On Starting Again


And so the first anniversary of My Mum’s death came and went and it was nothing and everything all at once. Perhaps too raw to explain yet. I meant to carry on regardless, but it turned out to be harder than I anticipated and I retreated for a while: seven days of enduring something none of us here can yet tolerate.
Then yesterday I stood in my little house, cleaning it and wiping away the cobwebs, spiders taking advantage of our absence,  have seen fit to form, when my friend Debbie came up the path and said hello. And we stood in the house that was once my home and she said well I think this feels right: It is time to close the door on all these memories and start your life again. And because she is the voice of my own conscience I nodded, and we talked about Spark Joy and how on earth I am going to find somewhere for the many books on my huge immovable bookcase when there isn’t a bookcase to be seen in the Bungalow and ne’er a wall to hold one if I could take it with me.
It is time to start my life again. Richard will be released soon and it frightens me. And so much of what was is gone. Even Finn’s famed long curls have been trimmed in to a more manageable short cut (something that felt like a little death all of its own). It is time to start my life again. So last week I signed up to the Elite Blog Academy so I could have someone teach me how to trim the behemoth that BrocanteHome has become. How to tidy it up and show it off to audiences I have never had the inclination to reach out to, but now need in a world where writing isn’t enough.
I need life to be leaner. For my world to be a lighter place in which to exist. I need my bottom to be half the size it is becoming. For BrocanteHome – like Finley’s hair – to be more manageable so I know whether I am coming or going, not flapping hither and thither like some sort of demented donkey carrying far too much on his sweltering back.
So yes. All this crazy imagery of hot donkeys is the long way around to saying that as I move through the very first blogging course I have ever taken, you may just notice some changes. This week all the categories that once existed on the blog have been deleted and just five new categories will take their place. Five categories that will represent the five aspects of my life as it is now. The guiding posts to a life less ordinary, and one that will in the very near future be the five pillars of living life the Brocante way.
You see life is never static. Change happens by necessity, because without it life spirals downwards and we have to keep daring to dream that it can be better. That we can update our websites without fear of heaven knows what. And more than that, update our own identities in this relentless search for comfort, authenticity and peace.
Is it time to start YOUR life again?

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  1. I wish you peace and happiness going forward Alison. I recently did a smudging ceremony all by myself at home. It’s where u burn dried sage to get rid of negative energies, and follow it with burning sweetgrass to invite blessings and positive energies. If you google or Pinterest it you will find a crazy amount of info. I was worried I’d find it abit too hocus pocus…but I have to say I loved it and the calm I felt afterwards. I will be doing it regularly from now on. Worth a go. Thinking of you. xx

  2. That is such a lovely idea Mary… A kind of thank you for all the happy times and goodbye to all the bad times ritual…
    I have made smudge sticks before and wafted them around – but without any ceremony to it, so I might just do exactly what you suggest.
    Thank you so much for taking the time to think of me. It is as always , so very much appreciated.xx

  3. Oh how starting life again is such a scary thought and yet we know it always holds such promise of new, fresh, clean and beautiful.
    Yes, it is definitely time for me to start my life again. I’ve been stuck in a rut for years – with housekeeping, self-care, priorities, laziness and just lack of passion and creativity.
    I do wish you the best and I know the future is bright and lovely for you Alison! You can do this and you deserve it!

  4. Thinking of you! I can’t begin to imagine what you are feeling, but know that you are being thought of and prayed for.

  5. I will follow you anywhere, as I have all these years, with great interest and gratitude for the many ways which you have influenced my housekeeping, my book selections, my music selections, and my outlook on life. Hugs to you on this new journey, and much empathy as you navigate life without Mum. I am still trying to find my way without mine, and I lost her way too early, 36 years ago.

  6. I’m definitely with you on the starting again on a new life and journey Alison.
    One thing I have been thinking is to take all the good and happy things in the past and view that they are “in the safe “. They are untouchable by the bad things and we can take them out and cherish them whenever we want and are ours forever.
    Looking forward….

  7. For what it’s worth, Alison, (and it may not be worth much) I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in housekeeping, vintage or otherwise.I accidentally found your website when I was googling for some images for a women’s history lecture I was preparing many years ago. Yet I drop back in from time to time to read and catch up with you because you are such an engaging writer. When I started reading you were fresh out of your marriage and it’s been interesting to see your life evolve and read your reflections on it all. I sincerely hope this new phase works out well for you.
    The point I want to make is that you are an excellent writer- you have real talent and I think that is more important than whatever package you choose to showcase it in. Just keep writing! If I were you, that’s where I’d focus my energy.
    Thanks for many hours of enjoyment!

  8. Such a heartfelt sharing, thank you.
    I too am at a restarting place in my life as I reach out into a new community to form new friendships. Yesterday, at a book club meeting, I was asked what I am, and it caught me off guard. What am I? I fumbled around trying to find words and finally came up with “I am a stay at home mom”, the one phrase which says so much and so little at the same time. *sigh*
    Peace — Ann

  9. Is it wrong to follow up too much change with starting over? I was widowed six years ago. At that time, I exchanged staying at home with my babies for a job and college. Some of my children have become adults, and others have grow so much it is taking my breath away. I remarried and even got some bonus children. I have a lot of children. Ha! As far as changes go, even as life evolves the way it always has, I added these huge changes and it was completely exhausting. I have completely lost my homemaking way, and to my new husband it seems, perhaps, like I have pulled off a really dirty trick. Now, I have until September to remember it when I begin a new, much bigger, teaching job. This post was like a call to action. I need things to be leaner and easier, too. I will be working it out here in Texas reading along with you, Allison.

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