About Me - Theodora....
I'm Theodora, Schrodie's Mummy.
Schrodie, is short for Schrodinger, he is my steadfast and loving companion. My best friend. Lucky me!
For over twenty years I wanted a male Australian Silky Terrier puppy, who I would name Schrodinger. His birth name was Skipper and he is indeed true to that name, bold, bouncy, boundless energetic boy that he is, just as he is to Schrodinger, being unbelievably smart. He's named for one of my favourite Scientists, the Austrian Physicist Erwin Schrodinger who is the Father of Modern Physics and the Father of Quantum Mechanics. Schrodinger was incredibly brilliant and just as incredibly non-conventional in the way he thought and the way he lived his life. Kinda like me.
I am not a naturally patient person. My only natural patience is with children and animals. Over the years I have learned to be patient, mostly through necessity, understanding its value and importance in life. Like Aesop's Fable of "The Tortoise and The Hare", which I was taught as a little girl.
Waiting for Schrodie was possibly the greatest test of patience, for me, so far. The Universe repaid me with my best matched soul. For this I am eternally grateful and happy. I would never have survived my worst days and times without this most precious, brave, adventurous joyful, playful, optimistic, cheeky, fearless, funny, spirited, willful, tough little soul. He is just like me.
We met after I adopted him, the only male puppy of his breed in the country, at the time. It was as the Qantas Hangar at Sydney Airport was closing, after 10pm where he had spent the day, since arriving from Adelaide, with the kind man who worked there and kept him company until I arrived to collect him. It was love at first sight. We have never faltered in eight and a half years. My sweet boy has suffered more than his fair share of traumas as a consequence of everything that has happened to me. It is in no way evident let-a-lone obvious. He is remarkable with the most beautiful temperament. His spirit is indomitable, as I have been told countless times, is mine. I trusted in the word of the eccentric eighty year old breeder who had raised him, not easy for me, but a risk well worth more by the ever yielding reward, of him.
More than anything, growing up, I wanted to secure my financial future. I never wanted to be homeless. I did everything in my power to make this my reality. This decision has saved me now at the worst and lowest point of my life.
I am an independent tree-changer, who moved to country NSW from North Bondi, Bondi Beach, almost nine years ago. WOW, what a crazy, unbelievable ride this has been so far. My family and friends told me that I was nuts and that I would hate living in the sleepy village which would become my home. Mostly, they believed that I would regret my decision. Not so. Not even close. Even after all the most terrible disasters that have befallen me. The best part was and is, that I got Schrodie.
Typically people discuss your occupation upon meeting. About ten years ago, I stopped doing that as I realized that I had been defining myself by my job. Up until this point I did not know that so much of my identity was wrapped up in how I earned my living. I am not my job. Possibly because I have worked and lived in so many different worlds over the years, mixing with the most incredible, eclectic groups of people. I worked incredibly hard and financially pulled off the magic tricks of the millennium before I moved to the country. I was the poorest I had ever been and in one year, I managed, on my own to buy my home and car and most importantly, adopt Schrodie.
An anomaly, I am, as Yoda would say. Qualifications, I have a list as long as my arm. Maybe longer.
I am an Applied Physicist. When I completed my Degree, less than two percent of Physicists in the world were women. For my dad, I am a qualified Accountant. After this I became a Financial Planner. Both my right and left brain are integral to my identity. For years I was told that I would never be able to secure the work I wanted as my qualifications, capabilities and capacities were atypical. I scared HR Managers and Agents as they typically did not know what to do with me. I did not fit into their boxes. However, I always found the right people to work with over the years and have had jobs created for me.
I fought to achieve the reality that I wanted and enjoyed it thoroughly, for as long as it lasted. Once I find myself bored or worst of all, disillusioned, I move on. This applies to every facet of my life, including relationships of all kinds. It has not been an easy ride.
Since I was fourteen years old and got my first job as a 'check-out chick' with Woollies, I have had a long-lasting love affair with Retail. I got in trouble for getting a job as I was still at school. School was my priority but so was my independence. I did not want to ask my parents for anything, especially money. I wanted to earn my own money. So I did. I opt in-and-out of retail work whenever I need and want to, including after my tree-change. I have been judged for this over the years but I do not care. I am not judgemental. There is no shame in good, honest work, no matter what form it takes.
Most of my life I have played in the biggest and oldest, most conservative 'Boy's Clubs', 'playing in the pit', as I called it, often as the only female peer of upwards of forty men at a time, all highly driven and highly competitive Alpha Males. I have learned much.
My right brain hemisphere has led me to study both Fashion and Millinery at Sydney's prestigious Sydney Institute. These were interests of mine, fostered by mummy, since childhood. Countless other courses and qualifications have made up some of my intellectual and creative indulgence over the years. What is the point of living if not to enjoy every day in whatever seemingly impossible way we can, for a chance at joy, peace and happiness for our hearts and souls?
Adrenaline keeps me balanced. When I am out of equilibrium I treat myself to adrenaline rich adventures. The adrenaline rush restores my equilibrium. I love roller-coasters, terrifying as they are and zip-lining, indoor parachuting, dancing, travelling, road-trips, hiking, doing new things. Whatever will make me feel alive. My life is nothing but the most remarkable adventure, not always fun or easy but never dull and always an insane ride.
