Tuesday, 12 February 2013

I saw the sign and it opened up my eyes...*

We run outside in bare feet with a ball and a lot of wide open smiles and excited laughter. Slightly long grass, slightly long shadows, slightly damp underfoot. Slightly warm evening. Intense smells. Perfect. My three children and me.

It has been a month of tears and stress and tense shoulders. Of swollen tongues and aching throats from decisions that were impossible to make alone. Of resentments and regrets and clunky pain that made my body feel like a bag of clanking rusting spanners.

A month of "I don't wanna". And that was just from me.

There are so many tangled emotions when it comes to family choices and choices over what do do with our family. Not least of all guilt and worry. Anger and sadness play a big part for me too.

And my poor kids really take the brunt of my out of sortsness.

I have really really really tried to shield them from all of my worry. But there has undoubtedly been a cloud. A scratchiness. An atmosphere. A treading on eggshells kind of vibe. Don't make Mummy cross.

I know it, I can feel it too. And even though I feel a desperate guilt, even though I hate myself when I look in and feel wretched that my moods affect them, I have felt powerless to prevent it.

And then, when I feel like I am truly going to break -  when I feel like I am just going to run away and leave it all - who to, I am not sure - something happens.

A barometer shift?

A pendulum swing?

The wind moving from hot northerly to cooling southerly?

The sun breaking through clouds?

Ice cracking and silk smoothing.

And I gather them up, to redeem myself in their eyes and in my own.

We run outside in bare feet with a ball and a lot of wide open smiles. Slightly long grass, slightly long shadows, slightly damp underfoot. Slightly warm evening. Intense smells. Perfect. My three children and me.

And as always, a butterfly appears. He is probably always there. But he catches my vision. I stop. I stop being a cranky bitch. And breath. And look upon my children and run with them and play ball with them and laugh with them. And hold them close. And remind myself that when shit stinks, and when the going is rough, that when I stop and do what is right, this butterfly always appears as a stamp of approval.

I do not know if these butterflies are reincarnations of my Dad or my late brother. My brother, I suspect. But I am glad that they appear. After the fact, to remind me that when I get my head out of my own misery, that it will all be OK.

Do you get "signs" like this, ever?

post signature
* Lyrics from the brilliant Ace of Base. ♥ that song.


  1. Beautiful Lucy - both you and this piece.

  2. I get signs from birds. I think it is my dad and it has happened so many times I have learned to embrace it.

    Thanks for sharing Miss Lucy!

  3. Wow.. what a wonderfully expressive writer you are, Lucy! This post really struck a chord with me. Always from a window (never when I'm outside), I sometimes see a little white feather floating down from the sky. If I go outside to look, it's never anywhere to be found. Can happen at any time of day or night;any time of year, but always when I'm feeling emotionally drained, am thinking/ talking about my mum, or am at a crossroads in life. When I see it I know she is still there for me, even though she passed away 18 years ago. A great comfort. I will always miss her, but the feathers help. Sounds like you have somebody watching over you, too. Have a good March, hope things improve for you, and I'm looking forward to all the photos.

  4. this is so beautiful... that shift, that moment is so powerful. I am glad you have butterflies.

  5. Butterflies are totally a sign. Your post gave me the shivers when you mentioned it was probably your brother. I think it is him, too. x

  6. What a beautiful post! It was so wonderfully written that I felt as if I was out there with you...

  7. So lovely - and comforting in many ways.

  8. Beautiful Lucy. Beautiful you and beautiful writing.


  9. This is the most beautiful post in every sense of the word. I've no doubt it is your brother - our angels appear always at the time we need a reminder most xx

  10. A wonderful post Lucy. I feel your pain and frustration and then your joy and sense of calm. May all the butterflies fly your way. x

  11. Beautiful writing Lucy and I'm so glad your brother has your back. You are making the right decisions and as hard as it is right now, it will all be ok. You have the love of your kids and your husband and your friends. If you have love ... you can do anything. xxxx

  12. Oh, lump in the throat. I'm so sorry there is so much worry and pain and sadness and upset around your mum at this time. I'm sure our children so understand that. My little boy and girl still say to me: 'Do you remember when your dad died and you were crying? It's all right to be sad Mum."

    It is alright to be sad, and to be grumpty too sometimes. Part of their learning for life. Everyone gets upset, sad, grumpy... it passes.

  13. Oh my gosh, Lucy, yes! I sooooooo get it. I lost my Dad, and they way I 'connect' with him is through butterflies too. I wrote a post about it last year http://mummiesaremagic.blogspot.com.au/2011/05/on-love-loss-my-dad-butterfly.html

    It's so comforting to see these 'signs', isn't it? They are a wake up call that there's more to this world and life than the banality and superficiality we seem to get caught up in.
    Beautiful post. Enjoy dancing with the butterflies xx

  14. YES. Butterflies are up there with feathers, as a tool for the other-wordly among us to use.

    I so so get what you say about being anxious-ridden and tightly wound up then going outside with your kids. And breathing. Letting go. I physically exhaled when I read this.

    love your goddamn guts, Lucy Lou.


  15. I agree butterflies are one of my signs, if I see on go by it makes me stop and smile and breathe and thats always a good thing. Dont be too hard on yourself Lucy, Im sure you ar doing the best you can at a very trying time...our kids are very forgiving...they still love us even when the bitchy witchy Mumma(as she is known here)comes out for a rant. Big hugs xx

  16. The way you write is like nothing I have ever read before. You should really consider writing a book or something similar. You're truly talented and have a wide range of creativity.

  17. Love the poetry of your words.. "Slightly long grass, slightly long shadows, slightly damp underfoot. Slightly warm evening".. so beautiful. Butterflies - ah yes, what a special sign for you. -Deb @ Bright and Precious.

  18. I dont get signs but sometimes I just go out on the verandah and let the peace of the landscape seep into me.

    Your children will be OK. They are learning about what it is to be a member of a family. It's a good lesson.

    Take care Lucy

    PS - Am definitely old enough to remember hanging out of bar windows with Ace of Base playing in the back ground....

  19. Oh Lucy I have shivers from this post. <3 butterflies.

  20. My youngest girl was stillborn ten years ago...when I came home from hospital and went on "autopilot" for a few months, the only thing that stirred me into wakefulness from time to time was a butterfly that would follow me, playing, teasing, wherever I went. It keeps coming back, more often than not when I'm down and it is always a sign that there is something better just round the corner.

  21. Such a heartbreaking shift of the heart.

    I am starting my own blog to keep me sane. Starting with what to do with the kids these holidays! Any suggestions would be really welcome. http://happyhipstermum.com/easter-holidays/sydney/


  22. I totally relate to the butterflies sign. In the early days of my marriage demise and separation whenever I felt like it was all too hard, when I wondered if I could go on at all they would fly directly into my path..one or multiple...i took it as a sign to keep going..it would be ok eventually. When I got my first tattoo I decided to get four butterflies on my wrist, a symbol of our journey together but also, secretly knowing that while they're there, right where I can see them ill always be reminded that there is hope. Love and hugs to you Lucy xoxo

  23. nature in general has a tendency to shake things up for me just when i need it the most, all of a sudden - trees have never looked greener or more special - and then I take moment to give thanks and rememberance to everyone I love and also to those I have lost x

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