Blast From The Past – Ode To A Playground

We spent a wonderful evening with our friends last night and as we all are from overseas, we sometimes talk about our “motherland” and how we spent our childhood. Moments like those bring up memories and one of them is about a special place I used to spend time at.

I’d like to share a post about it as a Blast From The Past today. Do you have a place like this as well?

Not my spot, but pretty similar to it…

You’re gone. It will never be the same again. The magic I found in you will not return. The timing though could not be better. I wonder why it happened at that moment. Maybe it was meant to be. Maybe it happened so I could let go of you for good as everything was about to change anyway…

I’ve spent many hours sitting with you admiring the moss growing on your roots and imagining that little fairies would live inside and under you. The little creek that was softly flowing past you took my imagination even further. Maybe there would be water fairies too? Would the fairies get along? Would they need little boats too? How would they build their houses? Was the moss enough for them to keep warm? Were they hiding in pine cones?

I was a child. A child that took her horse for a ride and stopped on a regular base next to you to let the horse have a drink. Then I decided to actually stop and have a snack and let my imagination run wild. I child that picked up pine cones, pretending they were little forest people. A child that collected sticks to build little shelters for the pine cone people. A child that was looking forward to return, smell the fresh forest air, listen to the splish splash of the creek, watching sticks float by, caressing her horse while telling the forest people story to the beautiful mare. A child that eventually turned into a teenager, who still loved to escape the real world on her rides and take a breather, sitting on the cool moss, smelling the moss, the soil, the forest. A teenager that turned into a young adult, enjoying to take a break at that very spot and let the mind wander.

You provided me with many beautiful days. Hot summer days were spent in the shade of your branches. Crisp fall days were equally enjoyed. In winter though you were off limits as there was just no way to get to you. Every spring I was wondering if you would still look the same or if nature would have changed something. Of course you changed slightly. The loss of a branch, a new created little arm of the creek. They were small changes. What didn’t change was the calm you gave me. The little escape from whatever was going on in my life. The energy I found back to after taking a break under the branches.

I still visited you after growing up, even after losing my horse. And I was hoping for many moments spent admiring you with my children. But it was not meant to be.

We decided to move to Australia but that was not the biggest change. Nature changed. It changed everything.

It was a huge storm. A lot of rain. And the river that fed the creek carried too much water and too much debris to be handled. There was a massive flood that changed the entire area you grew in. Months after the storm, when it was safe to return and things were kind of cleaned up everything looked different. Gone was the creek. Gone was the gentle river bank. Gone were you.

Gone was my childhood.

It seemed like a clear end to a chapter of my life. It seemed like a sign that it was time to move on.

The interesting thing is that this area was what I would have missed the most. Now it’s no longer there. As much as I felt sad for it to be gone, it helped me to let go of what would no longer be there. My childhood, my horse and my life in Switzerland.

The memories though will stay with me forever.

Inspired by the Daily Post Daily Prompt – Ode To A Playground

Tell Me Something Good #128

Happy Monday to you. We are way on the way towards summer and spring has definitely sprung down here in Australia. I tell you: I’m so ready for warm and sunny weather. Apparently this week will serve us more or less everything. From nice spring weather (like just now) to really chilly and almost winter-y weather later on. But that’s Melbourne. Always a trick up its sleeve.

So let’s start this week on a positive.

It’s easy:

• Mention something that you consider being good in the comments

• Or write a post about it on your blog (please don’t forget the pingback if you do so I don’t miss out and also share the link to it in the comments below). Something good that happened to you recently, or something good you will experience in a little while, or something good you know will happen soon. Something that makes you feel good.

• Share this post and invite your followers as well.

You know it by now! We are not moving any further without a little happy dance. It really doesn’t matter which style of dancing you like. Just do it. Just dance! Enjoy yourself 🙂

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Shake it! Have some fun. And when you think you are done, why not adding one more round of shimmy to the day?

