July 21, 2013

Landing somewhere


planesThe funny thing about divorce with kids is that there is never a distinction between the past and the future. It all blurs into one life that you have to continuously negotiate your way around. I don’t mean in a practical sense but in terms of managing your thoughts, blocking the intrusions and getting on with the task of living.

While we were away I read a few books on my kindle while on long haul flights. I had a boss that once told me her favourite place to be in the world was on a flight to another country. It wasn’t about the travel but about the fact that within the confines of that plane no one could find you, you couldn’t answer a phone, respond to an email or engage in mindless chitterchatter. You just had to be. And while the ‘be-ness’ of our flight was perhaps a juggle with two kids there was a real sense of not having to rush and to just decide if you said chicken or beef or if you really watched 7 episodes of Honey Boo Boo on your inflight entertainment system. *

One of the books I read looked at the way a family managed to survive after losing their eldest son during the Boxing Day Tsunami. It was a fictional account but having worked with families living through that dark dark day it was a very real exploration of how as partners we cant always be on the same page. How grief is a solitary journey. As with most books that fictionalise a very real moment in time there was a tying together of the lose bits at the end.

“its about a balance – you dont forget your past but you have to keep it where it belongs. Whatever it is. Behind you. So you face forward. So you move forward’.

Very different to how life can be because living with my own scars and watching the scars of others there is no closure just a sense of picking up all the loose bits and shoving them into your handbag as you forge ahead.

I was reminded of this when answering my girls 14 billionth question about divorce and how she understands life yesterday. While we drove together in the car. In the sun. That quote jumped right out in front of me. For many there is no magical way to keep the past where it belongs because it colours who we are now and who we continue to be.

Have you worked out a way to keep it all tucked away – those bits and bobs from the past because Im thinking that every long haul flight has to land somewhere and you have to get off and keep moving…

*not me. Twas the lady across the aisle.


Join the conversation! 6 Comments

  1. Cough cough yes I’m sure it was the lady across the aisle!!
    I’ll be sure to reflect on your words in a few weeks when we embark on long haul territory with not only each other for the first time but our lil 8 month old Tom too.
    Thank you yet again for making me think Sar!
    Love it, & you

    • Dont diss honey boo boo lady (or extreme couponing) – that journey to show off your beautiful boy comes with lots of extra helpings on the side my fellow thinker. May your seat be comfy and your TV cheesy x

  2. I love the plane ride. Silent thinking. Bliss.

  3. I just buy a bigger bag each year…… so far (in my imagination of course) is a dusty carpet bag – bit like the one on Mary Popins where a spoon full of sugar makes things go away….. I am figuring by the time I reach old age that I’ll be drifting into the oversized baggage department of the long haul flight….
    One of my school mummy friends yesterday told me she had a couple of huge regrets in life and whilst listening to 3 eight yr olds not sleep at midnight I dwell’d on the idea of reaching carpet bag age and still feeling I had regrets…… I have made bad choices… but figure we all have to do that to work out what are the good choices…… am still living with the idea that ‘you do the best you can with what you got at any given time’ and am trying to fulfil that idea even when it took 3 coffee’s before 10.30am today to make it 😉
    Love the blog x

    • Whenever I think of my big old bag of luggage I always think of Mary. Imagine the step ladder we will require as old ladies reaching in and pulling out all the stuff we’ve collected along the way. Im not a big one for regrets – we do what we do at the time. No point trying to work out where it went wrong. Thanks for the love J x


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Loss, Mental health