New Year, New Attitude, New Look!

I would also like to add, that in true Serene style of thinking, with a new attitude must come a new look.  Consequently, I have decided that this shall be achieved with a new haircut.  My hair is currently fairly long, about to the middle of my back and it has been this way for a few years now.  Recently I started making noises about cutting it off and I was met with horrified looks and exclamations of “No!” and “Why would you do that?!” or even “You can’t!”.

I also had a similar reaction when I told people that I had Lasik surgery done, they were all horrified because I “looked so good in glasses” (!!).  Er, yeah totally not the reason why I wore glasses but ANYHOO.

Because of this feedback, I started to think that if I cut off my long blonde locks, then this would somehow make me less attractive or something, so I chickened out the last time I was at the hairdresser.

Well, as of today, I am no longer defined by my hair! And being hair, it does tend to grow back… after all, do I not spend hours of my time every month trying to eliminate or reduce the regrowth of hair on various parts of my body? And now…it’s somehow a catastrophe that I might cut the hair on my head a bit shorter?


Anyway, here are just some ideas I’m toying with.  Obviously the shorter styles are a little more ambitious and something I will work up to, but so far I think the angled bob that Scarlet Johansson is sporting -which is a bit of a longer version of the Victoria Beckham do- is my favourite, and I think, totally doable.  Although, I’m currently sporting some angled bangs, so perhaps the Dianna Agron would be a better choice for now…

No need for me to decide tonight, my haircut is not until the 18th :)

Women-Short-Bob-Hair-Styles short-hairstyles-for-women-after-chemo short-haircuts-11 Pictures-of-short-bob-blonde-hair hair-styles Blonde-Hair-Color-for-Short-Hairstyles-2013 5-short-brown-hairstyles Dianna-Agron-Messy-Bob-Hairstyle scarlett-johansson-02-new-bob-haircut-mango

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January 7, 2014 · 10:25 pm

And so it begins, 2014….


OK so, 2013 was a tough year for me both professionally and personally.  Professionally I was being pushed beyond the boundaries of what I knew (which I considered to be a good, albeit, nerve fraying experience), pushed beyond my limits of what I considered sensible hours to actually BE working, and pushed beyond the safety net where others were around to rush to my defense and accept that sometimes I have to toughen up and stand up for myself. 

Personally, ohhhh….do we really want to go there? I only blogged a handful of times last year and even then most of the times they were a whine-fest.  But I as I always say, it’s my blog, and it really started out as being a bit of an online diary, like many, I suppose.  So, I am not going to beat myself up about having moments of weakness and allowing myself to get caught up in negativity, as long as its a healthy indulgence and not a spiral into self-loathing and man-hating.

So, as has already been discussed in a previous post (or perhaps many, I didnt go back and reread all of my 2013 posts, it was too cringeworthy), many of my friends fell pregnant and had babies last year.  All of the babies arrived safe and sound and I am happy to report they are all quite cute with some distinct personalities already showing, but I am genuinely not bitter and in fact, rather surprisingly, completely unclucky! 

Despite the [temporary] limitations on my social life and the fact that I miss my beautiful friends, I savor my freedom even more so now than I ever did. 

Which has consequently, made dating even harder because whilst the men I have met in recent months have all been very nice, kind souls, I have just found them to be …well…a little boring.  That sounds horrible I know, but its just how I feel. So I would spend my time running away from these men to be on my own and do my own thing.

Its strange that I have no real criteria (other than that they should be employed, non-smokers, and not living with their parents), yet I still haven’t found what I’m looking for (that wasn’t intended to be a reference to Bono but hey…it was a good line).

So that got me to thinking.  Over the past few years, I have whittled my “criteria” down to that short little list thinking that I was doing a good thing (for the guys as well as me), but maybe what it has done is prevented me from really thinking about and identifying what I AM looking for.  So there might be a little more thought going into that this year, I guess it’s hard for me to find the right guy if I’m dating every man that doesn’t cause my tummy to flip but who meets my appallingly short list of must-haves (or “preferable”‘s if that sounds a little more forgiving).

