I decided to look back into my journal for last year and found it quite enlightening. I had begun the year with such optimism. Having found a lovely little journal in a bookshop, in the western town where I was scheduled as a keynote speaker that evening, I immediately sat down to begin a bright new year.
My handwriting was neat and contents exuded enthusiasm from every line. My book, Sizzling at Seventy, was almost finished, I was undertaking a number of projects and speaking engagements. I was on fire!
What a difference a day can make. One morning early in May everything changed. That was the day that Mick discovered a huge lump in his groin and the next eight months became a nightmare as I watched my lovely husband turn into someone I no longer knew. Our loving relationship shattered as brain tumours were found and, combined with steroids, his personality completely changed – at least towards me.
I have mentioned before that I had never lost anybody I had really loved before and combined with some of the pressures that were brought about by exterior factors. There were others dealing with grief in their own way and matters that had been mismanaged due to my being originally unaware that Mick was trying to deal with his usual financial chores whilst his brain was waging war in his head.
Whilst I gave of myself 100% to his care, my own mind and body were compromised and now, almost six months after his death, I am dipping my toe into the waters of normalcy! It is time for me to decide if I want to keep living in the story of my pain, or practice what I preach and become a better observer of what has been happening to me. How easy it is to become stuck in our pain and I am determined that this can no longer define me. As I heard someone say recently – “The me is always changing”- and whilst there must be a time of grieving which may transition to a form of sadness, it cannot forever define the “me” of today.
It is important for me to take stock of where I see my future. It is very clear – I see the road map shining brightly ahead of me and I am beginning to feel a prickle of excitement that I am on the brink of something wonderful.
My daughter told me wisely that the tide has to go all the way out and I was beginning to wonder when that outward tide was going to cease – but it has and I am being swept back on the inward tide with a freshness and wonder.
T.S. Eliot eloquently expressed what I am trying to say
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Doors are at last beginning to open but it is up to me to make it happen – one step at a time.
I have an interview on a national USA radio next Tuesday, my book is to be showcased at the International Book Fair in Toronto in June and I am speaking and doing a workshop in May for the Healthy Wealthy and Wise series at the Gold Coast Convention Centre, also speaking at the new library in Helensvale – just a beginning but very significant. Meanwhile I am creating a much better product for the Thai market. It has been a mutual benefit for them and for me to have this time to focus.
Now my toe is in the water it is time to create my new story and plunge right in!