Author Archives: Confessions of a Dizzy Blonde

About Confessions of a Dizzy Blonde

Writer. Social Entrepreneur. Help raise kids from the township. Change maker. Foodie. Health freak. Nature lover. Big sister. Creative nutcase. Blogger. Potentially funny.

A beautiful perspective…

I don’t know what you tell yourself when you get upset with yourself, but I tend to call myself an idiot. I did so the other day when I lost my phone. I thought I’d left it at Little Angels while running off to another appointment, or in the car. So, while I realized I wasn’t bringing the phone, I didn’t see a problem. Only, when I returned, the phone was nowhere to be found.

The police. The cellphone store. Hours of arranging stuff. Putting out a reward. Then hearing someone found it, only to say it was with someone else, who said they didn’t have it.

I told myself that I wasn’t going to let someone get me down by keeping my phone. I’m in charge of my moods and all that. Then I told myself the South African police experience was interesting. Yet, by the end of the week I was starting to miss my phone and getting frustrated.

Then, when I was in Hangberg, someone approached me to say they did know who had it. Someone not previously mentioned. Then a long story from different parties about who really found it, who wanted to sell it, who kept it safe ensued. The SIM was missing, so clearly someone tried something, only to realize that iPhones can be locked. (I did consider putting the message “Cock blocked” on the phone, but instead put a number to call and promised a reward. I figured that would be more effective.)

I got my phone back. Yet, this week was a week filled with what seemed like obstacles, as were the last couple of months, so I started beating myself up about it. I could have prevented the phone going missing. I could have done this. I could have done that. I must still be in victim mode to set myself up for this.

Then, after I found the phone and had had some other breakthroughs someone told me, “It’s unusual to get a phone back, but then you’re a good person and good things happen to good people.” Huh. That’s one way of seeing it.

Come to think of it, rather a lot of good things happen to me. I’m just too caught up beating myself up for the bad things to notice. Not that I don’t enjoy the good things. Not that I don’t sing and dance around a lot. I certainly do–if life can be a musical, why not?! Eccentric. Perhaps. The way I like it? Absolutely. However, I still beat myself up all the time. People tell me my life should be a movie and I’m the most interesting person they ever met (that’s the most common thing I’m told). I tell myself I’m a royal F up. And as that’s what I tell msyelf, nothing else seems to penetrate. Until as of late. I’ve had a few moments.

Perspective.

The stories we tell ourselves reflect how we see our life and, thus, how we feel and act. How do you see your life? What stories are you telling yourself?

It’s not what happens to us, but what we make up about what happens to us that control our moods and reactions. It controls our experience. This experience right here called life. This gift. This tremendous thing.

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Whipped cream…

Do you have people in your life that make you feel like a million dollars? Or like a cup of hot chocolate with extra whipped cream and marshmallows?

I do. And I sure hope you do, too.

However, the trick in life is to make yourself feel that way. We all run out of steam some days (or, well, usually all days around four pm) and can do with a pick-me-up. A burst of happy energy. Like a kind word from those lovely people who have sunshine coming out of their behinds.

So what do those people do? Do they compliment us? Do they take us on magical or adventurous experiences? Do they make us sit down and breathe for a while? Take in the moment? Or chase us with a stick to ensure we live our passions? Whatever it is, it’s what we should be doing.

I am all for a cup of coffee when I run out of steam at four pm, but I need something more substantial to keep me going. I need to live my passions, go on magical (and wickedly wild) adventures, compliment myself, breathe in the moment and enjoy this thing called life.

If your life lacks luster…just add whipped cream…
See yourself as others do. For more of my poetry, check Instagram @themagiqueboutique

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Prayer…

A man walked up to me yesterday. A parking attendant at the beach. Told me he knew me.

“You taught me at the drug rehab center some years back,” he said. “You’re Maria.”

We chatted briefly–I asked him if he was still attending classes, but he said they charged now and he couldn’t afford it. It looked to me like he had relapsed. I had the child I raise with me, so I didn’t stay for long to chat–we were at the beach to run about and chase the sunset.

As we made our way back to the car, we met him again. And as I left, he stood staring after me.

This is not the first time, nor the last time this will happen. People know me. People have come up to me to ask me if I can take their children and raise them, if I can hire them, if I can sort out their husband who has taken their child from them, if I could please make way for a foster child, if I can get them off drugs, if I can get someone to help them with a child they raise… And yet, the requests I get are sporadic. The requests Liezl gets are non-stop.

Liezl runs the not-for-profit educare center I’ve been involved with for eight years now. The place where I met the kids I ended up helping to raise. The place that changed my life.

