Day One

Coming up for a title for this post was difficult so I made it plain, I made it simple, Day One…quite simply the most appropriate and significant day in recent times. So what’s been going on? A lot actually…I have changed jobs since I last checked in, my relationship is going along swimmingly (I’m engaged now!) My best friend and his partner have moved up here so I now have friends again that I can see and do things with, and yet somehow in the last 12 months I have put on 15kgs and sunk into what I thought was a “rough patch” after 6 months of roughing it I realised last week that this was no patch, this was my old friend depression rearing his ugly head again. Knocking on the doors of my mind and invading like an unwanted squatter clouding my thoughts and judgement.

I have gone from a t shirt size of M to a now XXL in a 2 year period. At first I palmed it off as “relationship weight” you get comfortable, you stop going to the gym as much, you go out on dinner dates more and generally just enjoy each other and it was an amazing time. I genuinely loved getting to know my partner and spending time together doing what we love. It was the most amazing and exciting time of my life and I loved every second of it. During this time though the gym sessions went down from 5 times a week to 3 times a week to one to eventually none. Blaming busy schedules and comfort everything just slipped away and as time flew by and I moved to a sentient job my life spun completely out of control .

During this time I have had a gym membership and I have been going intermittently. I did start to lose some weight earlier this year and things were looking up, however as my schedule got busier and I felt wearier I kept putting my next workout off because I was tired/not in the mood/busy/made other plans/not enough hours in the day/partner needs my attention and every other excuse under the sun that you could ever think of.

So here I am weighing in at the biggest I have ever been in my life 117kgs. I had my first proper gym session yesterday and I was so proud of myself. I completely smashed it and when I got that rush of endorphin and pump all these memories of how addicted to that feeling I used to be came flooding back and something in my mind just clicked. It was like I went into hyper-drive and I knew that this was it, do or die time. When I got home I was scrolling through Facebook and saw a video from a PT that I follow Steve Booth the video spoke at length about how you have to change your standard to lose weight and get fit and basically rise above what other people are doing. Having done a weight loss thing before I know it’s the alcohol and sugar that make me put on weight and I have allowed myself to become that person again who drinks and eats whenever and whatever I want without consequence. I used to be a drinker, I stopped when I lost weight for health and life reasons and now I have allowed myself to slip back down into that drinking lifestyle again.

When looking at what I could possibly do to kickstart this thing I honestly considered lapband surgery, it would be quick, the results would be good and it would force me to portion control. But then how does an easy way out work? I know people that have had it done and they have all put it back on because it doesn’t change lifestyle or bad habits. I considered chinese tea diet of tea 3 times a day for 4 weeks, yeah no sorry my body requires actual food to function and when I lost last time I did it with amazing fresh food and protein. At I weighed my options I knew that the only thing that could actually change my situation was nutrition and exercise. It all boiled down to 2 simple things that I can control and do, but I felt like I needed assistance. I don’t have hundreds of dollars for a personal trainer so as I paroozed Steve’s fitness page there was a 7 day start up transformation program that was free and all online. Without hesitating I signed up and decided that now is my time. I can work with the demons in my mind but I really REALLY want to get my body under control and start implementing self-discipline.

Here begins day one, I had some natural yoghurt and honey for breakfast with a weight loss shake and small coffee (almond milk) I premade chicken breast with broccoli and brown rice for lunch and banana for pre-gym workout later. Thus starts my 7 day transformation that will then continue with a life-long promise to myself that I will NEVER let myself go again. Looks aren’t everything and I know that but I want to look good for me, I want that rush from exercise and pump from working hard and seeing results. This is what I need to push through and motivate me, so not only am I back into exercise but I feel that my blog needs to come back to work through my mind demons to come out the other side.

Here’s to Day One!

 

Advertisements

2015 – A Reflection

What a year! I started out in Surry Hills for New Years, alone with a bottle of wine and  some movies. At the time I was blissfully unaware that I would be ringing in the most surprising and exciting years of my life. I was living with one of my close friends Sam (one of the only things I actually miss about Sydney!) working at my usual job, just generally plodding along doing what I do with no idea of what was ahead.

