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Gratitude

GratitudeIt has been a tough few days (actually a tough year but let’s focus on the last few days). We lost a chicken on Monday and that upset me more than I expected it would and yesterday, Steve and I went to a funeral as our friend Alexia lost her dad.
12 months after losing mine, feeling her intense pain and re-living the sense of loss and sadness we all felt, was extremely draining and painful.
We, as a group of friends, have spent far too many times at the Crematorium these past few months…4 times in total, that’s one loved one gone every 3 months.
Yet today, with tears in my eyes and my whole body aching, I want to feel grateful for all we have.

We have friends who are like family and who have been in our lives for a very long time and the thing I love the most is that when we introduce new friends to our old friends, they become friends too. My brother and sister’s close friends are friends of mine too and often my friends’ younger siblings are also friends with my own siblings. It’s like a massive family that is expanding and I think it is incredibly powerful when you think about this amazing human network we can all create.

I’m grateful for Instagram, Facebook and all the other social media networks because used in a positive way, they have an amazing way of bringing people together. I remember how odd it felt to open up to total strangers online a decade ago, yet I have met so many women online first who became friends offline…

The thing that never ceases to amaze me is the empathy you are all showing to others in difficult times.

Funnily enough, my little chicken news is the perfect example of your empathy and kindness and hopes we can have in this world. I genuinely thought I would be mocked or unfollowed (maybe I have but I tend to focus on those who follow rather than unfollow). I mean for goodness sake, I talk about fashion, interior design and suddenly a dead chicken…yet it was important for me to express my pain because I’ve always used the blog or IG to express my feelings and process my emotions.

The amount of love and understanding I felt reading your comments was incredible, uplifting and I want more than anything to focus on the positive things we have and what we can do together because it’s not Brexit or Trump that will break down our world, it’s how we connect with each other, how kind we are to each other without an agenda. How tolerant and helpful we can be towards each other.

I’m also grateful for having Steve in my life. I’ve learnt over the years that relationships take work and commitment and it took me a very long time to shake off my belief in unconditional love. Sometimes, we argue about stupid things to the point of breaking and then like a rubber band, we snap back because we are committed and we fix things, we let go of things, we forgive. Maybe one day, one of us won’t snap back anymore but for now, I’m grateful for having him in my life, for being the amazing dad he is to Mila and for being there when times are hard, not just for me but for my friends and family.

I’m grateful for the people who were kind to me yesterday, after a painful and difficult morning.
First, it was the guy at Apple (a brand that has frustrated me a great deal this past three years) who announced me it would cost 600 euros to fix the screen my dear child had damaged and then kindly passed it on my Apple cover at no charge. It was the Aussie Optician who understood how distressful it was to not be able to edit my pictures and kindly gave me a complimentary pair of glasses so I could see properly while he was fixing my new glasses for me and it was this total stranger who hold the door for Steve and I with a big, genuine smile and wished us a really nice evening.
This morning, it was my vet who I called to cancel this afternoon’s appointment because my chicken was gone and when I asked him how much I owed him for the care and injections he provided to save my chicken, he said “nothing”.

If the Universe is not trying to tell me that there is plenty of good people out there, what is it!?

All of this made me think how much of a positive impact, a smile and a kind word from a complete stranger can have on us.

I’ve always done my uttermost to focus on the positive than the negative but I’m going to try not to pass on my stress and frustrations on others when I have a bad day or at least, if I fail, to try to be extra kind and extra smiling to others when I feel good and those days, I feel I have nothing to give but bad vibes, then I will stay in my little corner until the bad mood passes.

I hope some of you will forgive me for spilling out my heart again but I needed to get this off my chest to focus on the positive. I know others will appreciate this kind of words because I’m not the only one to have had a tough year.

LOVE

 

10 Comments

  1. Henrietta says

    Hello!
    I hope you don’t mind a comment from a stranger, but as a follower of your blog/IG, I would like to say…
    Karine! Through your posts you continue to inspire me, and many others with your passion, soul, kindness, integrity, creativity, humanity, grace and positivity… I could go on!
    Through personal struggles and times of adversity both to yourself and others, you never cease to amaze me with your strength, compassion and endurance.
    I know through this difficult time you will regain your strength again, and as always continue to inspire and shine along the way!
    I hope this happens soon for you! ????

  2. Veronique Rigaudie says

    Merci Karine pour vos articles si humains qui forcément trouvent un écho dans chacun de nous. Vos joies et peines sont les notres et donnent la péche dans tous les cas.

  3. Hi Karine
    Take heart. Pain does not go but it lessens until one day you do not wake and remember once more your heartache. Be patient. This will not happen overnight, nor this year and most likely not the next. But.But it will. I promise one day you will almost for one whole day not cry. You are loved and allow yourself to be loved. Cry when you need to but do not punish yourself for laughter. Life goes on even when we cannot bare to and this I have learnt can be a blessing.
    I loved Ayn Rand too. But please be aware that this book has been appropriated by the right wing particularly in America.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/jun/10/confessions-recovering-objectivist-ayn-rand

    I wish you peace.

    • Thanks Sarah and thanks for the Lunn about the book. I didn’t know this. It’s a shame but when I read it 20 years ago, I was mostly inspired by the character’s integrity and the fact he was an Architect which is a profession I deeply admire. I will read the pièce in the guardian …

  4. I think it’s easy to get caught up in all the crap that’s going on in the world, I definitely find peace when I focus on the simple, wonderful things in my life like taking my kids out for a coffee and cake or getting to the beach. In 2017 I think for me less focus on the news and social media is going to cut out a lot of unnecessary angst. Wishing you a more peaceful and wonderful 2017.

  5. Pingback: 5 feel-good things to do this year | BODIE and FOU Design, Interiors, Fashion & Life

  6. Pingback: 5 feel-good things to do this year | BODIE and FOU Design, Interiors, Fashion & Life

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