Letter 25: To Resistance

25 February 2012

Dear Resistance

‘Love your enemy’ is the first phrase that comes into my head right now.  The reason being that I sat down and pondered who or what to write to next; as I am now so tantalisingly near to finishing my cherished challenge of writing a love letter a day, every single day, for the Valentine month of February.  That is twenty nine epistles … shooting out into the cosmos, reaching into the void … may be to over reach and be sent unseen; or may be to touch and to torch another creature’s flame.  Well so it should be, if indeed twenty nine there were in existence.  For I stared at a white page and racked a blank brain for an object of inspiration … and there was none … Just five letters to go … the end in sight, but now no sight, no sense of next.

So then suddenly, there it was – my enemy: resistance, procrastination, pfaffing, dawdling, dreaming, distracting or what ever name you are going by today … Now I want to have this out with you and I’m guessing this won’t be once and for all: this stalling, this staying, this stopping of my strived for success.

Why can’t I move beyond this solid wall, this barrier, this self created strange protectionism?  Why am I so static, so staid, so very stuck, so often?  What weight is this, what darkness, what blindness to my future?  What rocket, what change or what challenge will shift you out of my path and let me stride, rather than stress my self forward?  I am so staggered that not even grief, tears or terrible fear motivates me on and over you.

So I must consider this and think … well … could it be that now is not my time to move; or may be here is my lesson – my learning obstacle to be climbed up and over and scaled like any average mountain of life.  But then this mountain is unseen, and it feels so solid, so heavy, so truculent, so frustrating, so scream generating; if I let it stick and let it raise steam …  There I am pulled back to black – stale, pale and aged.

So forward now … I see you and I raise you … I am aware of you and I name you.  Not to shame you, though shame is tempting, but to acknowledge you, to understand you, to know your role, to push your boundaries, then to blast through to freedom.

Someone told me there is no real cure.  “My name is Sandra and I am a procrastinator” … I wait for the acknowledged applause to die away …

Now I name you and know you Resistance, I can start to step away from you, to walk around, climb over or sail in you.  I know how you tick, I see how you move, I hear your special solid voice.  That voice is not to be a vice to me now.  For in the very act of stopping me, I learn to step around you, to dance nimbly away.

For me the solution is to share.  Your weight is too much to bear alone.  Life is not meant to be one.  I chose to connect to cherished colleagues, not fellow workers, not sharing inmates.  I chose to commit to promises, rather than to (other’s) deadlines; I move to the light, to the way forward, in ways that work for me – that work with my rhythms, my wants, my true skills, my loves.  I trace the naturalness of my form, my thoughts, of my heart and I replicate that out into the world.  Then I chose to share the un-natural, the unwanted tasks and transferences with those who have the gifts which are my strangers, my sloth and my burdens.

This is not one lesson learned and kept close.  So very often I slip back, absorbed into alternate realities, distracted by your square solid form blocking out the sun.  I forget you are there, lulled into old life patterns, long learned forms of being and of seeing.  Now in my new life there is no pattern of average days to give me reason and meaning, so I chose to create my own way and my freedom.  And freedom is not resistance, it is grace and flow and ease … and THESE I love.  So smugly I will end – my very enemy now my friend, and now my very latest letter.

    Farewell old fiend.

         Not yours. Miss S E A Peachey

PS: For this and all the Letters in book form – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 24: To Love

Love letters

24 February 2012

Dear Love

So here we are – you and I – together, quietly, with everything in place. And because I’m sort of stubborn, this letter nearly didn’t happen – simply because some one said to me ‘and of course if you’re writing love letters, then you’ll write a letter to Love …’  Now see, these are MY love letters and I get to make up the rules… but any way, yes, here indeed it is, and no, I did NOT write it on Valentines Day… I had my own original plans for that, so there…

So… awkward pause again… here we are… And what to say / how to start? Well the starting is the thing with love isn’t it? It can crop up unexpectedly, unbidden – suddenly shaking your world; or then again it can creep up on you and slowly envelop you, falling softly on you and through you, like a feather floating down from the sky…

And it can start as a glance, a realisation, a declaration; something known, or on the tip of the tongue; it can be at the back of the brain or from the bottom of the heart … And love comes in many shapes and shades, then forms itself in solidarity or as shimmering waves.