A road trip to Melbourne for Australia Day and my birthday reunited with the Lawlers/Fraters and I was reminded why I love these beautiful and inspiring people who consistently love and surprise me just be being themselves. Nicole I could not ask for a better best friend than you (well maybe if you picked up the phone a few more times! You can’t blame Harper forever :P) Ryan you are one of the first straight men I have been able to get along with and I love that the husband of my best friend is just as amazing as she is. Thank you for always being honest and hitting me with the “hard truths”

Returning to Sydney I found out that our apartment was being sold and I had to move out. This terrified me as I re-evaluated just where I wanted to live, what I wanted to do with the year and really gave me the kick I needed to make some changes that I wanted instead of just drifting along in my complacency. I took up residence temporarily in a house in Annandale. A cute little apartment with a tennis court and swimming pool, it felt like I was living in a resort with beautifully manicured gardens, a large room to live in and walking distance to Newtown, this is a house I could see myself in. After 3 months of living here and not changing much except my living location, I kicked myself into gear. An opportunity came up at work to change things and relocate to Brisbane, this had always been on the cards for me, my brother and sister live there, my cousins live there, it was nice and warm there consistently, it was to be a temporary holiday place where I could “check out” of my life for a few months before finally making the move to Melbourne that I really wanted.

So I packed up my life, sold most of my belongings and filled my car to the brim with what I could and made the drive from Sydney to Brisbane to live with my sister temporarily until I decided where I wanted to live. A few weeks turned into a few months after some circumstances changed for my sister and I discovered that the sunshine state was agreeing with me. Two weeks into my stay I received a message on an internet dating site about my profile picture (taken at Sea World!)

sw
Look at this dish! Who wouldn’t want a piece of it? 

He was asking me about what I thought of the park and others that were in Queensland. When I told him that I would be visiting Movie World a few days later we arranged to meet up for coffee (as this is where he worked!) I went to the park and met him under the clock tower. He was wearing a blue cardigan over a business shirt and blue business slacks. The moment I saw him he took my breath away, he was to put it simply stunning. He was intelligent, he was funny, he had piercing blue eyes and we conversed over coffee and decided that we wanted to see each other again. The rest as they say is history, it has been 4 of the most intense and fulfilling months of my life and we are only getting started on our journey. I am choosing to stop this now so I don’t keep going on about him, but I will say Luke – I never dreamed that this year I would meet someone who I would care so much about. No-one has ever treated me as well as you do, you are kind, you are smart, you are hilarious, and I truly feel that we are a partnership and it has enriched my life in so many ways.

12243441_1049412468423173_8517867357132803520_n

Going along with Luke are the people in his life – Bradley I cannot believe you are leaving! I never thought I could be friends with a 19 year old, but you are so intelligent and funny and have made the last few months a lot of fun (and VERY boozy!!) I feel like I have just started getting to know you and you are leaving! I can’t wait to see all of your adventures and hear of your conquests in the USA.

My friends came to visit me in the Sunny state as well, The Lawler trip to Noosa was extremely memorable where we learnt that waterproof phones and spa selfies do not mix. Nicole has an unhealthy obsession with ginger factory tours and picking your own strawberries from a farm. Harper loves “mina mina” and not swimming at a beach in winter.

11836791_1024137517617335_7806226634339703384_n

 

 

 

 

12006129_1025012684196485_3237589170047162224_nHallowqueensland was an eventful weekend, Kale visiting for Fright Nights which turned into a massive weekend of theme park mayhem and eating out (A LOT!). Kale it sucked to leave you and move here and I do miss you a lot, we have an unbreakable friendship and I can’t wait to come and see you soon! You have been through so much this year and are still fighting fit and coming out on top.

12193679_1044233798941040_8034064978985279406_n

The Graham Family – This includes Sue, Sharna and Tameeka you ladies have been a rock for me moving here, I was so scared and worried about everything and you all contributed to making me feel welcome.

Ryan Betson – You are one of the funniest and most entertaining guys I have ever met. You always get a laugh, you work damn hard and put your all into everything, and on top of that you are an amazing friend. It has been my privilege to get to know you this year and I am so proud to count you in my friend circle.

Cam Byrnes – You saw me at one of the lowest points of my life and started to turn my head to see the person that I could be. Although our time together was short, you kick started my return to the world and I will always be grateful to you for this.

No this is not an Oscar’s speech so I will move on to the lessons I learnt this year.

People not things has been a resounding theme, in Sydney I locked myself away from the world, I would spend my weekends going to brunch and then playing games or binging TV shows in Netflix all weekend, and this flowed into the week as well. I shut myself away from the world because I truly believed that I was not good enough for anyone but myself and I convinced myself that I was ok with that. Warning – this is no way to live your life!

I finished writing season 1 of my first TV show and it was such an uphill battle. I had such a clear vision for it, I sat down and wrote and hated it. So I scrapped the whole thing and rewrote it in a completely different direction. I was not happy with this direction, so again I threw it out and went back to square one. Fortunately the third time around everything just flowed and it fit perfectly (again in my opinion). This was such a huge achievement for me and I am so proud of it and can’t wait to pursue it in 2016!

