It is the little things. Always the little things. They still remain what matters most to me: the future always to far away to focus on, and the past so very irrelevant. So it is the little things each day delivers that matter most.
This week Ste arrived home with a present for me. The biggest bag of bird seed I have ever seen and a bird feeder to swing from the rusty old hanging basket bracket above the kitchen window, And at first I didn’t understand. It was neither hearts, nor flowers, though it turned out to be so much more: quite the loveliest of gifts, nature herself in my own back garden, perfectly placed so that sitting tucked into the corner of my cozy sofa I can see through the laundry room window, the comings and goings of a host of teeny feathered friends.
Each time a sparrow perches in the ivy of the old brick outhouse, I go still and watch her debate her own safety before she swoops upon the feeder and takes what she needs. And it thrills me so much I whisper-shout at the pair of noisy bullying wood-pigeons that have long lived in the garden to leave my new friends alone and become positively apoplectic when they frighten them away and land on the feeder, knocking it off its perch so seed scatters all over the paving stones and I have to huff my way out to have a stern word with them.
This then was the loveliest. most romantic of gifts. Peace and gentle entertainment at a time when I need it most. A scrumptious pause, first thing in the morning when I sit with tea in hand before the rest of the family blunders down the stairs, and let myself be lost in something that reminds me why the littlest of things matter.
Ste knew what would soothe me better than I understood it myself.
The little things then. Half an hour sat stroking my baby-boys head as he talks his way through another Pewdie Pie vlog. The red velvet floor cushion I sit on to do nothing more than breathe, the CBD oil that lulls me to sleep as I walk all over again through lavender fields with Stephen Fry , the dreamcatcher that blows gently in the first breeze of Spring when I open the bedroom window, the tiny pot of feta and garlic I eat for lunch, and my daily conversation with my Dad.
All this and more. The little things I am doing to soothe myself. Hushing the noise of social media for a while before I lose my marbles. Removing all over again, news sources from my phone so that there is only goodness to be found when my fingers start twitching for new knowledge. Giving myself a Vitamin C facial that leaves my skin glowing. Sprinkling hundreds and thousands on to a tray of gluten free fairy cakes. Believing as always that this too will pass.
For it will. As I turn forty-seven tomorrow, I know for sure that this, whatever it may be, will pass. I hesitate to think of it as depression for I still exist in the midst of hope: still recognise joy and feel enormously grateful for all that exists. Nor do I think it is burn out. The fire is still burning deep within me for all that I have created in this life. No. This feels physical to me. A change in my very physiology that may or may not be related to having too many candles on my birthday cake, but is merely a new challenge. Something to be endured on the bad days, and used as inspiration for change on the good.
This is a good day. This morning I discovered an old locket of my Mums and pried it open to find a photograph of me inside, and brushing away tears, I remembered that she put it there for Finn when he was too sad to go to nursery without me, so she tucked my face into a heart he could carry in his little pocket and he thrived each day thereafter. A little kindness she created then, that means the world to me now.
Because the little things do matter, don’t they? The tiny kindnesses we bless the house with, soothe our souls with or tuck into our children’s pockets. It is the little things, always the little things, that get us through.