We are all on a journey, whether we like it or not, so we had better learn to like it.
Even love it.
But a lot of people never do. They think it’s their life’s work to hate and detest every single minute of it, ruining all the possible good stuff in the process. I suddenly realised I was fast becoming one of them, the signs were all there. Increased depression, lack of committed concentration and the most important one, the inability to relax and enjoy what I did have.
I really had to do something about it.
How can you get to be seventy- three years old before you have such an epiphany?
I remember reading (and thoroughly enjoying) Valerie Poore’s book ‘Watery Ways’ about her life on a Dutch barge, and how it made me stop and think about everything I used to love about living.
Despite how hard my life sometimes was there were some of those simple moments mixed in there. You know the ones, where you feel ‘right’.
It seems a long time since I felt like that, even for a second. However, I came close this morning.
I always used to read for a while in the mornings those days, (gives my old brain a chance to get going – before I insist that the body follows suit. These days I write, but the effect is the same.
For a blissful hour, I walked with Val in Rotterdam as she looked for a suitable barge to make her home and it was wonderful. I love water of any kind, rivers, canals and the sea, and I always wanted to live on a houseboat. The closest I ever came was a holiday on the Norfolk Broads. This story, Lazy Days is currently with our beta readers!
Two glorious weeks with the family on a large uncooperative boat that never seemed to want to go where you wanted it to, but I loved every minute.
I have discovered that when most of us look back at our lives, you only remember the good stuff in small bits and pieces. That’s what brought on my epiphany this morning.
I suddenly realised that I was guilty of trying much too hard, figuring that ‘more effort – better results. But trying to force something to happen just will not work, not even with the best will in the world. (and mine is getting pretty worn out nowadays!)
So, and I have said most of this before I know, I will stop frantically searching and studying for that one magic ingredient that will bring some measure of success – and more importantly, I will stop worrying about it.
I vow to concentrate on what I know I can do (and enjoy), reading, writing, walking when the knees allow, and some craftwork, for the sake of my soul. And if I can get on a boat now and then, that would be my idea of heaven…
Best wishes and see you next week…