One of the biggest lessons of this year was love, I loved more than I ever have in my life before and I really felt it all around me. Love for my family, love for my friends and love for myself. This year certainly had its challenges but the overall theme of it was love and I am eternally grateful for every up and down that happened as I have come through it a stronger and wiser person.

I hope you all have a very merry christmas, happy new years, hanukkah, kwanzaa. Stay safe, love yourselves and each other.

 

 

 

 

 

Goodbye FireFly

Warning – the following is very personal and only a handful of people on the planet know this about me. If you don’t believe in the supernatural then maybe this post is not for you.

For the majority of my life I have had a spirit/entity/ghost that has acted as semi-guide/creeper who has provided me with insights about the people around me and attempted to interject and advise on decisions I make in my life. Judging by the state of my life it is pretty safe to assume that I do not always listen or choose to hear and ignore and go on my own merry way. Why this poor thing would lump itself to me is completely beyond my understanding!

I call “it” or “him” Firefly as the first few times I saw him this was how he appeared, as a group of lights that were attempting to form a shape and it reminded me of these beautiful little beetles. I think this is possibly why I was never frightened of him.

The first night I met him was when I was about 6 or 7 years old. Our family home had just gone through a christian “purification” I still remember this husband and wife team coming over and telling my parents that there were demons hiding in the corners of the roof, that they were sitting there and they would swoop down and attack. It was one of the most frightening memories for me as a child and of course it invoked no sleep for me. My eyes would constantly dart up to the corners anytime I was scared or felt something with me in the room.

One night things were really bad, I awoke from a nightmare and opened my curtain as I heard a noise outside, I was convinced that I had seen a demon but in actual fact it was probably a bird or a confused bat who had flown into the window by mistake. I was crying and screaming and my mother came into my bed to comfort me. She sat on the end of the bed and grabbed my hand and asked angels to come down on the roof and protect us. A few seconds later she looked up to the roof and said “Do you hear that? Footsteps!” I looked up but couldn’t hear a thing.

I told my mother that I was ok and she went back to bed, I laid back into my bed, eyes wide open, still terrified out of my mind. This is when Firefly first appeared next to me, he floated in calmly and with a sense of complete coolness that instantly made me feel at ease. As he hovered next to my bed I heard a voice in my head “It is ok, everything will be ok now. Sleep” and I stretched out my hand and fell asleep instantly.

From here on in I saw him a few times over the coming years, when I met people I would get impressions of them and words that turned out later to be quite accurate. I never really thought too much about it being a child and all, but it wasn’t until later on in life that I started to realise just what this Firefly thing possibly could be.

Being the studious person I am I did all kinds of research into what this could possibly be. I found websites and personal accounts of spirits attaching themselves to people who could possibly have a “medium ability” I found stories of ghosts seeking companionship so they find people who are “open to the idea” I didn’t feel like I really fit these moulds.

Firefly was there when I decided to leave my abusive and violent relationship, he told me time and time again to leave for good this time, but little ol’ stubborn me would not listen, believing that people could change for the better. Firefly was there when I made bad choices, whispering the opposite in my ear but still stayed with me anyway, he was there when I triumphed and was overjoyed when I decided to move to Queensland because “Exciting things await you if you just go, don’t over think it, just GO!” These were his words as I contemplated the decision to move and for the first time in a long time, I listened (and boy am I glad I did!)

When I first moved I was scared and unsure about what lay ahead of me, but Firefly was with me every night that I was sitting in my sisters house on a mattress on the floor thinking about what the hell I had just done. He encouraged my confidence and bravery as I decided to finally start dating again and the second I met my current boyfriend he said these words “This is a good man, a good, good man, and you deserve a good man!” These words resonated with me, as I first met Luke and we talked and laughed, as I walked away from our first meeting words of reassurance and joy filled my head and I knew that we had just made a special connection.

At various other points in my life Firefly has interjected and offered his advice and opinions, if I asked for them or not. He has revealed things about past, present and future and acted as a semi spirit guide that I developed a relationship with. There was a time when he revealed that he was a monk in a previous life, and a warrior in another. This was revealed when several nights in a row I had horrific dreams about being attacked while I was sleeping. Fortunately it was not him attacking me, but protecting me from whatever was trying to get me that night.

Sunday night as Luke & I were talking in bed (I was a little bit intoxicated from day drinking) I told him about Firefly, it was important to me that he knew about this part of my life and he was only the third person alive to know about this. The next day I was concerned that he would think I was certifiably insane, I kept waiting for the white coats to walk down my driveway over the next few days and take me away because “my boyfriends has a voice in his head that talks to him!” I am aware of how insane this sounds!

