I let go to feel the fall
And know that I’m alive
I see my breath and think of God
And everything I have
This could be my last day
This could be my last day
With only 10 days before we leave this beautiful home and all that is familiar to us here at Eden we have started into the ‘last times’. The last time we will go to the supermarket here. The last time we will walk on our favourite beach. The last time that I will bake a cake here. The last time that family will be in this house…….
Today I was lost in thought as the dogs and I walked over the fields around our home here in the lush, green, damp Co. Down countryside. The to-do lists at the moment are enormous as we prepare to emigrate to France next Friday and let go off 3/4 of our possessions before then. My mind is busy and in full planning mode which I am very grateful for, if not a little exhausted by!
But then I was stopped short by the joyful dance of flock of swallows who were diving and skimming along the long grass which we were walking through. I was suddenly drawn right back into the Here and Now and intensely aware of the beauty of the present moment. I stood for about 10 minutes watching the swallows, admiring the Mourne Mountains in the distance, seeing the green, undulating landscape with fresh eyes created by the knowledge that this was one of the last times in my life that I will walk this particular walk which I know and love so well.
That got me thinking about all the last times in my life so far that I didn’t realise were last times until it was too late (bear with me…it will make sense!)
The last time that I breast-fed my daughter, Georgia, I had no idea that the next night she would decide to stop wanting that bedtime comfort.
The last time that I read Georgia a bedtime story I didn’t know that the next day she would tell me that she was now able to read faster on her own and she couldn’t wait for me to finish Harry Potter with her!
The last time that I slow-danced with my boyfriend Stuart when I was 16 I had no idea that he would die soon after on the Piper Alpha oil rig disaster.
The last time that I told my mother I loved her I had no idea that she would lapse into a coma shortly after.
The last time that I massaged my dad’s feet I had no idea that he would not recognise me as his daughter next time I did it.
You get the picture. Everything ends. We know this to be true. But what we often overlook is that quite often things end when we are not expecting them to and, before we know it, that part of our life has vanished or ended forever.
This may all seem very sad and depressing but actually the opposite is true for me. When I become very conscious of this fact – that everything passes, nothing is permanent and this could be my last time – then my present moment becomes much more vivid and much more alive. Because I want to remember it.
I want to remember the last time I make love with Eoin.
I want to remember our last night here at Eden.
I want to remember the last time I go dancing naked in the rain.
I want to remember the last time I hug my daughter and let her feel how much I love her and how proud I am of the young woman that she has evolved into.
I want to remember my last sunset and my last electrical storm.
I want to remember my last baked nectarine and my last glass of Prosecco.
I want to remember my last swim in the ocean.
I want to remember because it makes me savour my life even more.
As we go through this process of saying goodbye to our beloved Ireland and stepping out of our comfort zones into the void of uncertainty, I am milking every second of our remaining time here. Even amongst all the packing, selling, gardening, preparation of Mirabelle and planning for D-Day (Departure Day) next Friday, I pull myself back over and over again to right here, right now because I know that I will never get these moments back again.
Precious times indeed.
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