But most of all this year I am focusing on the following:

  • learning to back myself (professionally and personally)
  • spending more time with my parents
  • talking to my sister more
  • resisting the urge to feel guilty about things that I really don’t need to feel guilty about
  • MINDFULNESS. Getting out of my own head and the thought spirals that lead to catastrophic thinking
  • forgiveness

There is nothing in that list about my weight, or sporting aspirations, or money because whilst these too are things I will be attempting to balance better this year, I really think that If I can focus on the list, these things will happen anyway, because I will be happier and more content and will learn how to focus on the things that are truly important to me.

Of course, I will continue to be open to engaging with any new men that come on the scene too, but perhaps I might just pull back on the “searching” aspect.  People always tell me that you find love when you aren’t looking for it.  Quite frankly, I think that’s complete BS.  A few months earlier of course, those SAME people were telling me that if I don’t put the effort in, how am I expected to find it?

But I think there is a difference to being open to something vs. desperately seeking it or conversely, pretending that its not important to me at all.  Both of those latter scenarios give off the completely wrong vibe.

I already have a pretty great life, I dont think I need to take time out to focus on “me”, hell, I spend far too much time in my own head as it is… but I can focus on some key areas that I know will bring me more of what I already love in my life.

So, I guess I just made my 2014 resolutions?

Happy New Year lovely people, whoever/wherever you are.






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A few thoughts from the (pre?) menstrual woman

Look, Im just gonna put it out there. I dont know why “they” call it PRE menstrual syndrome/tension/strain/whatever, when it can last anywhere from 5 days to 2 weeks of the month, which includes most of the time I am menstruating.

For two weeks out of every month (that’s basically HALF MY LIFE, PEOPLE!) I am an anxious, blubbery, angry, spotty whale who is convinced noone will ever love her, and whose career will soon be in the toilet once her employer realises that the swollen eyed whale is actually shit at her job and completely incompetent.

…and while you’re at it- throw some insomnia into the mix.

Oh yeah, its not enough that the hormones make me stark raving mad, but it also seems to deprive me of the ability to go to sleep and block out this horrible world for a few hours reprieve, which only serves to make me more tired, more emotional and even less capable of falling to sleep.

All whilst my iron rich life blood flows from my loins leaving me on the anaemic side of the preferred blood iron level half the time as well.

Jeezzus- did I really just write “loins”?? FFS

So you can imagine what kind of state I was in yesterday when at exactly 1:03pm right when I was in the middle of preparing a report for the board, which our director usually does but I was doing because his wife was at that moment in labour, I received a message from Tall Irish – the guy I had been dating for a month or so and who I was really into and thought he felt the same. Well, apparently not- as he had decided to cancel our date for Friday because he just wasnt feeling “the thing”.


…and well, don’t we all just love to be informed of these things when we are AT WORK.

When I first saw the message, I just had to block it out- I was in the middle of something and I was stressed and I couldn’t waste another moment thinking about anything but my deadline.

However, slowly but surely, as the afternoon creeped on, the emotions creeped UP, and before too long I was mapping out pie charts like a pro, with streaks of tears rolling down my face.

At my desk.

In an open-plan office.

I finished my report (along with my first box of tissues) and skulked home where I soon after found myself showered, lying in bed, staring at the ceiling, ramrod straight with the covers pulled up to my chin, unable to cry, unable to sleep and with a searing ball of frustration and anger churning in my gut.

I tried logic. Logically we had only been on a handful of dates. Logically, I liked him and I could have seen it going somewhere but I mean, right now, I barely knew the guy. Logically this really shouldn’t be upsetting me this much.

But that’s the thing isn’t it? Logic is irrelevant when you have a potent mixture of hormones flying around in your brain at warp speed.

Don’t tell me to be logical. I’m not an idiot. I am a perfectly rational, irrational person, and I know what’s logical and what’s not.

