So, as most of you may already know, I live in the Land Down Under.
A beautiful continent that boasts a wide spectrum of weather, sun and sand being our signature for the Summer season.
But being Down Under means our seasons are all topsy turvy in relation to the top half of the globe.
Hence, whilst the Northern Hemisphere is enjoying a solid dose of sultry summer sun, we’re inundated with wind, rain and a kind of cold that bites through your clothing and seeps into your bones. Not the kind of weather that inspires warmth and love and all that goes with it. Yet, I must say that there are times at the moment when I’ve never felt more loved or cherished.
Sounds weird, right?
Perhaps not after I explain.
A couple of months ago I was carting a heavy (VERY HEAVY) load of shopping down some stairs.
My foot slipped out from under me, I fell, the shopping in my right hand went one way and my body the other.
Unfortunately when the shopping jerked back, it took my thumb with it. I’ll spare you the details, but suffice to say it was painful and debilitating and most inconvenient. I had several events booked in the next week, some that involved book signing. I couldn’t lose the use of my right hand.
So, I waited, hoping time would heal whatever had happened to my thumb.
It didn’t. So, eventually I trundled off to the doctor, had an x-ray and ultrasound, and discovered that I’d quite cleverly detached a tendon from a bone.
The only way this can be fixed is via surgery.
Double yay, me.
Again I had events coming up. I didn’t have time for surgery. I had a library panel and book signing.
A writing retreat.
I was attending RWA Australia’s annual conference, and for the first time I was presenting a workshop. I’d applied and booked the following year – missing out was not an option.
Luckily, I managed to schedule an operation for the day after I returned from conference – 3 months after the initial injury.
That’s three months of inconvenience and pain and partial use of my right hand.
Now, whilst this diatribe might sound like a moan session, and as far away from a display of love as it can be, it’s actually not. You see, it’s times like these when the beautiful people come out and show themselves.
Friends who pop over and help out and offer assistance in case you need it (and even if you don’t). A good friend who offered to drive over an hour and a half out of her way so that I could make it to our monthly writing meeting. Another two who – on two separate occasions – drove from the other side of Melbourne to meet me for coffee and then offered to chauffeur me around to do the things I couldn’t do now I can’t drive.
Family who step in and take over the mundane tasks that we all do without second thought until we can’t.
The four men in my life – one big, three small – have been the best.
My husband is my lifeline.
Despite running two full time businesses, hubby has donned so many other hats these past weeks. Where he finds the energy and time I have no idea. But he does – and it’s without comment or complaint. He’s the sole taxi driver to our three very busy, very over-committed boys – taekwondo, soccer, football, piano, cubs, scouts . . . you name it, they’re doing it! He’s helping out with the housework. He’s understanding when there’s nothing but pasta or takeout for dinner. He’s pretty much Superman without the tights.
My kids have really stepped up. I have three boys, aged 13, 12 and 10.
Everyday my youngest arrives home from school and his first words are ‘how’s your hand, Mummy?’ When I start to do something or struggle with a task, three voices pipe up asking ‘can we help?’ They now make their own breakfast and lunches, put on washing, sort and put away washing, help with dinner – that’s preparation and dishes – and pretty much do anything, on top of school and homework. I even get help with shoelaces, buttons and zips!
They really are little superheroes in the making. No doubt from the example they get from Dad.
‘Love’ – the caring, nurturing kind – is easy when times are easy. But when times are tough and everything seems stacked against you – these are the times when love and caring and nurturing mean the most.
With everything else going on in the periphery of our life right now – the stress and not-so-good stuff I won't go into here because that's not what this is about – these small acts become grand gestures, and their subtext makes me wake up each morning, grateful. For all I have and all this universe has given me.
Thankfully my thumb will heal, the scars will fade, and life will return to normal. Soon, the pain and inconvenience of my injury will become a distant memory. Not so the love. That’s what keeps me warm inside, even when the storms and cold of winter continue to rage outside.
Thanks so much for stopping by!
What’s your idea of LOVE? How do you or others around you show their loved ones they are special and cherished and, well, loved?
I’d love to hear your stories or your ‘take’ on this topic.
As always, have a fabulous month, and I look forward to seeing you all again in October.
Michelle Somers is a bookworm from way back. An ex-Kiwi who now calls Australia home, she's a professional killer and matchmaker, a storyteller and a romantic. Words are her power and her passion. Her heroes and heroines always get their happy ever after, but she'll put them through one hell of a journey to get there.Michelle lives in Melbourne, Australia, with her real life hero and three little heroes in the making. And Emmie, a furry black feline who thinks she’s a dog. Her debut novel, Lethal in Love won the Romance Writers of Australia's 2016 Romantic Book of the Year (RuBY) and the 2013 Valerie Parv Award.
You can find out all about Michelle, her adventures and her books at www.michelle-somers.com