What's Gone and What's Coming
It's been two months since I last wrote a blog post, or sent a newsletter. I just noticed that my newsletter subscriber count has doubled since I stopped writing. That alone is enough to awake me from my writing slumber. Here I am.
Where should I start? Two of my girlfriends at the crisis centre moved out with their kids early July. Their departure completely transformed the atmosphere here, and not in a good way. Hannah missed her playmates, while I missed rubbing elbows with Shabnam and Samara in our shared kitchen. We used to hang out and play board games after our kids have gone to bed. Those days are gone.
Earlier in June, my friend Julian flew all that way to visit me in Denmark. I had expected us to have nothing but fun, but that was not so. It was stressful when I had to repeatedly communicate my boundaries surrounding finances. It was confusing when his actions did not match his words... I did not need that. But so I learn. I learnt that Julian is a good friend, but I need better friends.
I did expand my network thereafter. I started going to this women's group for foreigners, called 'Blooming Room'. Some of the ladies were from the Philippines, while majority were from Arabic countries. I was the only fair-skinned Asian, so I stuck out like a sore thumb. But everyone was friendly enough. The people who ran the group are Danish. They had a set budget from the government so us ladies could go out and do fun things. That was when I got to paint on ceramics and dance Samba (pictures below). We also went to the H. C. Andersens Hus museum together, and I got free beer and cake. Nothing to complain about.
Also thanks to this women's group, I have now got a mentor. Her name is Helene. We meet every other week, which is kind of nice. I have been to her house twice, and I bring fruit each time. Oranges and mangoes. We both brought watermelon to the beach the last time we saw each other. It is lovely to have someone to go to the beach with. Someone to get to know.
I also got to meet another group of people. It was pure serendipity, how I returned to church again. They were having a church camp in my current neighbourhood. They happened to have made too much taco soup and nachos that evening, so someone posted in our neighbourhood's Facebook group. 'Come and join us,' it read. I had just been to the beach with Helene earlier that day, It was thirty minutes before dinner time. I hopped onto my bike and rode for about 7 minutes to our daily bread. Or more like nachos.
Apart from rekindling my relationship with God, the next most exciting news is that I am going to move out of the crisis centre really soon. I have found an apartment for Hannah and I to call home. It is in a charming neighbourhood, in an old brewery that has been now converted to apartments. The outside is painted salmon pink, which I absolutely adore. I once said to my ex-husband that I wish we could paint our future house in that colour. He shot it down cold. But now I am going to live in a salmon pink house of my choosing and there is nothing he can do about it. Ha!
|This is my colour y'all.|
There is an entrance to the forest just in the backyard. How idyllic! The building also happens to be the very last one on that road. So I need not worry if cars would come and go. If they would run into Hannah, when she rides her bike or scooter outside.
If it all goes according to plan, I will receive the keys to our new home in two weeks' time. I have so much to see to, like getting Hannah a place in her new nature kindergarten and thrift shopping for furniture. I have just bought four lamps today. I'm in love. I can't wait to decorate my home exactly how I would like it.
Below are some pictures that I have taken in June, at the CulturArte festival. It was around the time my friend Julian came to visit. He has sent me a poem recently, by John O' Donohue, titled 'For a New Home'. I have written parts of the poem down on a piece of A3 watercolour paper with blue and orange markers. The plan is to hang it up on the wall in my entry.
Here is the poem:
'May this home shelter your life.
When you come in home here,
May all the weight of the world
Fall from your shoulders.
May your heart be tranquil here,
Blessed by peace the world cannot give.
May this home be a lucky place,
Where the graces your life desires
Always find the pathway to your door.
May nothing destructive
Ever cross your threshold.
May this be a safe place
Full of understanding and acceptance,
Where you can be as you are,
Without the need of any mask
Of pretence or image.
May this home be a place of discovery,
Where the possibilities that sleep
In the clay of your soul can emerge
To deepen and refine your vision
For all that is yet to come to birth.
May it be a house of courage,
Where healing and growth are loved,
Where dignity and forgiveness prevail;
A home where patience of spirit is prized,
And the sight of the destination is never lost
Though the journey be difficult and slow.
May there be great delight around this hearth.
May it be a house of welcome
For the broken and diminished.
May you have the eyes to see
That no visitor arrives without a gift
And no guest leaves without a blessing.'
from "To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings"
|Samba class with Blooming Room|
|All smiles when there are snacks|
|My two Samba teachers, who showed me that women can have fun too|