Tag Archives: care

A new year and a new hope

Happy New Year!

What do you plan to do with the year ahead? It’s traditional to look back on the year gone by and to work out what you want / need to do for the coming months. It’s a time for planning, for resolutions, for looking at yourself, I’ve done my share of introspection, and thought I’d share my findings with you.

It’s been very apparent over the past year or so that we’re living in an angry society, where so many people seems to be railing against so much. The slightest thing seems to set them off, and there seems to be little thought given to care and compassion for others. You don’t need to look very far to see examples of this, and I wrote about some of our experiences earlier this year.

If I have a resolution for this year it is to be kinder to and less judgmental of others. It’s to be more thoughtful, more caring, and to do more for those less fortunate than myself. In other words, I need to be more mindful of all I say or do, and how that affects others. In order to do that well, I need to show myself compassion, and set boundaries where none existed before.

To that end, I need to let go of the last of the toxic relationships and friendships in my life. I’ve spent a lot of time and effort over the last couple of years trying to explain what issues I had to those who were causing me pain, and I thought that they would take that on board. I thought that they’d try to find some sort of common ground, some way of resolving those issues, but I have been mistaken.

It’s taken me a long time, but I have realised that those people will never change, and they will never even try to see things from my point of view. For the sake of my own mental health, I have to accept that there will never be a happy resolution with these people, and that I need to stop hoping for one and get on with my life.

My “new hope” for 2018 is therefore that people will start being kinder and more thoughtful, that rather than descending into something from Lord of the Flies, we can help ourselves and help other people.

At the risk of diluting this message, back in 1989 Bill and Ted hit on the right idea, and I thought I’d leave you with a reminder…

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Dad update – Image #115

Last year I recounted some of my experiences having become an “Instant Dad“, by dint of being in a relationship with a lovely lady who has two children. I’ve not said much since, other than to perhaps share the odd tale if we’ve been out for a day trip or something like that. Last weekend saw a significant milestone for me in that role, and I thought I’d share it here.

Dee was working all weekend during the day, and her son’s dad was in the US on business. Dee’s daughter looked after H on the Saturday as I had to play in  my first gig for my new band, but on Sunday I got to look after H all on my own, for the first time ever.

It’s hard to describe what this meant to me, other than “everything”. To have Dee trust me so much that she would entrust her only son to my care was incredible. For me to have sole responsibility for this young man was huge. I had to make sure that he was safe and protected wherever we went and whatever we did, and knowing that if anything went wrong the ramifications were unthinkable. Beforehand, my mind kept racing, making me ask myself all sorts of questions. What if I wasn’t up to the challenge? What if I messed up? What if I couldn’t cope? What if H didn’t enjoy it? What if…

As it turned out, H and I had a great time. We went to see Batman v Superman (he’d seen it and wanted to go again, and I hadn’t seen it so was happy to go). It’s quite a long film, at 150 minutes, so a good chunk of the day was spent in the relative safety of a cinema.

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We then had lunch, before heading off to see Dee at work via the supermarket. I’m not sure I’ve ever driven more carefully. All of a sudden, my time in sole charge was done, and nothing bad had happened. I definitely felt the weight of responsibility lift when we were three again, and with that resonsibility came tiredness after the fact: is that normal?

Even now, a couple of days later, I’m still struck by what an honour and privilege it was to be entrusted with H for so long. I know it was a big step for Dee, and for me, and I’m very touched and humbled by it.