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All the small things that keep us ticking along, all the big things we forget and all the in-between

Days of heart ache, heartbreak and everything in between.

Life is certainly for living and yet this wonderful thing called life can absorb us all in its glory, sorrow, confusion and joy. But the days go by and we call it living.

It has been quite awhile since I last sent out an email. Where has the time gone ? What have I been doing so much that the days just drift by ? I think it is called living and a lot of working in between.

I have also been doing a lot of doing and let me tell you, doing is my favourite thing.

Doing in the garden - Whilst one of my favourite past times, in my enthusiasm to create a visual canvas of garden colour ,I forget that to maintain such glory is actually hard work. So doing the garden has become a little more than therapy and more like a bit of hard work at the moment. I have created an oasis of peace but a home for weeds and overgrown plants. I must admit thou it is still one of my favourite wastes of time. Spring is about regrowth, new life, new beginnings and that glorious perfume of joy in just living . It wafts through the air like freshly mown grass on a spring afternoon, the faint smell of onions as the neighbours BBQs spring back to life and the sounds of laughter and children playing, not to mention the early morning birdsong as the mornings break earlier. A sure signal to get up and start doing.

Many of us were in some form of lockdown over the last few months and things we once took for granted disappeared before our eyes. This caused a different state of sadness to many as things we had scheduled into our lives became redundant. Birthday parties cancelled, road trips to visit friends cancelled, children playing outside in playgrounds cancelled , all those delightful noises that sit in the background of our lives just disappeared. A strange silence of loneliness and to some fear crept over our living space and some managed better than others. I thought of all those lonely funerals, those cancelled weddings, the big moments in life we like to celebrate, had all become so different now. I also took a mental note to check myself when my own self indulgent needs were stifled - like I really missed pancakes with blueberries in my favourite catch up cafe, drinks and laughter with friends, live music and dancing without a care in the world, even the launch of a book. I missed footy trips with my footy husband - my team went crap this year and I personally blame myself for not being there for them, maybe my loud voice and silent footy prayers helped more than I realised. Simple things, yet routines that are the small things in life - we sure have learnt how to value them.

Last weekend I went for a stroll (post lockdown) along the Barwon Heads river. They say you are never too old to be amazed by things and as I headed along the boardwalk I heard the sound of children, shrill, laughing freely , the sounds of excitement bounced off the water and raced along the sands. I realised then how silent the world had become in lockdown life. The happiness I felt at hearing and seeing this momentous event made me stand still and just take in the moment. The riverbank was full of people enjoying life, simple beautiful life. I had an extra bounce in my day - which coincidently I needed to climb the huge platform of stairs to get back to the road. Did anyone mention lockdown / iso kilos ? Which brings me to heart ache in case you were wondering where that would tie in :)

I have been crossing off all those " to do" " whatever" "one day" things that really are needed to be done so I can continue to tick along. Medical stuff - I know I hear it "you reach a certain age and .blah blah blah meh.." I like to ignore that conversation in many ways - you are only as old as you feel - right ? The thing is when you are busy doing, the body sometimes doesn't want to do. The mind wants to dance but the body is definitely past twerking - you get the picture. I am often reminded of one of my great dance moves ( back in the day ) to Push It, that song just comes on and you know I just have to dance. The mind says yes, the body said no and I ended up doing my back with two weeks off work and weeks of physio and Drs. So lately I have been feeling these not quite right , better not ignore feelings and off to the DRs I went. Now the thing about Drs is you can open a Pandoras box - and that is exactly what I did. So the heart ache is a literal one not the romantic type. Looks like a new change of lifestyle is on the cards , spring/ summer new growth, change and all that shit !! If only I wouldn't get distracted by the small things of living and doing and focus on the big things that enable us to do the small things.

My favourite distractions in life - gardening , puppy sitting and random walks - all the small things:)

And finally heartbreak - There is a unique heartbreak one feels when they lose a parent. I often visit my parents for a chat and as the anniversary of my mums passing rolled around again I placed flowers at her resting place and was overwhelmed by a sense of melancholy. It is funny what we miss and where those memories take us. I was my mums carer in her final years and later live in carer for her final months. We had such a fun, naughty time and it was a privilege and a pleasure to share these moments. Throughout her life like many of us my mum was always "watching her weight" and in her final months she would have chocolate for breakfast, anchovy pizzas laden with cheese whenever she felt like it and indulged in all those things she had once denied herself and started eat whatever she liked whenever she wanted . We would watch trash TV and pass comment like experts. Every afternoon at 4.00 p.m the blinds would be drawn and we would eat dinner whilst watching the Bold & The Beautiful. My mum used to think I was a genius as I told her the upcoming story lines before they happened - let me say it is not that hard lol. I still take the time to do the simple things, those random in between things like watch the Bold & The Beautiful. In those moments I tell the upcoming storylines to no one who cares but I always smile when I do .

May your days be full of moments but never forget the in between :)

Jan xx

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