Sunday, December 26, 2010

What a year

Wow - what a year this has been. Big highs, awful lows, great learnings, humbling times, incredible beauty, depths of despair, awareness of fragility and power, strength in peace and presence.

Kayla started at a new school in January - Yellowbrick Road. I was apprehensive of the higher fees and the seemingly tons of holidays. It took her about 6 weeks to settle in properly. I think her teacher, Kelly, went through a very tough time with her and I suspect was almost ready to say to us that she was not suitable for the school. But Kelly's love and patience with Kayla paid off and that precious child absolutely thrived at school this year. She made huge strides in communication and in her cognitive development. She was so tired at the half term breaks and holiday times and needed the break.

I entered 2010 struggling with depression. I fought demons this year on that front. The Comrades training was a real blessing as I did a lot of meditative work while running. Sometimes it was dialogues with my angels, sometimes it was complete rants, shouting and swearing at them, sometimes it was a repetition of my mantra – Faith, Abundance, Gratitude. I had many visits with Roche – a psychologist who is also a friend and a mom to a young son with Down Syndrome. Her patience and wisdom propped me up many a time in this lonely journey. I often wondered how I could be so lonely when I did have people who loved me.

I tried a variety of supplements to aid serotonin levels but they could not quite do the trick. My suicidal thoughts were concerning to me but I knew they were more a plea for help and a plea to take me out of the place I was simply not coping with. After months of resisting and desperation to change how I was feeling I went onto anti-depressants. I went onto them this time with a real awareness that I still have to do a lot of work and not just go with the sensation of “feeling better” – as that just does really paper over the cracks. So the place I am at now is I am coping with “life’ better and continuing to work the lessons. I have found my love of life again and every day feel the spark of Gratitude at all I am and all I have. Thank you….

Training for Comrades was pretty much all encompassing. I ran A LOT! I was tired a lot, excited, filled with doubt, absolutely certain I could do it. I used up the medical aid very quickly as I spent so much time at Michael the Chiro and Leigh the biokinetsist and then Dr Preddy the doom and gloom Orthopaedic Surgeon. Each goal reached – the half marathon in Jan, the qualifying marathon in March, the 60km run in April – filled me with pride. I really did enjoy each of those events but they took their toll on my body. After the long run I developed a large bursitis in my left hip. When I went to see the Orthopaedic Surgeon he sent me for an MRI scan which also revealed I had 2 compressed spinal disks. He said I should not run more than 2 kms from now on and that I would not finish Comrades. At that stage words like that only fuelled my determination to get to finish line. I had 2 lots of cortisone injections over a space of 4 weeks. It wreaked havoc with my sleep and made my tea taste funny! When we were registering in Pietermaritzburg 2 days before Comrades the combi was broken into. Everything was stolen – all my running kit, our clothes, cameras. I remember running up and down the road in a complete hysterical panic praying that they had thrown the bags into the bushes somewhere. Wow that hour or so probably went down as one of the real lows in the year. Once the panic had receded and I started thinking about where to from here, the question I asked was: “Are all these challenges a warning to not run this race or are they challenges put there to run in spite of everything?” I went with the latter and decided to run in spite of everything. So I gave the baddies the middle finger and set off to the shops to replace the kit. I was so boosted by the love and support of my friends and family and my darling husband. I was proud of my courage and pleased that I am so bloody stubborn! The day was magnificent and is a story all of its own.

Post May was filled with dealing with insurance and broken vehicles. The Audi fell apart spectacularly and cost a small fortune. I was so sorry to part with that car but its time with us was finished. The geyser in the house was replaced as were the bits and pieces of things stolen. We were under insured – sigh … one more of those lessons!

I struggled with winter. The emptiness of no goals, depression (I was not on the anti-depressants yet), the start of working on new business – setting up the maintenance division for Greg, the cold, the cold. Winter was just not so lekker. But the wheel turns. I learnt what I did not want and was still working out what I wanted. I moved away from the maintenance side and focused on Garden Godmother. I am excited by this little venture.

Spring was so welcomed and I seemed to be emerging myself. Some of the learnings were:

Find Freedom in what I do

Stop the sabotage

Be Present

Live in Gratitude

Move from fear to Faith

Doug and I did some gentle down time and healing in Umhlanga in September while Kayla spent a couple of days at my folks. Thank you Mom and Dad for that gift of space and time.

I learnt about Abundance this year. I suspect it is not a lesson you learn once and never go back to it again but rather something that requires on going attention to.

I went to the Berg in October with Fi and her sisters for her 50th. It was a wonderful week away. She is a really special friend and an awesome woman. I am always humbled and strengthened in the Berg. Those mountains remind me of my space in this universe – that my time is brief, that I come from an enormous source of power.

I turned 40 this year. We had a fabulous party with lots of food and wine – just my sort of party! I was very conscious of changing decades and said to myself – this is my last trail run in my 30’s, this is my last shower in my 30’s, this is my last etc, etc…. My initial reason for running Comrades this year was to end off my 30’s with a bang. Tick – did that one!

I celebrated my little girl’s 6th birthday today. 6 years old – gosh – it sounds so big yet at times she is just such a little person. Kayla has been a gift in so many ways. I love her is such a deep consuming way yet I could cheerfully throw her in the dustbin sometimes. It is a privilege to be a mother to her. And again – Thank You.

Doug and I celebrated our 7th year anniversary. I absolutely LOVE being married to him. He is wonderful, funny, sexy, kind and thoughtful. We are still teaching each other things – and long may that last. I have a lot to learn from him.

So that basically was 2010 in an elongated type of nut-shell. Let’s see what the New Year brings – BRING IT ON……

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