When contrast is the constant.

I really love the opportunity that this blog has given me.  The chance to ask questions that I would have otherwise ignored, to poke around inside my thoughts and my feelings, and see what I can see.  Most importantly, I get to see them from another view.  An outside view.

Other (probably saner) people than me, seem to be able to just do this.  I’ve needed to throw it on a screen, and onto the interwebs to really hear, see and feel the call of “me”.

I love reading other blogs, and have a fab crew that I read regularly.  I don’t tend to subscribe (sorry), but rather trust that the ones I need the most will pop up in front of my FB or twitter feed.  And they do.  Of course!

One of those was from the fabulous Eden at Edenland this morning.  I was all ready to write about some parenting fail and quandry moments (and I’ll still go there, many times, I’m sure), when Eden gave me a shove in another direction.  Click here to check it out.

Edenland's Fresh Horses Brigade

Her challenge for today, “come stage your comeback ….. who are you?”

How would I write about that?  As soon as I started asking myself “who are you”, rather than seeing who I am, I kept seeing the things that aren’t me, particularly the contrasts that are in my life.

My life shows that I have made a pattern of choosing things that conflict with each other.  Try these contrasts on for size:

– I’m a nurturing soul and I have chosen to marry early and have 4 children.  BUT I work full time, own my own business, my husband has his own business.  So I’m not really around all that often to nurture my own family.

– I’m passionate about families.  BUT I didn’t have contact with my parents and sisters for years.

– I’m a tactful and respectful communicator.  BUT I work as a family lawyer, litigating through family break down.

– I hate conflict.  BUT I chose an industry that only exists because of conflict.

– I’m social and thrive on the connection with others. BUT I rarely spend time with, or even have, any friends in real life (if I’m truly honest).

– I’m a lover of homemade food created from natural ingredients. BUT we have cheap pizza weekly, and an array of convenience and takeaway foods that I hate.

– I love getting to know people and lifestyles that I would have never otherwise have imagined.  BUT I’ve never left Australia, or even explored this country.

– I love the calm that comes with a planned and orderly life.  BUT I hate the feeling of inflexibility and robotic performance that comes from following a detailed plan.

– I give people advice every day about how to deal with their children and their finances.  BUT I have drama and difficulty and failure in my life.

So what does this mean?  Am I still miles away from me? Or have I chosen these contrasts to work out exactly what I need to be me.  I hope it’s the second, because that’s cool.

Now I just need to find the ways to get the “BUT”s out of the “I am”s.  Mmmmm now there’s a project.  I very big project, I suspect.  And in the meantime, I am happy to be me.  Contrasts and constants.  It’s all OK.  Because …. as the work of the amazing Brene Brown reminds me:

I live and love with my wholeheart

And that is who I am.  Someone striving to live a wholehearted life.

K xxx

K xxx

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About Kathryn Hodges

Hi! I'm Kathryn. I have many hats in this life. I am a daughter, a sister, a wife, a mother (of 4!), a friend, a keen try-er of yoga, a lawyer, a business owner, an avid reader and a lover of this electronic world and it's connections. As the Principal of a wonderful law firm on the Sunshine Coast, Qld, Australia, I focus on seeing my clients as people going through change and I am committed to practising mindfully that I am dealing with people and their families. Precious stuff, hey! I hope you enjoy learning more about the things that impact on me, my life and my practice. Please leave me a comment, as I'm sure you have something you can show or teach me. We're all in this learning thing, called life, together xx Oh, and my professional obligations mean I have to remind you that my opinions are my own.
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28 Responses to When contrast is the constant.

  1. Vanessa Moore says:

    Far out…that Eden writes,some powerful stuff. Who are you, interesting question. I,w recently challenged to write my Vision, Mission and USP. I was hugely challenged by this. I put it off, I procrastinated as I was convinced it was too hard and I didn’t know. Well, rather than not,do my homework I sat sown one morning and said “right, I am gonna do this”. I grabbed a pen and a blank sheet of my letterhead …..and it literally fell out of me in one go. When I stopped I was surprised that I had written so much.

    When I read it I was shocked, it was fantastic and my USP blew me away.

    I realized that sub consciously it was in there guiding me, I just hadn’t shared it with me.

    So sometimes we do know, we just haven’t shared it with ourselves for fear of letting it out.

    Hope this makes sense Kath…..xoxoxo

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Oh yes, Vanessa.
      And of course, there is only a step or 2 between us.
      I have a challenge to write my values by next Thursday. So far, I’ve decided “it’s too hard”.

      I’m going to trust that it’s not so hard, will tumble out, and be ready to guide me with what I already know.

      You make so much sense!!!
      K xx

  2. Debyl1 says:

    I love this post as I can relate to many of the things you are going through.
    Isnt it amazing how we do live the contrasts in our lives?I think it is great that you are happy to be who you are and that you live and love with your wholeheart.It makes the journey that much more enjoyable and worthwhile.
    I think we make the choices we need to make at the time.Although I cant say I am always happy with mine.Especially with parenting.I get so torn as to what is the right thing to do at times,especially as my girl is an older teen.
    I love how you enjoy the choices you have made.I admire how brave you are.xx

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Hi Deby,
      I’m working on surrender / acceptance. So that I can remove myself from the guilt and torment that I was previously feeling so much more.
      My parenting decisions – oh my. Sometimes I really just do not know. That was yesterday. Today seems to be OK. Phew!
      Thanks for commenting Deby. I appreciate it.
      K xx

  3. Vanessa Moore says:

    Meant to be our parallel journey. Trust – a big word. I am working on trusting myself and it is a challenge, I have it printed and on my wall in my office to remind me.