Before the hell of 2020 and Covid-19 I used to travel, at least one overseas trip every year, often three months at a time. I have seen much of the world and a lot of Australia. I worked hard, once with four jobs at once and an incredibly active social life. I have spent incredible amounts of money for the tangible and intangible experiences of which I can never be robbed.
My life has been enriched by people, places, architecture, art, privileged experience, film, music, literature, history, science, nature, food and culture. I love trains. I love Jon Bon Jovi. I love facts. I believe in having fun, always, no matter how seemingly impossible.
I have taught my niece and nephews to look upon everything they undertake and experience in life, as an adventure. They do just this and always look for joy and excitement in everything, as do I. I believe that this is why we find it, always, no matter how tedious or terrible the situation feels, initially. They are all brave and push through discomfort, fear and reluctance, not always easily but ultimately successfully.
For me, wanting safety for my loved ones is paramount. Since childhood I learned that it is not possible to protect anyone, including myself from the perils of living. What I realized, was that arming those you wish to protect with the understanding, knowledge and skills to make sound decisions and wise choices is how this blanket of protection is achieved. I did the same with Schrodie. I believe in living consciously and in the present moment, with a healthy regard for the future and the past. They live concurrently, making us who we are and enabling us to get where we want to go, the way we want and allow us to enjoy the ride.
People marvel and watch Schrodie, gobsmacked as he opens doors without hesitation. Regardless of a door looking shut, if Schrodie wants to go through it, he tests it first. The he will pull, push, slide to get the door open so he can pass and continue on his merry way. Other dogs, as per my observations and those of other people, all varieties, ages and genders tend to stand in front of a closed, or ajar door, waiting for a human to open it for them, not Schrodie. When he came home, as a puppy, I tested his intelligence by restricting his access to me and giving him puzzles to solve in order to reach me. He always found his way. I did not want him to be timid or dependent or suffer from separation anxiety and he is not and does not. I never wanted him to be stuck in the house if he faced danger, like a fire. I wanted him to always be safe and protect himself, if necessary.
On the 5th January 2020 when our house burned down, in the horrific Black Summer bush fire, I was grateful that we were gone and safe. The latent, hidden injuries resulting from this unbelievably horrific and grim reality were in fact critical, permanent and devastating. We were separated for much of 2020 as I fought for my life and could not look after him, or myself, upon becoming completely disabled and unable to do anything for myself, barely standing or moving, in June last year.
Against all the odds, I have regained my independence and continue to regain my strength. I look after us both. Tirelessly I work to rebuild my broken body, spirit and psyche. I am winning. Although I am fully aware of my new and hopefully temporary limitations, other people do not seem to notice, for which I am grateful. Rebuilding myself and my life is not something that I could have ever imagined. I take every win I get and it is no mean feat to achieve anything. I realized how much I still took for granted but not any more, nothing. Humility I learned long ago but now, it is at a new depth. I fight fiercely because I must. Failure is not an option for me as I restart my life when I had all but retired, not needing anything but small amounts of money to pay the bills. Work was for fun and mental stimulation, social activity and good mental health. These new challenges were unforeseeable.
In early 2022, I must be strong enough to travel to Antarctica, to make a few dreams come true. I must withstand the Journey, the Adventure, the elements and nature. I am booked on a camping and adventure Scientific Expedition. Travelling to Buenos Aires, then the Tierra del Fuego where I will embark upon my adventure of a lifetime. Until recently I had forgotten that this trip was booked, about two years ago. It was deferred because of Covid-19, lucky for me, given what happened to me. My initial response was to forego my trip but to do so would prove devastating for me. I pushed through my initial hesitation and fear, as I did when it was time to be discharged from hospital.
I still need to build a house, so that like Dorothy and Toto, we can go home, with a chance to finally recover from this horrific nightmare, this hell in which we have been trapped, yet slowly escaping. When I was little Mummy taught me "that home is where the heart is", now I know this to be true. Since losing my home and everything else I have learned that I don't care where I live. As long as Schrodie and I are loved, happy and safe we are home. The bricks and mortar, my house is personal security in an insecure world and life. For that rare and special real love, I would travel to the ends of the earth. I have learned that only love, real love matters most in this life.
There have also been some incredible gifts along the way, for which I will always be grateful.
This Blog is my journey from my broken body to Antarctica and beyond. I have no idea what is coming for me, none of us do but I will fight like hell to live the life I want and make my dreams come true.
I have been told by countless people I have met upon my journey since my life was stolen by a bush fire that I must share my story and write a book, to help other people. So, I write this Blog and hope that in some small way it will help someone, somewhere. My book is a work in progress.
I want to show that the Light never goes out, if you're prepared to keep looking for it, no matter how much you need to strain your eyes and body or how hard you need to squint.
My aim is to post every Sunday, but sometimes, life gets in the way.
Hope you enjoy the ride....
Feel free to leave any comments or ask me any questions. I will answer as best and as honestly, as I can, always.
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