HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope your year has started well, even amid the ongoing chaos of Covid 19. I hope you and your loved ones are well and safe. We’ve been fortunate here in Australia to have escaped the worst. I used to curse being born in Queensland, far from everything groovy, but it turns out it was very lucky indeed.
Recently I was helping my mother clean out some cupboards and found this old photo from 25 years ago. In January 1996 I opened my very own English language school in Sihanoukville Cambodia. In 1994 I’d opened the Australian Centre for Education in Sihanoukville as part of an Australian Government aid program. But by 1996 I was ready to spread my wings and open my own school with a Khmer business partner. It was a brave new beginning.
However, I’d also fallen head over heels with a rather odd, but exceedingly handsome young East German and, as luck and my misguided notions of natural family planning would have it, fell pregnant around the same time as I opened my school. UHOH! I was probably already pregnant in the photo. I suffered terrible morning – all day – sickness but had to continue teaching from six every morning until seven at night, travelling on bumpy buses up dangerous roads to Phnom Penh every Sunday, trying to find a replacement teacher.
Morning sickness and motherhood won. I returned to Australia in April, married my German in September and had our baby in October. That little baby will be 25 this year!
Another time, I’d just scored the perfect apartment in a much sought after inner-city suburb here in Brisbane. It was in a beautiful old building, my friend lived across the hall and my bedroom windows had birds painted on them. I’d just unpacked the final box, put the last book on the shelf, when the phone rang.
I had a new job!
As the old saying goes, “Want to make God laugh? Tell her your plans!”
So HAPPY NEW BEGINNINGS to you. May the gods smile upon your endeavours and the road rise with you, wherever that road may take you.
And if it takes you in a different direction to the way you were planning, trust that it will all work out for the best in the end. It always does.
With lots of love and best wishes for a healthy, peaceful new year that brings us all together to work towards the healing of our precious world.
PS – If you are in need of comfort, reeling from losses you’ve incurred through Covid or otherwise, check out my Guide Through Grief- First Aid for Your Heart and Soul. I wrote it after the loss of my third child as a baby – another new beginning that sent me in a very different direction to the way I’d intended.