Reflecting on a rainy day

Black/green background with rain drops, like on a window pane. White text reads Reflecting on a rainy day on handwriting font.

Hi lovelies,

Well, it was recently pancake Tuesday and Valentines Day, or as in the Catholic calendar, Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday symbolising the start of lent. Being brought up a catholic I always attended mass on Ash Wednesday and was told I had to give up a vice until Easter Sunday.

It got me thinking about vices, what they are and when we should give them up if at all. We start our life clean, untarnished of the world and its problems. Healthy as an ox with no chemicals or sugars. It is only as we grow, and life begins to chip away at our body and mind that the vices creep in!

Since losing my sight I have begun to practice self-reflection. Taking time out of the chaos of life to stop and consider things. Calendar events like lent prompt me to make time to reflect and decide to remove something that is no longing serving me. Ramadan in the Muslim faith is another time to do this, and other religions will have their time, but what if you are not religious? When can we take that time to reflect and eliminate?

Well, the answer is anytime. You don’t need 40 days and nights; you need to set some time to create the space to reflect. They say meditation can be done not the tram into work or walking in the woods. I agree and I had a moment of meditation or reflection last night when I attended a Coldplay by Candlelight gig. These are a series of concerts held in Manchester’s Cathedral. They take a popular artist and rework the music with a classical orchestra.

Whilst I was sat still and listening to the beautiful music, the crowd was quiet as a mouse, which is very different to an actual Coldplay gig. I began to reflect, and my thoughts began to flow. I thought about how my diet has changed the last few days and how much better I felt for it, how after a big night out drinking a lot it made me feel crap and how that no longer serves me. Then my thoughts flowed to my uncle who recently passed away from cancer and how much he loved churches. He was the ultimate catholic, and wanted to be a priest but they wouldn’t let him because of his sexuality. That’s another conversation! Tears began to fall down my cheeks, but a sense of joy with them. I think it was knowing in some way my uncle was with me and he would have loved being in the church listening to the music.

In that short time whilst the music was playing, and my world was silent, I thought about my vices and what doesn’t serve me and what makes me stronger. Doing things like Coldplay by Candlelight with someone who cares for me, even if they show it in a strange way, is an amazing thing and I am grateful for these moments.

This year I have given up sugar in my tea for lent. I am a true believer in balance. If you don’t tip one way with something it is healthy to have something that gives you joy, whether that is a chocolate bar, a concert by candlelight, a pint of beer or a meditation in the woods. The last five years have allowed me to grow and focus on that balance.

Why not give it a go? Take five minutes this week, close your eyes and allow the thoughts to flow. It might help make a change or even just highlight something that has been niggling at you. Being kind to ourselves and allowing the space to think is a great tool to moving forward and coping with change.

As always these are just my musings and me sharing my experiences. I invite you to share your thoughts in the comments.

All my love,

Nina xx


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