November 26, 2011

Bugger the bucketlist…

I just finished reading Sarah Watt and William McInnes book.

breathe.

Its been a while since I read a book where I had to stop and rub the words with my finger because in some ways I wanted to connect with them more than just read them.

A few months back I asked my uni supervisor how you answer why you are researching a particular topic. I get asked a bit why Im interesting in exploring loss, why I explore what happens for people when someone is missing.

I think this book explained it to me.

Im trying to understand how people live with loss to give me clues on how Ill cope when things happen to me – death, illness, disaster – they’re all in the realm of possibility. I know how Ill cope after divorce…Ive done that one. But I do live wondering how I’d react if something awful happened – Im curious to see what Id do, how Id manage, how Id survive, how I’d find the new me.

Sarah and Williams book flits between their two perspectives on relationships, being resilient, loss, living simply and just doing ‘stuff’. Like we all do.

Bugger the bucketlist…I dont want to live in a way that makes me grateful for every moment, I dont have aspirations to see the pyramids or swim with whale sharks or climb a great wall. I just have aspirations to find me, to be loving, to share with my kids what Ive learnt, to make sure they look out for each other, to show them how to be a good partner in a relationship, to wander about my home, to read good books, to hug and hug often and to be hopeful – not of anything tangible – just about life and people and things I see.

Im n0t going to say rush out and buy the book because its a heavy read but it is perhaps the loveliest thing Ive ever read because I think I see a bit of me in her, we all would, because she manages to look at loss and life through a lens that is real, raw, hopeful and magical.

Vale Sarah Watt…and hugs to those she left behind.

Join the conversation! 9 Comments

  1. Another great post.
    I watched William and Sarah on Australian Story recently and also saw her film (sorry, can’t remember the name of it) about cancer on SBS a few weeks ago. It struck me that they were just a really loving family trying to come to terms with a really terrible situation. I agree: it’s just not about the bucket list. We should live our life for the little things, because in the end the little things are actually the big things.

    Reply
    • they are karen…what you have been writing about lately reminds me of all those things, that its about managing the big and small. Its not often that you read something where you know the outcome is awful but its actually a pleasure to read as they move along the path

      Reply
  2. Gorgeous post Sarah, I’m loving your writing, and I will definitely find this book! I’m all for living in the now – good, bad, significant, insignificant, I want to experience every minute I continue to be gifted with. Love.

    Reply
  3. What a beautiful post. We seem to live in a word that values material possessions and where the table decorations are more important than the food or the company….So nice to see someone write so passionately about the things that really matter.

    Reply
    • Thank you Nicole – I was really struck by this book and I think in the lead up to Christmas it’s reminded me of the need not to stress about silly things – thanks for popping over x

      Reply
  4. Sarah,

    This post really touched me.

    Especially this paragraph of yours:

    “Bugger the bucketlist…I dont want to live in a way that makes me grateful for every moment, I dont have aspirations to see the pyramids or swim with whale sharks or climb a great wall. I just have aspirations to find me, to be loving, to share with my kids what Ive learnt, to make sure they look out for each other, to show them how to be a good partner in a relationship, to wander about my home, to read good books, to hug and hug often and to be hopeful – not of anything tangible – just about life and people and things I see.”

    I breathed deeply to it.

    My brother went missing 15 years ago when he was 29 years old. I think of him so much and miss him all the time but I still have a life. I deal with unresolved grief as much as anyone can deal with it, I think. I’ve had to sort of reconstruct my life in many ways. My life is pretty much as you describe it in that paragraph. Occasionally I lose sight of it and become overwhelmed by ‘other stuff’, some of it trivial, some of more in my face and difficult to deal with. But basically I’m steering a course you described so well. No bucket list for me. It’s the very things you wrote about in that paragraph that makes all the hard stuff bearable.

    Reply
    • wow thank you Deb…how lovely of you to say. I think that most of my perspective was found by sitting with families of missing people and listening to their stories. Id love to chat with you more, Ill send you a msg x

      Reply
  5. That was favourite book from last year. I loved everything about it, the stories of everyday life, the photos, the humour and the great dignity in dealing with loss. So sad that Sarah lost her own battle with cancer.

    Reply

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Loss, Parenting

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