So it’s not surprising then that we don’t always see it in our space.  However, spend a little time with love and you realise how much of it is around; despite the fact that so often we can be strangely pre-occupied with how little of it we have in our lives.  Yet love is an abundance when you consider it in its’ every kind.

Let’s begin with the old cliché of loving yourself – the very best place to embark on this journey, in my own writerly opinion.  For me that is a waxing and waning; and far from loving myself, sometimes I can be my own worst hated enemy.  Yet self is the starting place of all our loves, so we must take care of loving ourselves.  Pay that first love its due, treat it with affection, shine a light on it and show yourself that you are loved.  And the easiest way to do this is to be kind to yourself – do not silently chide or scold you and don’t listen to the dark voice that tells you that you cannot… be loved… Instead, love yourself.

And it reaches out, this love – to those around us, born to us, sent to us by fate as friends, chosen, gifted, sought.  So if we are not healed and solid in our own hearts, how can we reach out for more and give of our own best love?

For love moves and grows and can also stay unfettered in our being, unacknowledged for those around us, not named, when it should be praised and thanked and explored.  Well I’m biased in this of course, for these very letters are a gratitude of love, an exploration of, a voyage through it.  And to my surprise they were largely unchartered waters, so I simply trusted and sailed upon them – sometimes through choppy waters and sometimes through calm, turquoise bays.

Where to sail to next?  Love is in many ways is the simplest of things and then again it can get so obscured.  How strange that at times it can feel it’s way through our hearts as such a strong force, and then again be something that can wane away, grow pale and die. Does real love really die?  I say no: I say you may not feel its’ force in your daily world, but there it lies and shall shock you or sooth you when it rises out of the past and introduces itself to you again.

So to those friends and lovers who have titled me that way in the past, then moved on, please don’t think that you don’t live on in my heart, in some semblance; and never, ever imagine that you have left me for good (or ill).  Love doesn’t work that way – it is alive, even when dormant, and even when it’s object is on a distant unseeable horizon.  And I understand that you may say that you love that thing or that one, no more.  Yet I reply that love changes, transmutes, shifts and transforms.  It can hide, but is always there, around and in you.  Love has been your lesson – providing the research for the life that you life now.  Love is what makes you; love can guard you, buoy you; and when you think that you lack it – shrivel, shrive and waste you.

If then you appreciate love in all its’ forms and not only the romantic him / her version – your world expands; the frequency of love vibrates in you, it pulses and increases and comes to you often and more – so much more when you choose to see it, in all its every glory.  Quite simply like attracts love … and so this letter ends ….

    With love, love, love … from Me xxx

PS: Love in ALL its’ forms is explored and celebrated in the book of the blog – Peachey Letters – Love Letters to Life published in paperback and kindle.  For a St Valentines’ Day special offer of a signed author copy – go to my website now and buy the paperback for just £7.99!


Letter 23: To Lucie Bradbury

23 February 2012

Dear Angel in Chief

That we have stayed together now through thick and thicker is a testament to our own strong wills, sometimes clashing, sometimes forgotten, sometimes celebrated …

And love can come in many ways, and shape itself to time and tide and so it can grow, and here then is OUR love story, told from MY sandy shore …

The first time we were in a room together, we didn’t meet … we were all celebrating an amazing year in someone else’s company.  The same someone else suggested I get in touch with you later, when I wanted to fix myself of my life’s ills (or so I thought).  So I came into your orbit, walking a muddy path from the life I had created towards to the life to be …

Then I find myself in a room with you again, shared with other women, learning NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming … and very scared that I would learn the keys to the Universe, yet would fail to unlock the door …

My eyes were opened to training, but not as I had known it, or had indeed delivered it, in dusty corporate rooms of the past … This Training Room had cushions and candles, hugs and dreams, and still we learned the solid techniques of brain and language.  NLP did not change my world, in some ways, but this new experience showed me that I was not a broken thing; and I realised that this knowing could be a gift that I in turn, would give to the world.

