drifting away

Every time that I get cold, my mind returns to the memory

That tucks itself away, and burrows out when chilly air

Pinches at the skin and sinks into my bones. The memory,

I’d given birth as the sun came up and now I’d braved

Leaving baby in his plastic cot, to let the water run

In rivulets, the pink tinged water circled in the plug.

But when I dried myself, that cold took hold as air blew through

The open window on the ward. The blood loss seemed to hit at once

And that was when the vision blurred, the shaking stopped

As something shifted deep inside, a slipping of the soul.

Heart rate hammered as I reached the place I slept, the place

Where the baby had been born, freshly made with starched white sheets

But now I’m sure it will also see a death, my soul is drifting

Hardly noticing that the baby’s gone. Reaching for the scarlet button

By the bed, the jug of water and the ‘well done’ card.

I had never thought of death before, but there I was, thinking

That he’d grow up on his own, looking at the aging photographs

And wondering what his mum was like, did she love him?

Why she had to leave?

happy news is always good news

Love can shine through photographs

And joy should spread like sweetest viruses

That pull us in and crack a smile

And smiles are all we need to move

Through this world of hurt and pain.

So soak it up and don’t turn sour,

You need this healthy medicine

To soothe the aches and pains of life.

I saw this photograph and my heart just melted with happiness for them. The love and joy just seems to shine out from the picture and my immediate thought was how similar the shot is to the one at the end of the movie, Notting Hill.

I kind of just wanted to put the picture on my blog because I like to flick through the pictures every so often and it’s nice to have either a fond memory or just a nice feeling in the pit of my stomach.

I do think that, as a couple, these two have taken a bit of battering and it’s nice to see that they have something lovely to celebrate. I’m a huge fan of the royals and I think it’s so sad that they felt the need to leave, but I think that we should all be respectful of their decision. After all, it is a job of sorts, and nobody would make you feel ashamed for leaving a job that made you miserable in a normal situation.

I’m sure that most people can really wish them well and feel happy for them. We are in the middle of a pandemic and I think that we need to grab onto everyone’s happy news. We need to stop being nasty and bitter because we are hiding behind a screen and a keyboard. In my opinion, good news breeds more good news, so let’s not stamp on this.

Much Love

Rachel xx

i have no photos

three women wearing high heels
Photo by Inga Seliverstova on Pexels.com

I have no Polaroids tucked into boxes,

Pushed into wardrobes or under a bed.

I have no pictures to touch with fingers,

Pointing out memories of summers long gone.

It felt normal back then,

To not have a camera, locked in my hands,

But now I look back at the hazy images

Crowding the corners of an aging mind

And wonder what’s lost through ravages of time.

When I went travelling around South Africa at the beginning of the noughties, I went armed with a disposable camera that eventually got lost, left behind in some awful hostel in the arse end of nowhere.

I sometimes wonder what was on that film and what memories I have lost. There were probably things on there that I have completely forgotten about (and that I was probably a bit too drunk to remember anyway)!

However, those memories aren’t the only ones that have been lost. I’m notoriously bad for not having my phone on me, so I rarely have a camera either. It means that I often live in the moment, but it also means that I don’t capture that moment to look back on years later.

I sometimes feel really sad that I can’t find a single photo of the man I married in South Africa. There are no pictures of our wedding day or the flat that we shared in Durban. And that makes me really sad now.

I also don’t have any photos of when I was pregnant. None of those images of me lovingly holding my bump exist. I sometimes wish that I was famous and got papped so that I had some more photos of myself to look back on, worrying that I’ll become an old lady and have no photos of myself as a young person to look back on.

I’m going to make more of an effort to take photos and films because I love photographs so much. I’ll even make beautiful albums that can be passed down the generations. Or maybe I’ll just keep living my life…..

Much Love

Rachel xx

The Parenting Journey (a poem)

Sometimes when you set out into the land of parenting you can be a little bit gung ho and think that everything is just going to fall into place. You think that you will give birth to this rosy cheeked angel who will grown into the perfect child and then the perfect teenager and the journey will end when they fly the nest as a fully formed adult.

But in reality we all know it’s not quite that simple. We forget that most of the time we spend struggling with next to no sleep. Partners who seemed almost perfect suddenly become an annoyance at best; at worst, they disappear altogether and leave you to do the job all on your lonesome.

It’s a really difficult road to traverse and a lot of people gloss over the horrible bits. That’s pretty much what this poem aims to address. It’s the pain and the agony, the tears and the tantrums in all of their technicolour glory. It’s true that children really are a blessing but life is difficult and parenting really brings this message to the forefront. So without further ado, I give you The Parenting Journey:

The blurred and fuzzy black and white

image doesn’t seem so right

knowing that the little bean is mine.

I’ve seen it played out for

The other couples that deserve it more,

That know the way to sparkle and to shine

As loving leaders who will guide

That little child and push aside

The horrors that can plague our earth.

And when the babe is finally born,

And our hearts are gladly torn

Into shreds that have no worth,

We realise without a doubt

That older worries all mean nowt,

As new life starts to take its root.

There will be pain and hurt and strife

As there is as part of life

And that’s a point you can’t dispute.

So then you have to watch them grow

Even though it hurts you so

To watch them stumble, trip and fall,

When all that’s running over, round and through

Your mind are all the things that are not true

That hold you back from standing tall.

It’s all a bunch of hurtful lies

That are designed to close your eyes

To all the things you do so well.

You’ve brought him up through all these years

Of fun, of laughter and some tears.

Sure you lose your temper, you may yell.

You may wonder what it is that keeps you going,

And then you see him as he’s growing

And see the journey you are taking.

You realise it’s worth the struggle,

The daily battles that you juggle,

Because there’s love with no mistaking.