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  • Anna

I Took All The Time I Needed...

The house didn’t get cleaned because I took all the time I needed to relish the crisp morning air as I walked the dogs. Then I stopped to cuddle the pig, who prostrated herself at my feet, asking me to stroke her tummy. Her belly is full of piglets ready to make their appearance. She is full and heavy and tired and wants me to stay with her, whispering comfort into her great floppy ears.

The house didn’t get cleaned because all my plans have gone awry and, as a friend says, suddenly I have time clawed back from the jaws of life to do with what I will. So there’s no need to clear the dust bunnies from under the chairs or sweep the veranda. Instead, I can take all the time I need to draw and paint and even write this blog; although it is disappointing not to have the visitors.

The house will not get cleaned, so I can take all the time I need to sit and soak up the day, drink my coffee and consider what has happened in 2023 and what I would like to see in 2024. And because a neighbour died, which hit us all for six as we walked behind his coffin at the funeral. Not forgetting my dog who needs special attention for her poorly eye.

The house isn’t getting cleaned because half the time I don’t know what I’m doing, although I like to pretend I do. So now I can take all the time I need to get things right, especially as I like to be right not wrong, I like to be here not there, now, not yesterday or tomorrow. And I need to take all the time I have to immerse myself in everything, moment by moment, because life slips by so fast and vroooom there goes another day, another week and another year. Then I discover I’ve missed something tiny, but important. Life comprises so many tiny, important things, that when I ricochet from one thing to another, without taking all the time I need to absorb them, I miss something; lose it to a parallel universe where someone else is stopping to take all the time they need.

The house didn’t get cleaned because I’m taking all the time I need to delight in the cocoon of winter and relax into it. Like a hedgehog, I curl into a spiny bundle and dig deep into the undergrowth of cushions and throws on the sofa, a dog on each side and cats snuggled in with them. When did I ever imagine that my dogs and cats would be folded into each other’s bodies, entwined until impossible to tell the difference between them. And suddenly, not knowing what I’m doing, seems irrelevant.

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