I’m not sure if it’s the end of year, Summer alighting our doorstep or maybe I’m just getting older, but the last few weeks I’ve been emotional. Not sad, but moved to tears constantly by beauty and things that make my heart break. A sunrise. A little kid dressed in a kimono at the Japan Festival in Byron. Our local bakery slipping me a baby croissant as she said I looked tired. A little kid ever, ever so gently patting a Labrador’s head with such tenderness and I’m a mess!!
This morning one of our Palm Beach neighbours chatted to us over our morning coffee. Most mornings he drives past us in his car and we intersect at the beach both now on foot as we walk our dogs. Many times he comments on how fast we seem to walk, and jokes about his age, being in his 80’s now.
This morning he asked about Marley, and how old she was. I was just about to say how it’s awesome she’s older and is more independent and we can walk in the mornings with her reading and pottering about at home. But before I could, he said his huge regret in life was not having kids. And now he wants to play golf with his friends but frequently they can’t as they’re looking after the grandkids. He said he doesn’t have any to look after, and his eyes filled with tears, and he had to walk off with a gruff ‘well, see you tomorrow’. I then cried quietly out of empathy and pain into my long black coffee.
I cried for him. I cried for my daughter growing up. I cried for Arran raising her as his own. I cried with gratitude. And I recommitted to being as present as I could be to the gift that is life. One of my students Nat posted this below on her Instagram and I loved it. It was written by a mother who wrote it if she could have her time again.
As the year comes to a close, what are you committed to?
Sent with love,
Photo of our view at Palm Beach over coffees every morning.