Sometimes, these requests warm my heart. Sometimes they break it.

We’re always fighting. Fighting for funds for a safe house for women. Fighting for funds to look after more children. Fighting for the right to build a larger center. Fighting to get me the right visa so I can stay forever with the kids. Fighting for awareness. Fighting for change. Fighting to help.

Often, we’re fighting for our own survival, too. We’ve been on so many journeys, ups and downs and roundabouts. We’ve made mistakes, we’ve failed people, we’ve cried, we’ve been too broke to mention…

And, today, I was thinking that maybe it’s time to stop fighting and start praying. You cannot help everyone. You cannot sink your own life to the ground trying to do so. But you can pray. You can have faith that things will come right and that you will thrive in the end. And that you will help those who are meant to receive it. You have to let go of the rest. You have to realize that you are not responsible for anyone, but you can become a vessel that helps when there’s a way to do so. And I believe, if you open yourself up to that, then you will indeed become a vessel of good, instead of one that’s constantly fighting the waves on a stormy sea–only just about avoiding becoming a shipwreck.

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Winter…

The earth rose to greet her no matter the season. Today the air smelled of winter. It had that unmistakably clean tinge to it and was cold and crisp like an apple. It was almost as if though you could take a bite and it would crack like the skin of an apple, or a piece of ice. Frost was only a breath away.

Dreams clouded the sky–it was so heavy with them, she just about expected them to fall down and powder the earth with a fine layer of snow. Because in winter, people dreamed. Cooped up in their houses huddling by their fireplaces, they dreamed. They dreamed of long days and summer nights spent out in the wilderness catching fish, or kissing their latest lover, high on the essence of summer. And as people dreamed, the sky got clouded with their desires until they fell down like snow–sprinkling the earth with seeds that would blossom once summer arrived. At least if they were nurtured.

Snow. All she could think of was roses captured in Turkish delight. Smooth like ice. Cold. Dusted with powdered sugar, just as the earth would soon be dusted with snow.

People did not associate roses with winter, but today she felt sure roses were just what she needed and what should go on the menu tomorrow. Some light pink Turkish delight to match the soft grays of the clouded sky. And if combined with something made with mint, it would be cool, too.

Roses were soft and sweet and people needed that on days like these when the grayness of the world threatened to swallow them. Yet, there was an edge to all the gray. A sharpness–a bite in the air that turned your cheeks into roses in their own right. As much as your senses were dulled by the gray color scheme, they were awakened by the cold. It was impossible not to get a thrill when walking briskly in this weather.

So that’s what she did–Violette went for a brisk walk through the sleeping little town. The streets winded around sand colored houses. Walking along those streets, Violette felt comforted knowing that she knew every turn. Every step was familiar to her.

Then she stopped. In front of her was a red parcel. Neatly wrapped and sealed with wax, it stood on the pavement like a stop sign. A tag was attached to the parcel with a piece of twine and suddenly the tag moved with an unexpected gust of wind that seemed to have come out of nowhere. It was a still morning. The morning before frost. The morning before snow. The air was practically heavy with it. Heavy and still.

As the tag moved, Violette took a step closer. The tag was black and her name was written on it in purple. Purple paint. As she leaned down to take a closer look, the scent of violets greeted her nostrils. Spooked she took an involuntary step back. Her grandma had always done that–scented her gifts with violets–but she’d been gone for many years now. Violette ran her bakery. Lived in her house. Cared for her plants and her customers alike. So who was this parcel from and why was it standing in the middle of the pavement?

The sun had only just grazed the sky with that kind of bright yet muted yellow light that signifies a winter morning. It mixed together with the gray to create that perfect winter sky. The fact that it was a Sunday and the sun had just risen explained why no one else had found the package. This was peoples’ day off. A time to sleep and mend old socks and friendships, not a time for getting out of bed at the crack of dawn. Though, admittedly, many people did. They just didn’t set about walking through the village unless they had a very urgent errand. All shops were closed–even her bakery.

Violette felt a shiver move through her. She took a step closer toward the parcel again. This time, she touched it. It felt good. Warm somehow, even though it was cold to the touch.

She turned the tag around.

“My dear Violette, when you receive this I will be long gone, but your dreams will still be alive. Your heart beating in your chest, your keen eyes always studying and learning, and your mind stirring with questions and answers. You’re a seeker, yet someone who is content to stay mostly in one place. You love your home, but would like to see the world for short periods of time. I have no doubt you will undertake many short journeys. Maybe even a grand one, one day. However, in the meantime, I give you this gift. I told Xe to drop it off when passing through town next. He might come see you, he might not. He’s a curious fellow with a brilliant mind, not unlike yours. You’ll enjoy his company if he does pop by. I told him to leave you the gift where you’ll find it. Given it’s Xe, it might be at an unexpected place. I may not be able to hug you, but I will always love you, Gran.”

