Mind you at the time I was sitting on the beach with my dog and the sun was shining.
So let me back track. I have been feeling OK lately, in fact better than OK. I have been feeling good. Motivated, inspired, excited about the future. This is an unsettling feeling for someone emerging from the fog of deep, dark grief. Grief is a heavy burden that you have to carry every day accompanied by a black fog that envelops you and makes everything difficult, not only can’t you see clearly through the black fog, but you are struggling with the weight of your burden. You can’t see that it will ever change or get better.
Then one day you perceive that the fog may be lifting slightly and your backpack is feeling a bit lighter nowadays. You have felt this before and it didn’t last, but this time feels different.
Four years ago I was just about to fly to Miami to start a Caribbean cruise with the man who I thought was the love of my life. Now four short years later, the love of my life has left me because ‘he just didn’t love me enough’ and my son and my father are both gone, passed away in the same year. So I have learned that life can change on the spin of a dime. There we are breezing through life and tomorrow we could win the lottery or we could lose a loved one. The only thing we have is now, today and the only certainty is that things rarely stay the same.
Today was another balmy sunny January day in Cornwall. You don’t take much notice of the weather forecast when you live in my corner of the world. The only weather forecast you need is right outside your window. You look out, look at the sky, then the height of the tide, and decide whether to pull on your boots and hat and take the dog for a long walk on the beach or curl up with a book in front of the fire.
Today was a long walk day, so there I was sitting on a rock on a tiny deserted beach watching the waves breaking on the shore, listening to the swoosh and crash of the tide and the silhouette of St Michael’s Mount and feeling the warm sun on my face. My little dog Elfie was at my side as always and she was looking up at me trying to figure out how long we were going to sit still, before she could rush off to find some new smells.
It was then that I was filled with hope and excitement. ‘I could meet the man of my dreams tomorrow, or win the lottery’ I thought. Then I thought ‘but what if I don’t’?’ ‘What if this is it, what if the rest of my life is exactly the same as today and nothing changes?’
That was when it hit me, that I was more than OK with that. Today I was where I wanted to be, doing what I wanted to do, looking at the sea, feeling the sun on my face with my little dog by my side. So if that is what the rest of my life will be like then I’ll be happy with that, more than happy. Anything else is just icing on the cake.
If you can go to bed tonight knowing that if today was your last day on this earth and you are happy and satisfied with the way you spent it, then that is priceless, and it doesn’t get much better than that.