Monday, 14 May 2012

Still learning to knit (with only one needle…)

Today I popped into a new wool shop in town. It opened a couple of months ago and although I am follow them on Facebook I'd not had the chance to take a look for myself.

The shelves were stacked with beautiful yarn, every colour of the rainbow, soft, silky and fluffy. Wool is becoming a must have commodity.

"I must learn to knit properly!" I exclaimed to my friend as we left.

"You can knit." she scoffed.

Well I can but only the basics and I certainly can't figure out a knitting pattern.

All of which has little to do with this post I wrote almost a year ago except the title.

There are times I re-read my writing from a year ago and think it's rubbish and then there are times when it surprises me, sometimes it's the content, the way I've expressed an idea or the fact that I have moved on from that point.

Sometimes re-reading makes me believe I CAN write and have something to say! 

So often we tell our kids they can do ANYTHING if they put their mind to it, practice and keep trying.

There's a lesson in here somewhere and once again it's perseverance, picking yourself up and carrying on with whatever life throws at you.

I’m knitting with only one needle…

(posted 15th May 2011) 

I’ve figured something out.  I’m now officially out of sync with the rest of my generation.

I’ve always felt odd, a bit different.  In my best and most positive moments I would describe myself as unique!

I shouldn’t be a widow at 43!  Nobody should be.

My peers, my friends have husbands and families to share their lives with.  They do things together. Ups, downs, tears, tantrums, joy and laughter.

We were at the stage of the children growing more independent yet still needing us and we were making those adjustments required to accommodate adolescence.  We had a long way to go but we were learning – together.  A mutual help and support group of two.

OK it’s not like that for everyone.  There are lots of people who are on their own.  Some people never meet that special someone to share their life with.  I was “lucky”, for a while.  For someone who suffered so much anxiety and self-doubt growing up that I would never meet anyone, I counted myself as truly blessed – most of the time.

But now that’s gone.

Nobody should be a widow in their early 40s when there are still jobs to be done.  The children still need raising, the house still needs fixing.  It is a time to plan together for the empty nest.  The years at the end when we get the chance to fly too, satisfied we’ve done our best.

My parents are away on holiday at the moment, a coach trip to Scotland.  Just them and their friends relaxing and having fun.  That should have been us in twenty years time.  Only I always wanted us to return to Tahiti, a romantic getaway, same hotel, our exotic paradise with black sand…. 

I have been enjoying walking round my garden more and more, usually in the morning.  It seems like the thing to do, to admire new growth.  I am going to write some more about that another day.  My last post about the garden was a very popular one, this time I may include some photos!

While taking a wander this morning (still in my dressing gown, because I can!) I thought about not quite fitting in.

To me the word “widow” conjures up an image of an older woman with her family grown.  She is able to visit children, even grandchildren, but still have her own space to do the things she dreams of.  Memories make her smile and some may bring tears but she treasures the time spent together with her husband and the family they created together.

Of course in reality “widows” come in all shapes and sizes.  Some older and some even younger than me.

It’s just at the moment I am quite angry at the unfairness of it all.  It wasn’t even as if I picked at man considerably older than me so I somehow expected this to happen so early.  Six years isn’t a huge age gap.

What I am most frustrated about at the moment is that I still have to raise the boys.  I have no idea what goes on in their heads they are like a different species!  This is a job for two people and I now have to do it alone.

Today’s title is from a Queen song that just happened to shuffle its way onto my iPod …

I’m knitting on only one needle
Unravelling fast it’s true
I’m driving on only three wheels
My dear, how about you?
I’m going slightly mad

You can’t possibly knit on one needle so maybe I need to learn to crochet instead to hold us together.

The other week I did have a flat tyre and you can’t drive like that, maybe I just need to rely on others to keep me balanced.  Or buy a Robin Reliant!