Violette stared at the tag, that, by now, felt burning hot on her skin. It was a note from her gran from beyond the grave. Tears rose to her eyes. On the darkest day of the year, her gran had given her a gift.

It was a miracle. Only, of course, it wasn’t. It was just her gran thinking ahead and planning a lovely surprise for her. But then miracles are often like that–small things that are exactly what we need.

As of late, Violette had felt restless. Like she had to go some place, only she didn’t know where yet. She was not so patiently waiting for it to reveal itself. The place she was meant to go, that is. And how she was meant to get there also needed to become clear. She knew the day would come when she’d know, but in the meantime, she’d taken to pacing her kitchen at night and drinking way too much lemon balm and mint tea to soothe her restless mind.

Violette scooped up the gift, and turned around to return to the bakery. She couldn’t wait to unwrap the gift and make her Turkish delight and mint…mint caramels, she decided. Some would be crushed and sprinkled over the Turkish delight. Soothing. They’d be soothing. She needed that now. Just as she needed to open the burning hot gift resting in her arms.

This week we’ve been celebrating the winter solstice here in the southernmost tip of Africa. I’ve been listening to First Frost (again), drunk mulled wine, baked apple pie, lit several fires and candles (a candle is currently burning bright next to me and a fire is blazing downstairs), baked french bread, eaten popcorn with chipotle sauce and butter, collected pine cones and chased shy rays of sunshine. As the weekend approached, this came to me. Well snippets of this came to me. Something about Turkish delight, the scent of winter rising from the earth, and dreams snowing from the sky. The rest I penned now. It’s part of my collection of short stories that will, possibly, add up to a book one day. A book, possibly, called The Jester. There’s a lot of possibly in there. You will find the other chapters/stories here.

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Filed under Magical Realism, Winter, Writing

The Superwoman crisis…

Do you ever feel like you’re fighting the snot wars? I do. All the time.

It’s winter in Africa and the little one I raise has had three colds in five weeks. Of course, I’ve had most of those colds too. Single parenthood, toppled with colds and oh, winter holidays. Because crèche here closes for three weeks?! And parents are meant to…pay even more for childcare? During COVID?

So you work from home, while blowing the little one’s nose. Over and over again.

The other night, I had the pleasure of being awoken in the middle of the night and then peed down. Literally. I was peed down. Ever tried to night potty train? Oh yeah, that.

In the middle of the night, I swore. I said a long line of unsuitable words only a Londoner would know. Then, of course, I felt ashamed of myself. So I swore at myself instead.

Some days, I feel like we’re fighting poverty, world hunger, the education crisis (on a micro scale) and a few other things at Little Angels. Some days, I feel like my movies will entertain, enlighten and make the world a better place. Some days, I feel like all the work I do in the personal development field is turning me into the next Dale Carnegie. And some days, I’m fighting the snot wars and learning how not to swear at midnight.

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The incredible dream…

As we get older, heck, even in our twenties, we often realize there are some things we do over and over again. Some of those things are great. We are always on time. We always manage to pay our bills. We always date kind guys. Other times, they aren’t so great. We’re never on time. We only just manage to pay the bills. We always date emotionally unavailable guys. We fuck up in the same way over and over again. It’s our dysfunctional pattern, whatever it may be.

Sometimes, it’s more subtle. We’ve lived in a similar manner for years. What was once exciting has now grown stagnant. It’s no longer putting a smile on our face; no longer fulfilling us.

And change…how do you create it? At times, it seems pretty damn impossible, doesn’t it? How are you going to create something you’ve never had?

There are two ways around this.

The first is structure. If you’ve always been bad at managing accounts, hire an accountant. If you’re bad at exercising, hire a personal trainer. Alternatively, read some books on the topic you want to get better at, then set up a plan. A structure. To stick to the new structure, get an accountability partner.

The second, is to dare to dream. If you’ve never brought in the millions it seems incredible to do so, doesn’t it? Yet your neighbor, has never earned less than 200k a year and, by now, sit on plenty of millions thanks to wise investments. How does your neighbor think? What’s normal to them? What’s a small amount of money to them? What’s a large amount of money to them? For them, not bringing in the millions is as unthinkable as it is for you to bring them in.

When something becomes possible, it suddenly becomes attainable. Not in a foggy dreamlike sort of way, but in a real, practical kind of way. It’s incredible what opportunities come along once you dare to dream up a new possibility. A new way of life. The life of your neighbor.