So you didn’t want to send your newly trained fledglings out into the world on their own and created your fabulous feminine community … and there was I, a ‘Damsel in Success’, witnessing you too, stepping onto your stage, sharing the secrets of your heart’s success.  Teaching and inspiring and breathing deep, bringing more and more stars into your orbit.  And I watched too, through my own lenses, as you stepped through your own new life stages – planning a wedding, working with women, loving and laughing and so looking forward to bringing your first baby into the world.

And very soon, I skipped to the front of the room and said, this MUST go further, we must get it out there, let me help you make it so …

I can’t remember why, but we were chatting the day you went for your baby scan … we were both giddy and excited that you would see your unborn girl and get to know her better.  Then the scan revealed that all was not well with the precious embryo princess swelling in your womb.  The news was a blow, a time of tears. You handled it so amazingly … I watched with admiration and love while you shined through the news and loved your way forward.  And since you had created a supportive sisterhood of a community, we closed in to blanket you, as you needed it, and yet still you had the love lead US through this too.

Then your gorgeous girl was born and we watched her stay – an angel child, a true gift of God.  And she didn’t have the simplest of starts, yet she survived and thrived and now toddles amongst us, testament to the love invested in her, in so many ways.

And the ‘Damsels in Success’ community, was your baby too and times changed and that baby needed to leave or needed to grow and so, at this time of love and expansion, when it could have sank or shrank, instead it multiplied …

Your love well invested, now paid dividends and there I was at your elbow, stepping up into the spotlight beside you and then … we fell out … of love, of synchronised vision.  We attacked, we parried.  Our partners duelled on our behalves … Love turned to difficulty and to the heavy weight of picking up the phone to speak words that would not heal … And I really can’t speak for your side, but at this strange and changing time, I was mainly in the business of blowing smoke up your ass …

Yet through all the fog, there was still love.  I LOVED your baby and would not want to let it go.  All the difference had been made to my life and now it was MY turn to shine the light.  Stubbornly I clung on, I would not walk away and so I suggested ways to stay … and we started the clock again and kept on loving and moving …

And here we are now, we have both come so far, and there have still been hillocky jolts along the way, but here is the thing – when you say you love me, I feel the huge force of your heart.  And it is truth and sharing, journeying and light.  And of all your children, I find it strange to be the problem child at times, but you listen and I listen, and as wise women we know that the things that set us apart, sometimes are strangely the things that bring us closest together too … And in the end, as I’ve always said – what we create in our twin energy field, will reap wondrous rewards and glorious lessons for us both … and so it came to pass …

And who knows what stage of our journey we are at, sometimes in step and sometimes out, yet always with the same vision in soft sight.

Now when all is said and done, love is a gift and you are definitely a gift to me, my ‘Angel in Chief’.  Who knows where our wings will take us???  I can’t wait to find out, can you ..?

    With love from Sandie … your ‘Auntie Angel’ xxx

Auntie Angel & Angel in Chief

PS: Thank you Lucie Lu for your love and learning and not least for your permission to let this letter live in public.  S xx

PPS: You can find out more about our community at www.damselsinsuccess.co.uk

PPS: To get this letter and more in its’ book version – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 22: To Comfort

22 February 2012

Dear Comfort

Well I’ve just got to come straight in with the compliments … what a gorgeous word you are; your beautiful cadent form is just gorgeousness personified …

What a glorious gift, what a soft, tender and giving thing you are … yes, the very thought of you makes my heart glad …

One of the many things I love about you Comfort, is the many forms you may manifest in.  You can be a hug or a healing, you can be light or you can be calming, sweet darkness.  Comfort is a recognised voice, a sense of familiarity and of a knowing. 

Comfort too can be a hot drink, a glass of wine, a chunk of chocolate … the kiss of loving, warming food.  Comfort food … mmmmmmmm …  A comfort of sausage and mash wrapped in a gravy of oniony flavour; or of pure cold ice cream caressing the tongue and the throat, melting into sensory pleasure.  A treasure of taste to be savoured and devoured, inhaled and duly digested.