Monday night when I arrived home, I attempted sleep, As I lay in my bed thinking about all of my encounters with Firefly, naturally he appeared. He was smiling with a solemn look in his face. He told me that he had to say goodbye, that he had taught me everything that he was sent here to teach me and that someone else needed him now. At this point I broke down, I was streaming tears and doing the “ugly cry” thing. He wished me well and told me I was on the right path and then like magic I fell asleep.

The next day I could still feel him lingering around me. I spoke to him several times during the day about something I was unsure of, a situation that I kept second guessing and he told me to stop over thinking things, stop second guessing.

Then on Tuesday night at approximately 8:45pm he left, unceremoniously departed with two words  “Be Happy” and he was gone. Wednesday I woke up for the first time without Firefly, I know that he has moved on and I have a sneaking suspicion that I know who he has moved on to (insert ominous guess here!)

So what did I learn from all this? Am I crazy? Are there voices in my head? Was this a ghost? A spirit? Divine intervention from the gods to stop my crazy life choices? Who knows! All I know is that Firefly was an important part of my journey and while it was difficult to discuss in the past, just writing about it now is helping me attempt to make sense of our crazy journey together.

So Firefly this one is for you! Thank you for the guidance, thank you for the lessons and most of all thank you for the protection. Does the supernatural exist? I do not know, but I choose to believe that whatever this thing was, it was a force of good and that can only be a good thing.

Public Affair

Anyone who knows me well, knows that my favourite author is the sublimely talented Elizabeth Gilbert. I find her so inspiring, her memoir Eat Pray Love changed my life and helped me forge my own journey (albeit not through the beauty of places like Italy, Bali or India) to self acceptance and through the pit of depression and out into the light. If you follow my Goodbye Fatty blog, you will no doubt already know all about these challenges and what I went through so you are all caught up? Great!

Liz (I hope I am allowed to call her that?) has written a fabulous new book called Big Magic, it is all about creative living beyond fear, something that speaks very expressly to me. I have been devouring this book every night, chapter by chapter, consistently fist pumping and screaming out “Yes! Yes! This so happens!” to the point of my housemates asking if I am ok in there (to which I reply with a resounding YES!). This is something that I have struggled with for so long, constantly being excited by creativity, but then fear creeps in and takes over and everything dwindles and I fall back into the black pit of “artist suffering” resolving myself to the fact that I will never be a writer or creative person.

A large part of the book explores our influences growing up and what people say to us about being creative and how this cannot lead to success (or what the world deems as successful) and I must admit that this is where probably three quarters of my fear comes from. What if I put it out there and it gets shot down? What if everyone laughs at it and it is a complete failure? What if my family read it and realise that some of this is about them? What then? This and a host of a million other questions consistently flood my mind when I start a creative project, I exhaust myself going through all of this, that I am so depleted and my creativity is completely bruised and battered, and the project slips away.

One of the ideas in the book explores making our creative projects public, this is something that I also struggle with, I have believed for the longest time that all creative work is for public consumption, otherwise how do you know if its any good? This has been my struggle this week and my realisation is this, I create because I want to create, because I make something that did not exist the day before. I do it because it get’s hold of me and I have to get it out. It doesn’t have to be a fully formed novel or script, it can be an idea with a few major plot points, and the more I dwell on it and research it, it reveals more of itself during this process. My problem is posting everything up for anyone and everyone to see before it has been attended to and coddled to produce a work worthy of creativities idea. I also do this in my personal life too and this has been a huge realisation this week, I looked back at the last few posts on here and they are deeply personal. I am posting up thoughts and events about myself and someone else I am currently involved with (hopefully still am!) and while I am an open book, he is a private person who does not necessarily want my thoughts about us and him out there for everyone to see.

When I approached the subject with him, he did listen and say that he understands why I need to write about it, and I agree to some extent that I definitely do need to write about it, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be public. So if you are reading this expecting hot and steamy details about my relationship, I am sorry to disappoint you, moving forward that is completely off the cards, I will be continuing to write about it, but it will not be something that is made for public consumption.

I feel like this is a first in a series of giant leaps forward for my creative life and I am excited about where it takes me. If you look to the left you will see a cute little cartoon that I nabbed from Liz Gilbert’s Facebook page about fear. This is a quote from Big Magic about where fear should be in the presence of our creative lives. “Fear is allowed to come along for the ride, but it is sitting in the back seat, it doesn’t get a say, it doesn’t get to navigate, it definitely does not get to take over, it does not even get to touch the radio! Instead of fighting it or conquering it, we have to work with it and acknowledge that it exists” I cannot stop reading this passage over and over and dwelling on the direction this will take my writing.

