to love, and be loved in return

sydney view


It’s been an extraordinary few days. đź’™

I watched one of my oldest friends play Shylock for the Bell Shakespeare Company at THE OPERA HOUSE this weekend. Wow. He was amazing—fire-in-the-toes, tingling-in-the-fingertips inspiring. His performance broke my heart. My goodness. I was completely blown away by everything he and the company did on that stage. Wow. Just. Wow.

I took my mum to the performance. It was a joint celebration of our birthdays—we hadn’t been to a play together in years. We caught a ferry to the Opera House, talking, laughing, taking photographs, riding the waves, drinking in the view and the feel of the wind. We watched the play and met my wonderful friend afterwards. I got to give him a dozen hugs and my mum was wise and funny. I was so proud to stand next to her. ‘This is my mum!’ I thought, as she spoke. ‘I am SO lucky.’

We spent the next day with my mum’s partner, my other mum, who I adore. Like, I can’t quite believe I get to have this amazing person in my life. She is wonderful. We had breakfast together, fruit salad—lime squeezed over the pawpaw, creamy coconut yoghurt on the side. We took another ferry to the Quay; we stood at the protest for Manus. We crossed arms together in a show of solidarity for the refugees who are trapped in a horror they never chose, imprisoned while trying to seek safety in our country.

My mum cried. Of course she did, because her heart is THIS big.

But it was a beautiful day too, because we were together and we are family and we want a better world. And this is what compassion is supposed to feel like: tears, and impassioned empathy, and love.

The next day, we went to my son’s end-of-year art opening. Four of us took the train up to Sydney; we met my two beautiful mums and my sister and her lovely people at the gallery. We wandered around and listened to speeches and took photos of my son next to his photographs and his paintings. This was a big day; he’d worked so hard and overcome SO much to be here. I was so proud of him.

I was busting with pride, busting with love, overflowing with this golden feeling of contentment and joy, which I haven’t felt in a while, not this kind.

It has been a while since I have had this feeling of being completely here, a feeling that everything is going to be okay, or at least, IS okay, in this moment. It was so nice to rest inside it. It was so nice.

I am lucky. I know how lucky I am. I am also sometimes very foggy, and sometimes I feel broken, and sometimes I feel scared. But I am loved. And I get to love in return.

I get to offer kindness. I get to tell people I love them. I get to tell them how much they mean to me. I get to have people in my life, in my kids’ and husband’s lives, who love us, who offer support and joy and respect and kindness. I get to have an incredible family, who makes me feel finer and calmer and loved and well.

I get to ride a train home on a Monday night, the four of us sending ridiculous Facebook messages to each other, puns and terrible photographs. We get to make each other laugh, too loudly, together in the quiet carriage, the train hugging the sea cliffs home. đź’™

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