I don’t often get sloppy, but seeing the news over the last week or so has focussed me a little. We have lost a number of entertainment icons since January 1st and the world has been in uproar – who knew so many people loved David Bowie, for example. How can Celine Dion bear the loss of two of her closest family within days of each other? Hasn’t Alan Rickman left a huge void in the entertainment world? I have also heard of less well-known, but not lesser people, who have lost their fight, whether through illness or old age, and it appears to be a trend. It seems that every year, during these winter months – and especially just into the New Year – people ‘move on’; not through the unpredictable weather, although we should all look out for vulnerable friends and relatives as the cold bites, but because their particular fight has become too much to continue.
Last week, when I took my 94 year old dad shopping, he absolutely insisted that this particular jacket was warm enough over his short-sleeved shirt. He had his flat cap, if he needed it – what was the problem? You can only try to change his mind for so long but he’s an adult – and then some – and ultimately it’s his choice. To be fair, we didn’t spend a lot of time in the open, so I wasn’t too worried. But I sat here, reading about Bowie and Rickman, leaving us at sixty-nine, and others in their seventies and eighties , or even younger, and mentally looked around my family and friends. We are very lucky. Obviously, we have had our losses but, on the whole, we are a long-lived, healthy bunch. I believe that the most useful – and challenging – resolution we could all make for the new year is to make the most of every day, whether it’s to do more, do less, make more of an effort to be with people, exercise *shudder*, eat less, eat better – the list is endless. However, at the top should be ‘think of me’. You’re no good to anyone if you’re no good to yourself.
“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” – Andy Warhol
“You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” –A.A. Milne