    Pick a time, sit and write and it will flow. Trust!

    Have fun and hope you share them xoxoxo

  4. Gad I loved that post. As I read it, the contrasts seem to make you and your life fuller somehow and you did really seem to be happy being YOU and that seems to be a pretty fine place 🙂

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Jo!!

      Imagine if my inner turmoils actually made me happier, in some Alice in Wonderland upside down twist!! I love that 🙂

      K xxx

  5. mumspeak says:

    I love this post. I think women these days wear many hats and so we contradict ourselves daily. I know this is true for myself anyhow. : )

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Oh, I am feeling so relieved that it isn’t just me.
      Pass the hat, it’s time for another quick change!
      K xxx

  6. I think compromises and contrasts are natural, it’s what tests us and makes us stronger.

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Laney!!
      Hope you’re feeling better soon.
      Loved you post too. Such a great question from Eden.
      K Xx

  7. MsMandie says:

    I think we’re all full of compromises and contrasts, and that makes us the unique, confounding humans we are! (I also love natural, fresh ingredients but have pizza (or fish and chips) at least weekly!!! I love that compromise 🙂 )

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thank goodness someone else ‘fessed to the crappy food choices.
      As I sit outside a bakery ready to supply my family with more crap. That is quick, easy, and hopefully allows us to repairs some little wounds that happened in the game of life this morning.
      K Xx

  8. I’m reading this having published my own list of contradictions as well! We are nothing if not fascinating 🙂

    I’m glad to have found your blog via Eden’s fresh horses as well 🙂

    • And I’m laughing at myself now because I know this blog!! Reading on my phone in mobile view, just switched to standard and had an ‘a-ha’ moment.

      I am nothing if not a bit daft lol!!

      • Kathryn Hodges says:

        Love a daft moment, particularly if it’s followed by a LOL. There is much joy in that!!
        K xxx
        Ps glad you recognised me, Kate 🙂

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Kate.
      I really thought I was in some weird misfitting fringe community, believing in one thing, but doing another.

      But guess what!?! We’re all living on the fringe 🙂 together.
      K xxx

  9. Kathy says:

    I think everyone is a mass of contradiction, really; it’s the tension between states that makes us human (and interesting!) Creativity and insight are often born from the spaces in between.

    I am glad to have discovered your blog from Fresh Horses – I’ll visit again regularly. I really like the way you write!

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Kathy,
      When I first started writing this, I was disturbed as my contrasts and conflicts, and wondered what I was doing wrong.

      Thanks to people like you, I’m feeling less of “what’s wrong” and more of “how can I make this more right”.

      Thanks for stopping by!!
      K x

  10. edenland says:

    Oh, wow. What a bloody great post to read, right now. Thank you for linking up Kathryn.

    You totally named it … this walk of contradictions that we all do. Bono once said that the best place to be was “Right in the middle of a contradiction.”

    I don’t think you’re miles away from you at all. I think you’re right there, doing the best you can, looking at yourself and living your life.

    And that’s enough.

    xx eden

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Eden.
      Your comment has helped me wipe my tears, as I sit awash in the parent fail that is having a 12yo.

      And how wonderful it is to share as deeply as we each need. I, truly, thought it was just me. Now that I’ve read so many other posts about contradictions wrapping others’ hearts, I’m feeling more comfortable with my contradictions.

      And thanks for putting Bono on my page. A piece of awesome, that is.
      K xxx

  11. I could relate to so much of that, Kathryn, the contradictions are what makes people interesting 🙂

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      Thanks Glow!!

      And aren’t they just.

      We’re all the same in our difference and different in our sameness.
      K xx

  12. Life would be boring if we weren’t contradictions. I totally understand the wanting a calm/orderly life yet not wanting the inflexibility of a robotic life. It’s so hard to achieve the balance. Loved reading your post. x

    • Kathryn Hodges says:

      I’m glad you understand the ordered v robotic thing. Drives me nuts!!
      Thanks Debbie for your comment. I feel so wonderful knowing that these contrasts and contradictions are mine, but I’m not alone in having them.
      K xxx

  13. Cameron Mann says:

    I loved reading this, although it wasn’t ’til the end that I realised how much you were hanging on those “BUT”s… That seems a bit cruel.

    I wonder how many “BUT”s you can re-label as “AND”s and then embrace your competence in resolving the ensuing dilemmas, on a case by case basis?

  14. eccentricess says:

    I love Eden’s Fresh Horses brigade for exactly the reason you have said here, that her ideas make you look at yourself. It’s great to step back and pull out of the zoom of everyday life and just take stock of where you are and who you are being.
    I’m going for the contrasts as well, that you have searched for the area’s that will help you learn what you need most.
    Stop, kiss each child, go and stand outside and breath in some fresh air and reset yourself, then zoom onwards. 🙂

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