Thoughts

When the timing is right.

2018 has been a year of significant change for this Sussex girl in the Midlands, and avid ‘rose tinted spectacle’ wearer.  Looking back as I come to the end of the first week of 2019,  I am amazed at the changes that have occurred, and am immensely proud of the way in which my family and I have adapted and adjusted to those changes.

images

Oh how true I find this quote to be.  Sometimes we yearn for change when we are stuck in a difficult situation, especially when it goes on for a long time, and we can see no light at the end of the tunnel.  For those of you who have been following my blog, you will know that I have been mum and carer to my son Simon for the last 32 years.  As a single mum for 20 of those years I’m sure you can imagine that there were many times when change was needed, if only in the form of a break.  I longed for the wind to blow in a different direction, but as my mum would often say to me,  “keep plodding on Alison”  so I would adjust my sails and continue to float, wondering if the wind would ever blow my way.

This time last year we were busy packing, buying and preparing for a change that I really never thought would happen.  Simon had been given the opportunity to move into supported living accommodation.  He would have his own flat, but there would be on site carers to help him with the daily tasks in life that he finds too challenging, and sometimes too unsafe to cope with alone.  The day he was handed his key is a day that I will never forget, and a day that brought positive change for both of us.  And although Simon will always keep us on our toes with his antics, I guess I could say that it’s a day when the wind definitely blew in a different direction.

This massive, unexpected change has taken some adjusting too.  Over Christmas, Simon was sat chatting with me and said: “Mum, when I spent my first night in Parklands I felt like crying, I felt so alone”.  My heart broke a little as I sat listening to him, but also gave a little jump of pride as I sat looking at my son, who with all his difficulties has stuck with his new situation, however hard he found it at first.  He now has far more support not just from me but from his family as a whole, and our relationship is vastly improved.

Meanwhile, as we were working our way through the Simon Changes there was another rather lovely life change on its way.  My first grandchild Arlo Frank was born on the  21st of July.  A lovely healthy baby boy and thankfully safely delivered at home.  Over the next few days Mum, Dad, and baby Arlo began to work their way through those first tentative days as a new little family.  I have to say that I am so proud of those two newbie parents, and the amazing job they are doing of caring for my grandson and each other.

Well, what a year!  I became an empty nester and a Nonna in the space of a few months. I’m sure those of you reading this who are already grandparents, will know what I mean when I say that the unexpected love I feel for that little boy is incredible.

Just over two years ago I had a bad fall downstairs which my body is still recovering from, but looking back on 2018, a year of major change, I am also proud of myself for what I have achieved during a time of personal difficulty.  I have also learnt to look after myself, to pace myself and to have faith in the adage that ‘time is a great healer’.

We can I’m sure be proactive in making changes in our lives, but sometimes we have to be willing to sail through the storm however long or hard it may be.  We have to learn to adjust our sails and take a day at a time, until one day the wind begins to gently blow our way……….when the ‘timing is right’.

images

 

Now here’s to a great 2019!!

 

 

 

Love Alison x

images

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
Thoughts

The faces of Christmas.

Another Christmas now is past

a Santa sack full of  memories made,

of smiles and laughter, and love expressed

as gifts were shared, and games were played.

20181222_160354

And carols were sung across the world,

and fires were lit, in houses both big, and small

and hearts overflowed, with emotions raw, and new

remembering those who’ve gone, but warmed by those held close.

And as the days of Christmas fall silently behind

hope stirs in our hearts, of what is to come.

A new year ahead, an unwritten page,

an adventure waiting,

a new journey…….yet to be taken.

IMG_1382.JPG

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL X.

 

 

Love Alison xx

images

 

 

 

 

Thoughts

Wrapped in Love.

A few days ago I was having a conversation with one of my grown-up sons about our families’ Christmas traditions.  After talking for a while he said:  “Mum, Christmas is all about the presents”.  For a minute I was a little shocked.  Having been brought up in a religious family, but not having religiously followed that route I felt momentarily sad, and a little guilty that my son held that view.  But then I started thinking about our Christmases as a family over the years, and the joy of our present giving ceremony,  and I realized that my sons’ sentence held a lot more meaning than I had at first thought.

IMG_1779

I always love this time of year when conversations start to turn to what everyone would like.  I have always encouraged my children to either buy or make presents for each other, as well as expecting a present from me or a stocking from Santa.  It’s never been a competition, there has never been any expectation to spend a certain amount, but I love the fact that at this celebratory time of the year they all have a reason to stop for a moment, think about one another, and decide what they can give to show their love.

