I had previously written this blog on Friday, but with amendments in respect of my website occurring yesterday, it no longer exists. I don’t particularly wish to re-write it as I wrote it previously, indeed I cannot as I wrote it in the moment,  but I do wish to incorporate some of the thoughts I included then writing today.

Thursday saw me paying my respects to my mum’s cousin at Mortlake, one day ahead of having lost my own father all those years ago. It was very much a celebration of life lived to the full and a poignant final farewell. As I opened my mouth to sign the first hymn, I was immediately buoyed up by sound of the male voices surrounding me, which can only have been the members of the Quintin Boat Club. This really was quite something to hear, it was quite wonderful and helped me a lot.

Losing my dad was very hard indeed, 24 years I’m in a better place to cope with all this. I remember how he himself lost four brothers as he did, not to mention school friends, when he was still young, all because of the stupidity of war. Life may deal unfortunate experiences, but life went on and indeed does go on. Learning the Alexander Technique as I do has helped greatly and is really helping me to keep at it when it comes to inhibition and direction, but it has helped me enormously when it comes to navigating the grief journey. Thinking forward and up is certainly something to which I very much needed (and need) to turn my thoughts, but the Technique has also very much helped in terms of continuing to help with emotional resilience, changing the direction of my own thinking, the direction in which I prefer it to go, also in terms of being far more aware about how I use my entire mechanism on a day-to-day basis, the two being of course very much connected. If you don’t know what I mean by forward and up, this is the direction in which the head is designed to balance on the atlanto-occipital, the first vertebra, on top of the spine, and the Alexander Technique shows us the importance of this in terms of our general wellbeing and reasoning ability.

Obviously my thoughts have been with family at this time, but most of all they were with reminding myself about maintaining balance, finding peace from within myself rather than from outside influences. I’m also very grateful for the friends who have been with me since before that time but particularly at that time, who themselves have experienced their own grief since. It’s important to work through our grief, to give ourselves time, however we each choose to do this. Friday we would have all been doing different things, in our own different ways, but I’m sure we were all remembering Papa each in our own individual ways.

Friday was a breezy but warm day in London and I enjoyed spending time and good conversation with a good Alexander Technique friend and teacher for a pot of tea on the South Bank in the afternoon; it brought my thoughts into the present moment, to be grateful for what  has been, what is and to look forward with gratitude.

Image courtesy of 123.com/olegdudko/Image 48242257/

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