a hasty retreat out of there before either of them caught my cooties.

Despite those 2 incidents, it was a happy occasion and Charlie was great comfort to me especially when my roommate had to return to Scotland for about a month and a half due to her illness. Charlie kept me company and for the first time as a rep abroad in a strange country, I finally felt like I was “home”. Saying goodbye to Charlie at the end of the season was VERY emotional, and my roommate and I made sure that he went to a good home. I still think about Charlie, and thanks to him, I will always remember my adventures in Ibiza. 068

 

Hold on to the ‘driftwood’

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There are moments in your life when the fog rolls in, and you have no idea why or where it came from. The thickness is so stifling you can’t see or think straight. There is nothing you can do except wait…wait for it to pass…wait for clarity…just wait.

It’s in these dark moments that you feel that all your hard work and your perseverance thus far was in vain. You were convinced you were making headway along the Journey of Life… the days were bright and the optimism was high. The path was clear of obstacles, and the climb to the top seemed so easy. Until…until something flipped a switch which causes great storm clouds to start rolling in. The thunderstorm begins and heavy rains cause landslides along your path. You go from joy to unbelievable anger and confusion because you had no idea it was sitting on the horizon waiting for an opportunity to strike.

These dark moments seem unnatural in the grand scheme. You begin to question if self sabotage is the root. You start to wonder if there are old wounds that need healing in order to continue. You begin to wonder if life is simply a cruel trickster who lulls you into a false sense of joy…only to then pull the rug from under your feet as a reminder: earth is a horrid, painful place where struggling is the norm.

Whichever it is…whichever answer you arrive at…one thing is certain…you cannot face those dark days alone. You need someone to reach out a hand so you can simply hold on for dear life as you ride the tumultuous wave, frightened and lost. That ‘hand’ cannot shield you from your thoughts or your pain… it cannot ride the wave for you…it cannot, and will never, be on the same journey as you. That ‘hand’ can only serve as a reminder that the storm will pass, the fog will clear and the sun has to shine again. That ‘hand’ is that piece of driftwood bobbing on the harsh sea which you must cling to in an effort to keep your head above water. It is the stability when you cannot touch the bottom… or clueless as to the direction you will drift next. That ‘hand’ is the reason you keep breathing, keep fighting…

It doesn’t matter who we are, where we are going, or what journey we are on…these dark stormy days will take a hold of us and cause us to evaluate our every thought, our decisions, and even our direction. None of it will make sense! You will feel helpless, tired…you will want to give up. You will want to allow the water to consume you and allow the fog to envelope you in its arms…you will become frustrated by the stream of consciousness that creates havoc in your normally organized mind. There comes a point when you will convince yourself that you just can’t go on. Why continue? Why bother? Who cares?

You have a choice in that moment…let go of the driftwood and sink to the depths, or cling to it for dear life and trust that it will play its part in the storm…which is to  keep you afloat and provide that feeling of security and safety.

When those dark days descend (which they will), don’t be afraid to hold onto your piece of ‘driftwood’…we all have one.

Finding my twin flame

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From I was a little girl, I would read every fairytale ever written and daydream about prince charmings, knights in shining armour and fabulous hero’s that would swoop in to save the day. As I grew older I held on steadfast to the belief in the “happily ever after” concept, and hoped and prayed that one day I would stumble upon my prince.

After multitudes of failed relationships under my belt, my belief of the fairytale soon waned and I too (like the majority of the world) became blasé about that so-called “happy ending”. Did it ever really exist? Was it simply a story for little girls? Or was it only reserved for a special set of people? Whichever was the case, my childhood dream was dwindling fast, and those fabulous daydreams were looking more like nightmares.

Regardless of my continual search, my heart was still full of love and hope that the next one would be “the one”. However, somehow the Universe had other plans for my heart …6 years of utter turmoil from losing 4 very close and personal family members caused a wall to build, and my heart to be locked behind a cage. I took that key and I threw it away…4 times my heart was ripped from my chest –  I honestly had nothing left to give.
I turned my back on fairy tales, and I resigned myself to the fact that my only happy ending would be one that involved me, and only me. I cried to the Universe and told it that I no longer cared. I didn’t need to love anyone except the beauty that the Universe surrounded me with. I was tired, broken and frail. I turned to myself and made my plan to forgo searching and just accept that “true love” would not exist for me in this lifetime…I was meant to learn other things…and that is exactly what I proceeded to do.

I started a spiritual journey of retrospection and growth. I embraced Life and its blessings, and I learned to accept and love myself instead of trying to love someone else. I meditated and soared to heights that some people can only dream about. I started reading books that opened my mind not my heart. I soon understood that the fairy tales were never about finding love, they were about BEING love.

In December 2014 I wrote a blog entitled “Is this ‘real’ love that I am feeling” …little did I know that by simply BEING love…love would be waiting around the corner, and the answers I posed to the Universe back then would be answered within a few months.

This love is not one of giddy skipped heartbeats, it is not one of excitement and fascination, it is not overwhelming and anxious. It is not the hearing of harps or the feeling of fluttering stomachs. It is a love not felt by the heart, but a love felt by the soul. It is a love that has no words and no sound. It is a love that just exists…just as the sun rises and the water flows. It is a love that loses track of time and simply blows like the breeze. It is a love that has no constraints, needs or wants. It is a love that has its own energy. It is a love that needs no explanations or validations. It is a love that simply ‘is’. It is the love where two souls connect and there are no words, or not enough words, to portray the magnitude of feelings.

