The winds of change…

It’s amazing how some things evolve but never truly change.

During my lower school years, every February we had an annual cross country run and as someone who doesn’t like running voluntarily, this forced run was not my idea of fun. However, every year the day would roll around where we piled onto the bus and headed off to Stockhill woods and its ‘lovely’ uneven paths. As you can probably tell, this was not my favourite place in the world.

And yet, on Saturday I spent a lovely morning (in the torrential rain) walking around those woods. People make such a difference to how you perceive things, and the people I went for a walk for are people who I haven’t seen in such a long time.

They’re some of my best friends and, with life being such as it is, we don’t spend a huge amount of time together. These are people who have seen, and dealt with, my worst and deserve my best (to paraphrase Marilyn Monroe) and who remind me that I have grown up and improved in many ways.

Whenever I feel stuck on something, be it how to deal with an issue or what to wear for a certain occasion, I find myself imagining conversations with these people. I may not have seen some of them for more than six months, I may not even have spoken to them in that time, but I do know what they would say about pairing this skirt with that top. They are the people that I spent so much time relying on during my formative years that they have become part of me. I cannot imagine doing something important without consulting them (even if the consulting happens in my mind).

However, whilst I know that they’re opinions on outfits is unlikely to change, it is harder to have imaginary conversations with them about the next steps I am looking to take in life. What would they say about me quitting my job? How would they react to my dropping everything and going travelling? These are all hypothetical questions, but trying to work out what the people you trust most in the world would answer these questions with is somewhat exhausting.

Most of my school friends have moved to London, and have managed to get themselves fantastic jobs that are interesting and let them stretch their potential. Growing up, I knew that having straight A* friends was never going to make me look the best. But that is not to say I resent their success. On the contrary, whenever I get told about a promotion or a new project that they have been put on, I practically jump for joy. When you love someone that much, and I do love these people, you can only be happy for them.

What has happened is that they have changed, and change is good. Change is essential. And there have been times where I feel that they have changed so much that I am no longer relevant to their lives.

But that is doing them a disservice.

This is something I realised this Easter weekend: whilst my friends have changed their locations, their jobs,and their lives, they are still, and always have been, my friends.

The people who I can start a conversation with after six months of silence and not feel guilty about the silence. The people who I have never once felt the need to explain anything to. We may not see each other every day but we have each other and shared experiences.

Even if now we’re complaining about the property market rather than the homework we’ve been set.

It’s the little things…

So, tonight I am sitting in my dining room next to a dark window (it is about 10pm) and thinking about all the gorgeous places in the world that I cannot wait to see and I realise that the garden that is currently hiding outside is a gorgeous place that I have already had the privilege to see.

It may not be the largest or the grandest garden in the world, in fact it is really just a rectangle of grass with a patio on either end, but it is wonderful. And it’s mine. I get to go into it everyday and see what new growth there is on the newly planted lavender and hebe border. I can finally tell that the roses from last summer survived the winter and are preparing to start putting out buds. I watched my dogs have a ridiculous roll in the sunny grass. I saw my first bumblebee of the year!

This is just my experience of the wonderful everyday – and that is what rural Somerset (where I call home) is all about. Being able to take the time and appreciating the small things. Without the small things, life is just waiting for us to get on the next plane, or accomplish the next great thing; and whilst that works for some people, I have found that finding the wonder in the mundane is not only what gets me through the day but what makes life worth living.

(Here is my precious rectangle of grass – minus the dogs)