3/19/2011

Time to say Goodbye.



Over the last few months our lives have been dominated by boxes, all around us people are on the move. One son moved house, the other moved office and my mum is moving from the former family home into a smaller retirement property within walking distance of our house. Amidst the chaos it has been difficult to keep up with work, blogs, housework and all the other myriad of things that demand my attention.

There have been some tough decisions to make, what to keep, what to give and what to recycle and everywhere memories. Memories, which stop you in your tracks and cause you to ponder on your own mortality. We come into this world with nothing and we go out with nothing but we don’t half accumulate some stuff along the way!

So yesterday I said a tearful goodbye to the garden my father tended for the last fifty-five years, the primroses, the quince, and the flowering aubrietia all looked lovely in the spring sunshine. I now carry his spirit, along with my late brother and sister, here in my heart. Home is, after all, where the heart is.

32 comments:

  1. So true Valerie. The only permanent thing on this world is change. I hope goodbyes will give way to brighter, more beautiful beginnings along the journey.

    Have a happy weekend!

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  2. Valerie,
    I have moved several times in my life, two continents,
    three countries. The last move almost broke my heart (I said that of the one before too), but I have also learned one truth, beyond the fact that home is where the heart is: traveling lighter makes for an easier journey.
    Happy new beginnings, to you and your mother,
    Merisi

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  3. I find it so very hard to say goodbye to land - and gardens. I haven't yet had to say goodbye to a garden that was tended by a loved one that has passed on. I imagine that is surely hard. Its nice to know that your father's garden is flourishing. Maybe those who tend it now will hear his whispered guidance when they work, for I'm sure they will feel his spirit.

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  4. Valerie, you express the difficulty of farewells very well. I believe that you will always be carrying your beautiful memories along with you. They will always find enough space to remain.

    xo

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  5. Oh, Valerie, yes, bittersweet moments...
    Hugs and blessings....
    Diane

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  6. It is and it isn't. Our physical homes are part of ourselves for we are physical as well as spiritual beings.

    It's a heart ache post; even if it is joyful and positive too.

    Best wishes.

    Lucy

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  7. This cannot be easy.
    My thoughts are with you today.

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  8. Tearful goodbyes are inevitable - but you are quite right Valerie - there is a time to move on. When I almost died in November I had a realistic look at all my possessions and realised that they were nothing like as important as I had thought they were.

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  9. Gardens, I find are one of the most difficult things to leave behind. A well tended garden can be such an emotional thing. All the time and spirit put into a garden...But I always hope someone who comes along will feel that and love it just as much. Good luck with the move.

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  10. goodbyes can be so hard... wishing everyone changes that feel good day by day.

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  11. Such a precious and touching post. The painting is absolutely stunning. Sending you a hug from Canada.
    xo,
    Heather

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  12. Yes it is poignant. I recently looked at retirement homes with my Mum in mind. I re`lised that we all end up with oe room in the end. Where will it all go

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  13. What a moving post, Valerie! I remember a few years after my Mum died we had to move Dad to a home because of his dementia. When we finally had to clear our childhood home it was heartbreaking! I understand how you feel and my thoughts are with you.

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  14. Very true Valerie - and such a lovely illustration, which must have captured some of the beauty of your Dad's garden. x

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  15. what a difficult time but as you say, they will always be in your heart.
    love
    Lyn
    xxx

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  16. Such a moving post Valerie. I can imagine it must be hard to say goodbye to the garden that your Dad loved and tended for so long. I found it hard to see all the seeds that my Mum collected and saved. I still have some and am still planting the sweet pea seeds she saved(a huge bag of them) But how wonderful thatthe bees and insects will still benefit from your Dad's love of his garden. Keep your memories close to your heart.x

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  17. What difficult days - so similar to our past year. Saying good-by to things that link to love ones is hard - but part of a process too.

    I realise that one day soon I'll have to 'say good-bye' to my dad's garden. You're right it highlights ones own mortality. But after that realisation one gets a sense of purpose - to do as much while one can.

    Take care
    Celia
    x

    PS I love the picture you have painted of your Dad and his garden.

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  18. Yes, of course, the memories kept close in our hearts are the most important.
    Today is the first day of Spring.
    Lift up your heart.
    Much love.

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  19. This is such a touching post. It is so hard to walk away from those memories. My grandfather was an amazing gardener. When I went by their summer camp a few years after it was sold and saw what the new people had done to his gardens I was broken-hearted. Over the years I've been able to replace that particular moment with wonderful memories of times spent with him there. Occasionally I'll pass a place and a whiff of apple blossoms, or roses will bring back all those great times. Your painting is such a lovely tribute to your dad.

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  20. Sending extra-tight hugs... and love~
    :)

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  21. It's true that home is where the heart is. Thank you for sharing such a lovely post. I wish you well. Your painting of your father in his greenhouse is beautiful.

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  22. So bittersweet. Peace to you my friend. Home really is where the heart is, but hard, still.

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  23. So sorry to learn of the passing of your father. You have been through a very tough time but I hope the future will be brighter for you and your mother.

    Patricia Skilleter

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  24. The closing of chapters in our lives are always hard Valerie. So many things that bring back memories. We had the same when my dad died last year. So many things that we did for the last time with him. I hope that your memories are all good ones though. You have created a gorgeous painting of your dad's garden to remember it by.

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  25. I can't think of a more fitting tribute to your dear father's garden through the years than this beautiful painting. He must have been proud of his talented daughter.

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  26. Beautiful post, home IS where the heart is. Can you take a few of your favorite plants for your own garden? I have some of my great grandfather's iris.

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  27. Oh Valerie, such a poignant post. I sense your hurt in dealing with such difficult times. Loss in any form is a tough one.

    Glad your Mum will be close by...I wish you happy hours with her, the rest of your family and in time spent painting.

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  28. It is hard to see the family home empty, and dealing with all the memories and emotions.
    One day I walked past and saw three little girls playing in the garden. It made me smile, mum and dad would have loved that.
    Hope your mum is settled in her new home.

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  29. Oooh, girl. ((hugs)) All I can say is--my heart is so full for you.

    This must have been so difficult. I, too, have a special feeling for gardens. It would be hard to say goodbye to the ones I've loved and helped to tend.

    God bless you in your new beginnings.

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  30. Busy wiping away the tears. Love to you and your family. x

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  31. My heart goes out to you. I am in the midst of the same kind of situation. Packing to move, sorting out things that hold so many memories, not everything can go to the new place, hard to part with connections to the past but don't really want to have so many things to manage.....It all takes a lot of energy. Blessings to you.

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  32. That's very difficult, Valerie. I would like to recommend a book I've just read, "Father Flashes" by Tricia Bauer. It's a poignant book, gentle and loving.

    My father also loved his garden - he was "famous" for it. You know, the little house with little yard just overflowing with trees and blossoms and all manner of vegetation.

    xo
    Morna

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