Don’t save Anything for a Special Occasion, Being Alive is a Special Occasion

I was listening to Radio 2 Pause for Thought on our way to daycare yesterday morning : The speaker told a tale of an elderly lady who in her 80s decided to wear all of her special dresses everyday as she was not sure what she was saving them for. One day she decided that if she did not wear them on ordinary days, she might run out of time and her daughter would simply be giving them to a charity shop when she died. It did make me pause for thought and I could relate to her outlook. I used to do something similar with my wardrobe : I used to downgrade my ‘going out ‘ clothes to work-wear, as we did not go out much and otherwise, they were just languishing in the wardrobe and they used to give me a lot of pleasure wearing nice dresses to work. I often use my clothes to brighten my mood : often when I was feeling my lowest, I would wear bright colours to try to lift my own spirits and of those around me, hoping that some of the brightness would rub off on my mood.

Then I reflected on how Joshua’s outlook is very much living for the moment. He is not waiting for a special day, everyday for Joshua is new and exciting and he embraces it. We could all learn more about how to be from his outlook. As far as I can tell, he does not have any regrets or waste any time thinking about the past – once it has gone for Joshua, it has gone. He loved his Granny dearly, that was clear from the way he greeted her so enthusiastically, but he has not wasted any time or energy grieving her loss. He loved her while she was in his life but he shows no sign of pining for her, even when we were emptying her house , he was not traumatised by her being missing, like we feared. On the last day that we were there, he sat on the carpet, in the empty lounge happily enjoying fish and chips for tea, ignoring the fact that tears were streaming down my face. It does not mean that he did not love her, he just deals in the here and now and she had gone, so he moved on.

He does not appear to worry about the future either, he is just very present. I cannot tell him that it is his Aunt’s birthday at the weekend and we are going to see them for a birthday lunch, as he would expect to do that now, today at the very least, so I will not distract him with that news until Saturday morning, when he will be delighted. When Joshua started daycare, I was anxious about how on earth he was going to get out of bed at 8.30 am after two years of lying in. But now his understanding has improved, I simply explain what he is getting up for and he leaps out of bed if it is something that he wants to do. Yesterday he had a restless night and he was snoring at 8.15 when I went into his bedroom and opened his curtains, to enable him to come round slowly. After his Weetabix breakfast, I told him that he was going to ‘Play’ and he throw the duvet back and swung his legs out of bed, raring to go. Joshua does not hold back is emotions, if he is excited or happy, his body language and expression, make it very clear.

So lets not wait for the day we retire or that special holiday before we have fun, let’s try to make the most of everyday and squeeze as much joy into it as we can, that is how Joshua behaves and it certainly seems to make him happy.

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