Recently I gave up playing games and dedicated that time to my writing, already in the last few weeks I have seen such a surge forward in my work, I am getting to pursue and accept so many things that I just kept on the back-burner because I was convinced that I would do these things “when the time was right”. Already this post is close to 1000 words, something that used to feel like such a chore to get out, now just seems to be flowing out of me as I open myself up to the creative process and accept that yes I am a writer, yes I am a successful creator and I have all the tools I need to do this.

If you want to listen to the Magic Lessons podcast hosted by Liz Gilbert you can subscribe here

A Change Is As Good As A Holiday

For those that do not know me personally, I have recently relocated from the stormy and cold city of Sydney, to the sunny, friendly and breathtakingly beautiful state of Queensland. An opportunity came up at work to relocate and after much soul searching (a whole 24 hours) I said yes and then it seemed as if I blinked and it was time to move.

I haven’t talked much about my time in Sydney, it was one of the most challenging and rewarding times of my life. I moved after completing a 12 week challenge that reinvigorated my body, I had dreams, I had ambition and a new job and everywhere I went it seemed like everyone around me was shitting all over it. I had one persistent and ever optimistic friend (thanks Sipple!) who encouraged me to keep going for my dreams and if it wasn’t for here I would not have experienced half of what I did in my time there.

Sydney was amazing for my Novastream website, movie premieres, gaming events, networking and connections and I found myself busying my life with this noise and surrounding myself with “things to do” that were distracting me from what was really going on inside. I had up and moved and left all of my friends behind, and instead of taking all I had learnt with me, I fell victim to what I am calling “Sydney Syndrome”, an infectious disease that I found in a lot of people I met with there.

They, like me, had moved to Sydney hoping to achieve their dreams, they had big plans, make it big, get rich, get connected enough that they could then get out and live where they wanted to and all would be right in the world. One of these people (whose name I have changed for the sake of this article) is Mike. Mike had moved here 12 months before I did, working at a low level paying office job in the CBD, a horrible boss, whose dreams had also been squashed by the city lights, he went in day and day out, 5 sometimes 6 days a week and had dreams of running a Google like empire. He had the degree, he had the connections, but the city had beaten him down, told him that too many other people were trying to do the same thing, so what is the point of trying to do it? You will try, fail and then have to come back to work here and will end up resenting yourself and life. No, no, it is easier and more rewarding if you just stick to what you know and leave that to Sundar Pichai’s of the world.

Another friend Bettina, had been living here for 6 years, she wanted to be a news reporter, and now worked in the low level administration for a television studio. She spent her days answering phones, through her window she could see the news desk and coerced with journalists and camera crew all day, sitting there longing for the job, but overtime she thought she tried, she was denied, feeling like she was always overlooked for someone younger, someone prettier so she descended into madness and monotony and decided to stick to what she knew.

11899833_1013832655314488_6360501487668572819_n

Now don’t get me wrong, this is not a trashing Sydney post, I learned so much from my time there about myself, about other people and about the world. All I will say is that it was definitely not the place for me. I do miss the coffee and the late night shopping combined with the consistent slew of events that the city just seems to pump out day and night throughout the year. Sydney will always have a fond place in my heart, it taught me a lot about myself and revealed some ugly truths that I had to face and deal with.

So where am I now? I am in Queensland, everyday is feeling like a holiday at the moment, I go to work during the day, then in the afternoons and evenings I get to explore some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet (I could possibly be biased here, just a little!) I feel like this place has defrosted me from the inside out. I am dating again, and successfully this time (I think…) work is great, my direction and purpose feel revitalised and the blocks that were stopping me are feeling further and further away. If I get bored or need inspiration I can drive to a beautiful beach, go for a walk in the golden sand, eat ice cream and go on a rollercoaster, and it’s still winter! I feel lucky and blessed to be here and I would not want it any other way.

An Open Letter To Foxtel & AME

On Monday Foxtel’s Facebook page went rampant with posts about an advertisement for the Marriage Alliance “Same Sex Marriage : There’s More To It Than You Think” (see ad here) Hundreds of disgruntled customers and annoyed LGBT Australians and supported flooded the page with messages of anger and disgust over the decision to air these ads repeatedly over the weekend. The ad claims that same sex marriage will lead to changes in sex education in schools, effect children and directs viewers to a website to find more information (you really should check it out!)

