The house is quiet and the light pours in from the window just beside me. Candles flicker and the room warms up. My body feels fragile and shaky, I’ve been fighting the cold all week. It was inevitable I suppose. The washing machine whirs in the kitchen and I am cherishing the solitude after the whirlwind of kiddies this past week. I have noticed this year, there is something different about the sky in October. Its blue is brilliant and deep and void of clouds. The light is long and shadowy and lingers until the sun disappears in the late afternoon. Last year, we missed it entirely, Autumn, we chased the sun and skipped the seasons. This time round, i’m cherishing it all. The fading and shifting colours, the cool air and sometimes still warm days, Summer has long since slipped away for another year and yet the sun warms us at midday. I sip ginger tea and eat crusty, buttered toast, flick through magazines and rest my eyes. I am willing my body to heal up.

I don’t want to forget these moments. I am mulling over these simple days, the prospect of elevating the mundane.

It’s in the mundane moments, stillness and solitude, when the world stops, that I feel truly content. I I am beginning to realise, the big thing, that big thing we all long for, is an accumulation of all the small things. It’s the whole thing that matters. It’s in this place that humans thrive creatively, all of us, taking part in the ongoing creation of the world around us. We start with the details. I’m learning, about myself, about you, and the world, that ordinary people can live in the midst of incredible stresses, with joy and wonder and awe. 

So, i’m choosing gratitude, scribbling at the end of long days in my green journal beside the bed. Gratitude for the sky, for the way the sun lights this old attic room up all day long, gratitude for the warming meal eaten beside friends, gratitude for the golden leaves dropping from the trees. There’s a million things to be thankful for. A million ways each day to take stock and appreciate all that life has to offer, even in, and especially in times of trouble. This year has not been easy, it’s held loss and change, new cities new jobs, miscarriages and friendship loss and illness. And yet. There is beauty in it all, there is beauty in the twists and turns, the valleys and peaks and I choose to be thankful. To soak in the sunlight, to hold my mug of steaming tea, to enjoy the flickering candles and for just a moment, be still. 

Bethany WalkerComment