Posts Tagged ‘feelings’

I turn 60 today! A milestone in anyone’s book and it comes with feelings of trepidation. Somehow the dreaded SIX has just come around too fast and I don’t feel quite ready for it. It is not the usual fears of the body starting to issue screams of protest when I attack yet a new outdoor hobby or the laughter lines that just seem to grow. It is the dread that I suppose I will now have to grow up!

When does one refrain from wearing your much loved blue jeans? Is there some special code of dress that I have to adhere to at this stage?  Maybe a twin set and pearls is more fitting. But the Woodstock Era with its flower power accessories still run deep in my veins. Can I still don my purple tights with white spots or better still the Christmas ones covered in reindeer?

Out paddling on Lake Ontario.

Out paddling on Lake Ontario.


Can I still jump up and dance when I hear a favourite song on the radio? (I know this childish act is usually a source of embarrassment to my family.)Is there still room for a good sulk? Will I be allowed to play pot-hockey in the kitchen when I find the house chores tedious?

I stumble into the bathroom and turn on the light. It is one of those awfully bright ones that does not lie. Yes, the face is gently showing the signs of the time and the grey hair is competing like a champion. It is inevitable and I accept it all gracefully……. not too gracefully as I shall continue to ‘put on the face’ each morning. Fortunately my sensitive eyes don’t allow me to use much ‘toorgoedjies’ which is probably a blessing in disguise. I prefer my morning ritual to be as fast as possible so that I can begin my day. So no pink blushing cheeks or purple eye shadow……..a sweep of cover stick and a dash of lipstick will have to suffice. The time has come for ‘less is more.’

'Twinset and pearls' but without the 'toergoed.'

‘Twinset and pearls’ but without the ‘toorgoedjies.’

It is liberating when you don’t concern yourself too much with what others think or say and you can merely be comfortable in your own skin. I have definitely been there and have the t-shirt and I wear my badges with honour. But having said this, I do not intend to just sit and watch my garden grow. Complacency is not something that I visit too often. I wish I did, as it would certainly do wonders for the old blood pressure spike! There is just too much out there to tempt me…….. a whole world still left to explore, books to read, music to listen to and people to meet.  It is good to be alive and hope that I don’t grow up any time soon.


You don’t have to try so hard
You don’t have to give it all away
You just have to get up, get up, get up, get up
You don’t have to change a single thing


......with a little help from my friends!

……with a little help from my friends!


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We all dread the call that comes in the early hours of the morning when there is bad news from home and today was one of those days. It got me thinking about the things that I write about in my blog. So far I have tried to be positive and hopefully sometimes amusing, when I relate stories about the customs we have tried to absorb, the places we have seen and the new friends we have made. But today I feel like putting down on paper the reality of what it feels like to be far away from the people that you love.


Firstly there is the feeling of guilt: One feels guilty that you cannot be there for the people that still need you. I have tried to be supportive at a distance but it does not make up for my absence. I think that what people must realize that I am needed here in Canada too, I know it is primarily as cook and bottle washer for the men in my life but know that if I was not here, settling in would be much harder for them. There is a continual feeling of being torn between my commitments here with my family and those that I have left behind in South Africa.


Secondly there are feelings of loneliness and newness: There are plenty of people here, South African and locals, that have stretched out their hands in kindness towards us and for that I am grateful. We have had to have instruction on how to close up a house for winter which entails the draining of pipes, covering of external structures and the carrying in of all garden pots to name a few. Our garage looks like a tip! But it does not take away the fact that you have not walked a long road with these people and they do not know your essence yet. Where ever you go you are exposed to this whole new culture from the types of food to way you are supposed to drive. Everything is a new experience! Maybe I am showing my age but my brain goes into overload some days with this whole newness that surrounds me. I still have not mastered the driving here and have failed my first attempt at the test so I am back on my bicycle.


Thirdly there are the scared feelings: These are usually present in the early hours of the morning when you lie awake and think things through. There are the worry thoughts on: What will I do if I don’t manage to get my license? Will Philip be safe when he has to journey into Pakistan? Will David settle into the Canadian school system? Will Bryan find a job that suits him? Will I be able to fill my day with meaningful deeds?


Fourthly there are the feelings of loss: Besides the deep loss of the closeness of my loved ones, I feel a great sense of loss with the sudden termination of my career as a teacher. I miss the feeling of making a difference in children’s lives. I miss the adventure of each day being with my classes and I miss the wonder on their faces as I impart new facts or experiences to them.


So this blog has been all about me and my feelings but as any good psychologist will tell you, that you need to work through all of these feelings to get to the other side. So I apologise for making you endure this sorry tale today but I know that it takes bravery to say it like it is and it takes bravery to do what we have done as a family….. scoop ourselves up from our comfortable life in SA and to venture into the unknown. So you will still get the ‘other type’ of blog but know that there is an element of sadness and that it is not all milk and honey on the other side but hopefully these experiences will enrich our lives and ultimately make us better people.

Fall at the bottom of our garden



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