Are you sure you are done? Well then here is what I’d like to share with you today:

“My daughter’s passion and commitment for the things she does are amazing. I love watching her play soccer or dance. Or doing her martial art. What she takes on she does properly, always putting her best effort forward. Yesterday they she had her annual dance show. Something they work towards to for months. It’s the highlight of the year and as one girl said ‘once it’s here it’s over in now time’. It was amazing to watch them all dance. Most of all of course my daughter. Every year everyone is looking forward to the costume reveal and most of the time you are blown away by the beautiful creations. Sometimes though you pick the short straw and end up with a costume that is not really that nice. It happens. And this year one of hers was probably the worst of all of them (as most parents agreed). She hated it. She was disappointed. She wondered how someone can possibly choose something like this. Yet she was up there, on stage, rocking that costume, giving her all, smiling and performing. And she looked stunning.

Sometimes we get handed a short straw. We can go into hiding and give into the frustration or we can do what my girl did, put a smile on our face, accept that we can’t change it and just run with it (or in her case dance). Needless to say, that I’m a super proud mom (as always)…”

Blast From The Past – For You, My Son

He is sitting next to me, reading his book. I’m joking. Asking him if he would read to me. He just looks at me with this “are you serious” kind of look. I answer him that I am and he just laughs and shakes his head. He keeps reading. And then he stops, looks at me and asks me if I’m serious. If I am he would be happy to read to me. And I see the love he has for me in his eyes. I smile at him and tell him that it’s okay. Just keep reading.

I can’t help myself watching him from the corner of my eyes. He has grown up so much. My little boy is a teenager. A teenager who doesn’t need his mom as much anymore as he used to and still does so much. A teenager who still happily cuddles, hugs and kisses his mom, even in public. A teenager who has just scored his first job and is doing great in it. A teenager who talks so much “rubbish” with his friends. A teenager with a deep voice and a good humor. A smart, polite young man. And still… He needs me. He needs his dad. Somewhere in there is still a little boy and most likely will always be.

While I think about all of this so many memories come up. So please forgive me that I share this Blast From The Past today. I just can’t help myself ;-)…

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#atozchallenge – N for Normal

Normal is a very big word. Don’t you think? Because let’s be honest: We all kind of define normal in a different way. Yes, I agree, there are the standard norms that society dictates, which in itself can already be challenging, but then it quickly starts getting complicated. Just think about how often we use the word “normal” when we tell a story, describe and compare something…

I can’t stop thinking about an episode I encountered when my daughter was not even 2 yet. She was a bigger baby, and by bigger I don’t mean it in a negative way. She was a big baby. The kind of baby that is hard work to give birth to. Not the normal (see, there it is…) kind of size baby. While in baby swimming class, which was just a normal thing to do back then, I met a group of women. Some were Australians, one was Canadian, one was American and one was Eastern European. Now we all were normal looking moms but the Easter European one, who seemed rather skinny. Our kids were quite similar in shape and size. We got along. It was normal to hang out for a cup of coffee after swimming and often we caught up for a coffee outside of the baby swimming. While most of the moms in that class were first moms, my American friend already had a son who was about my son’s age. So that was pretty handy. But back to my Eastern European friend…

Now she has a couple of degrees. She is a smart cookie. And she knows it. While I’m still in contact with her, I wouldn’t say we are friends. We don’t catch up. It’s the random “hi, how are you” every now and then. There are many reasons for it but I guess they can all be listed under one topic: Going to far.

One morning we caught up for coffee and I was handing my daughter a snack. It was not an unhealthy snack. It was the normal fruit and biscuit combination most moms offered their kids during the morning. And then the lecture started. I was told that I need to cut out this and that from my daughters diet. That it was not normal that she was such a big baby and that I need to watch out. Funny enough I just had a visit at the nurse the day before for our regular check (something that is done here in Australia) and she said that my girl is well underway.

I don’t know why people think it’s okay to tell other people what they have to do. But looking at the pictures of this woman’s daughter on Facebook now I can tell you that I’m sometimes tempted to write to her and say that I think it’s not normal how thin her girl is. That I’m worried about her skinny thin arms and that I wonder if she is feeding her enough. But that would be bitchy… Looking and listening to some moms I see I wonder though, if that would not make me more normal… And then I wonder if I actually want to be normal…

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