Like clockworks customers and the LGBT community and its supporters hit the Foxtel Facebook page, flooding it with outrage. Cancellations and promises of moving to streaming services flowed on their page for days, as well as members of the LGBT community and their supporters tearing down the company for daring to air the ad. I was also one of these people, not a Foxtel subscriber, but a member of the LGBT community and felt outraged that an ad I hadn’t bothered to watch was aired on a service that I did not have. So after I wrote a scathing message condemning Foxtel for daring to show the ad, I actually watched it and realised that it wasn’t anywhere near as offensive as others had claimed, and that I was more offended that the Marriage Alliance seemed to blame the gay community for sinking the Titanic!

Foxtel were not the only one’s to cop it, the Australian Marriage Equality Twitter page was bombarded with messages of outrage, as they had previously confirmed that Foxtel were a corporate sponsor and support of AME. This response was posted by the AME in conjunction with Foxtel :

“Australian Marriage Equality values the support shown by Australia’s business community for marriage equality. Foxtel is among our corporate supporters.

A group opposing marriage equality, known as “the Marriage Alliance”, is currently airing an advertisement through various media outlets including Foxtel. It is their right to express their views.

The feedback from decision-makers in Canberra is that the “Marriage Alliance” advertisement is actually helping our campaign. The ad offers nothing new and and our research indicates that when opponents of marriage equality express their views in the way they have, support for marriage equality increases.

We urge community members who are angry about the ad to turn their anger into positive action.

If you’re outraged with the Marriage Alliance’s campaign the best way to end it is to help make marriage equality happen and recruit everyone you know to help. There are actions listed on our new website www.wecandothis.org.au

You can leave a message in support of marriage equality on our Equality Calling hotline 1300663679. Your message will go direct to your MP and Senators.”

Similarly Fairfax media have aired the ad on Channel Nine and online on their news website. In response they have said a Fairfax Media spokesman said:  “The advertising Fairfax runs is just that, advertising, and not reflective of the company’s position on anything whatsoever.”

It is hard to not get emotional about this issue, Tony Abbott himself confirmed that this is a very personal and emotional subject and it is easy to get upset when the opposite opinion is aired. It is easy to forget that we live in a democratic country that has the openness to show both sides of an argument and it is our job as human beings to respect that there are two sides. We don’t have to agree with it, we don’t have to support it, but we should as human beings and Australian’s at least allow for that other opinion to be heard. Now before you start commenting and biting my head, you should know my stance on the issue. I am a gay man and I support marriage equality 100%. I am not in a relationship so this is not something that is an immediate option for me, but I do have friends who have been in loving and fruitful relationships for many years, who would love the option to enter into a marriage in the eyes of their country.

The good news moving forward is that the five day span of Marriage Alliance ads are now over, in that time we saw a six hour parliamentary debate happen with the current government to decide what to do moving forward with this issue, yes no decision was made, but what did come out of it was more conversation and more discussion within our community. Media outlets like The Project and MammaMia have posted articles and videos in support of Marriage Equality and condemning the speech from Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who remains stagnant on the issue. American actor and comedian Jack Black even voiced his opposition to Abbott stating “I personally think the guy’s living in the stone ages, though. He’s not seeing the writing on the wall. The movement of the world is heading towards equality for all people, all sexual preferences. Come on, we’re all the same in the end. Who cares what gives you a boner. Really?”

So where to from here? I can confirm that Australian Marriage Equality have their own ad coming and it will run for a lot longer than the five days given to Marriage Alliance, just like you I jumped down Foxtel’s throat without thinking, without investigating further what would happen with Foxtel’s alliance with the AME and how this will change things in the future. If you look at Marriage Equality in other countries, it has passed when both sides have been given time to air, because in the end love wins. Showing the ad from the Marriage Alliance highlight’s the ignorance and exploitation of children, while AME show’s nothing but pure and beautiful love, love that should be celebrated, love that should be encouraged and love that should be accepted.

I guess this is a really long way of me personally apologising to Foxtel for jumping the gun and posting my ill-informed message on your Facebook wall. At the time I withdrew Novastream affiliation for Foxtel and affiliated streaming service Presto with our upcoming podcast The Streaming Show, we now would like to reinstate our full support and thank Foxtel for supporting the AME and airing pro marriage equality ads on their channels. We look forward to the day that Australia finally achieves marriage equality, until then there will be plenty of debate around the issue and remember, in the end love always wins!

The Truth

It has been exactly one year that the “12 week Transformation” thing happened, and I found myself reflecting all week upon it. Looking where I am now, what am I doing now, where am I at now and it all affected me. At the time I got down to 84kgs, I was starting to develop actual shaped muscles and believed that having a “good body” would make me feel good about myself, and at the time I thought this was true. Flash forward 12 months later and I actually believe the opposite, I am now 93kgs (yes 9 kilos heavier!) and I am happy.