I say, so sincerely Comfort, that I’m very sorry that I am not always faithful to you and am sometimes forgetful of you … I will often toil and trade and treat you like an affair, a guilty pleasure kept secretly for free and forgotten days, when really you are a necessity – my true love, my joy and my ultimate sanity. At those forgetful, regretful times, I push through life, I thrust and force, I cajole and cry.  These are hard things to do my dear Comfort, and yet so often I do them to myself, being my own willing victim, enslaving myself to time, to effort and to (non comforting) reward. 

Now there’s the thing – is comfort a reward or a right?  Is it a luxury or a necessity?  Is it a guilt or a given?  Is it rebellion or heaven? 

Comfort is love, in many faceted forms and love is my birth right, so comfort be mine and let me be true to you.  Ah comfort, how shall I celebrate you?  Simply or in a spa?  I shall take you and make you in all guises and remember to wrap you around me, to share you, to prioritise you, to eulogise you, to practise you frequently and blissfully.  Oh comfort what shall we do?  Let’s make ‘love’ (and yes that can be a comfort too!)

And your form can be gorgeously simple and shape you into new names … here is one of my very favourites … I shall breathe this gently … the breath of a ‘blankie’, yes, the very caress of comfort enveloping me, making the corporeal me less real.  Softness defined into a loving square of comfort and joy, of pride and possession, my very own selfish delight, wrapping and binding me as a gift. Draped and shaped around me, a new me, yielding and melting and slowed … ah comfort.

Comfort be my very own, engaging my senses with ease and grace and gratitude.  Comfort be long, comfort be often, and comfort be continual. 

Comfort be there in the fabric of my being, not sought after when I am sore or tired or lost; for with you there, as my constant companion, there will be more light and less loss, more energy, more fun and more lingering, yellow sun. 

Comfort is complete and utter surrender to a yummy moment of love, an act of complete submissive tenderness; so seek comfort in your surroundings – take yourself to where comfort resides and call it to you, lure it in with love, love for yourself, for your life, for this cradled, cosseted moment.  The moment of heart’s ease, this single eternity of forgetfulness for everything except this delicious, comforting now.

And what is comfort?  Comfort is a thousand things and it is one thing.  It is various and it is simple.  It is common and it is golden.  It can be resting your head on a cat’s purring form, paddling in the sea, listening to beautiful music: lifting you up, resting you down, flattening out the undulations and tribulations of life, filling you up, filling your senses with nonsensical, whimsical joy.  Comfort, you are relaxation, slow tempo, warmth or coolness, gravity geared or stillness.

Comfort you are the very realisation and personification of slow joy; a gift, a treasure, a genuine pleasure.

Ah comfort, I love you and that you love me too is incontrovertible, for you always welcome me in with hugging, open arms and so too now, my dearest one, I’ll embrace you.  Yes, here is my commitment – to comfort and to love.

   Yours sweetly and softly …

      S xx

PS: If you want the comfort of Peachey Letters in book form – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 21: To God’s Creatures

21 February 2012

Dear Creatures

For all our involvement, for all the power we try to wield over this planet, mankind is, in many ways, in the minority.  We share it all this creation, this never ending motion, with God’s Creatures … the beasts, the animals and the pets.

As I write this letter, my elbow is resting on the haunches of George – a cat, a named pet, a creature on loan to me, a gift from God.

At some point in its evolution, cat-kind left the jungle and became enmeshed in the world of man and womankind.  Its descendants pounced on our vermin, kept us company, then shared their fleas and their purrs.

The domesticated cat – a recognisable cousin to its wild counterparts, now resides alongside many of us and for me that particular co-habitation started early on.

I’m told we had a cat when I was a small child, though I have only one hazy memory of this creature, called Corky, curled up on a blanket.

My solid memories start later, with the kitten bought for me when I was 12.  That was the year my brother left home … so we substituted him with another boy, my lucky black cat ‘Whiskers’.  The love was instant … I met a tiny ball of black fluff who was curled up on my living room chair, who then got up, yawned and stretched luxouriously, found his own way in to the next room for dinner, then availed him self of the litter box.  I was amazed at the confident temerity of this little creature: his self assurance, how at home he already was, how he knew what to do, where to go and next I discovered that he loved to play and he loved to give and receive love and from then on I was hooked on feline kind …

This creature immediately became part of the family unit …  I discovered, unknowingly that my father had an affinity for the feline; in fact he had a special language, reserved just for the cat, (which he in turn had absorbed from his own father) and he would compliment his companion, in fun of and homage to his own lost dad and the cat received these blandishments with quiet, blinking gratitude.

