When a bad day needs to be a good day

I am pretty open in this blog. I was open in my book.  But there is still a gap between openness and honesty. I share a lot, but I don’t share it all, and nor should I.   (Although sometimes I am so tempted to just put it all out there because I would love to stop having to protect people sometimes).  There is truth in my story that would make a great blog but for now I will keep it hidden. But I do write about my grief, and anger, and joy and struggles.  But I’ve noticed I’m a bit like an American movie adaptation – I always have to write in a happy ending. Even the down posts need to be uplifted at the end.

Part of this is my own positivity – and I am grateful every fucking day this last year that my over-riding belief system is one where I am responsible for my own happiness, and that I am capable of making things happen. Because there have been days this last year, and the last few years when that belief system has been tested to the limit.   Where I am literally pushed to the edge of the cliff and it is only my own sheer will power that keeps me clinging on by my fingertips.  (That, and my friends, Butler’s Salt truffles and a sparkling glass of Bombay Sapphire).

I fight to find my own voice in the crowded shouts of self-doubt and attacks from others, but I have found that amidst all the trauma of the last few years my voice has got stronger and stronger.  I have always tried to be kind. I have always strived to be fair. I have always chosen to be forgiving.  Those are the precious gifts my mum taught me. And I’m not going to be cute about it.. it has taken strength to be that way.   It has taken that will that I somehow have, that positivity, that self-belief, to keep those traits to the forefront when the days have been shit and people have hurt me. I am closing the gap between openness and honesty in this blog, but I am also determined to keep my own voice steady.   There are people and circumstances that will try to blow me over, that will try to undermine my strengths because it is my kindness and fairness and forgiveness that reflect back their lack of these things like a MirrorMirror on the Wall. They cannot stand my strength and so they try to weaken me. But I will not be weakened.  Not by you, not by this life.  I care less and less now about being seen as perfect, about protecting others, about being the good girl.  I care more and more about being open and honest about the shit days that don’t have an uplift at the end.

I seem to quote Nora Ephron a lot, but she speaks to me. I admire her strength of voice, her ‘I don’t care, I’ll say it how it is’ attitude, her self-belief in being honest. So here is my uplift at the end of this post. But it is more of a rally cry. It is who I am. Some days there is no uplift, just the loneliness and sadness and anger of a bad day. And that is life. But my saving grace, my life-saving trait, my fucking armour, is that I can always bring my own uplift to the table.


About Grin & Tonic by Alana Kirk

Bouncing into middle age armed with courage, ambition and a pair of tweezers (chin hairs for anyone over the age of 45 reading this) I am a writer with a mission: to redefine this midway point in my life when the last thing I want to do is hang up my high heels and become invisible. This is the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end. A single mum to 3 fabulous girls, an author, and a fundraising consultant, both ends of my candle are on fire. As I enter this new stage of my life, I want to explore what it means for 'mid-aged' women today, who were promised they could have it all, ended up doing it all, and just do not identify with the traditional image of middle age.
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2 Responses to When a bad day needs to be a good day

  1. Cathy says:

    Right there with you, Alana. I am definitely cast as the bad guy in others’ versions of our stories together. Generally, it’s a matter of my refusing to be dragged down by them and maintaining my self-worth and natural emotional buoyancy. More power to you to honor yourself!


  2. I love Nora Ephron 🙂


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