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After A Big Year

Well 2018 was one of those whirl wind years and while I did my best to keep up, some things simply got past me, including this blog.

The biggest was the passing of family members, including my treasured and beloved dad. Thankfully he had a peaceful passing in itself and it came after a relatively brief illness. He’d had heart surgery in 2016 and had spent quite a lot of time in and out of hospital, was finding ways to live with Parkinsons and was beautifully looked after by my mum, his wife since February 1963.

So the focus was on mum after she’d lost her best mate and deeply loved husband. I don’t think she really remembers what life is like without him.

Just before dad’s passing mum’s brother in-law passed away too. Just as we were making sense of losing Kevin, dad went into hospital.

We had lost my sister years before to breast cancer but it has brought back a lot of memories. Grief never goes away, you learn to live with it but it can resurface easily. And for me that can mean I lose track of time, as if I stall some how and the days disappear.

Early in the year my much loved cat passed away. She’d been very ill (but not in pain) for a long time and had a very peaceful passing. I have missed the sweet sassy girl but I am deeply thankful that I was able to do the right thing by her with a good ending rather than getting it wrong and her having a lot of pain, which was entirely possible.

The Creatively Belle supervisor Shelly outside the artisan studio

The Creatively Belle supervisor Shelly outside the studio

On the business front I’ve been busily designing and releasing new cards to the growing greeting card collection. I’ve been off to trade shows, welcoming new stockists and reworking the back end of the website so it can look after stockist orders.

It’s all involved huge learning curves and the joy in finding that I do actually have a natural talent for designing greeting cards (something I’ve always loved) has been a heart warming counter balance for my grief. So that feels really healthy.

I have been feeling anxious, grief sad, overwhelmed and daunted by big tasks. I would love to be able to do more than I have but I’ve also had to accept that I can’t.

But mum is doing a little better and I feel good about her being engaged and involved. She misses dad constantly but is so thankful he passed peaceful and wasn’t crushed by Parkinsons and his other illnesses, we both feel this strongly.

So my hopes for 2019 involve healing and growing, supporting and enabling, designing and making. I don’t know if I’ll be going back to weekly blogs again this year but I will be more frequent.

There will be more beautiful greeting cards designed and launched with all that it involves.

I hope you will join me in all of this and to see you at market, online or simply around.

 

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