I never used to get people when they said: ‘I loved my holiday, but oh my God it’s so good to be home.’ I’d be the one thinking to myself: you mad bitch! Get over yourself. The phrase: ‘I love sleeping in my own bed’, used to annoy the crap out of me. A bed’s a bed, I’d think to myself. Don’t be so bloody fussy. I went travelling around the World when I was 18 years old, so this probably had a lot to do with my attitude and age…age has a great deal to do with a lot of things.
So, does the fact that every time I now walk in to my house and let out an inward sigh of contentment, mean that I have aged? That sounds like a cheese or a fine wine (note I use the word, ‘fine’). Does it signify a stage in my life when I am content with what I have and I am able to fully appreciate the here and now? Does age bring with it the ability to exhibit mindfulness more readily?
I’ve been thinking a lot about mindfulness recently. At first, the word irritated me. I thought it sounded a bit naff – a bit of a nondescript, hippy word, that just meant what everyone does anyway, without feeling the need to give it a name. However, quite often now I find myself focusing on the present – almost forcing myself to look at the beautiful sun glistening on the frost on our dog walk, rather than tramping along in my wellies, head down, hands thrust in pockets and cold. I find myself really valuing time spent with the girls and I am really enjoying my bed: warmed up by the electric blanket every night now it’s Winter and full of possibilities.
Am I now being more mindful?
Christmas decorations have given the house a new life. Walking in to a room with bright lights flashing on the Christmas tree is good for the soul. Seeing tinsel enveloped around a warm, soft glow gives the heart a much needed lift at this time of year. Add candles and you have instantly created a moment to savour, a place to enjoy. Cost is irrelevant – our decorations are second hand, pre-loved in fact so they bring double the joy.
Home can be home whatever the state of your castle. It’s the memories you create within it that matter. I love candles and wine and so I fill my house with candles and wine. For others it’s cushions and throws and for many it’s just laughter and forgiveness. Every house has a tale to tell and I think that the key to knowing you have made your house your home, is that every time you walk into your house, you inwardly sigh.
My God, life can throw you some curve balls. Your walls could tell a story that would sell like water in the desert on Amazon. But create that space that gives you something back. A house that as much as it absorbs, it releases in endorphins, that every time you walk in to your house you inhale. Endorphins so powerful that they can see through the kids’ toys strewn everywhere and they can see through your cursory wipe. They intoxicate you, so that you feel in a happy place. A place where you feel safe. A place where you can just be.