Can I still say Happy New Year?
I realise we are at the beginning of February but Happy New Year! I’m slightly late to the party but better late than never. I feel like I’ve actually been in hiding all of December. I was preparing for my surprise visit home to Australia and it was best for me to avoid being on social media as much as possible as no doubt I would be the one to let it slip. I’ve always wanted to do a surprise like that and it was everything I imagined. And I imagined that moment a lot! It really was a special Christmas; Lucille’s first surrounded by her entire family both from Australia and Ireland. She won’t remember any of it of course but it was very special for me to be able to share a hot, noisy Christmas with her just as I did growing up. The flight from Dublin to Melbourne was a whole other story and one that caused me a lot of stress both in the lead up and in the sky but she did surprisingly well and a dear friend reminded me before I left; the flight is temporary and I reminded myself of that every minute she was awake.
I started writing this piece when I was in Melbourne. I was going to edit it but actually here you have it.
So here we are 2019. I am currently in a beach house on the Mornington Peninsula of Victoria with no internet connection, a fan about ten centimetres away from my face (it’s currently 42 degrees) and a pile of books I brought with the hope of reading at least a paragraph of one. I brought in the new year by being in bed by 9:30pm. You can probably imagine that jet lag for a nine month old baby (and her parents) is hell, so any chance for sleep and I take it. It’s hard not to get nostalgic this time of year. One is finishing and the new one brings such hope. For me 2018 was consumed by time. Counting the days I was waiting for Lucille to arrive, counting the hours between feeds, counting the minutes Lucille slept, counting the minutes between naps, counting down until visitors arrived, counting down to deadlines, wishing some days away and wanting others back. Part of me is filled with regrets, not just as the year wraps up but also as Lucille grows. Are they really regrets? Maybe not. Yes I wish I had got more work done, I wish I had not been so stressed about everything, I wish I had been able to be a better mum, a better friend, a better everything but I did what I did as well as I could. When I remind myself of that I realise I don’t really have any regrets, it’s just life and it has been a rollercoaster year.
I can’t see 2019 being any different to be honest except that I hope I have a bit more acceptance. No doubt Lucille will continue to dominate and I will continue to learn something new everyday just by being around her. I hope that some projects I’ve been working on come to fruition and that I can get back to writing (actually writing ready to be published and not just in my head. It’s amazing what comes to mind at 2am, and then 3am and 4am!); something I have missed. So while I have no internet connection I am going to soak up what is left of my surprise summer holiday by spending it with family and friends, letting the sun seep into my bones and eating way too much food. By the time I publish this piece I will be back in Dublin, complaining about the cold, counting hopefully the hours between Lucille’s naps and planning my next holiday.
Happy New Year to you all!