I am happy that I don’t spend hours everyday at the gym, that I don’t spend what little time I have obsessing over every calorie I consume and what it is doing to my body. I can’t believe that I was ever so selfish and narrow minded that I thought life was about making myself look good to get the approval of other people, and this in lies the real heart of the matter. I was consistently posting “selfie updates” on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter, feeding off the likes and comments, my head swelling and turning into this gargantuan egotistical maniac fuelled by the approval of others, to feel accepted, to feel normal.

It felt like I was back in high school again and definitely not the person I had set out to be. Now before you start jumping to conclusions I met some amazing people and made life-long friendships through doing this, I do not regret what I did, but I do see the holes in it, and know that looking good is not an instant thing that will last forever, it is bloody hard work and not something to be taken lightly.

While it may sound like I am trash talking fitness and losing weight, I have made many life long friends through it, and that is something I will always be grateful for. I am as happy now as I was when I was 9 kilos lighter and that is something that surprised me. So what really does this prove? It proves that you can have be skinny and have a 6 pack if that’s what you want, I don’t want that. Sure I am still going to work on my body but I love food too much to have the “perfect” physique. I am prepared to do enough work to warrant eating burgers and fries, while not being morbidly obese, I am happy with the body I have and that is fine with me.

If you want to kickstart your body, do a 12 week challenge but be prepared to invest your money, your time, your patience for a great kickstart, but be prepared to learn maintenance work to keep the body you have gained, if not it is easy to slip back into old habits. So I guess for me the Truth is that I want working out to be a social thing, so group classes, boot camps and group training sessions are going to be my thing moving forward, it’s where I can make working out fun without being too aggressive about it and maintain my fitness.

What is your truth?

Understanding Children

I know, you just read the title and thought what would a gay man know about children? I mean until the other day, I didn’t have a full understanding of the female reproductive system and the in-depth knowledge of what happens when a girl has her period (apart from the horror movie style bleeding scenes that we love to imagine!) nearly 12 months ago my best friend had a baby, and it was such a terrifying time for me, usually in the past when friends have had babies, they morph into this monster that see single people as “sad” and “lonely” and the worst “unfulfilled because you don’t have children” So naturally I expected the same thing to happen, and while they assured me nothing would change, I was convinced it was only a matter of time.

The baby arrived and (not biased at all!) is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. She is funny and smart, with personality to boot! I always used to roll my eyes at children and think meh I could never be that interested in one, oh how wrong I was!

I already felt like a member of the family, and them having this child only accelerated it further. I can’t even describe how protective and loving I am of this child, and it didn’t even come out of me!(so I can only imagine how my friend feels about her!) All I want to do is cuddle and kiss her and wrap her up in a fuzzy pink dressing gown and have her stay that way forever!

We were at the show and I wanted to get her something for Easter that wasn’t chocolate (I am waiting till she is a little bit older, I can have her for the morning, pump her full of chocolate and send her back to Mum & Dad with a new drum kit!) and found the most precious beautiful hand made plush bunny rabbit. The stall lady wrapped it in a brown paper bag and we took it back to her. She opened the bag herself and pulled the bunny out, and the look of pure joy on her face smashed my heart and as she cuddled it to her head and smiled I am not ashamed to say I got a little teary and the love I felt in my heart-like area was unlike anything I have ever felt before. My Mum always says that Christmas isn’t the same when your kids grow up and you can’t see their faces, and I always say “Yeah yeah whatever, we are still your children, you can still buy us stuff up!” and grin at her stupidly. Now I think I understand what she means, if I could I would buy her a present  a day just to see that look on that beautiful little face, the pure joy and love from something so simple.

The day went on and on and I had that “ah-ha!” moment, this is what children are, this is what they bring that I have never understood before. So as I was walking home, the undeniable question lingered “Do you want kids?” and to be honest, it was never something that I considered to be a possibility before, I have always been that “self-involved” person so it never occurred to me that I could love anyone more than myself. But I love knowing that question is lingering and I now have a deeper understanding of what children are and why breeders (hehe) go so crazy over them.

Motivation

So the holidays are over and my birthday is looming closer and closer. (AH! The dreaded over 30’s birthdays) I find myself having “rewarded” myself over the holidays a little too much, and the gym sessions declined to a whole week of nothing, that’s right NOTHING and it was pure fucking bliss. I ate what I wanted, I played video games for hours on end, ate bread with no guilt whatsoever and desert! OH DESERT HOW I MISSED YOU! I gorged on Drumsticks, Puddings, Cakes, Profiteroles and Messina!

