It’s been a bit of a roller coaster day, in terms of emotions. I worked for three sets of people, all of whom were lovely, all of whom I learned something from but by the time I got home, I was ready to snuggle close to my family and feel the comfort of my own reality seep into my bones.

I find it quite sobering sometimes, being amongst photographs and memories that stretch back so far. Echoes of children’s voices and vibrant family lives, wound down to a quieter, sometimes more lonely time. Almost without exception, they are kind to me and thoughtful and I work as hard as I can, in the short time allotted, to do the things that they’ve identified as being the things that will be the most useful to them.

I dust pictures and clean bathrooms, vacuum and do laundry. I bustle about, making beds, polishing mirrors, wanting to leave things fresh and bright for another week. I used to think that cleaning was depressing, menial, that it meant something about who I am but the fact is that it’s just making things clean and I am still me and better for this experience I think. More than that, it makes me so grateful for everything. I’m grateful to have work that is meaningful. To know that what I do makes a difference, sometimes a significant difference to quality of life, for some people.

I’m grateful that all the movement makes my body sore with exertion by the end of the day and that I have the willpower now, to say no thank you to offers of chocolate cake and lamingtons and biscuits. Though if there’s time at the end, I may have a tea if it feels as though someone just needs a conversation that day.

I feel grateful to be reminded of how precious life, and the people we love, are. When I get home and Sam and Zac tumble, like overgrown puppies into my arms, when I walk into Andy’s arms, strong and warm, and there’s talking and noise and vibrance, I feel incredibly grateful for my life.

I feel more aware, more alert, more loving and more present, as a result of this work.

 

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