I must resist the gusts and stand tall, my roots are strong.
I am wide awake in the early hours of a cold and windy Saturday morning. My already fragmented slumber, pierced by the sound of my mobile phone announcing a text. A constant companion, my phone is usually in my pocket all day, in case some foul event descends upon one of my beloved. I don’t know how my mum coped without this constant reassurance that if one of her children or husband were involved in something dreadful, she would know one nanosecond later.
During the day at work, when my phone is in my pocket, I rarely hear the requests, hi and where are you , yet when it is on the kitchen bench or as it was tonight under a pillow on the sofa, meters away from my body, its boingy happy sound fills the whole house. Tonight it made me jump out of bed and stumble along the hall, arms outstretched like one of the zombie dead. I read the message through blinking, bloodshot eyes, my son, is on another continent, but is happy and doing well. Yay, I run back and tell my husband who has the enviable knack of listening, making the right reply, rolling over and resuming his sleep within, I would say less than a minute.
I am wide awake in the early hours of a cold and windy Saturday morning, I slip out of bed and settle on the sofa, its cold so I pull a knitted throw over my legs, should I have thrown the throw, I’m tired but cannot sleep, my body is weary but it holds my mind which is forever crowded and demanding answers. It feels like I have had a nasty week, I am unsettled, the upcoming changes are scary. Our new neighbours glibly announced that our fence is on their land and that in the morning they were removing it to reclaim 180cm to build a retaining wall for their brand new landmark home.
I came home the next day to find a year’s worth of compost, new planting and my fence in the skip: the screen trees have been left with roots exposed and hanging off a cliff face of clay and my naked, showered body will now be visible to the whole of the street. I have had to renegotiate my contract at work, for me an ordeal, health problems and uncertainty have undermined my little world this week, I feel like those trees, exposed, things are changing, I want my fence back.
I am wide awake in the early hours of a cold and windy Saturday morning. The cat has seen the glow of my screen and now wants to come inside. She is calling to me, open the door, it is cold outside, but I am snugly in my knitted blanket and she needs to remember that she is cat, sometimes she looks the other way.
I feel like those trees, exposed, things are changing, I want my fence back.
My daughter had a cat tattoo today, it is fierce and beautiful and unique, like her, and holds a special meaning. I am now part of that tattoo as we went together and I waited on the large squishy brown sofa, while she decided the patterns and outlines that were to forever mark this day. I had hours to think and read about Japanese men who had whole body tattoos, even their penises were covered, I stared at the pictures for too long trying to imagine the process. The cat has given up and gone off to make a warm bed somewhere.
You need to accept that you are cat, embrace your nature, see the mouse.
I am wide awake in the early hours of a cold and windy Saturday morning, it’s still dark and now my body has caught up and is rumbling, asking for food. The wind is dying down, I hope the trees manage to hold on, resist the gusts, and then we can build a new fence, make friends with our new neighbours and watch them as they enjoy their new home, get married and raise their own family. I will get used to the new view and grow more trees and make more compost, I will place a hook near the shower to hold a towel close by, my contract will be renewed and medical matters dealt with, I will resist the gusts. On reflection all is well, I must be fluid and accept change, not allow myself to get caught up in the small stuff. I will let the cat in and make a cup of coffee, invite her onto my blanket and we will watch Netflix until the proper morning comes when I will want to sleep. Then we will meet with friends, laugh and drink cocktails, that’s the real part of life not the 180cm of dirt.
I am wide awake in the early hours of a cold and windy Saturday morning but……………….