And when I left home 6 years later again, I packed all my belongings away, dry eyed and finally cried at long last when I had to say good bye to my creature friend; as if he some how represented all that was soft and childish in me and embodied the loss of all that I was now leaving behind me, in order to walk towards my adulthood.

I had to bide my time before I was quite grown up and static enough to have my very own cat creature.  And when the time finally came, I chose another black boy, to substitute my child cat, to practise my parenting skills on, to add warmth and dimension to my life; and bought him into my new home, shared with my fiancé – a self confessed cat hater …

Now I did have his permission to bring a cat in, but he was less than impressed at his first meeting with the ‘little rat’.  Then without my bidding, the feline magic was worked … he gave the creature a human name (Dougal) and his affection; he realised he had a live toy, a companion, a subject of endless fascination and conversation and so his own love story with cat kind began …

I left the man and he kept the cat and a little later the next creature came in to my life and so on through my time.  Then there was one man later on who was made sick by my cat, so the cat went and the man stayed … for a short time … Never again I said.  And never again I did.

My next cat – a large ginger tiger tom named Muttley – was a challenge.  He was intelligent and self possessed and kept himself to himself.  I had adopted him as an abandoned adult, so who knew his story before then?   So I learned to love unconditionally, getting little in return for my food and shelter.  Instead I made cat-kind an object of study, I read, I revised, I learnt … all about their physiology, psychology and genetics, and I also studied my own boy – his body language, his voice, his ways and I gave him love by food, by shelter and by soft voice.  Then over years, he returned the favours and the love and later again, when he was run over and his pelvis was crushed – I sobbed sadly and loudly.

He survived the experience – the treating vet telling me that these creatures of God have the best self healing musclo-skeletal system of all animal kind and though his pelvis formed a new shape, the tiger returned to his habitat, changed but yet intact.

And there have been more and more creature companions, and I have seen the love story happen to others, again and again … and for some it becomes a feline obsession …  An endless fascination of conversation and occupation.

For me, the lure is that we are bound by love to these creatures.  They come to us for food of course, but then they stay with us for love.  They seek our company, they desire our affection and so it is love that ties us together.  We receive their company, and are part of a primordial relationship, one that is closer to nature than to man’s machinations.  And at times they are domesticated pets and at times they are wild creatures and it is their very differences – between themselves and ourselves – that is part of their inherent allure.

And that for me is love.  So I am now sending that love out to you – from me and from George and Taz – two of my favourite gifts and most definitely God’s Creatures.

      Yours purringly and adoringly, Sandra x

PS: For all these letters and more, you can buy Peachey Letters as a book – follow the link here to find out more…

Me, George and Taz, all God’s Creatures …

Letter 20: To (a life of) Choice

20 February 2012

Dear Sandy

I remember about a decade (or a lifetime) ago, I had a boyfriend who was a unique breed at the time … he made a living selling goods on EBay and a good living at that.  He decided to leave his high flying career in the rat race and then simply set up his own business working from home.

Now at the time, this freedom of choice struck such a chord with me – I had just come out of relationship with another man who told me that not only could I not work part-time, as I had wanted to, for so long; but in order to get the decent house of our dreams, we would both have to work long and hard for the next 10 years …  We clearly weren’t compatible, but that’s another story …

Now with this new man, a new way started to dawn … here was someone who had decided he wanted it his way and had created a new reality for himself … one where he would get up with his body clock (around 11.00 am), take sunny days off ‘work’ to sit in the garden with a book, and chose who he sold to / worked with.

