Oh, Shifting Tide, Where Art Thou?

The tides keep shifting, don’t they?

Both literally and metaphorically.

A lot of those life-coachey, inspirational-speakey types say that a lot.

You hear them in various incarnations, particularly on the web.

It’s alright if things are shit right now because the tides keep shifting.

The good comes in and goes out.

The bad comes in and comes out.

The tides keep shifting. It’s the nature of things.

Yeah, that’s fine, but the good comes in and goes out again before I can even grasp it. And the bad keeps coming in and coming in until I am up to my knees in it.

What a week I’ve had. I thought I was the only one until I spoke to at least ten other people who are also up to their knees in the bad stuff brought in by the tides.

Some of them are up to their necks in it.

This week my husband was given notice on his shop. Over the rent dispute. The reduction in rent that was accepted by the landlord for over two years but which he now claims he knew nothing about. My husband has to be out by Sunday or pay over a hundred thousand dollars.

Which one would you choose?

So we lose a shop we’ve had for eight years as well as our rental bond of over thirty thousand dollars. And apparently there’s nothing legally we can do.

Fortunately, we’ve found another shop three doors up at cheaper rent so that is a big relief. But it’s still a bitter pill to swallow.

On the same day as the eviction notice we got a letter from the agent who handles our house telling us our rent was going up by fifty bucks a week. Yay. I love living in Sydney.

Then my funding fell through for Uni. It had been granted but fell through on a technicality. It’s a very long tale of bureaucratic inflexibility, shattered dreams and maidens in lacy white gowns jumping from castle parapets, but OH MY GOD I am so disappointed.

One of the saddest equations in the world is

no money=no degree

OMG to the max.

And just when my bruises were beginning to heal from all the imaginary steel-capped boots kicking me at every turn my main employer who I do freelance work for (and have done for the past five years) and is responsible for me being able to pay my rent rang me and said her business is going into receivership and she will have no further work for me.

Gurgle gurgle choke.

That was me swallowing the wave from the tide that refuses to shift. It’s full of sludge, the tops from plastic bottles and the bones of baby angels. No, the bones of baby pixies.

I was feeling all sorry for myself until the woman I do freelance work for (who is one of the loveliest people I know) told me she is going to lose her house because she put it up as collateral when she took out a business loan a few years back. And she doesn’t know where she is going to end up. At age 55.

That tide really needs to start shifting. For all of us.

Until then there is only one thing that will cheer me up.


21 thoughts on “Oh, Shifting Tide, Where Art Thou?

  1. Well better to trollololo than to cry, but man that is some heap of bad news in a week and I would swear but not on the internet (I’m swearing under my breath for you Selma). I am so sorry about your degree and I was just thinking about it yesterday – like when were you going to start etc., and the shop and the … I’m sure you can get more freelancing work – I know a couple of people who do quite well out of it (on the internet and off the internet) – trick is to not be too fussy about content (one friend is writing about livestock – cattle – haha) and there is plenty of work writing for companies (as opposed to magazines which are hard to get a foot in). Big hugs to you Selma.


  2. At times like these, I think of the incident in ‘Bravo Two Zero’:

    Andy MacNab and his patrol had been captured by the Iraqis, and very badly treated. They’d been beated, abused and kept in absolutely squalid conditions. They were at their lowest ebb, when one of the soldiers said:

    ‘At least, they can’t make us pregnant!’

    (and, I hope your landlord can’t rent your old shop again!)


  3. On second thoughts, you don’t really need an empty shop three doors away from your business, do you?


  4. If I win the lottery I’m going to email you for your address! I promise!
    I really hope things get better soon Selma, and until I do win, I’m going to send lots of positive thoughts and love your way xxx
    As for Trollololo … they ought to prescribe him! :o)


  5. OMG, am sending you such big hugs. Chin up though, you’ll get through it and you’ll come out on top. Because you’re that kind of person. x


  6. Aw geeze. Really hate to hear all this. Warm hugs, and I’m really rooting for you. Rooting for those tides to change. (And I hope I don’t sound like one of those life-coachy types.) xoxo


  7. Oh dearest, I’m so sorry! You are seriously due a huge break. I hope it comes through with so much fanfare that it blows all your troubles into smithereens and then some.



    I swear all the time although admittedly I do try and restrain myself on blogs because I wouldn’t like to offend anyone but please feel free to let it rip if you wish to. Haha. There are a few options for freelance writing but it is very competitive so I find that part of it quite stressful. I feel something will come up though so I’m not too worried. One thing I am learning as I get older is to push the worrying sideways so it can’t take centre stage. That does seem to help.

    Hahaha. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – you have the best anecdotes!!

    I suspect the landlord will have trouble re-leasing the site. There are vacant shops all over the Sydney CBD. I can only hope….

    Awww. You are such a sweetie. Your kind thoughts really mean a lot to me. Thank you ♥

    Hi VIC:
    It means a lot to me that you should say that because I really want to be regarded as ‘that kind of person.’ That’s important, you know? You are that kind of person too. I really admire your strength.

    Hahaha. I hope I didn’t offend anyone in the life coaching business, but you know what I mean about the kind of speak they use. Your hugs are lovely and warm!!!

    Hi DAOINE:
    Smithereens that turn into stars and flowers. That would be awesome 😀


  9. Oh how sweet things will be once life turns around. But until then, sheesh. It seems a bit world-wide, because this past week has been rather spectacularly pissy here, too.

    My best to your husband and his new shop, may the move prove to be exactly what he needs to prosper and grow.

