I haven’t blogged for some time. My intentions have been good but somehow the urge passes or is it more that life reflection is hard to capture in words and sentences? I think it’s the latter. Much has transpired in the past eighteen months, life changing events have spun the world upside down and what we took for granted two years ago is no longer so. This post isn’t specifically about covid but it’s fair to say that covid has been a force that’s effected us all profoundly in recent times.
I’ve been reading a book by Julia Baird called ‘Phosphorescence‘. The strap line on this book is ‘On awe, wonder & things that sustain you when the world goes dark’. It’s a beautiful book and raises life issues that I think most of us can relate to. The experience of reading this book challenged me to think more about everyday life, illness, family, friendships and how we human beings, who often don’t have much control over life events, navigate the aftermath of difficult circumstances. As Julia Baird asks, what sustains us?
What is it during these life events that help us through? Is it the talks on the phone to friends and family or the online sessions on just about every imaginable topic? Is it the outside exercise, our own less than perfect backyard gardens or maybe it’s a strong belief in the universe to deliver us from the jaws of the pandemic? Maybe it’s a religious belief or a profound sense in the notion that ‘all things pass’. Or maybe it’s immersing the self in nature, as Julia Baird discusses in her book. Although, I suspect that not all of us can swim in the ocean each day or walk in a rain forest, but we can all have something that gives us hope, lightness and reassurance.
What I mean by reflection, is to to give serious thought or consideration to a situation or a notion. Reflection can also apply to reviewing or thinking back on the past. So, I use the term loosely for the purpose of this writing.
Recently I’ve spoken with several friends who have experienced complicated illness. Conditions that have been challenging and in some cases. I also have to put my hand up for this issue. During the last year, I have faced unwell times that both bothered and worried me. I’m okay but it’s shaken my sense of well being and like my friends in similar but different situations, it’s awakened the notion that good health can’t be taken for granted. In conversation with friends, I’ve noticed how we have dropped into discussing past events in our lives and how those events have effected our current coping strategies. Reflecting on how we manage and what works can be a helpful process and one that sparks new possibilities.
I suspect that being reflective or thinking about what sustains us in life is not something we necessarily do without reason. It’s not until our equilibrium has been unbalanced that we seek out a process to make sense of our situations.