Unsuitable Girl


Aging gracefully?

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Aging gracefully?

A new experience for me today,  was watching a gardener work in our garden, clearing in an hour what would have taken me at least three days and given me aching hands, revealing the original design, rescued from tangled swirls  of dark green ivy and the bleached tresses of couch grass.

This is lovely, and allows me to refresh corners with new plants, to replace the ones which had been choked by weeds, and  look forward to a late summer’s  palette of sunny yellow Rudbeckias and  deep pink and brown Echinacea, all attracting bees, butterflies, hoverflies and providing colourful resting  spots  for damselflies and dragon flies……

But I still have vestiges of  that ‘unable to let go’ feeling. The garden is hugely a part of me, the plants akin to children, seedling ferns, garnered from amongst the pebble mulch today,  like new babies! This visceral connection will not dissolve easily.

But it’s all about accepting advancing years with grace,  (as my friend Laila  commented the other day), and using the means we have to pay  for  help.  The grace to see that Nelson , the Portuguese gardener is only too happy to have a fortnightly gig, for fifteen pounds an hour, to add to his wife’s earnings for house cleaning.  The grace to realise we have worked hard throughout our younger lives, and now we can ease back and enjoy the years we have left, in our garden , which we  made together in this small corner of the world.

So another lesson in letting go, as the years pass, letting go, and having  more time to do other creative things, like my novel, Unsuitable Girl, finishing it finally and getting it published,  having coffee with friends, going  bird watching in local reserves, seeing  Melissa and Paul, Magnus and Tamsin, Bijal, Sachin and Darsh,  going to concerts and  to the theatre, without that  guilty nagging thought,   'we should be doing the weeding, before it really gets out of hand.’

So, aging gracefully is possible, if we learn to let go. I am still learning!

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