“Home is where the heart is,
Even if you can’t remember which box you packed it in.”
What can I say every bone and muscle in my body is aching? They are telling me I am alive and well. They are reminding me of my blessings and that real work is painful physically, emotionally, and financially. And then, when you least expect it the Creator sends you an angel to remind you to be grounded and grateful. As you are aware Leila and I will soon be moving into our new home. Yesterday was a major work day to get boxes out of our place and stored in the new home. What a crew! I had to make them stop for lunch. Second crew came over in the early evening to assist with more packing. In this past week complete strangers have become friends and I mean friends, not acquaintances. They are looking out after Leila and me to ensure what needs to be done gets done. Over the years my work places became the source to build my family and the Police Service gifted me some pretty terrific folks, both from within the Service and the community connections made through my position. And I certainly would be remiss, if I didn’t mention the richness in my circle were it not for Leila, thanks to her love of hockey. This was yesterday’s team.
In the late afternoon Samantha and I were on a quest to find hanging baskets to add a little colour to the amazing garden left by the previous owners. This is where the angel, Nicole appeared. As we got caught up since our last encounter and talked about why we were at the nursery, she stated, “First world problems.” Not to discount what we face, rather to remind us we are privileged. We both looked at each other and acknowledged the power of her statement. My thoughts immediately turned to newcomers and the stories they share; to my grandparents’ decision to emigrate to Canada; and to the work I once did in Jamaica.
Working in the family business, education and the Police Service provided me the opportunity to learn about life and the importance of clearly being present for others. Every once in a while, a reminder is required to keep me grounded and grateful. Leila, my work, and new home – all come with ups and downs – the roller coaster called life. The truth that I have aching bones and muscles from lifting, carrying, packing, etc. to move to a new home is a gift, an aide-mémoire I am truly alive. The fact I can move to a new home comes from a life supported by the teachings of my ancestors; the work I did over the years provided an income and source for savings; the circle of people who stood by me, encouraged me no matter that I was far from perfect; and a naiveite that anything is possible. At this moment I am emotionally overwhelmed and thankfully, it is not a concern.
The realization of the many who I love, who have been my source of strength so many times over the years, my go-to people that no longer are in my daily life because we have different life paths or live in different places saddens me. Finding time to connect to have a meaningful conversation with no interruptions or demands is rare and my heart hurts. Why can’t we have it all? Why can’t the people who make us smile, laugh, cry be with us always? With the limitations of a 24-hour clock, the need to provide, the challenge to parent, the expectations to complete the to-do list, and the recognition we are on a journey assists in reconciling the circle providing love, support, teachings is fluid. Sometimes I fret wondering if people who enter my heart know they matter, that they are missed, that their influence remains present, that they are a part of who I have become and the fruition of my goals. If you are reading this, know this is you of whom I speak.
Take time this week to appreciate the strangers that will become friends and honour those who moved to other circles to support, love and guide.