This would have to be one of the longest posts I’ve ever written but I gotta tell you – I LOVE it 🙂
The words just flowed today so go and grab a cup of coffee or glass of wine depending on what time it is and come and join me on this journey of discovery. I can wait 🙂
I woke up this morning and decided that today had to be all about me. I have been so snowed under with responsibilities and demands that it had really started to do my head in. I realised that I needed to take some time out and work through what has been going on in my head lately and I actually permitted myself to take this time without feeling selfish.
(And THAT in itself is a huge step of progress right there!)
Recently, there have been a huge array of emotions that are seemingly unconnected to each other and I needed to stop and try to piece this jigsaw puzzle of confusion together once and for all.
I dropped Lucas at pre-school and jumped into my car and drove until I felt that I had reached the perfect spot. I landed in a small country town roughly and hours drive away. We are very fortunate to live where we do because it really doesn’t take too long before you’re in the countryside enjoying the fresh air and mingling with small town folk who always make you feel welcome.
So here I sit holed up in a gorgeous little cafe with a strong coffee, a HUGE piece of gluten-free cake and my iPad, notepad and pen. The warm winter sun is coming through the window onto my back and the fire crackling in the fireplace is completing the ambiance.
(OK….I lied about the fire but I really am in absolute heaven you could say!)
Things have been really rough lately in that I have honestly believed that I have been cruising along nicely but it turns out that this has all been surface emotions. I had been fooling myself again.
Because that awful little terror called grief really is a sneaky little bugger. He lies in wait for sometimes quite a sizable amount of time lulling you into a false sense of security and then one day, he creeps up on you and whacks you over the head when you least expect it. It has been so forceful in its attack on me this time, that it has brought me to my knees dramatically screaming in agony and wondering how on earth I didn’t see it coming!
Grief is no respecter of times or places and is not subject to the unspoken rules of political correctness. It operates according to its own schedule.
Most of my grief stems from the loss of my Dad to cancer 3 years ago and I have been remembering a lot of wonderful things about him this week. Strangely enough – thinking about him usually has the reverse effect in that it brings me smiles and laughs and keeps my wonderful memories alive.
It doesn’t weigh me down because I’m choosing to remember the good times and not focus on the loss. It’s really cathartic for me. But with those joyful thoughts – the sad thoughts also inevitably creep in and they are what drag me down and threaten to wipe me out.
My dad was a really gentle soul. He was a hugger, an encourager and a comforter. He was laid back without being lazy, peace-loving without being wimpy and authoritative without being demanding or unreasonable.
I miss his laugh, his silly jokes and his amazing wealth of knowledge. This man knew everything about everything. He was an asset to any trivia team and had a memory to rival any elephant!
He was particularly special in that he would often go out of his way to learn all about something that interested one of his friends so that he had something to talk with them about at his meeting.
When Mr Patient and I got married – he threw himself into learning all about Mr P’s interests and did the same thing with my sister and her hubby. He loved God passionately and because of his earthly example to me of what a father is – I have found it easy to trust in God as my heavenly father.
Dad always joked that he should write a book because “one day I won’t be around anymore and I want you kids to know where you came from and what I consider to be the important lessons in life.”
But as you all know – “one day” came a lot sooner than any of us could have anticipated.
Dad used to be the best storyteller I knew. His facial expressions and mannerisms helped illustrate the tale and brought a real authenticity to it. He often told us stories of his youth and can I just say – he was a ratbag at times!
Dad holding me when I was about 12 months old
He would tell us of all the pranks that they used to pull on the girls at school, the numerous times that he was given the cane for mischief and the times that they narrowly escaped the law!
He regularly reflected on his childhood and remembers that his mother often told the tale of her standing in the street talking to friends when Dad climbed down out of his pram and took the wheels off so he could figure out how it worked!
Oh how much my boys are like their Granddad!
Dad ended up working with his hands in his chosen vocation and was also the best handyman around. There was nothing my Dad wouldn’t have a go at and his can-do attitude was contagious.
Dad also wanted to write down all the stories of his childhood and youth so that my sister and I could have a record of where we came from and what life was like back in his day.
When Ella was in grade 2, she did a speech at school that was all about the differences between when her granddad’s generation went to school and now. Ella would ring him up to pick his brain and hung on his every word. Of course Dad got a real kick out of being asked to share his story and was as proud as punch that she wanted to know!
And Ella actually ended up winning that year’s speeches coming first out of her whole entire grade! It completely made his day,
Dad always told me that he wanted me to write, he was always encouraging me and loved the silly little poems that I would often churn out as a child. He told me that I had the gift of the gab like him (no doubting that!) and that I should share my life story with my kids.
So I guess this brings me to the point of this post.
This particular post has been written in honour of my Dad but also because I want to continue the legacy that he never got to see to completion. I want this blog to be that book for MY children that Dad never got to write.
I want MY kids to be able to read back on this in ten years time and see how much I love and adore them and to show them just how far they have come.
And if something were to happen to me and I was to join Dad in heaven prematurely – I want to leave this legacy for my children.
I have told my daughter and husband my blog log in and password and if that day should ever come…..I want them to continue writing this for their children and for their grandchildren and so on.
I want this blog to become a family tradition, a record of highs and lows and successes and failures. I want my descendants to know that they do matter and that their lives are full of purpose and that their dreams are achievable.
I want them to be the best that they can be and I want them to know that above all else – they are loved.
And on that note – I think it’s time to go and get a coffee refill.
I’ll leave you with some photos that I took on my phone of the beautiful Australian countryside.
I truly found peace out there today , I hope you all enjoy your evenings or your days wherever you are in the world.
This pic should give my "real life" friends an idea of which direction I drove in today 🙂