Friday, July 16, 2010

Contemplating change.....

The wind is blowing the garden to bits as I speak. And I gave in in the end, and went and asked for a repeat prescription for the medication which attempts to sort out the nerve damage. I hate medicine. But there is a limit to what I can tolerate, and I just breezed past that. So we are not having a stunning day round here. When even your face starts tingling when you move, you know you need to do something.

Anyway.

Hello, all.

I am trying to ignore the fact that Wednesday will be here soon, and I will be saying goodbye to my daughter as she wings her way back to her home in NZ. Again. At the same time, I am caught in a quandary - Where should I be? What should I do? Do I sell this house and move? Where? When? I have 3 children. One in New Zealand. 2 in Kent. For now. I have a sister in Switzerland. I have friends here in the village, but then I also have friends in Scotland..... all over the place.

If I move away, I will have to build a new life with new people, and in new places. New doctors - oh we will not go there right now.

It is just that I wonder why I am here in this house sometimes. Away from my family. Away from my grandchild. Away from my sister. Why? They are not here - those people who mean the world to me.

Things change, you know. When our children were small, here in the village, there was a huge network of friends and we all saw each other regularly, and did things together. Then the children grew up and went off to university, and for a few years, we had a wonderful grown up time - lots of social events without children around, except during the holidays. Dinner parties, choirs, walks, theatres and so on.

Then they started settling down, getting married and scattering to the 4 corners of the world, had babies, and so the close knit community of friends got (and is getting) pulled in a multitude of directions, as the new role as grandparents entered our realms of experience. And our responsibilities changed. Add retirement into the mix, and life is changing rapidly for the people I know. The Third Age is here.

The core of close friends remains solid, of course. But being alone, and not half of a couple makes this a challenging time, because I have to think of options, sort out positive and negative aspects, and then make a decision. I. Me. Myself. Moi. Ich. No-one to bounce ideas off, because I am the only one affected by whatever decision I make, ultimately. And whatever I choose to do, it will be alone.

So I am in ostrich mode.

Stick the whole lot in the "too hard" basket and plod on doing all the mundane every day things I can think of doing to validate the avoidance of decision making. Procrastination is my middle name.

Of course there is no hurry to make any decision at all. The housing market is not going to rise for another decade, they tell us. There is no immediate reason for me to up sticks and disappear over the horizon in a daisy painted Kombi, clutching my mythical laptop and sewing machine and crochet hook. But sometimes, that sounds like an excellent idea. Become a gypsy.

I would miss my garden. But then I could make a garden anywhere, couldn't I.

I want to spend time with my children regularly. All of them. I want to be a part of their lives, but to have that balance - you know? A good part, not a "rolling-of-the-eyes-here-she-comes-again" kind. The kind which builds wonderful family memories. That means I need to be travelling. And it also means having my own space somewhere. But where?

And what about those adventures? I have plans for many. The list has been around for decades, and yes, a lot has been crossed off, either done or discarded as being totally ludicrous. The list is still there. So are the dreams. Some dreams have died. Some have changed, but the essence of them remains. Love, laughter, happiness, health, peace.......

Bev has written 2 wonderful posts "Freedom to..." and "Still in the school of life" which have given me plenty to think about too. She is absolutely embracing this new stage of her life with delight and joy and she makes me smile too.

When I was at Bath, one of the huge concerns of the team was what was going to happen when all the legal whatsits are over, and the mammoth mountain I have been tackling disappears. The void it will leave.

Hmmmm.

Maybe I must consider that Kombi again. And daisy painting.

7 comments:

Needled Mom said...

I have a dear friend in the exact same situation as you - alone and recently retired. She has expressed the same concerns that you are writing. I really do not know the answer. Several of our friends have packed up to follow their children only to be disappointed because their children then moved again. It is a challenge to know what you should be doing.

Lisa Marie said...

Hmmmm. yes this is a difficult time for you. I wonder if a "family meeting" with your kids would help. Ask them for their opinion and see what they say. It clears the air and might help you to see it from their perspective too. I do know that it is important to be near family because they will stick with you when you need them. But you are right, you can't follow your kids around the globe. But to be close to them or in a central location would be perfect. I know you will work this out Linds, you are a brave, strong woman. And God is on your side. Cheers and Good luck

Vee said...

Sometimes, in unsettled moments of heart and mind, we'd just like to pack up and head out. I think I hear what you're saying...

Linda said...

I understand Linds. I really don't like having to make those life-changing decisions. Perhaps when you are feeling a bit better and have time to just reflect a bit, you will be able to decide on the best plan for you. There could be some exciting adventure just around the bend!

Isabelle said...

So sorry you're not well, Linds. And I really feel for you about the offspring / where-do-I-want to be? thing.

Grown children should live in the same street as their parents. There should be a law.

Olson Family said...

Keep looking for the daisy's and He who made them.
Wow - a lot going on for you. Enjoy every second of your daughters time and hope you have a restful time in Switz. Engelberg is one of our to-do hikes this summer. So maybe we could meet - have dinner at the restaurant late afternoon (at some uncivilized early hour!)? It would be family - unless after 18. Aug. when kids go back to school (love it and hate it).

Mary said...

I vote for the Kombi - sunflowers on one side (my side) and daisies on the other (just for you).