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Daily dose of Dee

I’ll Never Get Married (But That’s Not The Whole Story)

When people hear that Damien and I have been together for 8+ years, the first questions they ask are:

“Getting Married Soon?”
“Marriage on the cards?”
“Why aren’t you married?”

My insides get filled with internal eye-rolls and deep disappointment.

But why should it be? Isn’t that a normal question?

Sure it is.

But the whole concept of marriage to me is bewildering.

Maybe it’s because growing up, I never saw a happy marriage I wanted to emulate.

Or maybe because the idea of making a commitment that’s a delusional lie irritates the hell out of me. How can someone in their right mind commit to someone when they have no idea whom they’ll become as they grow older? Or whom their partner will become? Or how circumstance will make them realise they’re not right for each other?

Makes no sense to me…

I know what you’re thinking.

It’s more about the sentiment than the practicality or getting married.

It’s about a show of commitment.

Fair enough but that ‘show’ of commitment can have lasting legal obligations that can screw up your future. If you don’t want to be practical about your future, at least think about not f#&king it up right?

But that’s not the whole story..

It would be great it it was just aboutt me and my thought on marriage but there is another person with thoughts and feeling (dang nammit)

The next thing I get asked often is:

“So your partner also doesn’t want to get married?”

He actually wants to be married but it’s not massively important to him to get married.

After lengthy conversations we’ve had together, what IS important to him that marriage does provide is:

1.Public acknowledgement that we are together (that I’m not trying to hide him)
2.Public acknowledgement of our commitment (that he feels stable and that there’s trust)
3.That we don’t create confusion and trauma for our future children by not getting married (getting bullied in school for having unmarried parents)

Ok, fair enough.

So what we talked about is trying to fulfil these aspects of marriage without signing a legally binding contract that screws us in the long run.

Here has been my response so far:
1.We are publicly in a relationship on Facebook (so that all friends and family know we are together) I’m sure that accounts for a marriage in modern times right?
2.I agreed to potentially be forever engaged as an acknowledgement of our commitment. He gets to put a ring on it. This was a big move for me to make after realising I have made no public acknowledgement of my commitment to this relationship. Damien really appreciated the sentiment but acknowledged we probably won’t because we’d forever be getting questioned about a wedding that’s never going to happen. But if he changes his mind, it’s always there.
3.As for our future children, I assured him that it’s very common to have unmarried parents and if it was really an issue when we have kids, I would certainly look into it.

Don’t get me wrong.

I would definitely get married if there was a practical reason for it. Getting a visa, for example. Damien is a dual citizen so if we needed to, I would get married so I didn’t have to screw around with visas.

And most people respond sarcastically with, ‘Wow, so romantic’.

If marriage enriched my life in a practical way, I would do it.

I’m okay with that. I’m also okay with changing my mind and realising it is something I want.

But i figure if I need marriage to give my relationship commitment and stability, I would suggest this relationships is not working.

And don’t even get me started about the cost of the whole things and the kind of money some people pay.

*sigh*

Too Much Pressure On Myself – Is it Necessary?

Being taught that women can do anything has created pressure to do everything.
  • Running a household and career
  • Being the good cook
  • A good CEO
  • Keeping your man happy
  • Your body fit
It’s exhausting just thinking about it.
Something has to give. And it always does.
I feel like for years all I’ve done is push myself:
  • Went to gym everyday and pushed me to do it
  • Run a half marathon
  • Fasted for a week
  • Vegan for 2 years
  • Push myself to create businesses
  • Spent too much money on the house/car etc

And you would think that all of that stuff would make me happy.

Nope. I was miserable for most of these. I pushed myself too hard because I thought these things NEEDED to happen.

Why did they need to happen?

I wanted to be healthy but hold on – Isn’t mental health and happiness more important than pushing myself to do things I’ve decided is necessary.

Isn’t life supposed to be fun?

Yes I know that physical health is important – But do I need to push myself so hard to achieve these things?

I know that the health industry is telling me I should.

But I know how it goes. I push myself for a few months until I can’t do it any longer; like most normal people.

I get burnt out and just can’t do it anymore until a few months later when I start the cycle again.

That’s not healthy.

There must be a middle ground.

Just because I CAN push myself doesn’t mean I SHOULD.

I’ve decided I’m saying NO to things that don’t serve me long-term, regardless of what society says is good for me.

I’m going to do what makes me happy.

I’m going to take my time with everything – I’m not going to push too hard so that I can get to where I want to be and enjoy the journey.

I want to create good healthy habits long term.

No more pressure.

2018 New Year’s Resolution To End All New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Eve are one of the two times in the year I become more aware of time. The other is my birthday.