It’s time to imagine having some fun. Some real life fucking magic. Because it’s possible. Just as if by magic.

You can find my poetry on Insta: @TheMagiqueBoutique

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Alight…

Sometimes a kind of glory lights up a man…

Sometimes it does. Sometimes we stumble upon those events that light us up like firework. Other times we don’t.

Truth be told, life can be hard. So hard. And we’re all looking to achieve different things, walking up staircases that, at times, seem endless. We feel drained. Our muscles need oxygen. We may resort to coping mechanisms ranging from binge watching Netflix to binge drinking alcohol to get through. But that only drains us further.

It’s at those times we need to remember that we don’t have to wait for the magic. The magic is already within us.

As we walk up those steps, we can turn on that magic. The song that makes us dance. The melody that makes us remember something out of this world. The clothes that make us believe we rule. The food that makes our heart sing. The friends who make us smile. The little treats that make our life worth living.

And the funny thing is, once we do that a kind of glory lights us up from within. We start to skip up the steps. And the magic we so craved, but could find nowhere, suddenly returns. Those magical events we thought had deserted us come back in abundance. And so magic comes from within and without.

It’s true what Steinbeck said–that sometimes we encounter people and events that light us up. But it’s also true that we are the light in our own life. And from time to time, we are the light that fuels someone else’s glow. We are the event that sets the night sky on fire.

Yours truly,

Dizzy Blonde

My poetic musings on Insta. @TheMagiqueBoutique

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Awakening…

Sometimes we die. Not literally, but it’s as if our flame burns out. We’re tired. We don’t seem to have enough energy to get excited about anything.

Usually we cause this ourselves. We do this thing whereby we think thoughts that don’t serve us. We obsess about our mortgage payments, or losing our job, or failing our exams, or our daughter’s battle with drugs. Or maybe we obsess about how little our parents love us or how little our partner cares. We get lost in a cloud of despair, or hopelessness. Or maybe not even that, it’s just we waste our energy on entirely the wrong thoughts.

Then, suddenly, we have a good sleep. Or we see a man who makes us smile. Or a friend gives us a good laugh. Or something stirs our passions.

Then, then you feel it coming back. Your body starts to tingle. Your mind starts to sing. You feel desire brewing within you. The desire to do what you love. To live your passions instead of your fears. To think about what you love, instead of what you do not like.

It’s like that first cup of coffee in the morning that makes your eyes pop open and your mind become alert. Suddenly, the air is filled with opportunity. And life, life seems a brilliant journey once more.

This is your life. Your journey. Choose where you put your focus. You can do the exact same thing you’re doing now, but live a completely different reality.

Yours truly,

Dizzy Blonde

Awakening indeed. I write poetry on Insta that you can buy as poetry collages on Etsy.

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Take me for a swirl…

There are things in life that awaken us. Make our soul take a twirl on the dance floor. Make our heart smile. Those things–those glorious things–are sometimes forgotten. A career that was at first fun turns into an all-consuming death trap. Not that it kills us, but it kills the joy in our lives. We get busy. We brush our teeth and put our kids to bed. We get tired. And somewhere we forget to stop to breathe. Not to smell the flowers–most of us stop for long enough to do that from time to time–but to seek out those things that make our soul twinkle with the joy of life. And then, sometimes, we remember. We run into a person. We see something that reminds us of, well, ourselves. Of those particles of ourselves that make up the true fabric of who we are. We stop. And then we start to sway with the music. We remember. We remember what makes our soul dance. 

This is my poetry about the city that has always awakened me. More found on www.instagram.com/themagiqueboutique Can also be bought on Etsy.

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Bruised bottoms…

There’s no fucking backup plan for falling in love. You fall. You stumble down some stairs, land flat on your ass and look up to someone who now appears as a giant before you. All other men, in comparison, ants. They lack the beautiful traits, the significant looks, and the commonalities the other man shares with you. They seem insignificant in comparison.

The thing is, you have to do it. You have to fall. You have to imagine that this man is better than all the rest, even if you know it’s an illusion. Because without that illusion, there are no butterflies. No tingles in your forearms. No longing so painful and so sweet a mere text messages makes you erupt in euphoria.

You want those feelings.

At the same time, of course, you need to be practical. This man, if any good, will end up your husband. He has to be able to express what he needs, while still thinking you’re some thinly veiled goddess. He has to be able to say the hard stuff and praise–generously–the good stuff. He needs to be able to build a reality with you where you are both happy. He will have to read the books you recommend about marriage, and go on a trip to Beijing even though he doesn’t want to. He has to get up at five on days you have a fever, to make sure you get breakfast in bed. And just like that, you have to do the same for him. You have to do things you’d never imagined just to learn to understand and aid this giant of a man. And that’s when it really helps to think he is a giant compared to other men. It helps to have butterflies in your belly. It helps to be seduced by his mind and body, heart and soul. It’s the fuel that will take you through.

