I know that I already did a post this week about contemplation, thinking about the start of The Great War. Somehow though I seem to be in contemplative mood this week. I think that it is because it was my birthday. I have received quite a few cards, including some from some of you lovely bloggers who I have made special friends with over the last year - thank you, you know who you are. However, numbers of cards are down on previous years. I'm not complaining or seeking sympathy, it is just a fact of life. We seem to have lost so many family members and friends in the last few years especially, and while in normal day to day life, I don't forget those people, it isn't so obvious somehow that they are not there. It is the occasions of life that makes their absence more obvious, such as not receiving a card from them on your birthday - or sending them one on theirs.
It has made me much sadder this year than in previous years, especially because I have not received cards from some people who are alive, but unable because of their health to see to send a card, or to remember that I am here to send one to me. Somehow when people are gone you know that and you have to move on, but when they are still here, but yet at the same time not, that is harder to handle.
Sorry for being a bit of a downer, here, I hope that the next paragraph will be more upbeat, bear with me!
So, in the light of this how am I dealing with it. Well, for one I am grateful for the new friends that I have made in life, especially those friends made over the last year that I received a card from for the very first time this year and that I have been or will be able to send a card to on their birthday. That is pretty great right!
Sharing with others. Although I did not have a chance to bake, before I went to Basildon yesterday I bought lots of bags of cookies from the supermarket and took them in with me and told everyone to help themselves to a cookie. They did and they enjoyed themselves a lot - although some people got a bit sticky from the looks of things! Never mind though.
I think that I have shared with you before that I am a very rare breed of person. You have probably heard of hoarders. You might even have heard of chuckers. Well, I am a combination of the two, a gatherer chucker - we are rare you know!! What does that mean. Well, I keep things, gather things, birthday cards especially from years gone by. For no good reason mostly other than I don't know what to do with things. I don't hoard, I just don't know what to do with the more sentimental things of life. Then, when I feel like I do right now, I have a massive clear out I take things to the charity shop - all good sellable things, other stuff is recycled, and any remaining rubbish goes in the bin.
Today I am clearing out. Not so much in the style of What Would Jesus Do, but, What Would Martha Do. As in, getting organised and tidying, in the style of another hero of mine, William Morris, keeping only that which I know to be beautiful or believe to be useful. A large collection of jigsaw puzzles have been kept. No, I am unlikely to do them, and not at the moment for sure, but they got me through some times in the past when I could not get out and about so much and they are great for keeping your mind occupied, so they stay. However, another collection of old birthday cards that has accumulated has gone, as have other bits and pieces. I seem to have a large collection of Christmas ribbons that are lovely, but not to my taste at all. I cannot imagine ever using them, but I know that someone will, so they are for the charity shop. Along with 6 Christmas charger plates that I bought when I needed something in a rush. I regretted the purchase immediately and have felt guilty about it ever since. Well no more, they are off to a new home.
Many many years ago, I read something in a book about when you are worried cleaning the silver is a good idea, because at the end of the day, you are still worried, but at least the silver is clean. I don't have silver to clean - thank goodness, because it never would be cleaned! - so instead I clean house, organise and clear out.
It seems that this year my birthday has been bittersweet. It was a lovely day, and heck, I am always glad to have achieved another year and have another one to look forward to, but it has been reflective too. I guess that is what happens as we get older isn't it!
So, I really don't mean this to be gloomy or upsetting, but actually positive in that although I am feeling reflective, I am getting on and occupying myself and my mind by doing rather than just sitting and fretting. That has to be positive?