My birthday was recently in March and May is around the time that everyone loses sight of their New Year’s resolutions so I thought this was the perfect time to bring out this article.

Every year I think about:

– How my year has passed and feel sad about how fast it has gone.
– How my life is progressing and lament about how quickly I’m ageing.
– What’s missing in my life and how time is running out.
– What I need to do to get to my goal and how sad I am that I’m not there already.

Then I go ahead and create New Year’s Resolutions to fix all that sh*t.

I think about what’s most important and usually it’s:

– I need to lose weight
– I need to make more money
– I need to live life more
– I need to save more money
– I need to spend more time living in the moment

All things most people make their goals.

But this year has been different.

I don’t feel the need to do any of these things *next* year.

Why?

Because this year, I finally took steps to live the life I wanted.

Every other year I felt like I was planning to live this life, planning to be on a tropical island with great people.

– Planning to lose weight
– Planning to live life
– Planning to get away
– Planning to make money

Planning, planning, planning…

Because the truth is most of my New Year’s Resolutions don’t last more than 3 months.

The monotony of life gets in the way and I lose sight of all the things I was meant to accomplish until the next New Year (or birthday).

This is the cycle I’ve always lived by.

For the first time ever I feel like I’m living the life I was meant to live.

I’m not postponing anymore and that’s why a new year doesn’t feel like time is running away from me.

I don’t feel sad about getting older…

In fact, getting older makes me feel indifferent which seems significant, especially as a woman. I don’t feel good or bad about it. It just is what it is.

But I can do the best I can with the time I DO have.

This is where I’m meant to be – I’m finding my independence, making mistakes I would never have allowed myself to make before and feeling things I’ve never allowed myself to feel.

I’m becoming more human, more forgiving, more fun, more relaxed and more whole as a person. I’m loving who I am right now and I’m incredibly grateful to the people that have allowed this to occur.

My new year’s resolution is:

Make my life so awesome this year that:

I don’t need a New Year’s Resolution Next Year.
I’m not disappointed at the trajectory of my life every time a new year or birthday comes around.
I can make mistakes, take risks and do the things I need to be doing.

Everything’s else is total bulls#*t. I know it and you know it.

Reasons I Love You (Appreciation For My Boyfriend Damien)

I am told often that I do not need a man, that everything can be done without them.

A man’s role has become obsolete.

Because there are some fundamental issues with that sentiment, I’d prefer to talk about some of the ways a man has shaped me into the woman I am today.

That man is Damien, my partner of over 8 years. This is my ode to a great man and his value in a woman’s life.

Probably the closest thing to a love letter I could ever muster.

Here are all the reasons he showed me who I am:

My Intelligence. Damien took a 20 year old girl and showed her she was intelligent, that she could run a business. He was 6 years older than me and he didn’t need to do that.

My value. Damien showed me how beautiful I was, not just in the way he looked at me but the way he was so proud to call me his girlfriend.

My awareness. Damien allowed me the space to question everything – monogamy, politics, life – everything. When 50:50 wasn’t working, we had the space to come up with a new system. Actually anything could be changed if I needed it.

My stability. Damien became the rock that was consistent. Whenever something went wrong, I could always hide out in his arms and everything would be ok.

My confidence. Damien is always supportive and as much as I like to think that I created the confidence myself, truth be told I get the most confidence from knowing that whatever happens, someone out there loves me. It gives me a springboard with which to not allow insecurity to overtake me.

My humour. Damien is always joking around. I learnt from Damien that fun doesn’t stop when you’re in a relationship. We laugh a lot together and often one-up each other on the most offensive joke.

My growth. He gave me space to grow into a different person without having to do it alone. He allowed me to change, even if it wasn’t in his best interest sometimes.

My femininity. Damien takes care of me sometimes and enjoys it. We make each other feel valued and I love that.

My relationships. He created a bridge for me to have a good relationship with my parents and see some unhealthy dynamics I was creating in my friendships.

My love. He showed me how to love and how to commit. I have always felt loved by him, regardless of whatever what going on. I have never had to worry about his commitment to us.

Whilst it’s true that I do not need Damien to function in society and it’s arguable that I might have gotten these things in other ways but the way I see it, it’s unlikely I would have been intelligent, confident and funny in the same way.

The best parts of me have been nurtured by this man.

And I’m so, so thankful for all of it.

Separate Bedrooms – Is it Smart Or Bad For Relationships?

A house can get very small if you’re living in one bedroom. I learnt this the hard way.

My boyfriend and I have lived together for 7 years. In the last year, we decided to trial separate bedrooms because I suspected he was the reason I was sleeping badly (he rolls around a lot). We initially weren’t too excited about the idea because you know; the affection, cuddling and whatnot before bed was important to us.

