If you want a life that is full, and make no mistake life only gets faster and is not that long at all, then listen carefully and listen well:
I regret only those loves that I did not express well, or slandered or made wrong; do not let miserly minds take from the gifts of the heart.
I know that with deep truth – it is the acts of courage and defiance that led me best, that led me to husband and to friends. I did not listen to expectation and I was not agreeable to the images that others had decided for me. Craft your own destiny, fill it with poetry and the laughter of those people younger than you.
Children of your own are less important than the love you can feel from yourself, from the birds and the trees, the love that is clean presence and sunlight and rain.
Listen to the voices of others who have stories and wisdom to share, then make your own mind up. Do not be afraid to express your displeasure even when others wish you were silent or nice. There is a sharpness required to face life as it is, and to not become squishy and fat. Do not think for one second that the patterns of behavior around you are new; there is always the echo of the past, heritage, familiar and human impulses.
Make sure you write, and create, and express – make your mark – out on the world. Do it for yourself or for those who will profit or laugh, let it be serious, or nonsense poems too. All of this is in important. Stories and myths are what will nourish you the longest. Do not be afraid or hide from letting stories emerge from your mind and your soul. I am proud for how you followed your own path and own way.
Forgiveness, not just for others but for yourself is key, and easy to put off or leave behind. I was young and afraid, and the decisions we make when we are faced with something beyond our years only turn out well from luck. There will be mess, and loss, and hurt towards and from those that are most loved. Do not let these seeds become bitter fruit in your soul.
Drink not for escape but for pleasure, for celebration and for family. Eat what you want and rejoice when it is not rationed or given forcibly. Enjoy the options and the freedoms you have. Remember nature. Look at the sunrises and feel the moon. Know where your roots lie and how deep they go. Remember the story of lorna doone and the forbidden loves.
Keep walking, keep moving, keep finding a reason to laugh. Allow yourself to feel anger too. Try not to let it fester and turn to spite. Don’t become possessive of those who you love.
Give freely and encourage money to be spent on that which brings joy and laughter, frivolity and fun. Life is short and letting it become too heavy does no good to anyone.
No matter what happens, circumstance of war, death, abandonment, you do not have to be a victim. You do not have to isolate yourself in misery, you do not have to become a docile domesticated cow – you can push and pull and laugh and rage too. I represent independence and determination. I married again and left but kept the house. I lived alone for many years but did not let that defeat me, I was creative and found ways to bring in people and life to my home.
My pride did blind me and made me stubborn, I found it hard to accept help and support from others and that was not kind. Sometimes I snapped as a defense. Learn to be gracious in the face of support, not abrasive, accepting help and love does not mean that you are weak.
Do not let yourself become consumed or absorbed in the world of men and people – I had my garden, my birds, my walks along the countryside to look at the trees. The story of going on adventures and sitting in the trees resonates with me and you need to have this aspect to your world and your life.
“was re- reading the Story you wrote me for my Birthday- Lovely- You should write one on Trees- They have seen and heard so much in their lives-” (granny 2011)