This shall be my last post of 2018, and so it seems befitting that I take a moment to consider everything that has been and gone this year.
At this time of year, it is normal to express astonishment at how fast it has all flown, but for me it hasn't felt that way. I feel as though time has passed in the exact measured way it should. If anything, at this very moment, I feel it is lingering a little too slowly. I know - I know - we still have Christmas, and I do love that so, but here I am, thinking ahead. Our Christmas tree is aglow but I can already anticipate the morning my husband carries it out of the house over his shoulder again, heading to the log pile in the park. Then, I shall brush the fallen pines away. Then, there will be corners of lightness again.
I love the cosiness of this time of year, but I love the turning of pages, the shaking of rugs, the start of a new diary signalling a fresh start, even more. And I'm excited.
This year nothing really went to plan, and lest this sound melodramatic, I mean it in the most wonderful way. Things both happened and did not happen the way I had hoped. I shall spare you the updates out of my diary but in short, I started a shop. It didn't work out. I started a blog. That, astonishingly, did work out. And then I wrote my own online writing course and put it into the world and gave it a try and you know what? That worked out too. This year, I also tentatively stepped back into my journalism shoes for the first time since having my third child and I ended up being back live on air - one of the parts I used to love most about my career. I’m not sure what next year may bring, but I’m hopeful there may be more of this, more of reminding myself of what I once upon a time worked so hard at and was good at too.
These things I mention above are all good things, surprising things I never imagined might have happened. But when the night draws in on New Year’s Eve, these shan’t be the things I remember.
Rather I shall remember this was the year that my baby started to walk, his little feet thumping across the wooden floor with each unsteady step, a smile like honey gleaming across his round, round face.
I shall remember that this was the year my middle one, my golden-haired spirited sunbeam of a three-year-old boy, took a felt pen and wrote his name across a page for the very first time and more than that, I shall remember too how it felt when he flung his arms around me so triumphantly afterwards.
I shall remember, in turn, that this too was the year my eldest started school and I shall always remember, I think, the bittersweet sadness that comes with knotting a school tie for the very first time and letting him go.
But then before that thought settles too long in my throat, I shall also remember how this was the year my firstborn grew in so many ways, standing taller than my waist now, but also so grown and growing as a boy, all elbows and knees. I shall remember how this was the year I overheard his voice reading books aloud for the first time on his very own and how it felt like catching dewdrops in my palm.
This too was the year my husband held my hand, as always forever close by, and urged me to write again, to find my voice again, and do what I needed to do. It was the year he told me that giving up and starting over not just once but twice didn’t matter one jot. After that, it was the year I said yes to new things and started my yoga teacher training. It was the year we considered leaving London for good - a thought that left us feeling so glum we decided, together, we would make London our forever home instead. It was the year we saw in seven years of marriage with pizza on the sofa and, later, an evening out just us, celebrating a whole lot of love for all that we have.
And so in all these ways, this was the year we all grew in leaps little and large and for that I shall look into the sky and up to the stars, and then, I shall whisper my thanks. And I thank you all too - each and every single one of you who takes the time to stop by each week to read my words and sit with me through them. I promise I shan’t stop earning your trust. I promise I shan’t stop writing what is true even when sometimes it is not easy to do. Thank you for reading and for sharing and helping my words reach more and more people every single week.
And with that, I wish you all a glorious Christmas and start to 2019. I’ll be back with my first blog post of the year on Wednesday, January 2nd. I can’t wait to see how the next year shall unfold for us all.
Still Christmas shopping? Buy a gift for self-improvement with my writer’s course, The Quiet Words, on the craft of writing creatively, or Writing Friends, my one-on-one bespoke mentorship scheme.