Today is our penultimate day here in beautiful Majorca. You know the one. The day where you realise you haven’t packed enough ‘evening clothes’ and knickers.
I’m also on the penultimate chapter of a book called Wellth by Jason Wachob, founder of MindBodyGreen.
This chapter is called Live and amongst other chapters like Eat, Believe and Connect, the books ultimate aim is to help the reader grow happiness and wellbeing by building a life, not a resume. Ahem, CV.
These last 10 days in the sunshine, bobbing in the sea, watching a Mediterranean world slope by and spending quality time with my husband (including him teaching me how to front crawl again!) has been such a tonic.
There are a number of worries in my world just now; (you guessed it) fertility, health of dear loved ones and the sometimes overwhelming thoughts of what I’m really here to do and if I’m wasting my time.
We all have worries and sometimes life can literally thwack us when we’re least expecting or prepared for it. Our feet can be swiped away from underneath us, our breath shortened, our bodies tense, minds on a collision course. Little worries fade away into the ridiculous when faced with the big bruisers.
Until you walk in someone else’s shoes it’s tough to know advice to give when someone is struggling or lost. Some little nuggets can seem completely futile.
When you’re on holiday things just seem so much simpler. Your awareness and appreciation for new sensations; tastes, smells, landscape, the air, sounds are heightened and curious.
You could say that holidays aren’t real life, except they are no? They are breaks in our normal activities for sure, but we get to indulge in observing new people, cultures, new surroundings and new experiences. That sounds more like real life to me than any of the cyclical, repetitive routines we adopt. More so out of necessity right?
We’re literally out of our comfort zones when we’re away from the norm. We get to think outside the box and as someone that works in marketing where that term is banded around like no tomorrow can tell you, that’s when we are asked to think more creatively, expanding and opening to options.
I used to dread returning home after a getaway, but what a horrible way to mark the end of a wonderful new experience. I am so acutely aware of just how lucky I am to even be in a position to afford a holiday, that my husband has his dream job after literally making that happen for himself so that we are (presently) in a position to be able to enjoy ourselves. That my brother gifted us the flights using his airmiles back in May when I returned home from the hospital. That our doggy is so well looked after when we decide to jet off. It wouldn’t be very grateful or gracious of me to plod back home with the hump when so many wonderful things aligned to afford us this time.
Right now, I can hear the waves lapping, kids screaming and splashing with pure joy (although if you wouldn’t mind keeping it down little treasures, that would be wonderful), some chilled out beats coming from the beach bar, birds singing, friends laughing, plates and cutlery clanking.
Real life. In abundance.
I mean, we’re half naked around complete strangers every single day in this place aren’t we. Fellow humans cavorting around (almost) as nature intended. Perhaps. All our different shapes and sizes. United but each having a different and unique time.
Conversely, just the other evening John and I noticed some ‘looky looky’ men walking around town trying to flog fake bags, flashing bouncy balls that seem to be the hot purchase this summer for the little ones and watches. We started thinking about how some people don’t even notice them, or that when they do they mark them up as a nuisance, ruining the view. But we started talking about them, as men. We wondered why they were here. Where they live, where they’ve come from, if they have family. If there’s a main boss man, where they get the fake goods from to sell. How much they make, if they have other ways of earning money. I wanted to know their names. Their stories. John looked up some journalist accounts of some working in Ibiza. How they’d sailed from Senegal to try and make money for their families there, some not surviving the journey. I then wanted to know about the people who make the fake goods. Where are they? What are their lives like?
Their real lives juxtaposed with ours. Do they have a break?
Slower living is something I’m really curious about at the mo. Not just striving to achieve more, get more, own more more more. But to be still and thankful right here. To say no to things that don’t top you up, to lessen the use of ‘should’ in order that you can actually serve yourself better, outside of external expectation. One of the first things people say to you when you share that you’re going on holiday is along the lines of ‘ooooh, a nice chill out’. How we’ve come to accept that holidays no matter how long or short or the destination are our time to stop and recharge.
Don’t get me wrong, having goals is inspiring. Wanting to grow and develop yourself, feeling a pull from your ‘calling’ and honouring that. If you’re lucky enough to have a clear idea on what that is. I don’t, not 100% yet but I think it’s coming. It’s not too far off now.
As this is our last full day before our evening flight tomorrow I want to flail around in the sea more than ever before. Moving my body in a way it’s not regularly used to.
Floating, stroking, kicking, bobbing.
This is precious and very, very real.