    And may you find the perfect publisher for your wonderful writing and have that be your main source of income.

    Love you bunches, dear Selma. Tam and I are going to do some kind of cleansing/healing ritual in the near future. If you want, we’ll add your name to the healing “cauldron.”


  10. One thing that is a “constant” in life is change. And the shifts will come, go, come go….it’s hard when the difficulties pile up and seem insurmountable. Things will get better, focus on the good things that are still working and the outcome you want for the things that arent.

    Sending positive vibes you way Sel. Don’t give up. I’m really sorry about all of these challenges and I hope some silver linings show up out of the clouds in the coming week. The sun always shines, remember that. It will shine on you again and soon. Take care, G


  11. Hang on til the shift comes – what a rotten week it’s been for you – there’s much of that ‘stuff’ going around – and for some reason it always hits the nicest of folks. Your writing is admirable, no matter the topic. Good luck to you!!


  12. Hi KAREN:
    I would love it if you would add my name to the healing cauldron. That would be an honour. There does seem to be a lot of negative energy out there at the moment. Not sure what’s going on but I will be glad when it’s over. I love you two loads. You are both awesome XXXX

    The sun will come out again for sure. There is obviously a major shift going on because there does seem to be a lot of turmoil in the air. Thank you for the lovely positive vibes 😀

    Thank you so much for saying that. You are so kind. There is definitely a shift on the way but until then – BATTEN DOWN THE HATCHES!!!!!


  13. Selma I believe that really amazing things are in store for you! Over the past year I would keep hearing – everything happens for a reason and would say really and would try to figure it out because to me it just didn’t make sense. But I look at where I am now and had all these not happened to me I would not be the person I am today! So I know that you will succeed in whatever you do! Sending all my positive vibes I have!


  14. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh my.

    Part of the reason I rarely blog or comment anymore is that I have no words for what I feel. If I had a million dollars I would buy you your own place so there would be no rent to pay. If I lived nearby I would make you soup and bring you flowers and take you out to lunch.

    But all I can do is tell you that I love you dear friend, and that you are headed for some amazing miracles in your life. It’s called the Law of Compensation. Where there is a crappy opposite for all that is good there is also a fantastic opposite for all that is crap. And when life gives you crap, there is an overabundance of goodness that’s given in compensation if we ALLOW it. “A flower has to go through a lot of dirt before it can bloom.” ~ Author Unknown I know that’s small consolation when money is drying up and the rent is being raised. But it doesn’t change the facts. Get through this, and your life is going to skyrocket. Maybe you’ll get better freelance work from someone else that you wouldn’t have sought out as long as you were comfortable. Maybe in the new shop your sales will double because of a better location. Who knows what will happen next. Marianne Williamson said, “On any given day, in any given moment, something could happen that opens up for you an entirely new path. Be still, be alert, and be ready.” I believe that – well, except for the be still part. I don’t know if I could sit still for a microsecond for ANYTHING. lol!

    I read and listen to all the positive gurus too. One thing that HAS worked for me so far is a vision board. I don’t know about vision boards having any mystical properties, but I do know that by creating mine I had to figure out and focus on what I DO want rather than what I didn’t want, and so when opportunities present themselves, I’m ready to accept them. For the most part. Sometimes as something is standing in front of me saying, “Well, I’m here. Did you really want me or not?” I’m shaking internally because…. well, I’m just not that used to life saying, “Go for it.” But I think I can get there. I bet you could too. 😉

    I believe in goodness for YOU. It is coming. Sooner than you think.

    ♥ you.


  15. Hi TBALL:
    You are such a wise woman. Whenever people say to me ‘Everything happens for a reason’ I want to blow them a raspberry because when you’re in the thick of the crappy stuff you just don’t believe that, you know?

    However, I can see that out of the bad comes the good and you can’t have one without the other. I know all this stuff is part of my journey and that I can cope with it so that is something. However, I would like some good stuff to happen now. Are you listening Universe????

    You are my constant inspiration, TBall. I really look up to you XX

    Hi AINE:
    WOW. What an incredible comment. I am overwhelmed. You know that I would do anything in the world to help you too, don’t you? Any time. Any place.

    What you say makes such sense and makes me feel so much better. The Law of Compensation is something I have seen in action although sometimes it seems to need a kickstart. Haha.

    A vision board is such a good idea. Sort of like a concrete example of creative visualisation which I believe works as long as it is realistic because it is all about maintaining focus. I’m going to try the vision board.

    Thank you, Aine. Your comment is invaluable. I ♥ you too.

    Hi MELEAH:
    You are so kind to offer. I just have to ride it out, I’m afraid. Oddly enough, I don’t feel too stressed about it which is unusual for me. I hope you are starting to feel a little better. You have been through such a tough time. And yet you still want to help me. I could cry thinking about what a lovely person you are. Thank you XX


  16. Gosh that’s a lot of bad news, hope things start to get better soon.

    Best wishes
    Crafty green poet


  17. I am so sorry, Selma. I hate it when these things happen, one after the other. Just try to be positive – they will make you strong enough to bounce back!


  18. Hi JULIET:
    It never rains but it pours. But I am coping and moving forward so that’s the main thing. Hope all is well with you!

    In a strange kind of way sometimes a lot of stressful things happening at once help to clear the air. Thank you for your lovely, supportive comment!


  19. What the hell? Selma, this sucks! If I could give you a hug and a million dollars, I would totally do both right this second. I believe you have so many people pulling for you, though, that things will turn out A-OK.


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