It made me realize that the presents we give to each other are not just about the gift inside, but about the process of giving.  We take time to think about that special person, we consider their needs and wants, we talk about it, we shop for it, and then we choose the paper and ‘wrap it in love’.  Seeing my Christmas tree surrounded by presents is like seeing all the love our family holds for each other in one place on one day

1908484_10155037601185249_5690651639229051071_n

As a family, we sit down after a scrumptious breakfast and then one by one, each family member gets their presents from under the tree and hands them out to those around them.  We wait patiently until the last person has their present then we all open them together.  A chorus of thanks is heard, quite often accompanied by a little surprise or laughter at what was inside and at times maybe a few tears.   It’s a special time and I always feel a real sense of pride as I see the love they have for each other, expressed in the gifts they are giving.

After a little thought, I’ve come to the conclusion that Christmas might not be all about the presents, but it is definitely about the gift.  The gift of love that is expressed through our traditions, whatever religious beliefs we might hold in our hearts, and the gift of a family,  who having faced the highs and the lows of the year,  take time to wrap each other in love around the Christmas tree.

1476198_10153649622825249_1344277470_n

 

IMG-20171227-WA0001

 

 

 

Love Alison x

images

Thoughts

I Want My Way

While sat on my sofa, comfortably watching tv in the home that I have known and loved for the last 12 years, my thoughts turned to Gary and his family, who over the last few weeks have suffered a loss that I personally find unimaginable.  I have followed Gary’s blog since I joined this lovely WordPress family and have so enjoyed reading about his life’s journey, until a couple of weeks ago when I read his blog and my heart broke.

I am quite sure if you have time to read it that you will understand why.

Thoughts are with you and your family Gary.

Love Alison x

Another Picture On The Wall

I lived in a house, no let me start over. I lived in a home that echoed with 30 years worth of our laughter, sweat, anxiety, celebrations, arguments, prayers, tears, Easter egg hunts, middle of the night conversations, daughters’ boyfriends I did not approve of, memories initiated from old photos, music, and hundreds of birthday candles being blown out just after a personal wish that was never, ever shared but always well contemplated before being chosen.

A fire swept through that home 12 days ago and now those echoes have been turned to ashes and blown miles from Paradise California. Perhaps some will eventually mingle with the echoes of your life and loves.

I want to go home. I want all those things back. I want thousands of people’s sufferings to be reversed. I want to wake up from the nightmare. Just like that toddler throwing a tantrum in the…

View original post 376 more words

Thoughts

Standing on the shoulders of Giants.

While sat watching the service of remembrance at this 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, 100 years to the day since the silent guns marked the end of World War 1, I am filled with gratitude.

8f785f22762033e86a2d7a14c7dc34ec

Gratitude for the Men who left behind families they loved,  giving my family the lives we have today, and gratitude for the women who kept the home fires burning, taking on many of the traditional roles of the men as they were away serving their country.

This picture posted on Facebook a few weeks ago really hit me.  How easy it is to go through our lives day by day, completely forgetting the price that these men paid.  Yet we are living in a better world today because of their sacrifice.

I don’t find war easy to contemplate, I have a mind that is much happier thinking of pleasant things, and struggle to allow myself to think of the realities and horrors of countries at war.  But today I am watching, thinking and remembering as I quietly pay my respect to those ‘Giants on whose shoulders I am standing’.

I believe that we stand on the shoulders of so many giants.  Not just the soldiers who fought for our country in the first and second world wars, but of the many great men and women who have gone before us, who have laid the stones of the pavements on which we walk, and the foundations on which our lives are built

Each new generation is in some way standing on the shoulders of the last, reaping the benefits of the work that was done and the lessons that were learned.

While out in my car this afternoon with the radio on I was reminded of a song by Mike and the Mechanics  ‘The Living Years’ .   The lyrics were written by band members between the time of losing their own fathers and being about to become fathers themselves.  It’s a great song but today the words  ‘Every generation blames the one before’  weighed heavy on my heart, as surely along with the soldiers we are honouring we should be thanking them for what they have sacrificed and achieved in order to make our world a better, safer place.

I leave you with some inspirational quotes that touched me today.

George S. Patton, an American soldier
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.”

G.K. Chesterton, English author
“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.”

Lane Allen Evans, American politician
“Without the brave efforts of all the soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines and their families, this nation, along with our allies around the world, would not stand so boldly, shine so brightly and live so freely.”

 

10176268_10154766134615249_8020505796494919917_n

 

With love and gratitude

Alison x