…on disruption

Original art by Blu Art Xinjia. Where have I been and why have I been neglecting my blog? I dropped a hint last July when this was so new it didn't have a name. All this unkindness surrounding Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's interview with Oprah Winfrey has touched a raw nerve. In excuse for my silence, I'm coming out as a parent of a kid recently diagnosed with Tourette's Syndrome. The past...

Always was, always will be.

After unfriending yet more people on my most often used social media platform, I understand why so many Aboriginal people in this country choose to stay offline today, instead attending protests with their allies regarding the naming (and celebrating) of our national day of patriotism, Australia Day, as January 26. For those who aren't familiar with our history, January 26, 1788, commemorates...

Being Born is born!

What Does It Feel Like Being Born is a memoir about having babies, juggling family life and accidentally becoming an activist. I wrote it because, despite all the talent surrounding me, I couldn't convince others to write it! Even as we were living it, I knew it was a fantastic story that deserved to be told. But I didn't perceive myself as a writer then. A communicator, yes, maybe even a...

…on aging as a woman

'Do you mind if I ask how old you are?' It was an off-the-cuff question from an eighteen year old boy. He faltered a little by the end, realising too late that he might be breaking etiquette, crossing a line. I'm his employer. It's none of his business. I probably should have reminded him of that. Instead, I laughed. I'm a modern woman, right? This question shouldn't scare me. 'I turned fifty...

…on learning to write, and being edited

This entry is drawn from a guest blog written for Leisl Leighton. Wind back the clock to the new millennium. I was having babies and caring for small children. My husband worked FIFO, which is hectic enough, but I also ran a community group attached to the birth centre at the Royal Brisbane & Women’s Hospital, where my babies were born. With a group of thoughtful, committed citizens, I...

…on motherhood #1

Once my belly was prominent I didn't really want to go to clubs or be around crowds of people. Our friends, Pete and Lee, had an unspoken but well-understood open door policy. Their place was like a train station every weekend. Late one Saturday night, sitting at their 1950's laminate dining table in inner-Brisbane, near the river, with the brewery lights flashing through the leafy surrounds,...

Black Dog

Maybe it follows you home. Slinking in the distance, tail between legs, like you might turn around any moment and chase it away. You don't. You take pity on the mangy critter and invite it closer. Just a few days, you think. Until he's strong enough to go. With a sweep of your arm, you invite the stray into a corner of your room, with a soft cushion to curl up and sleep. Ah, that's better. Good...

Contract teacher

My first day on the job I am called to the Principal’s office to discuss my role and responsibilities and complete some paperwork. He ushers me in and offers me a chair. With glasses perched on his nose he flips a manila folder onto the desk. ‘Please, eat your lunch while we chat,’ he says. ‘You might not get time later.’ I open my tuna and cheese sandwich, smile apologetically and...

…on daughterhood

This year, Mothers' Day felt significant. My mother is 72 and Covid-19 has certainly changed how we relate and interact. The past two months has been lonely for her - among friends in her retirement village - but removed from her grandchildren and from us, who all present potential risk for her due to our daily exposure to the big bad world. We ensured Mothers Day was special. Understated, but...

…on uncertainty

COVID-19 certainly gave us pause. Is still giving us pause - we're not out of the woods yet - to think about all the things we don't and can't know in our world. We're all learning here. We're all winging it. No one, not even the experts, can predict exactly what life will become after isolation is over. Will it return to what it was before? Highly unlikely. I drive for my living, which is great...