Now I was good with the whole lie-in and garden thing … but to CHOSE your customer felt distinctly strange … You see I had come from years of service to whom ever the corporate world had put in my path … the good, bad and occasionally the mad …

So the seed was sown, the possibilities were laid out before me and still I did not see that being MY path … I had a well paid, managerial, lofty position in the corporate world … and so my fantasy slowly started to form – I would work part-time, (eventually at some indeterminate point in the future).  For – let’s face it, I was just some one who could NEVER be self employed, that was beyond the realms of my capability and reality …  Yet still I as I worked away, corporately, for those long and difficult hours – I was tired and stressed and frequently found myself doing things that I found completely unpleasant … oh woe was poor little princess me …

And then that man left me and so I forgot my pipe dreams and carried on and left those plans behind, and instead bought myself more golden ties to keep me bound into the inexorable existence that was created for me and which I only knew how to embrace.

Well dear reader, guess how this story ends???  I left that world behind, eventually …  And the changing was painful, drawn out and difficult, because although I wanted to alter my life and live my dreams; that all just seemed impossible without a future map and banks full of money firmly in place.

And so I sought support and aspiration, and STILL, over dithering months and years, I would not commit to change.   Then finally, one day, one decisionless day, in the company of chosen people; someone special took me and bodily shook me and said “Sandie you have just got to make the decision, just make it now and commit to it”.  And I wanted the words and I needed the physical intervention to shake me out of my world and off my Plan A path.

And suddenly it all became easy, the decision now made, then the doors opened, my support came in and the world changed into a place of my choosing.

Now this brave new world is not all one of plain sailing, yet now I sail where I chose and I get to chose my crew mates, colleagues and clients too.

Over time, over those seas – the deliciousness of choice, of having things MY way, has become more and more desirable and indeed necessary to living my life.  And it IS my way, though I sometimes share this journey and will steer with others.  Some people would call THAT choice compromise and yet for me this is choice too – given freely and from my core centre – to sail, ride and walk the ways I want, with those gifted to me, on loan to me in life, to stay a short while or be there for the long distance of my life.

And my passion is to have my choice and even more to guide others to have their cake of choice and then to eat it too and to know that every one, who wants to, can have their own cake of choice.

I love that choice.

  Yours choosily

       Sandra x 

PS: Did you know that I can chose to be Sandra, Sandy or Sandie?  Any name given or transformed, by choice too 🙂

PPS: If you would like all my letters in book form – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 19: To the Friends Who are Family

19 February 2012

Dear Friends and honorary: (take a deep breath here …) sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, uncles and aunties, etc, etc and so on …

My blood ties are few … I have a mother and a brother living, and my dear departed father provided me with a whole crowd of first cousins and through them many more seconds and thirds.  Somehow though we were out of kilter with them in family history and we stay in rare Christmas card and family funeral touch …  No children for me and my bro, no living grand parents, aunts or uncles or anything else and so that is our little Peachey family …

So there is me – ‘friend’ to a few … sometimes called sister … I always wanted a sister – ideally a twin one; there are twin girl cousins out there in the family tree; yet not me.  Not quite an only child, but spaced from my big brother by nearly 8 years and we were together in the early years, then separated through adolescence and distance and caught up with each other later in our lives, when our dad died.

So friend becomes sister, becomes honorary Auntie to babies … this role given by friendship, affection and love extended to you, as a non blood relative.  You get to love the expansion of your friend’s lives.  The title is given as a gift and in return you give gifts back … as ‘cool aunt’ your brief is to spoil those darling children rotten when you have the ways and means at your disposal … 

So you grow up and grow older, watching the babies follow in your wake, establishing the patterns of their lives … watching the changing facial features, the family characteristics – now like their mum, now like dad … grand-dad … cousin … who knows who?  The inherent fascination and dissertation of seeing the lineage reflected and altered in unique genetic combination.

And as my world is filled with new generations, so too is my mother’s.  No blood grand-babies for her, so she becomes honorary Nanna to two.  So proud I am she does this, that she is allowed to shine and show her capability for love and generosity; and when I take her round to meet my friend’s babies, they all hang round her, for she has a child like quality which pulls them in.  Straight away, the purse is open, gifts are given … I remember HER mother too giving me sixpences, and so it goes on …

In my childhood, there were aunts and uncles and they came with affection and affinity, though rarely were there parental friends around to be granted the honorary given title I have gained in abundance.  So even now, after a quarter of a century of being an Aunt, I am so surprised at how I am accepted, welcomed and you can see – loved by those who had no choice but to have me there, to have me to share.  Now they see ME, not ‘just’ Auntie, for many of them have grown out of the title now and as I am Sandra to my life long friends, so now too to them …

And else where, I am known as ‘Auntie Sandra’ to ALL the family – adults and children alike – a huge loving reminder of the affectionate part I play in their lives. 

