Sitting with a grieving family last week, our conversation moved into talking about how tricky everyday life is and how afraid they felt.
After sitting comfortably in silence for a while, I suggested that change was coming from the grassroots level. We had gathered together as strangers and were going our own ways afterwards with loving connections created. We had shared magic moments as adult siblings gathered on the sofa, and we went through a wonderful box of family photographs that had been discovered. A lifetime's history laid out before us; greeted with cries of delight, shared moments and grateful tears shed.
'Do you remember when?'
No matter what leaders, energy companies, politicians, councils or any authorities are deciding and striving to implement, we will always have each other. Kindness and love are rising and if we pause and still the noise in our every day for a few moments, we could see and feel that energy.
I recall moving to the depths of Wales when I earned my living through an online service. The day after my move I fired my laptop up and the screen was poorly. I headed out into the town to find a 'man who did' and there was one hi-tech engineering shop on the hilltop. A smiling man explained that I would need a replacement screen and he'd order it overnight and I could pick my repaired laptop up the next day. Marvellous.
Walking out, I headed down the hill and called into a lovely teashop for a hot drink. Obviously, in the depth of Wales, my southern English accent stood out like a sore thumb and the lovely lass who served me asked if I was visiting. I explained that I was a new resident and had popped into town to get my laptop fixed. Her face changed.
'Where did you take it?' she asked.
I explained and she went pale.
'You won't get that back for at least a week, Jane.'
I went pale.
'I need to work.' I squeaked.
She asked what I needed and made a thoughtful offer. For the next week, I walked to her teashop every day where she let me use her laptop for my work and kept me supplied with coffee and cake. I have never forgotten her kindness and we are still in touch as she welcomed her baby son into the world on Sunday.
Today, I messaged an old landlord of mine to wish him 'Happy Birthday' and we had a catch-up. I remember the day we met when I signed the rental agreement on his little cottage at the letting agent's office. He was a man of few words and my new neighbours mentioned that they never saw him visit the old tenants. I was unconcerned because all I could feel from him was kind energy.
My little cottage needed the central heating sorting and it also needed decorating. I offered to decorate if my landlord bought the paint and he did not hesitate to send an engineer around to mend the heating. We had a memorable meeting, as we discussed how much he would pay me to do the decorating. Lots of cake was involved and it was a tough negotiation, with many smiles and twinkly eyes (his). After a few ins and outs and ups and downs, we reached a compromise, ending on laughter notes.
He popped in occasionally to see how I was getting on, more cake was involved, and we became friends. I have never forgotten his kindness.
Today, a treasured friend and I messaged back and forth as dawn broke. She lives in New Zealand and was just heading upstairs to bed. We met in the uniform shop when Emily was starting at a new school and we were there trying to get everything together for her first day. When she discovered we were newbies, she invited us around to meet her family and share a meal with them. We had many meals together after that and family celebrations and our daughters became friends. Her eldest son is a whizz at gardening and he would come around and help me when I was faced with an overgrown walled garden and little time. Heart memories. I have another heart memory of the two of us girls sitting on the floor of her front room making glass bead jewellery together. Her kindness continues and our hearts know no distance.
Kindness and loving energy flow and nurture our connections, new and old, and that is how we rise.