Just like the breeze blows and the sea ebbs, he flew into my life on the winds of change. I had no idea that I  would meet someone who would know me better than I know myself. I had no idea I would meet someone who could look into my eyes and see my thoughts. Not for one second did I think I would meet someone who I knew with every fiber of my being was a version of me in male form. This perfect creature cares not about my past,  he only wants to be my future…and without a doubt, I want to be his.

Who would have thought that this wonderful man would end up to be my hero, my prince charming…my fairy tale romance. Who could have thought that he was out there all along waiting for the alignment of the Universe so that he could stride into my life and sweep me off my feet. He is my best friend, my lover, my family, and above all he is my twin flame.

Holiday Reps are humans too actually!! 

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R.I.P to the innocent, slain for just being human!

Considering what has transpired recently in Tunisia, I think it is only right for me to highlight the areas that guests do not see and definitely do not know about Holiday Reps.

Rep training is very basic – it teaches the principles of the company, the importance of customer service, the sales techniques, the do’s and don’ts of representing the company… and it touches very casually on the issues that could arise in resort – such as a death or a dispute.

At no point during the weeks training course does it cover terrorism threats, bomb threats, floods, gangs, mob violence, drunk and disorderlies, rapes, deaths (accidental or natural), delays, strikes, natural disasters – the list is endless and countless. I will be honest, on rep training I had no idea that anything bad could happen – and if it did, I naively thought that someone else would be handling whatever disaster would occur…WRONG!

Once that contract is signed, a rep is now the face of the company. They must wear that uniform with pride and they must take every form of battering, beating and abuse that is hurled at them about the company they represent. Reps are the ones who must paint a smile on their face knowing full well they are hated by the guests who have decided to go on holiday and moan about EVERYTHING! Each rep strides with confidence and exudes an air of authority (even though they are quivering in their shoes). They ARE the company – they must never for one second look frightened or shocked. Every incident is supposed to be a walk in the park, just another day in paradise…WRONG!

Yes, reps ARE the company…but they are human too. They too have emotions and they too can hurt and bruise easily. They too can be shocked, frightened…afraid. They too get tired, lonely and upset. Guess what – reps are superheroes! Each and every one of them – they must quell their own emotions, shut down their own feelings and don a mask that is professional, calm and reassuring. To you as the guest, they come across aloof and standoffish. They may even appear pompous and up their own arses – but guess what, they are scared shitless just as much as you are in a situation that is way beyond their control and the control of the company they represent.

Over the recent days I have read Facebook statuses from ex-reps who have mentioned being in resort during flash floods, terrorist bomb threats, island wide bus strikes, flight delays from 9/11, natural deaths etc. They have all shared a slice of their experiences in order to show the rest of the world (who have no idea what it is like to be in that position) what it is like to be responsible for the wellbeing of hundreds and thousands of VERY scared human beings.

I have also read various messages from holidaymakers ranting and raving about Thomson this, and Thomas Cook that. They have ranted about getting their money back and needing more information. Guests in the resort of Tunisia have responded by saying they can’t see any reps, and things like, “this is the worst service ever”. Family members of holidaymakers in Tunisia have cursed about the lack of communication, the slow response time, and how disgusted they are with all the travel companies for their complete lack of effort during a time like this.

I am appalled, disgusted and horrified at the people who have shown no remorse or concern for the team of reps, managers, hotel staff, cabin crew, ground crew, airport staff, bus drivers, taxi men, police personnel, hospital workers, random strangers – all working tirelessly to keep THOUSANDS of holiday makers calm, safe and secure. For one minute you haven’t thought that all those people are just as frightened, just as tired and just as shocked. You haven’t for one minute thought that those people would like nothing more than to go hide under their bed? Are you being serious when you are demanding answers from a team who can only work as fast as the information they are given? Do you honestly think holiday companies walk around with genies in bottles waiting for any sign of trouble? For God’s sake stop living in the ‘me,me,me’ bubble and look around! The issue in Tunisia has a knock on effect for every holiday maker whether in the UK or already scattered around Europe – planes have to be diverted, airports have to shift their ENTIRE flight plan, staff have to be called in, flights have to be cancelled, holiday makers in other resorts like Spain, Greece, Turkey etc, now have to be delayed in returning home so that their plane can be used.

It is not about YOU, it is not about ME…it is about the men, woman, children and ALL the staff involved in that incident, having to witness images of bodies shot in cold blood, strewn across the beach or lying lifeless in the lounge chairs. It’s the sounds of crying, screaming, wailing and moaning. It’s the weeping of a wife as she cradles the body of her husband covered in blood. It’s the child who will live the rest of his life having nightmares and being petrifiecebf58a4-24d9-45b7-975f-08c97507f652-620x372d of his own shadow. It is the mother laying face down in the pool of her own blood as her children search frantically for her amid the thousands of scared faces. It is the authorities who must carry away bodies with no identification – so that someone…anyone…can come and claim rightful ownership.

As you sit in front of the television and curse blue murder because Thomson won’t answer your call about the holiday you have booked for Turkey NEXT YEAR…stop being an arsehole and imagine how you would feel lying in a pool of your own family members blood screaming for help.

The only thing you should be cursing about is when will we, as a nation of human beings, put an end to the animalistic treatment of the innocent. When will we – as a thinking, awakened people – stop believing that religion is still the answer! Look at what ‘religion’ has caused!