What YOU cant possibly understand is, what I’m going through right now! And I’m telling you- logic has nothing to do with it!!!

And so it was that I tossed and turned and cried until 4am when I finally drifted off to sleep, only to be hurled back into wakefulness by the 4:40am alarm that I forgot to reset (MOTHER*beeeeeeep*!!!!)

Consequently, with an air of determination at 4:55am I sent a text message to my trainer and booked a second PT session today. Two workouts in one day is surely guaranteed to send me into blissful oblivion come 8:30pm tonight?

Let’s hope so, or the otherwise lovely colleague with the inexplicable need to whistle and click his pen incessantly ALL DAY LONG is far more likely than me, to be going home in tears tomorrow.

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Acknowledging the Good Stuff

I really did not want to turn 35 this year.

I know, it is childish, and really I should worry about things I can control instead of wasting energy and wrinkles on things that I can’t.

But even so, I REALLY didn’t want to turn 35 this year.

So, this week I’m making an extra special effort to focus on things that make me happy.

The list so far (in no particular order):

Tickling my dog’s chin fuzz after she has had a bath and is all fluffy and cute-smelling
Lindt chocolate balls
Having my hair brushed
Freshly painted toenails
Maggie Beer’s Chocolate and salted caramel icecream
The way my dog’s tail starts to wag as soon as look at her, even if her eyes are closed and she was snoring just seconds earlier
The euphoria of finishing a hard workout
A clean house
Walking in the rain (on a contact lens- wearing day)
My mums vegetable soup (which nonsensically, does contain meat)
Cooking with my mum
A glass of wine with friends
A view of the ocean
The way my dog’s face looks when I am lying down and she is standing over me, and all the skin on her face falls forward
Sharing a whisky with my dad
Pottering without a time schedule
Good hair days
Good SKIN days…facials
Pretty shoes that fit
Shoes generally…
Mel’s laugh

Not going to lie- I still want to crawl into bed and ignore the world for a few days, but focussing on nice things does help make the day bearable, albeit somewhat unproductive at work.

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Just another blog post about being last…

Ok so this year, I turn 35. I am officially mid-thirties, and on the last rung before the slippery slide to forty. 

And friend #6 announced her pregnancy today. 

That’s 6 friends, all pregnant, all due about the same time. (Ok today’s announcement was more of an acquaintance but as all but one of my closest friends is indeed, up the duff, I figure I could include her in my tally).

And I, am officially the last single gal.

I’m not sure how I feel about that. First of all, why am I always last? I’m like Gretl freakin’ Von Trapp.  That line where she asks “why am I always last?” always used to get me, even as a child- because I did always seem to be last, and I totally understood how she felt. Move over morose middle child, being the youngest isn’t all kittens and sunshine either!

Growing up I experienced a lot of lasts.  I was the last one to be picked on sporting teams (thanks, lack of hand-eye-coordination!).  I was the last to know about any birthday parties (and I suppose it should be noted, I never had one myself).  I always came second to my elder sister in hacking and showjumping (heck, I was usually plain last in showjumping anyway!). I was the last of my friends to kiss a boy.  I was the last of my friends to become a woman (urgh I hate that phrase). So far as I know, I was the last to have sex.  I was the last to finish my studies. I was the last to travel overseas. 

However, I was the first to get my pen license in grade 3, but then I moved schools and upon showing up to my first day with a pen (not thinking anything untoward, I had after all, been writing with it for 6 months by then), my new teacher swiftly removed it from my possession.  That I had the audacity to assume I could continue to write with INK before she herself had decreed it so, clearly convinced her that her new pupil was of a rebellious nature and needed to be taught a lesson  She then proceeded to make me earn my license back all over again with the rest of the class, and just to make sure I got the point-  you guessed it…I was last!

So, in the last few years my friends have slowly, one by one, met, fallen in love with, and (in all but a couple of cases) eventually married their lifelong partners. That didn’t really change much by way of our friendships, I must admit.  Sure, sometimes I felt a bit like the odd one out when I’m the only one at dinner without a partner, but I was always thankful that I never seemed to be seated at the end of the table like some kind of outcast. 

