Without boring everyone senseless and realising that we have all been dealing with the fall-out from Covid, Omicron and all the variations and differing impact therein, suffice to say some situations have been more complicated or bureaucratic as a consequence. For example, a lot of our time has been focused upon ensuring that my mother-in-law has been / is looked after and comfortable. Over the past year or so she has been unwell and it was agreed that it would be best for her to move from Hampshire to Gloucestershire (Cheltenham). Naturally there has been a great deal of work involved – selling her house, finding another residence and all the palaver of dealing with medical people, solicitors, estate agents. Subsequently Paul and I know all the various routes up and down the country back-to-front and inside-out as we have had to travel so much to organise boxing-up and clearing the house. Invariably there were a great many trips to charity shops and hopefully the ‘new’ stock swelled the Christmas coffers for them. We also had a number of bookings with charities who collect furniture or white goods, such as Emmaus and The Heart Foundation, but that was increasingly frustrating because of the rules and regulations around what they are allowed to accept or – more commonly – cannot. It was such a shame as we were keen that the good quality furniture might be of benefit to others but invariably we were thwarted at the attempt. It got me very down to realise that as much as we want to do “the right thing” it was nigh on impossible – especially trying to work logistics from a distance. Good grief, it was bad enough dealing with the official people who were being paid to do a job, Really, you couldn’t make it up – Paul contacted the estate agent about three weeks ago just to check up on how the house sale was progressing with the buyers only to be informed that they were moving in the next day!? Seriously! Apparently (pinch of salt to be taken here) one of the solicitors’ offices had neglected to keep the vendor (Paul) in the loop! Isn’t that shocking? What is more shocking (in my opinion) is that once the not-inconsiderable amount of money was transferred to the holding account (or whatever it is called) there was no mention of some kind of ‘discount’ on fees for their slipshod work. Oh no – they just take their fee, pay the estate agent and wander off into the sunset rubbing hands in glee…. call me a cynic but we did more of the paperwork and bureaucratic toing and froing than those particular offices. Personally, not impressed. However, by that stage, it has just been a relief to draw a line under that busyness.
So, the above might explain some lack of engagement on my part, but I also have to admit that Christmas, New Year and January was also somewhat onerous with the various isolation periods and changing of plans and the differing effects of these on different people. As I said previously, I didn’t actually feel necessarily ‘put out’ by enforced isolation at the time but, over the past month, I am not sure if I am feeling a bit depressed? It is very weird. I don’t feel unhappy as such, but I do feel very tired and weary. That is both physically and mentally, and probably emotionally too. Oh yes – let’s embrace the whole gamut!! I have also felt stressed with some aspects of the various job roles that keep me increasingly occupied but think it is probably sensible to review everything at Easter – when at least we should be out of an English winter which can bring even the chirpiest optimistic a bit down in the middle of February!
What do you think?
I have seen it in parents who give up every life plan to care for a child with a disability, somebody who tenderly supports their partner through mental illness, a friend who gives up their only meal for someone hungrier than them, or a neighbour who takes time out of their hectic life to drop a care package to the person next door.
Rather than a pursuit of a feeling, love is about devoting a life to courageous acts of service that usher more kindness into our world, especially in the darkest of circumstances.
Small acts of love often mean the world. Cups of tea handed out in love, fresh towels after a night in the pouring rain, or a set of clean clothes and undies when someone walks in drenched to the bone.
Think about what love means to you. This Valentine’s Day, perhaps you can forgo the flowers and chocolates, in favour of an act of love that will truly make a difference to someone's life. If you can, please make a donation to our "Nothing Says I Love you Like a Clean Pair of Undies" appeal”…
Click the link: Wayside Chapel | Love Over Hate