One of the toughest life challenges just happened to me, it’s one heck of a teacher!
Last week I talked about the ‘Still Dancing’ event for Alzheimer’s that I volunteer at, and as a result, I got a message from the lovely Katie from Alfreton Nursery School.
They invite residents from the nearby elderly residential home to regular tea dances where they sing and dance together.
Katie’s 96 year old Grandma joins them and she lights up every time.
The children also pop across to the home every week and spend time with the residents.
Katie’s message filled me with joy and hope, I hope you feel it too.
The Last Dance
A week last Tuesday on July 2nd, my Dad danced his last waltz with that dastardly dance partner; Alzheimer’s. My mum, my brother and I were with him and he went peacefully to the sound of a Hot Chocolate tune from his playlist.
Birth and death are the most natural things in our existence. And yet our reaction to death can smack us up the back of the head like a complete surprise.
Every day is different. I have to allow the flow of tears and give myself permission slow down a little when my brain can’t operate at a normal pace.
Then there are days when I feel calm and peaceful with no distress and I have to remind myself it’s not disrespectful to not be sad all the time.
It’s ok to not be ok.
It’s also ok to be ok.
Mysteries of the Universe
Sorry the picture below isn’t very clear but I really wanted you to see it. My mum has a quote-a-day-calendar and just had to send me this photo from the very day he left, synchronicity is fascinating!
In case you can’t read it, here’s what Eleanor Roosevelt says:
“You have to accept whatever comes and the only important thing is that you meet it with courage and the best you have to give”
Every life challenge can teach or remind us of something really important. It can help us (re)gain perspective on what really matters and is an opportunity to release and forgive the stuff that, in the end, doesn’t serve anyone.
It’s a time when we can wake-up and decide to do something different, or do more of one thing, less of another.
I’m not setting myself a bucket list or a punishing to-do list. I have one thing that has been shining out in these last few days really strongly – to spend more time with lovely people having lovely chats.
Life is such that we might intend to do enjoyable things but it’s the ‘urgent and important’ things that keep jumping up the list.
I’m going to book in ‘lovely chats’ as my new urgent and important. After all, if those human connections that make us laugh, smile, cry and share love, aren’t urgent and important, what’s the actual point?
A brighter day
I hope my news hasn’t dampened your day. My intention was to remind you, and remind myself, that loss and pain in life are inevitable. Staying stuck there is not. Let’s all decide to listen to our hearts and soothe the pain. Let’s also listen to our hearts and do what lights us up.
Let’s decide to have a brighter day.
It doesn’t mean going round like an hysterical clown or pretending everything is ok when it’s not, it’s just about saying “Today can be a little brighter than yesterday”.
Acceptance, Forgiveness and Perspective
I knew that today I HAD to do some yoga before starting my day. I knew for sure it would help me have a brighter day. And the yoga session in the 30 day series I’m following on YouTube mentioned three words above.
Just what I needed to hear. It’s so helpful when the universe conspires to support you 😉
Whatever you’re dealing with in your life right now, there will be things you can control, tackle and sort.
And then there’s the other stuff that you have no control over whatsoever!
For that we need the three words above:
Accept what is
Forgive yourself and others
Regain Perspective of what really matters
Another quirk of fate came the very next day with July 3rd’s quotation, having spent July 2nd with my mum and her asking “What on earth do I do now? I have no purpose if I’m not caring for your dad”…
“Birds sing after a storm, why shouldn’t people feel as free to delight in whatever remains to them?” Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. Spooky timing, eh?
What remains to you?
You have suffered loss in one way or another, but what remains?
What are you going to do with this one crazy, relatively short and wonderful life?
I’ll leave you with this one last thing; We pondered for a moment about whether to play that same Hot Chocolate tune at dad’s funeral. Only for a moment though, before deciding ‘You sexy thing’ was probably not quite ‘the’ thing in the circumstances lol!
I want to send you all my love, (you sexy thing, you) wrapped up in all that I know about how to feel better and sealed with permission to look after your one, precious self,
Until next week, take good care,