Old photos on my desktop.
They are not that old. My daughter's 9th birthday. That's only 11 years back, for crying. The colours in our front room. Wine red couches, handed down from friends. Paired with a graded blue-to-green symphony that is created with table cloths and fabric draped to cover up ugly pieces of furniture. It looked sweet; young; colourful; and surprisingly: Calm.
When we went through heavy years - there were challenges of all sorts - the interior deco fell by the wayside, calm made way to chaos. I discovered Mary Kondo and tried desperately to implement her advice, and we got somewhere... not overly far, but we were beginning to make headway.
Then came the forced move to Faerie Glen. It was a damned-if-we-do-and-damned-if-we-don't situation. Dismantling our home of 19 years, that had got - frankly - overly chaotic; and trying to reestablish a new one in a place that was full of OPF (other people's furniture) and OPK (other people's knicknacks). But we nearly got there, basing our colours less on the blues and greens and more on beige, brown, and rust-reds. We nearly got there.
Stuck inbetween this style change, disaster hit. And here we are, back in a place filled with OPF, not even in possession of our own things (they are in another country)... bringing it home acutely how much we have lost. With our Daddy, we have lost our home, our circle of friends, our favourite things, our income, our entire lives we'd led up to that point - and we've had to leave behind my parents in SA, and it hurts!
2006, when the photo was taken... I had just established that it's okay to write. I'm allowed. I need to give myself that permission again. He's not there to read my writings back to... in a big way I wrote for him, to entertain him. But I will have to allow myself to carry on anyway. To give myself that time off from reality, from mourning a lost life, a lost partnership, a lost everything... to immersing myself again in the fantasy worlds I created (with him always on the edges commenting). Will it hurt? You bet it will hurt! I remember every little comment he made... every laugh, every grin, every time I glanced up and he was there across the room just watching me, with that thoughtful look in his eyes. His hearty belly-laughter baring all his teeth to the very gums. He had an immense laugh and it was so contagious!
I'm going to revisit and re-edit the Solar Winds, even though they already are well-published and have reviews, because they need to be updated for this generation and its sensitivities. When I wrote them, saying "gypsy" was not a big deal, it carried the connotation it always has in European culture, that of music, mystery and magic, and flary dresses and dances around bonfires - but there has been so much abuse of the word that in the interim, it has become one of those no-no words in certain parts. So I'll fix that wording. It is a pity to lose the richness of the connotation.
But face it, perhaps the Free Tzigany of the Solar Wind's era are more an invention of a mythical people than anything else. It's the romance of the idea that Europe had its own half-invisible folk of wanderers, living like Tolkien's wood-elves off the land and having their own unique culture and music (which they do!!).
I'm studying into ways of scaling a business. Our brave venture that we started, Iain and I - P'kaboo Publishers - it must survive. It is another of our babies. So while I'm looking for dayjobs and teaching on a volunteer basis to pick up more experience locally, and giving some violin lessons, and building a network too, or rather various networks related to various different fields, I'm also thinking on what P'kaboo needs to swing back up.
Time for me to step up and be a mother again, and the entrepreneur I was capable of being together with Iain.
They said it would be hard. Yup. It is. But not impossible. So, it shall be done!