Home' Nova National : January 2011 Contents 21
into relationships too quickly just so I
could avoid being alone, end of me not
being a traveller and risk taker, end of me
thinking I'll never go overseas.
Suddenly, on moving day, I had a
partner, albeit back in Canada to finish
up work and sneakily avoid unpacking
boxes. I had two kids shifting into their
new bigger rooms. A new group of friends
helping us move. Four cats (mad cat lady
status approved), and a dog.
A dog? Me? A confirmed cat lady? And
yet, my daughter installed a puppy in the
house, and Puppycat is now confused as
to who he belongs to. If daughter is home,
he will spend time with her. But if she's
out, he will stick to me like glue, insist on
sleeping with me, and I'm the official dog
walker. I'm the only one he will come to in
the park, when let off his leash.
I let go of not liking dogs so much,
and having a catty household. I now have
a menagerie. One male cat who is boss
of the house and provides for his family
(mice, rats, occasional other delights), one
girl cat who is paranoid and in love with
TRM to the point of worship, one female
cat who wakes people up with a friendly
claw up the nose, one kitten who wrestles
the dog, and one puppycat who thinks
he's a cat and washes the kitten.
And I knew, when I moved house
again, that it would be to a small house on
the Mornington Peninsula. Knew it, knew
it, felt it. Had to let that go. Large house,
eastern surburbs, two storeys. Oh dear.
Not what I had in mind at all.
I stood in the doorway on moving day
and wondered what possibilities it opened
up for me. Partner, grown children, pets,
a garden again, different neighbourhood,
a fresh view of the Dandenongs. A little
further away from Frankston than I
thought I would be, and a little closer to
Warrandyte, which is no bad thing.
I'm told that a house with the number
four is a house to dream in, to make
plans. Already, I am speculating on the
new phases of my life. How shall I be the
mother to grown to children? How shall
I delight in lives I have only a supporting
role in now?
Where will my travels take me? What
will happen when I finally finish my yoga
teacher training? Already my vision of
my own yoga studio has transformed.
Well, collapsed, really. If I didn't fancy
owning my own belly dance studio,
odds are I wouldn't fancy a yoga studio
Belly dance began as a personal
study and journey for me, and ended up
being very public. Yoga teacher training
began as a very public statement, and
is rapidly becoming a private journey of
self discovery. I am surrendering to the
tofu of my body and bending it into soft
shapes. My Downward Dog is more Art
Deco Table. Cow Face Posture is Arthritic
Dinosaur. No pushing, because it's silly
to fight tofu. I watch young people in
classes want to "work it" and smile my little
round smile in my little round face and
meditate on my sacred word, "Cadbury,
Leaving behind the thinner, driven
belly dancer has been pure relief. Even
letting go of the image of "tall, thin yoga
teacher" -- whew! I am 5'2", curvy and
think there should be more yoga nidre
and much less of the advanced poses
where you put your feet up behind the
base of your skull and balance on one
Each day is small beginnings. A tiny
coriander plant is thriving in the front
yard, most unexpectedly, while the one
I put into the back yard with much love
has wilted and will shortly flop backwards
into Corpse Posture.
Yes, goodbye little unit. You were
good to us, and I loved you. But it's now
time to love this new, big place, with all
its quirks and curiosities.
The garden, the space, the windows,
the view, the happiness the animals feel
at not being in each other's faces all the
time. I do try to love the oven and stove,
even though they are, in fact, loathsome
and fantasise about them evaporating and
a sensible cooker taking their place.
This house is becoming home, to all of
us. We are merging in new ways as a family.
A house in which to dream, even if, as yet,
we don't know what it is we dream. We will
perhaps not know what we've begun until
we are halfway through it. It's often the way
© NOVA JANUARY 2011
'I am surrendering to the tofu of my body and bending
it into soft shapes.'
'How shall I delight in lives I have only a supporting role in now?'
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