I am having to adjust to so much to do the best I can with what I’ve been given.  Sometimes it is so hard and I feel like the pain will never end.  I still don’t understand why it hurts so much more now than it did in the beginning.  Probably reality hitting home.  There are still moments every day when I stop and realise - Andrew's never coming back!

Sometimes it feels like I am going slightly mad so please bear with me while I acclimatise to my new state.  The road ahead is still very bumpy but you can still follow if you wish…

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

A big decision made last year

It was a whole year ago that the house went on the market, I know because I wrote about it!

Yesterday I wrote something for re-ravelling about the many journeys I make in a day, going to and from school, church, shops, my friends. Those 7 minute trips soon add up and often take an hour out of my day. 

How I wish the boys could walk to school, they would gain so much freedom and I would get back my hour a day...

I long to move, to put the finishing touches to this chapter and begin the next one.

But I keep hearing from various sources that I should live in the present and enjoy the things I've got here and now, not always easy but I'm trying. 

In the end I never posted my whingey post about my seven minute journeys, I've written too much lately about the lows, the things that pull me under.

I need to celebrate just how far I've come, enjoy living in this home Andrew and I created while we are still here and look back with satisfaction at all the decisions I have made...

unravelling edges: Sometimes the big decisions are far easier than th...: Well I’ve done it!   I’ve put the house on the market.   The house Andrew and I lovingly worked on to create our family home. I remember...

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Last year I wrote a poem that didn't rhyme...

A year ago I wrote and posted this "sort of" poem about all the things I should be doing but just don't have the time or inclination to complete. Also about the impossible things on my list that I will never achieve and how the "shoulds" and the "nevers" merge into one...
Here I sit a year on and wonder how much has changed, some days are still a hard slog. I could make the excuse that our wedding anniversary is coming around soon, so it is another difficult time of the year, but it would be an excuse, grief has so many ups and downs not always connected to dates or seasons. Sometimes it has more to do with the weather!

Today, this year, I have nearly reached the bottom of my ironing pile, have written a letter and posted a birthday card and present. I also finished the crossword with youngest son, otherwise I have not been at my most productive. There are lots of things I "should" have done with my free day.

I wonder what I will be doing this time next year? How much my life will have changed or if I will still only be moving in baby steps, unsure and uncertain...

Today I wrote a Poem That Didn't Rhyme... 
(posted 2nd May 2011)
Today I should have cooked a wholesome meal and made sure the boys had at least maybe three portions of fresh fruit and veg.

Today I should have worried about world peace and that particularly unpleasant situation that’s flared up in some far flung corner of the globe.

Today I should have climbed a mountain, swam the entire length of the Amazon and popped to the Antarctic before the ice caps melt.

Today I should have telephoned my friend who’s sick, wrapped and posted a birthday present and replied to that email I got two weeks ago.

Today I should have tidied that cupboard, recycled my cardboard, cut out those coupons and written a shopping list so I don’t forget to buy the toilet rolls again next week.

Today I should have practiced flying on the trapeze and learnt Ophelia’s lines from Hamlet.  I should have baked that cake with icing and a cherry on the top!

Today I remembered to breathe.  I did one load of washing but left the ironing.  I fed the boys pasta for the third day in a row.

Last week I left the dishes in the sink and post unopened on the table.  I forgot to charge my phone and I was only 14p in credit.

The month before I couldn’t do the crossword without you and I woke up in a panic at ten to twelve worried I hadn’t locked the front door.

Six months ago you were here to change the light bulbs and shut the gate at night.  You were someone to impress with my culinary skills.

Today I remembered to breathe.  I spent time talking to the children.   I visited your mum.  I wrote a poem.

Today I made it, somehow I got through.  I shed a tear.  I thought of you.

P.S. I didn’t really feed the boys pasta three days in a row, it just felt like it.

P.P.S. If you are the one who didn’t get the phone call, birthday card or email. Please know that I am thinking of you.

Today I hope that my thought counts! x