But this is different.  First of all, in one fell swoop, I have lost my social life. No more pub/wine bar action, no more girly soirees over red wine and chocolate (ok I guess the chocolate is still on the list).  Two weeks ago I was on my way home after finishing my Saturday activities and I suddenly had the urge to go out somewhere.  After two very long work weeks, I was in the mood for maybe a vino and some dancing, some live music and perhaps a flirt with a bartender, but a quick scroll through my phone revealed that in fact…there was no one to call. I had no wing[wo]man.

It’s not unreasonable for this to have happened of course.  We are, after all, in our mid-thirties, but naive as it may have been of me to not forsee this, I just didnt expect ALL of my friends to drop out of my social life at the same time

And I am sad.  I am sad that all of my friendships have now changed forever.  I am sad -and a little annoyed- that I wasn’t more prepared.  In About a Boy, Marcus, even at the age of (12?) recognised that you need backup, and sure enough, here I find myself, devoid of such.

I realise this does make me sound like an immensely selfish individual.  Yes, I realise that my friends lives and families are not about me, but this blog is, so please, do try to keep up.

Dont misunderstand me, I am extremely happy for all of my friends who are about to embark on a very exciting new chapter in their lives. I’m super excited about being ‘cool aunty Serene’ again, and I genuinely cannot wait to meet all of the new arrivals.  For those who simply refuse to divulge gender (you know who you are) I am simply DYING to know so I can go crazy with the online shopping (my credit card is newly paid off and ready for action!). 

And those feelings are entirely separate from the fear that suddenly has its vice-like grip on my stomach and heart. 

Furthermore, it turns out that with the intgration of online dating into modern society, it turns out that it is actually much easier to get a date, than it is to make a new friend to hang out with on a Saturday night.

But I don’t want a date.  I want someone(s) who I can laugh with, cry with, share my fears with, and dance like a lunatic with and share stupid stories with and whinge to…all without the pressure of having to decide if I want a “relationship” with that person when the evening is over, or having to spend the entire evening thinking up the best way to let them down gently.

This is not an unusual circumstance, a quick Google of something along the lines of “last single girl” or “all of my friends are married with children”, raised countless results of blogs, forum posts and Yahoo questions all uploaded by people in the midst of a massive panic attack, upon realising that they are the last one, who are suddenly desperate to seek verification that they aren’t freaks, and that this doesn’t mean they are destined to be alone forever. 

If I wasn’t so goddamned petrified myself, I would be reading these hastily typed queries and marvelling at how desperate they sound.

These people have been left behind- through no fault of their own, or their peers - with no hope of even some good natured girly backup on a night out to blow off some steam and share a few glasses of bubbly, laugh off their fears of turning 40 with a collection of cats, whilst pretending not to entertain a heavily repressed hope that a chance meeting at the bar, or in the taxi queue, might be the critical turning point to set them on the right track to blissful coupledom.

A few months ago, I would have confidently reassured myself that I had plenty of friends and that this would simply never happen to me.  There would always be someone still sufficiently childfree to call upon.

But as luck would have it, I find myself experiencing that well worn path of being last….again.

Only, I don’t have an Uncle Max to reassure me that it’s just because I am the most important.

And even if I did, I don’t think that explanation would really fly at my age.  I mean realistically, nothing makes you more aware of your relative insignificance, than being left behind.

So, in honour of my beautiful friendships, which are now altered forever, I apologise in advance if my behaviour in the next 6 months resembles some of this:

I am hoping that I will have worked my way through most of the stages before the bundles of joy arrive!

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May 15, 2013 · 10:23 pm

Reblog- The Good Girl

For the Good girls…

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A Woman’s Right

A womans right

(NB: Not Worth)

S 06 E 09

“A Woman’s Right to Shoes”

’nuff said.

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