So the single girl creates a family, gets to hug the children and give them back … then time flows on and she becomes a strange new creature of honorary familyness – a Great Aunt indeed! 

So it was that I held one baby in my arms and looked down at her and then, so little time later, it is HER son in his turn, in my arms … I hold this new born personality for hours, looking down at him, held and sated with the special milky love that comes with cradling a precious new life.  So in that room there is Mother, Grand Mother and Auntie, all quietly together, loving this new little lad. 

Then how quickly quiet turns to toddler noise and we move on and on, inexorably, pacing through life with the new comers beside us: sometimes stopping together, sometimes in step and sometimes continents apart; and I am woven into the fabric of their living, of their memories and mostly they come closer and some shy away; and shying away is allowed, since this is not necessarily unconditional love, but it IS acceptance, just like I gladly accepted the gift of them into my rounded, bonded Auntified kind of life … 

And is it coincidence this love spills over into my vocation and how much I love my clients, those whose orbits I circle in; for as I love to be cherished, I love to cherish too and to me coaching is cherishing and loving and nurturing.  Sometimes this is soft supporting love and some times shaking love, but throughout time I would tell my babies the score if that felt required; and still they love me and still we move on and where ever it is we happen to go; we all move on in love.

   Big love and hugs,

         Auntie S xxx

PS: Peachey Letters has now been published as a book, to find out more and purchase your own copies – follow this  link…

Letter 18: To Song

18 February 2012

Dear Song

I am puzzling over whether to address you as song singular or songs plural … either way,  you know what I mean and you know how much I love you. In fact I love you so much that I am semi convinced that the reason my memory is so slow, is that my brain is simply over loaded with song lyrics … especially ones from the 80s … oh and the ABBA back catalogue of course …

I love listening to you, I love singing you, I love dancing to you. There I was this very evening in fact – dancing the night away and singing along; part of a jostling happy crowd, in the semi darkness of a singing, dancing, drinking homaging kind of a place and, it  has to be said, doing justice to all three of those activities … ah, the power of the multi-tasking woman …

And from childhood I saw myself as pop star, opera star, musical star … yes I would open my tonsils, so the dream went, and out would come a voice of such power and beauty that glass would shatter and icebergs would melt … When I sat and watched the old Saturday Afternoon, BBC 2 film musicals, I’d see myself on screen, the girl in the gorgeous dress, who could act like Ava Gardiner, dance like Cyd Charisse and sing, like nothing else on this earth …

When other people did not recognise this about me, it was always received with a sense of puzzlement.  In latter years I have wondered if I am akin to one of those deluded people in the Y (on earth) Factor programme – the ones they have on in the early audition stages; you know – the musical wannabes who have that implicit belief in their own amazing talent … yet we, the public, see and hear them with differently filtered eyes and ears …

Then at other times, some one will hear me, see me and praise me and I am content with my own localised stardom … for now any way … there is still time on this earth for me to be a mega star yet or indeed to get my next fix …

And here’s the thing – singing in public still takes me wildly out of my comfort zone and the sound of my own voice can either mesmerise me or make me wince … so here is my ultimate vulnerability, a badly made recording of me is attached … singing ‘Love Letters’ of course.

I trust Dear Song that you will take this as a compliment and not a caterwaul – that’s for your ears to judge. Either way I’m gonna love you … it’s a love I was born with, it’s a love that’s unconditional and it’s most definitely a love that is real …

    Yours tunefully,

          Sandie Super Star xxx

PS: If you love the written word and pictures, as well as song, there is more of both in the Book version of my letters – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 17: To Photographs

17 February 2012

Dear Photos

Well I don’t know about love … really it’s more of an obsession …

I love those moments captured in time, I love memories revived, I love staging and posing and yet again the naturalness of a split millisecond of beauty or frieze framed action.

