It's Okay To Fall Down

itsok

Years and years ago (golly) I wrote a song titled 'Let It All Out'. It goes a little like this...

weekofsaturdays

It's from my 2009 EP 'A Week Of Saturdays'. Alas, the Kitchenhands are no more and I am pretty much retired from professional gigging.

I wrote 'Let It All Out' when on some level I realised that it was okay to fall down, drop all your marbles, slowly gather them up again and continue on your merry way. In 2008 (when I wrote this song), my father had passed away the previous year, I was in a job I hated, we had to move house suddenly after my father died, and my depression and anxiety was really beating me down. Music was a solace, and writing this song was such a great help.

I'd always been concerned with finding 'The Real Me' - the big thing that I wanted to do and what would make me have an awesome career and which was the Right Way To Go? Susan Jeffers had a great diagram in one of her books about finding the 'right path'. I can't find it online anywhere, but it was essentially a straight line with a gigantic amount of squiggles drawn through it. In other words, the 'right path' is never a straight one. Incidentally, I'm the real me and I still haven't quite worked out what I want to be.

The path is never straight and true. There's always quirks and roadblocks and it's up to you as to how you deal with them. Find your path. Navigate the twists and turns that will take you to your destination. It's okay. If you fall down, enjoy the view, find your cards, get up and keep going. Enjoy the ride.

'Dark days cannot take me
I won't let this one make me
It's all over to me
I let it all out
I let it fall down
I fold my hand and I'm out of the game
Then I pack it all up
I put it all away
Here I am I can face another day.'

Written by Amy Kendall, arr Amy Kendall and Andrew Smyth

If depression and anxiety are concerning you and you'd like to talk to someone please call Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636 or visit beyondblue.org.au

What we want for you... 12 months on.

Yes, this is a repost from 13th July, 2011. It's become especially relevant again as our government moves to make same sex marriage legal in Australia. 
I remembered that when I originally wrote this I hoped that same sex marriage would be legal in Millie's lifetime, but I really didn't hold much hope. What a change a year makes!
I enjoyed re-reading this passage, and I thought you might too.

If you want to know how you can help, GetUp have an automated petition on their site so you can send your support to your local MPs. But as I stated last year, one of the best things you can do to help is to talk about it. Start conversations in your community, go and chat to your MP and feel confident that by passing this legislation we're on our way to making an equal society where no one is discriminated against for their sexuality, race or gender.

Read on! Please share this post if this is an issue you feel strongly about. Let's keep the conversation going. Thank you!


What we want for you…


There’s a passage in my daughter’s Baby Book that is headed ‘What we want for you in this world’. It’s still blank because there’s so many things we want for her that I haven’t been able to articulate them.

I want Millie to grow up in a world where she has choices. A world that is free from poverty and disease. A world where she feels she can make a difference. Heady stuff. She’s already got a great start on this. She was lucky enough to be born in Australia, a first world country with many things. 

Federally funded health care. Work equality. Freedom to speak her mind. The freedom to make choices about birth control. Running water in her house. A non leaky roof over her head. Parents that love her. Freedom to marry whom she chooses, for love is all you need. Wait one minute.

Before I jump on in, let me begin this by telling you that I am married. And when we married last October, the non-removable part of our vows was along the lines of ‘In Australia, The Marriage Act defines marriage as the union between a man and a woman.’ Because right now that is how our country defines marriage.

Now let’s rewind a bit. The big issue when my baby boomer mother was in her formative years was women’s rights and equality. The big issue when I was growing up was homosexuality. In my household it was no big deal. We spoke about it and my parents went to pains to make sure my siblings and I knew it was okay, a non-issue. I vividly recall a conversation between early teenaged me and my father - ‘What do you mean he’s gay?’ ‘Yep. He’s gay.’ ‘Oh. So <insert name here>’s his boyfriend then?’ ‘Yep.’ ‘Huh.’ And that was it.

It wasn’t like that for a lot of people, and when I was growing up to be called homosexual was still an insult. I can’t imagine that in many schools today that it’s still an insult and for this I rejoice.
It never occurred to me until years later that same sex couples were not allowed to marry. I’m proud that Millie will grow up in such a household where homosexuality is not a big deal. We may not speak about it, because it’s not a big deal.

Back to marriage. I cannot buy into the idea that same sex marriage devalues a traditional marriage. I cannot understand it. Why, on some level, are we still comparing ourselves as superior to others? It’s like saying African Americans can’t patronise the same bar as Caucasian people. Or saying Aboriginal Australians can’t vote. Thankfully we don’t advocate these backward ideals anymore.

I’m constantly avoiding arguments about same sex marriage within social & traditional media because I can’t believe it’s an issue. I don’t care if couples of the same sex get married. I simply don’t. I care that they can’t make a choice to, because I love the country that we live in and part of that love of our free country is the choices you can make.

  • Vegemite or Promite? (As if that’s a question anyway? Vegemite always wins.) 
  • Buy a house or rent? 
  • Have more children or only one? 
  • Go to work or stay at home? 
  • Regular unleaded or premium petrol? 
  • Openly practice a religion or state your atheism?
These are very basic choices. Followed on by a choice that only straight couples can make… 

  • To marry or live in a de facto relationship?


I’m baffled by the time and energy expended by both non religious and religious folk in making sure the government decision for same sex couples to marry will be still a ways away yet. I’d like to know why other’s decision to marry offends your sensibilities. How does another’s expression of love change your expression of love? If it helps, my husband and I are not religious. We got married. And I was pregnant when we did. Does that offend your sensibilities? Why? What does it make you feel about yourself?

I hope we live in a time where my daughter grows up and feels confident about stating her sexuality and is able to marry whomever she chooses. And that should she choose to marry, she will not be applauded or made an example of, because I wish for anyone’s decision to marry to be a joyful one that can happen any day, to anybody.

That is what I wish for my daughter. Choice.

(There’s information over here, but the best way you can help is to talk about it. Start conversations and talk away.)