The year's beginning was pretty tough. There had been some problems with Andy. I found myself often on the brink of exhaustion, lonely and fairly out of balance. More than anything I was still living my life as 'a mother' and nothing and no-one else, there was still very little room for Laura in my life.
During this time my friends and family and also you blog readers, rallied around me and offered me so much support and love. I am so grateful for each phone call, for each treatment, for each hug, for each word of kindness and strength that got me through this and let me know how loved and cared for I am. Thank you.
The spring brought with it a change. Andy and I got some help to negotiate our separate lives and I am grateful for the services that supported us. This process is on going of course, in fact only today I got a letter from the Mediation service offering me an appointment for 2 weeks time to begin the formal process of separation. But we are muddling through and finding a way for all of our needs to be supported. Thank you.
I was still attending my weekly counselling sessions until the late spring at which point I felt ready to stop attending. I am so grateful for my counselor for giving me such an essential tool box, leaving me feeling strong and true to myself and able to deal with whatever problems and challenges that may face me. Thank you.
I am grateful for each experience and gathering and day trip that peppered my year. So many wonderful places and people I have seen and precious memories I have made. Thank you.
I am grateful for Joa, for the crazy, nutty joy he brings into my life. For his way of telling a story filled with expression and his own unique brand of interpretation. I am grateful to have him as my daily companion, helping in the kitchen or out for a walk. I am grateful for his sweet kisses as I put him to bed each night and for the full body hug I get from him every morning he wakes.
I am grateful for Benny, for his gentle, caring nature. For his quiet calm and strength. I am grateful for how perceptive he is and the deep empathy he shows for other people and their feelings. I am grateful for how helpful he is, how hard he tries and for his incredible bravery and sheer courage. I am grateful in the trust he places in his own body and the inspiring self belief he shows.
I am grateful for Rebe. For her boundless creativity, a reflection of my own. I am grateful for how she looks after us all and shows her love in such thoughtful ways; cooking for the boys, making me sweet little cards and love notes. I am grateful for the strength and determination she shows in just being true to herself. There have been many times this year when she has been faced with feeling very 'different' and she handles it so beautifully. Life can be a tough ride but she is riding high on the crest of that wave. I am also so in awe of her self awareness and her ability to articulate this. A few weeks ago she was displaying a lot of anger, one night before bed we found a little time to talk about it and she said that actually she wasn't really angry all the time, but she did feel a bit sad and it was coming out as angry. Oh what insight to have at the age of 8 and I am so grateful that she feels that she can talk to me about this and many other things.
I am so grateful for all of these things. However, there are 2 things above all else that I am so happy to have found in 2013.
One of these is my self. I have found myself; a whole complete being. Learning mindfulness and meditation, finding time to run every week and developing my own interests and hobbies such as singing in the choir, taking care of myself in a way I never perhaps felt justified in doing before. All of this has given me such a balance in my life. I am no longer completely consumed by and with motherhood. My life is full of me and I feel so right, so whole and so happy. I still mother in exactly the same way, but no longer at the expense of the rest of my life. I am finding ways to say 'no' and 'that's ok' and 'I forgive myself''. I am also hearing what I need, what I want and what my dreams are and giving myself permission to follow those thoughts and feelings.
I am so excited about this coming year, I feel very sure that it will be filled with so much magic and happiness and love, and I hope that I will recognise and fully live each and every moment that I can with love and with gratitude.