I took a week off working out and felt like absolute shit, Like complete and utter crap, I felt slow and tired, I was grumpy living off a constant trans fat high and I was begging to go back to the gym and eat better (well the last part…sort of…) It really showed me just how far I  have come, if you had told me this time last year that I would be craving going to the gym and not eating and playing video games, I would have laughed in your face and called you crazy.

I went back to the gym today and worked so hard, I poured all of my energy and frustrations over my “week off” into my workout and was so happy with the results. Yes I am exhausted, Yes I am a little cranky at my small portion dinner of chicken and brocolli, but I am happy and knowing that 2015 is the year that I will lose ALL of my gut and have defined abs. It is a hard goal to want, but I know I can do it and it all starts with what I do now.

So my birthday is now less than a week away and I have a goal, along with my things to do this year and some other prospects that I can’t say too much about at the moment, things are looking up in 2015, I know that this year I have to DOUBLE the energy, double the effort, double the enthusiasm and passion for life that I had in 2014, and while a lot of it is physical, it really is just a state of mind.

If you are lacking motivation at this most auspicious time of year, don’t let it run dry, don’t do the new year new me thing and get bogged down in the same business that will stop you from becoming the best version of yourself, because above all else, you owe yourself that life.

65 Things in 2015 *UPDATED!

So i stole this from my friend Troy Lampier. I love the idea of making a list of things to do and ticking them off as you go along! So in 2015 I will attempt to complete every task on this list, keep checking back as I will update with pics when they are complete! I hope you all had a great new year!

They are:
1. Travel overseas at least twice.
2. Live in two cities at once for at least 6 months – DONE! (Sydney & Gold Coast!)
3. Walk the entire length of beach from Nobbys to Merewether at least once.( DONE!)

11233788_958378957526525_9109137352142594542_n
Walk done with Levi!


4. Do the Q1 tower walk on the Gold Coast
5. Give away $100 to a random person for no reason at all.
6. Go rock climbing for the first time.
7. Go skydiving at least once.
8. Sing into a microphone, in public (DONE!)
9. Go vegetarian for at least one month. (Officially backing out of! Seriously, what was I thinking?)
10. Pick up a hitchhiker
11. Get another tattoo
12. Complete twelve pull-ups in one go (DONE!)
13. Get a photo of myself at the Big Banana.

11013535_994753253889095_5028082077306147201_n
14. Get a photo of myself at the Big Pineapple. (DONE!)

bigpineapple
15. Visit the War Memorial in Canberra.
16. Dance with my shirt off at a dance party.
17. Finish the horror short story
18. Learn French.
19. See a shooting star or meteor shower.
20. Try drinking juice (DONE!)
21. Be able to plank for 5 minutes
22. Bake and decorate a cake.
23. Go a whole month without eating any burgers or fries (I doubt this will EVER happen!)
24. Go on a hot air balloon ride
25. Make an item of clothing and wear it.
26. Finish my first trilogy novel
27. Finish my goddamn degree (I have started UNI again!)
28. Buy something online and have it posted to a friend for no reason.
29. Go camping (NOT glamping!)
30. Grown my beard for a month without clippering it.
31. Write a poem that is at least 3 pages long
32. Try kiwi fruit (I still can’t do it!)
33. Go swimming at a beach in winter ( I did this in QLD so it still counts!)
34. Go to a horse race (Ethical reasons are making me not want to do this!)
35. Eat at a vietnamese restaurant (Done!)
36. Eat a meal at a revolving restaurant
37. Visit Cradle Mountain, Tasmania
38. Go tenpin bowling (Done! Thanks Luke)
39. Jump on a trampoline
40. Buy flowers for someone I love
41. Go to a drive-in in every state of Australia
42. Eat a tropical fruit that I have never tried before
43. Ride a motorbike
44. Make out with someone in the back seat of my car
45. Visit Australia Zoo in QLD (I have heard it’s lame so I might alter this one)
46. Visit Taronga Zoo in Sydney
47. Ride a rollercoaster (DONE! So many times!) 

superman
48. Go fishing
49. Give a busker $100 (Done! And I cried and he cried)
50. Go skinny dipping on a beach
51. Make a piece of public art and leave it somewhere public
52. Grow and maintain a herb garden at home
53. Eat a Yorkshire Pudding
54. Make a loaf of bread (no cheating!)
55. coffee

Switch to Decaf Coffee…yeah this was NEVER going to happen
56. Complete an online course
57. Do a nude photo shoot
58. Walk across the Sydney Harbour Bridge (DONE!)
59. Get my passport
60. Do the BVH with Kale
61. Leave flowers at the grave of someone I don’t know
62. Learn to swim properly

12108289_1038524346178652_1881397730693606791_n
63. LOVE more!


64. Read an autobiography (Done!)
65. Write a song and perform it online.