But all of that can only last–the endorphin high–if the hard work is done.

And that’s why many people get off of the floor, dust their bottoms, and start climbing the stairs again. Because they aren’t willing to work. To learn. To compromise. Instead, the giant becomes a giant obstacle, hindering them on their path. Or the giant is uncompromising; unwilling to move.

Thankfully, for all of us, we’ve learned that falling and getting up isn’t too hard. Not when you’re on round twenty-five, or so. You’ve learned you can climb stairs, even in stilettos. You’ve learned you’re OK, even when you’re bruised.

And if nothing else, there’s coffee. Dark, divine, delicious coffee. Laden with just the right amount of honey to sweeten it and cream to tame the darkness. That coffee, served at an ungodly hour will kickstart you once more. Your internal engine humming.

There’s also tea. Drunk together with friends, who pat you on the back and give you another cookie. A sugar rush. Something to bring you back to the moment and forget your temporary insanity when you thought a mere man a giant.

Tea brings new adventures as souls set out on journeys together; discover new thoughts; decide to start up businesses; or go on spa weekends in the country. Tea is the glue that keeps souls together. And we all know when it’s time to put on the kettle and bake the scones.

Then, there’s wine and champagne when we are in need of a good giggle–bubbles bursting on our tongue and tickling our throat. Landing in our belly like butterflies. And as our mind ascends to a pink cloud, we look around and start seeing men. Maybe not giants, but men with potential at least. Men who wink at us and tell us we’re OK, even with our bruised bottoms. Men who’d be happy for us to fall for them–men who might even catch us as we stumble down the stairs on a giddy high. Men who would, potentially, consider doing the hard work. The push-ups that will give them the muscle that make us smile and lick our lips. The men willing to go the extra mile. If, of course, we do the same.

One day, you’ll meet a man who will remain a giant. Till that day, dust yourself up and brew some coffee–head to a friend for tea and go out for wine. Life. Feel it. Brewing inside of you until it bursts out in cascades of stars. Be a star. Glitter. Glimmer. Indulge in every moment. Drink the morning dew. Recognize it for the nectar that it is. Turn up the music and dance around the kitchen. Look out over the rooftops of Paris as many times as you need to get inspired. Run so fast you fall over and laugh uncontrollably with a runner’s high. Drive along the PCH till you feel freedom pump around your blood. Howl at a full moon. Set yourself free–scream with joy and jump in puddles–and discover the treasure right there at your doorstep. Especially if you’re in isolation–make sure that doorstep fucking shines.

At eight o’clock I call you

Waiting to hear your voice

Like a kid waiting for Santa 

Like a desperate woman pouring a glass of wine

Oh even if you don’t pick up

And I’m sent to voice mail

I get to hear that dark grumble

That always makes me stumble

Right into your arms

Where I escape the day’s harms

You’re no hero

No man in shining armor

A tad bruised 

A tad battered

Scarred enough to be a man 

Lost enough to be human

But with an inner compass

Looking for the light 

At eight o’clock I call you

Oh even if you don’t pick up

And I’m sent to voice mail

I get to hear that dark grumble

That always makes me stumble

Right into your arms

Where I escape the day’s harms

The truth is

I learned to walk long ago

Both in high heels and bare feet

Even with sneakers in obstacle courses

And even though I sometimes stumble 

I know that I’ll win the race

Celebrate another day ending

And the next’s beginning

And yet at eight o’clock I call you

Oh even if you don’t pick up

And I’m sent to voice mail

I get to hear that dark grumble

That always makes me stumble

Right into your arms

Where I escape the day’s harms

I can walk 

I can run 

I can pick myself up when I stumble 

I’m fine

I’m free

I’ll bleed and I’ll heal

I’ll laugh and I’ll move forward 

I’ll love and live and pirouette

Around the next corner

For yet another adventure

But at eight o’clock I call you

Oh even if you don’t pick up

And I’m sent to voice mail

I get to hear that dark grumble

That always makes me stumble

Right into your arms

Where I enjoy another 

Of life’s treasures

Yours truly,

Dizzy Blonde aka Maria Montgomery and yes, the copyright is all mine and all that.

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Filed under confessions, diary, Happiness, Insights, Inspiration, Inspirational, Love, Love-life, Motivation, Musings, Poem, poetry, Relationship, relationships