I didn’t sleep that well, takes me a while to get used to my camp mat again (it always seems to be deflating). 3 nights were not enough. I headed back down to the creek, washed, ate breakfast, filled my water bottles and hung out with the birdies long enough for some scrub wrens and rosellas to come really close. Juvenile crimson rosellas, with their plumage all scraggly and changing, seem to have been following me for at least a year now and I don’t understand it, clearly. Time to grow up maybe? (I think I have a little since then. They’re now, far more often, crimson red). I packed up camp and set off.
The first part of the walk, again, was way too pretty to be thinking about things. I started off back down the service road then took a left onto the track towards Mollison’s Galleries. It was the least visible track I’d ever walked along solo, visible enough though. I made a little, confusing creek crossing, found my bearings and continued on. A couple of hours into my walk, negative thoughts started creeping into my head. It sucked. I was like; “am I really so much of a crazy person that I can’t even enjoy this perfect weather, perfect place, perfect time?!” I tried very hard to push them away. Not possible. I was given, probably not, my first lesson out there but it was a big one. One I already thought I had learnt but now realise I only thought I had and got a reiteration on the lesson that understanding and knowing are NOT one and the same. I can’t push things away no matter how hard I try and no matter how minute they seem… Well I can continue to if I don’t want to do what’s best for me. It sunk into me then, became a part of who I am and a lot of negative thoughts came up but I welcomed them. When I finally figured out that my surroundings were bringing all this stuff to the fore, I let down my defences and I think was brutally honest with myself. One example being: There was a person I knew when I was in school that I’ve always kind of had an issue with and not for any obvious reason. They weren’t the kindest person in the world but I know people far less nice than her. I hadn’t really thought about it for years and I was so confused as to why she, of all people, had popped into my head. I suppose she had every once in a while over the years, almost always in relation to something negative. I mulled it over for a while then actually spoke the words out of my mouth. “Am I jealous of her?” No that wasn’t it, (far too obvious). What it was is that I saw such potential in her, she was beautiful, smart and popular. If she had her shit together she could do something really special, maybe and hopefully she has by now, I have no idea but I realised all of a sudden what part of myself I saw reflected in her and it was that unrealised potential. As that realisation emerged, my negativity towards her completely dissolved. It’s hard for me to accept some things. Not hard-difficult but I have trouble with it, it feels very uncomfortable. I can tell I’m getting to the sour spot when I start feeling all uneasy in my shoulders and my heart starts pounding. My body’s defence mechanisms kick in and my mind wants to run for the hills. I am finally getting to a point where I recognise that feeling straight away and so push through it, in a way I find it rewarding, it’s like a little part inside of me dies but somehow, each time it happens, I feel more alive.
I want to be as connected as possible to my unconscious mind, it’s still a giant mystery to me but it seems to now be taking over in a way that’s more beneficial than previously. I definitely had a complete meltdown about 3 days ago and got reminded again, I have a LONG way to go. I mentioned the word “dysfunction” in my first blog post and I just want to clarify what I mean by that. I don’t mean it in a negative way, that’s just the term I use to describe my unhealthy behaviours because it works for me. No-one is immune to dysfunction, it’s a part of being a human being, I believe and my mental illness in no way defines me. I find it hard to justify having strong opinions, when I only have my life and my perspective’s view of things. I feel like it’s really important to be open to hearing others’ views and opinions about things I’ve not experienced but they have. I do believe I come from a rare perspective, in ways, having experienced a lot of difficulty and traumatic times but also always knowing and understanding what unconditional love is and what it feels like to be supported. I have to remind myself, a lot, that just because it’s my perspective, that doesn’t make it right. I think my judgment on things is becoming more accurate as time goes on but I have still got a hell of a lot to work on. It’s incredibly liberating to have the space, the resources and the time to be able to do so.
I find it difficult to know whether I am being completely honest with myself or not but I’m thankful to be in a place now where I’m secure enough to, at least, question myself. A massive difference I can articulate, between before I knew and now, is that I catch myself trying to make assumptions. I used to let my mind run wild and talk myself into things, justify or explain my behaviours to myself with my thoughts, make exceptions and allowances for myself and everyone else. That used to be my whole existence. Something about being in the bush and having it to reflect off forces me to be honest. I almost felt that honesty and connection leave me as I left the park. I know it’s retainable but I wish it was always so easily accessible. Maybe one day it will be.
Anyway, I got to Mollison’s Galleries and there was a Dad with his two young sons exploring. It made me happy to see. The walk back was pretty cool with all the wildflowers, alpine forest and perdy views. I want to go back again at some point, so left a few lookouts for next time. The kookaburras chimed in again as I was leaving the trees and the jezebel butterflies that made me decide to go to Mount Buffalo in the first place met me back at my car, validating the whole thing. A couple of weeks before my trip, a friend, from overseas, came to visit me at my parent’s home (where I’m living) on the Mornington Peninsula. I took him to Point Nepean National Park, the weather was spectacular. I walk out of the house almost everyday, through hundreds of butterflies as I do my lap with the pups and try so often to get a snap. I can’t think of a time when it’s happened. But on this day at Point Nepean, this red spotted jezebel decided to stay still, not for a small amount of time, it let us get so close, it stayed there and didn’t move, not even after we’d finished. I have starred a whole heap of places on google maps that I want to visit in the future and for some reason the one on Mount Buffalo caught my eye so I searched it. The first thing I saw was that same angle of that same butterfly and I instantly made up my mind or it was made up for me.
I camped that night and the next at Lake Catani.