Hey there dear Lighty friends,
I was watching the telly last night - which I don't indulge in very much anymore. Channel 10 were previewing their new series 'Puberty Blues', based on the best selling Australian novel by Kathy Lette.
It's a 'coming of age' story, based around two best friends Debbie and Sue, who were growing up during their tender teenage years in the 1970's, on Sydney's southern beaches. If this life doesn't imitate art??? Well, it could very well be the story of my very own life.
It has evoked in me some very profound experiences from my youth, that I thought I had dealt with - however, not so - today I have been struggling to cope with old, old memories which I thought were long buried - some good - some not so good. I think you will understand what I'm talking about, by following the below vids. Just another way to express myself beyond words:-
In the early 80's, I met my future husband. He was a member (brother) of the notorious beach tribe (or gang) the 'Bra Boys'(My Brother's Keeper). We had known each other since school as we both grew up on the infamous Maroubra Beach (Bra being an synonym of Marou-BRA). Home of the 2005 Cronulla racial riots. This is a very male dominated sub culture, an urban generated phenonomen, separate from the rest of society, very peroquial and patriotic. Women were regarded less than their surf boards - it was a very strange, difficult time to find your feet and know who you were - particularly if you were a young girl. As you had no identity - only the status given to you by your boyfriend or partner. In 2008, they produced a documentary on this particular beach culture. It was a tough and often violent gig - you needed a lot of guts to get by. You had to learn real quick, if you wanted to survive. It was literally a wild jungle out there.
I married very young. After the devastating heartbreak, due to the loss of two babies, my husband and I were delighted to welcome our darling daughter. However, it was not enough for my husband to stay home and place precedence on being a loving father and husband. The arguments began, sometimes escalating into violence. At that time, it was regarded as nothing unusual, many young women were subjected to abuse from their partners. It was normal to go down to the shops and see women wearing dark sun glasses to hide their black eyes. Our men had sworn allegience to their brothers - they came before anything else, even their families. As a female, you soon became pretty resilient and resourceful, you relied on your sisters for the necessary emotional support that you needed to make do under very difficult circumstances. Your men were just 'not there' for you.
In 1986, my daughter was just a toddler, I summoned up the courage to leave my husband. It was hard, I had nothing and I still really loved him. I just could'nt go on existing the way we were. Not knowing whether I would see my husband again - dead or alive. I just had to get out. It was not a fit life for my daughter or I. It wasn't easy to confront him with this ultimatum - 'Get out - or I go'. He didn't take me seriously, so consequently I walked. To say he was furious, is an understatment, as far as he was concerned, I belonged to him.
The years that ensued were very harsh. However, I was determined to make a go of it. I left Sydney and moved to Canberra - trying to make a complete fresh start. My exhusband, made it very difficult for me and my daughter. He wanted us back, no matter what. It was a chaotic time, full of unnecessary drama. I began to resent him immensely.
I then realised that I had to cease the friction between my ex and I, if my daughter was to have the benefit of two loving parents. Her overall welfare was my main priority. So I drew a line in the sand with my ex. Today we are really good friends. He has remarried again and his new wife has been a wonderful influence on him and a support for me with regards to raring my daughter. I love her and my ex a lot. I'm pleased we are all now on the same page.
Much love and happiness to you all