We decided to trial it for a month. After 1 week, we could see how awesome separate living situations were and we never looked back.

We started getting better sleep – Neither of us had any idea how we get disrupted by each other during sleep. Waking up tired and not knowing why has a snowball effect

We were able to control temperature – My boyfriend loves having the room icy cold whereas I like it warm and cozy. This was a huge issue for us ongoing until we had separate bedrooms

We longer disrupted each other – My boyfriend wakes up earlier and disrupts my sleep. He also has to tip-toe around me and make sure he’s not making any noise

We now enjoy spending time with each other – When you’re in the same house, you stop appreciating each other’s company because it’s always there. But when you have your own space, you start enjoying hanging out with one another.

We have more alone time – Relationships have a lot of friction because there’s no alone time. If you don’t have your own space, it can be a constant low-level irritation that can create resentment in the relationship.

We still spend time cuddling, hanging out and having sex, it’s just the sleep/work aspect happens separately.

And goodness how big of a difference it has made in our relationship.

Digital Nomad Lifestyle Is Not All It’s Cracked Up To Be

Travelling constantly is actually hard. It doesn’t solve your problems and it will not allow you to run away from your problems for long.

Travelling is amazing for perspective around your issues and gives you a blank slate to deal with them away from your normal surroundings.

Here’s a list of things I’ve struggles with:
1. Lack of stability – I’ve realised that I crave stability, even when I’m travelling. This is why I don’t travel constantly.

2. Sickness – In most popular third-world DN countries, jokes about diarrhoea and dengue etc are commonplace. Being sick regularly makes me crave home and to be taken care of. I miss my Dad a lot at these times.

3. Loneliness – With constantly transient friendships, it’s hard to make real friendships. We can be friends with many people (my friend list on facebook has gone from <200 to >700 since I started travelling. It’s great that we can reconnect with people on the other side of the world but the novelty expires pretty quickly when you realise you still have a handful of friends you really care about.

If you’re new to this, here’s are the ways I’ve been able to deal with it:

1. I allow myself the space to feel the issues, deal with it in a healthy way and change things if they’re not working. After all this is my adventure.

2. Talk about it – DN’s tend to have similar problems and it binds us together.

3. Feel the problems and really deal with it – Being away from home allows us the space to learn new things without old habits/people getting in the way.

4. Create your own adventure – Don’t feel bad about wanting to go home or realising you don’t want to travel constantly. This whole adventure is yours and you create whatever makes you happy.

5. Go home – This is an option digital nomads don’t like to consider. It feels like giving up. But sometimes you need to go travelling to really appreciate what you have at home. I have really come to appreciate the stability of being home.

To the point where I’m considering being at home for the next few months.

Take care of yourself. Screw holding onto what you thought you want before you started travelling.

Allow yourself the freedom to change your mind.

Before I travelled, I thought of myself as being some whose home was ‘the world’. Nowadays, I realise my home is where I find stability.

Cultural Appropriation – I’m An Immigrant And Even I’m Confused By It

I’m an immigrant and I must say I don’t understand cultural appropriation.

To be clear, here’s what I think it means:

Cultural appropriation is when western people wear or behave like another culture.

I see this come up when:

– People wear braids/dreadlocks to appropriate black culture.
– People wear bindis and bangles etc to appropriate indian culture.
– People wear headdresses to appropriate American native culture.

The popular sentiment today is that it’s not right as it’s ‘culturally insensitive’.

I think that’s bulls%#t.

I was 8 years old when I came to Australia from Fiji. Growing up in a predominant Indian culture, I would have loved to have seen Australians wear bindis, bangles and whatnot because I would instantly have felt some connection. It was scary back then, having to learn a new culture and suddenly being alone without any friends, especially in a new school.

Of course there are racist people who paint their faces black or adorn headdresses so what we do in modern society is we call every cultural appropriation ‘insensitive’.

But I believe that most westerners wearing and behaving like another culture are the type of people who are very accepting.

I’ve never met a racist person wearing braids or dancing to Bollywood songs.

These people generally want to be free to appreciate and get involved in other cultures by including it as part of their personal identity.

I think that’s the best compliment to one’s culture don’t you think?

By doing that, we stop making people from other cultures feel that their traditions and valued are accepted and celebrated.

If that’s not accepting of different cultures, then I don’t know what is.

I say wear whatever you like, appropriate away and allow people to feel that their culture is accepted in western society.

Screw what other people think. By looking to other cultures to find what we like, we can also stop giving so much control to the fashion industrialists who create trends to divide not only cultures but the rich & poor, the young & old, the cool & uncool – the list goes on.

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