So, hello, its been a very long time since I last posted on this blog, I believe it was October 2020 and, as with all things you do when you take a long break from them, there’s a tendency to feel a little akward when you start back at them. So forgive me as I try to find my writing voice again and excuse any writing stammers or nonsensical streams of thought. I am rusty and need to oil the volcabulary, dust of the little grey cells and fall in love with my keyboard again.
It has been a strange period of time for all of us, life has been challenging to say the least and the best laid plans have had to be amended or even shelved as we have had to adapt to a different way of living. Hopefully we are returning to a kind of normalcy that at least allows us to get out and about again and meet up with family and friends and long may this last. I have learnt many things about myself during this pandemic upheaval, some good and some bad, but the one thing that stands out to me is the importance of family, both on a sibling level and a parental level.
On a parental level, not being able to hug your own children when you see them, or sit close to them when you are with them (two metres and all that) has been totally weird, though necessary, I understand that. I am a person who likes contact, tactile I believe it’s known as. During the early part of the pandemic when I went to see my children (in line with all government regualtions I may add) and would stand in the garden and speak to them through a window, it wasn’t great but at least I could see them in person, see them smile, hear them laugh, cocoon myself in their voices until the next visit. But no hugging, no physical contact, I found that hard, particularily when one of them was ill and all you wanted to do was hug them or sit with them and hold them close to you. That was odd, difficult and the total opposite of how I saw parenting. Nothing, and I mean nothing, has given me greater joy since the end of the lockdown then being able to hug my children once again. They are my life blood, my joy, my grounding in a hectic world and they infuse me with such love and such a tremendous sense of well being that they make me believe that the impossible is possible. They are my life drug of choice and to them I am truly grateful.
The above picture was taken near Barnstaple, scene of a family wedding, the first mass meet up of family since the lifting of lockdown. It was a terrific day, filled with laughter, alcohol, though sadly not for me, (but that’s another story involving ridiculous taxi prices!) music, dancing, conversation, an occassion of supreme generational memory making. I have two sisters and one brother and it was so good to be together again, to hug each other (it’s a theme) and revel in close conversation unhinded by masks or measurements. I have at times drifted apart from my family, been distant whilst dealing with my own issues of who I was, but they have always been there for me quietly in the background if needed. In times of trouble they have bailed me out, kept me going, never judging and astonishingly welcoming in a way I couldn’t have believed when I finally began my journey of transition. I can never re-pay what they have given me because it went way beyond the material world, but they gave me hope, a sense of a better world coming and the undying belief that I would one day get there. To them, my sisters and brother, I am aslo very grateful.
It’s a short post, but I wanted to get out there what I am grateful for. I bitch and moan a lot at times (and I will be back there at some point because there is much to bitch and moan about!) and have forgotten the art of gratitude, of simply giving thanks for what I actually have. My children and my brother and sisters have helped me achieve balance in a world I feel at times has gone crazy. They are my comfort blanket on bad days and the energizers of my dreams and hopes on good days. I am grateful for their presence in my life.
Until the next post, take care of yourselves.
Love and hugs,