Proof ... sort of.

William is my youngest nephew. He is 9 years and one day old today. On Saturday he was 8 years and 364 days old. Numbers are important to William. I see his point.

Besides being his birthday-eve Saturday was also St Nikolaus day. In Germany children put their shoes out by the door and during the night ‘der Nikolaus’ comes by and puts a small gift or some sweets inside for the children to find the next day. William and Oliver do not put their shoes out preferring instead to wait by the window to watch out for the big man himself. William in particular loves this visit although when it comes to meeting St Nikolaus he is understandably nervous. A large stranger in a strange get-up will have that effect on the brave-but-cautious amongst us.

Being 8 and 364 days old and still being a firm believer in both Santa Claus and St Nikolaus, has opened William up to not a little teasing from his young friends … some of whom have fallen prey to disbelief after somewhat brutal disclosures from older children. William remains adamant however and I applaud his stance. He asked me the other day if I had ever seen the “real” Santa Claus. I told him that when I was a very little girl I remember going to see Santa at a shop near my house. I told him I wasn’t sure if he was the real one or not. It’s important not to lie I guess, but equally important not to be needlessly truthful.

As with many children William is a scientist at heart. When a hypothesis is thrown into doubt what is the appropriate course of action? Well of course evidence must be attained and evaluated … and therein lies the rub. What sort of evidence will do the trick if the annual piles of presents prove insufficient in themselves?

A photo.

And there you have it. Yes it’s blurry and yes it’s indistinct. Even so. It’s proof.

P.S. I was very nervous being St Nik this year. What if I was found out? I would be witness to emotional trauma at the very least. I need not have worried. Markus (William’s Dad) being privie to The Plan took action … he turned down the resolution on his camera. Good man … where would we be without co-conspirators?

Ho ho ho.

At the beach

We're on holiday this week in deepest Devonshire .... although it's just called Devon theses days. I like the "Austenesque-ness" of adding the shire though.

Anyhow the "we" in this case is, Trev and I, my sister Kath and her mob, and my middle brother Brendan and his mob. All seemingly normal eh? Families are rarely if ever normal though. In the last 37 years I've spent less than five days in Brendan's company ... and that's a generous assessment of the time we've spent together.

T'is odd. He seems both familiar and unfamiliar all at the same time. And I feel the tug of those ancient deeply held resentments which would be all too easy to dwell upon. But that would detract from what is a HUGE opportunity to start a healing process both long overdue and much longed for ... at least on my part.

Like many children whose backgrounds are scarred by abuse we are ... or at least have been ... a fractured family. Long decades of not a word and now? It seems we have to choose. Shall we ask why? Why did you take yourself away and lock us out? Why did you compound the hurt already done?

Except I already know why. To stop more hurt it can seem like a good option to shut ourselves away from all that's gone on in the past, create a new persona and live that life instead. I get it. Compassion is not a soft option that's for sure.

I get to know my nephew Liam though as well so instead of two small(ish) boys I now get to play with three. I'm off to the beach to try to fly a kite.

Here's hoping for fair winds.  xx Jos

Making Friends

You'd think it would be easy enough
I meet people all the time
I chat
They chat back
And then either I or they
Go away.
I wonder sometimes if I should hibernate
As is my instinct
I know it's supposed to be wrong
Are we not social creatures.
Why is it so hard to make friends?

I lack courage
Time and again I come to this sober conclusion
Which I question
And then acquiesce
How to refute the truth of it.
I am sad to find myself so alone
A situation of my own making
The unmaking of which
Quells even the prospect of bravery
Shall I instead spin my cocoon
In the hope of metamorphosis?

Frustration battles procrastination
A solid feeling fear based lethargy
That threatens to consume
Not solely my present state
But my state-to-be
And I
I battle alongside with the wanting
And not wanting all at the same time
Somehow though I still believe
It should not be this difficult
Where then the fault?

The case for perseverance
Needs to be made
If only for the sake of balance
And to offset the bleakest
Of all prospects
That of continuing in the same vein
With the same result
Or non-results.
Tell me then
How is it that you go about
Making friends?

Remembering Renee

There is something very powerful about someone telling you that you are more than fine just the way you are ... that you are loveable and loved. It takes a pretty special person to make you believe something as unbelievable as that. Every year I'm surprised that it's another year since you gained your wings Renee. I hope you've been enjoying life beyond life ... and I hope you've met my Mum and given her a big huge hug. I reckon even in heaven hugs are good medicine. I miss you dear heart. All my love xx Jos

The black dog

When people talk about depression they aren't all talking about depression. Some are talking about the blues which is something entirely different. I don't talk about my depression much. In fact for years I didn't even know how to label what ailed me.

About 2 years ago I went to the docs and talked about what was going on in my head. I'm glad I did even though I was really scared. The meds don't make it all better but they do help. The thing is that when I start to deteriorate mental health wise I don't always realise until I am really quite unwell. It's hard to ask for help. I don't know why it's so hard ... it just is.

I know it's stupid to wish things away. It's what children do isn't it? I do wish though. I wish my mind was in better shape.