Words are not enough

Well here I am in the first week of my six months long service leave. I’ve made quite a few grand promises (to myself and others) about the things I was planning to do whilst on leave, but when I booked the time off, I had no idea that I would actually be at home full-time, every single day.

My plan was to swim regularly at the pool, pick up some more exercise classes, and meet friends for coffee. Some of these have been put on hold or are happening virtually, but I’m not complaining. I feel lucky to have a comfortable home and a loving husband. So many people are under so much strain and I really feel for them.

Being stuck at home means that some of the other things I was planning to tackle are simply unavoidable. I’ve got no real excuse for not writing more, and I can’t really worm my way out of weeding the horribly overgrown garden. Nor can I avoid sorting through all the paperwork that’s accumulated in my office. There’s old teaching material, tax returns from the last 12 years and hundreds of old photos. It could realistically take me six months just to sort through all these accumulated memories.

I hate sorting through old photos. It makes me unbearably sad to see people (and pets) I’ve loved and lost. Even photos of my children make me feel teary. They look so sweet and innocent and I can’t bear the idea of them being hurt by anyone.

I’m often regarded as unsentimental by my family. Little do they know that this is often just a cover for being overwhelmed with emotion.

My mother (who would have been 91 today) was a master at not showing her emotions but those who knew her realised that this was just a way of covering up feelings that she couldn’t express or deal with very well. Things often went unsaid but we always knew that she cared about us. The fact that she loved us was evident in the food she made, the neatly made bed with a vase of freshly picked flowers, the little note that arrived in the mail just when you were feeling all alone. She would often arrive and do all your ironing, even though she hated ironing.

So in these trying times, perhaps we should use this time to let people know that we care about them. You don’t necessarily need to use words.

13 thoughts on “Words are not enough

  1. Hey Marg Love your post! Don’t be too hard on yourself, it’ll take a little time to get into the grove of having all this time to do stuff. Some days are more productive than others and that’s ok. I can relate to growing up in a non emotional family and I think you’re right, it doesn’t mean they didn’t care, everyone has different ways of expression. Your mum sounded lovely Take care Treen

    1. Hello Treen, it’s so lovey to hear from you. Even though I’ve only been away from work for a little while, I miss you already.
      Do you think that we non-huggers all come from restrained families? I guess that’s obvious now that I think about it. I am already stressing that I’m not making enough progress, so I may need to work on my mindset a bit. Thanks for your encouragement and keep safe xxx

    2. Hi Marg 4am can’t sleep as I was just thinking of my family along the same strain, not really emotional yet all very caring and attentive to each others needs. Our mum n dad in their 90s and 4 of their offspring plus numerous grandkids living within coee of each other and form quite a supportive group. Thank you for writing so honest and thought provoking works. I miss our banding together after 30 odd years. Hope we can return soon. Enjoy the time you have to have your cleanup.

      1. I miss banding and chatting to you too. I started off well (practicing once or twice a week) but have let things slide a bit, so I need to get back into the habit before I lose too much ground. I’ve also got to get back to playing my piano. I think I need to make myself a schedule.
        I’m sure you are finding plenty to do, but I hope you are making some time to do something for yourself. xxx

  2. what a lovely post. We all have people in our lives who inspire through their deeds and if Bev is a yardstick you must have had much love in your childhood.
    Stay well Virginia O’Keeffe

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I know it can be a little tricky to navigate the system sometimes.
      Yes, I think we had a good childhood and I lot of love from both our Mum and our grandmother. Best wishes to you and your family too.

  3. Lovely comments Margaret. I think of Nola often and miss her so much❣️❣️ She was my closest friend and I loved being with her. I have so many fun memories of our times together❣️
    My very best wishes to the family at this trying time.
    Take care and keep safe
    Sue Wade💕🥰😷

    1. Hi Sue and thanks so much for connecting with me to remember your great friendship with Nola. We all miss her very much. I hope you and your family are well, love Marg.

  4. Hi, Margaret, a lovely post. I know you will carve out an excellent time despite the unexpected circumstances. I felt the same way – we no sooner had moved back east when this happened, and I’d never gotten a chance to resume my old life and get together with friends more than once or twice.

    1. It must be very strange for you to have moved and then be basically quarantined so soon afterwards. A plus is that you are writing on your blog again. I’m really enjoying your posts.
      all the best xxx

  5. Hi Marg,

    My Mum would have been 91 on 5th April.

    I’m amazed at how lazy I can be these days! Still doing some online work – only about 6 days per week. Doing a bit of knitting and trying to go for a long walk every couple of days.

    I hope you still enjoy your 6 months LSL.


    Sent from my iPhone


    1. How amazing that our mum’s were the same age, but I guess not surprising given that we are of a similar age.
      I’m sure I’ll enjoy my break. Just need to rethink what productivity really means.

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