September 2018


From my bedroom window I have a spectacular view. Right now the plumb pink plumes of the magnolia tree sway as the wind wrestles with each waving branch. Next to it; a bottlebrush tree stands proudly as two of our resident Tui’s perch in full sight. Each morning I wake to their symphony of competing tunes. A giant flowering Camelia acts as camouflage as it pushes against the fence to the neighbouring property. It’s been raining all night and there are puddles everywhere. Suddenly the bigger of two male Tui flies over to the guttering for a bath and water splashes onto the window pane. I’m reminded of the time my son and I stood outside arm in arm and watched in wonder as the Tui took his bath. 

It’s a beautiful view and particularly so mid morning when the sun sneaks through the trees and dances its way onto the walls and my bed. I sit here satisfied and grateful to be sharing this magical moment in nature. Spring feels hopeful as each bulb and bud opens from its slumber. I can see and hear so much outside my bedroom window. Nature has a beauty that when captured by the right lens is truly breath taking. 

I’ve learnt that choosing the right lens to see our lives through is vital when creating a joyous, precious and grateful day. 

I could have looked through my window with an entirely different lens and my perception would change too. I could choose to see the remains of a cold, dank and wet, windy wintery day. I could choose to see the dark, threatening cloud above the magnolia tree as sign of more rain to come. I could choose to look at my pyjama clad body complete with a soothing hot water bottle seeping into my side and see only its limitations. Moving is hard for me today. My planned cardio workout is making several trips to the loo and showering earlier felt like an endurance event. Today I have very little choice; I need to stay in bed. 

Now with all the dramatics that come with screaming nerve pain, I could have chosen to feel sorry for myself and hate the universe for dealing my body an unfair hand (excuse the pun) or I can see today as an opportunity. A wonderful opportunity to grow and learn and rest and reflect and observe. Sometimes I allow my lens to go out of focus and I fail to see the beauty in my present moment. I forget to smile and feel grateful. My mind is sometimes limited by the thoughts I feed it. My imagination is then dimmed by the glare of my limiting body and the world turns sepia with my darkening thoughts. It is in times like that the ‘I’m not enough’ channel comes on in my mind, singing that old familiar tune. 

But not today. Today my lens is clean, bright and smiling. Today I choose to focus my lens on the present moment and the joy it brings. I see the promise of warmth and light and movement in each waving arm of the branches outside. My partner brings me a fresh, hot cup of strong Kenya bold tea and as I take a sip I feel loved. I feel grateful. I look down at my body and know my pain is temporary and soon enough I will be outside picking flowers. Until then I sit here and enjoy the quiet contemplation my day allows. Many people yearn for the chance to lie in bed and look at flowers in bloom and Tui’s bathe. Some people might say I’m lucky to have such a day; to do nothing. I have a good book lying open; partially read beside me. And it’s in that moment I smile and tell myself that I am not lucky; I am blessed. Today is a good day and I am enough just as I am. x