And now a triangle
Monday 17 September 2018
Bathed in the colour purple, a sense of satin, soft and billowing, comforting, surrounding me, I float to the surface, emerging from a deep, nourishing sleep.
It’s morning, it’s raining, it’s Saturday.
I am saturating in quietness, reveling in the silence, the girls are asleep.
I can hear the sound of the nearby burn, bubbling, not rushing and the rain on the trees, not tarmac.
There is an occasional passing car but apart from that, I hear only rain, gentle, constant and a slow breeze greets me with waves of fresh, earthy morning, brushing my face and it smells good.
I’m quite glad that it’s raining, it allows space to breathe and take stock of this next step of our journey.
We’ve arrived and it feels exciting.
I feel lighter, not worried, we have taken the next step of our journey, and for us it’s all about little steps.
It’s been sadder than I anticipated or even imagined, to say my goodbyes.
I can’t say goodbye, it’s more of a “See you soon,” my heart can’t tolerate it, I hadn’t realised how much we are loved and appreciated.
Now that the time has arrived and we’ve made our change, the magnitude of what we have been through overwhelms; I choke up.
We’ve lost our love and our life, the entity that completed our square and we are now a triangle, sometimes obtuse, occasionally equilateral but mostly isosceles, always with one side out of balance.
We’ve packed, cleared, shifted, recycled, and moved belongings from one room to the next, for weeks, months, three years and four days. The unearthing of memories has been overwhelming at times. The endless photographs of us; happy, fun loving, cheerful, loving life and growing; a happy, complete family, navigating life without regard for the future are a painful treasure but also a reminder that we can and we will, again.
We’re nursing scars, my beautiful girls are subconsciously battling their pain, but I see glimmers of their joyful little selves emerging like spring shoots. We’re affecting change, making change, opening realms of possibilities and I feel supported in this.
We’ve now been here for nearly two weeks.
We arrived, went camping, moved into our new ‘home for three months’, started at a new High School, moved out of our ‘new home for three months’, (pre-booked holiday let), moved in to a smallholding to house sit while our friends went away, stayed with our friends as they didn’t go away, tended to eighteen sheep, nineteen lambs, twenty hens, five chicks and some very ugly pigs.
As it turned out, I’m terrified of pigs, and these were the biggest, most ugly pigs I have ever encountered.
They charge, snorting and threateningly towards us. I close my eyes, my heart in my mouth, desperately suppressing my urge to flee to safety, to leap over the fence screaming in terror.
They sniff at my boots, grunting and hungry, my mouth is dry but I have to hold it together – I can’t let my children sense my fear.
I blame this unreasonable reaction on one of Roald Dahl’s tales of macabre unpleasantness that I have amplified in my childhood memories, as really, truthfully, those pigs were quite delightful and I rather grew quite fond of them. These rare breed pigs live a good life, fed on chocolate croissants and stoneground sour dough bread, wild apples and organic pellets, no wonder they come charging for their dinner. They even roll over for a tummy tickle when prompted, heaven forbid a misplaced foot or child. My youngest takes over the chore of feeding the pigs, she likes them.
Needless to say, in keeping with our general propensity for plan changes, the short let cancels at last minute and we can move back to our ‘new home for three months’.
Annoying, yes; exhausted with packing and moving, yes; happy girls, a big yes. This experience has been good for them, they’ve viewed a different horizon, stretching down through freshly cut pastures onto the sea, enjoyed farmyard responsibilities, boarded a different rural bus to school, taken bike rides to the beach, explored caves and got to spend time with our wonderful, quirky, grounded and loving friends – and all this during a school week.
Now we are back in our cottage, booked in until Christmas, surrounded by hedgerows dripping with Autumn harvest, we can settle in, settle down, and plan the next steps of our journey.
So far, I feel blessed, my heart is open and I am in awe and quiet appreciation each time I walk or cycle or jog or just leave the house. The air is brighter, cleaner, fresher and in every direction I see a horizon and a scope of possibilities and impending adventures.
I feel that Kevin is with us, in us, around us, but something has changed. There’s been a tiny shift, a one degree change in perspective and instead of constant pain and heartache and loss, I feel a growing love and joy for all that he is and was and continues to manifest in his beautiful girls who are regaining their confidence and trust in life, day by day.
I feel his forgiveness, more importantly I am learning to forgive myself; and in this allowance I am opening myself up to gain trust in life once more. For life can be beautiful, again.
In loving respect for Kevin and the life that he lived and for the life that we shared and for ourselves, our little family of three humans, a dog and two cats, we can be happy again.