On Monday I celebrated my birthday. I love birthdays and I love any excuse to celebrate. Before my children landed on my bed (as is our way with birthdays and Christmas) I took some time in the quiet of the early morning to jot down some thoughts. Usually I’ve done this in my head. This year I thought more in depth about the past year and the coming year, about endings and beginnings.
Admittedly it’s been quite a fast and furious year by anyone’s standards. I’ve had ups and downs, highlights and times I’d rather not revisit. 12 months ago began with heartbreak, a visceral experience that woke me up. I was mourning the ending of a love affair and at the same time gave myself permission to grieve the ending of my marriage. It all came out as one traumatic and dramatic experience for me and those close to me. For a time I wasn’t sure the tears would ever stop, but stop they did of course.
I saw the beginning, the creation of this blog. A courageous step to publish one’s thoughts, it has been a cathartic and enriching experience. I have learned that what I write does touch women’s lives, I am humbled by that. Best Knickers Always has begun to take on a life of its own.
I saw the ending of my marriage as we sat around the mediator’s table discussing our individual needs and requirements, our demands and non negotiables. It is a deeply painful experience. We managed to remain civil throughout, a great achievement and one I am certainly proud of.
I witnessed my son start another new school, a casualty of our divorce. He handled it astonishingly well and continues to amaze me with his resilience. I have also witnessed my eldest prepare himself for leaving university and my daughter preparing herself for the ending of her school career and heading off for her next phase of life.
I joined a dating site, I learned to feel attractive and sexy again, I learned what it felt like to feel adored (quite claustrophic actually!), I learned that I love my own company, I learned that I don’t need a man to make me feel whole. I learned what I will tolerate and what I won’t.
I learned that living is an amazing experience – it’s a bloody bumpy ride …………and at the end of the day I’d do it all again ………..I’d feel all the pain and crap and heartache just to feel alive. I’ve lived in a ‘coma’ and I’m never going back there again. This year has been a true renaissance, a rebirth for me.
So what for the next 12 months? You don’t need a birthday to decide that today is the first day of the rest of your life. Today is a gift. As of today what have you got in store for yourself? How could you improve the way things are? Just how good could things be for you this coming year? What do you envisage? What would a brighter future be for you?
Sometimes I feel breathless with excitement at how I can change things in my life this coming year. What will it take for you to feel the same?
Ps the Buddha was my birthday present from my children!