I hoard, I treasure, I capture on camera. I love photography as an art form, as part subject / part picture taker’s product. I love that they can provoke an emotional response in me and I will devour their pixels again and again. And photography can be instant – a quick snap taken on your phone or it can be orchestrated, seen through long lens, filtered by light, changed by perspective and by these means it can be glamorised or turned to black and white. It is life seen through an artificial eye … life that can be cropped, coloured and manipulated by machine to another identity, an altered ego, a new id changing our form through light and digicality.

And in this instant age, we can flash our images immediately around the world and sit back and wait to be ‘Liked’ for it …

Of course I can loathe too – that wrong moment, that piece of flesh seen and frozen for public view. Yet I can quietly forget those images, un-name myself, just delete that piece of camera memory; and so photography becomes a polished performance of simply the best of me, of my times, my loves and my creations.

In my hoarding places, literally thousands of photos live, sometimes in the dark, sometimes to breath lighter air … I have sepia representations of great grand parents, babies now grown up and old, records of places travelled and of loves lost and friends found on cardboard and in computer they wait … to be seen and to be loved …

So here is a fraction of all the pictorial love I possess … a life of love in photographs …

    Mind the birdie …

         Sandra x

PS: If you love the written word AND photos, there is more of both in the Book version of my letters – follow the link here to find out more…

Letter 16: To My Mother

16 February 2012

Dear Mum

Unexpected presents are fabulous aren’t they?  And I got one from you on Valentine’s Day.  A bunch of peach coloured roses and carnations … peach from a Peachey to a Peachey … Thank you so so much!  For this I cried, with happiness, with surprise and appreciation, because this was such an act of generosity to me and not the easiest thing to organise when you are wheel chair bound, in a nursing home and not surprisingly, given everything about who and where you are now – in body, mind and environment, that it is usually all about YOUR wants being met and met NOW!  Is THAT where my natural impatience stems from, I wonder ..?

Several weeks ago I was hauled into the head mistress / AKA the (nursing home) manager’s office to be told of bad behaviours, possible causes and then courses of action.  I went to you next … “Why did you do it?” I asked gently and you said there was a voice in your head telling you to … So that’s what drives you on now … What voice organised roses for me then, I think smilingly today ..?  I must remember that, when the other, darker voice is at work on another day in our lives …

So this is our now.  Mother become child.  My brother and I take you out and about and have to look after every aspect of your care as we go.  And one day I observed lightly that it was our Karma – we neither of us children had children, so now we were taking care of our version of child …  My brother smiled back …

There is so much water under the bridges of our lives now.  So many tears, so many shoutings, such anger, such blame.  Yes blame, such a heavy, self victimising blow of a word, of a deed.  Oh I blame blame blamed you for so much, for everything, in between those times I thought I had struggled away to be a different creature, a creature of light and laughter, the blonde haired cherub of your proud creation.

Then always I would return to you to break the news … that I was back in black …  And more blows reigned on you – no grand babies, no soft Nanna lisps to be loved and spoilt … my heart breaks to think you will probably never have that from your line.

From my babyhood on, I never doubted that you loved me, though at times you tried hard to disguise the fact, in some very extreme ways.  Your own childhood was lonely, broken and unloving and you told me you had decided you would not repeat the histories of your mother and father’s poor parental conduct, with your own children.

You were one child alone, a little girl with chestnut hair and an indomitable spirit, who refused to go to school one cold day because the colour of your tights weren’t right … who skated, loved the cinema and had a cat called Spitfire … I loved those stories of your life back then.  Though too there were the stories of betrayal, loss, ridicule and shame – the darker stories that were also woven into your life fabric.

And we shared more stories on long weekend afternoons when we watched old black and white movies on the sofa, together.  You knew all the decades old gossip of every star, gleaned from escapist movie magazines of way back when and I took it all in.

Then the tides of time turn and we grow up and grow old and there were more years and many more tears between us two.

It is an oddly natural thing to see a sort of reflection of you that is so similar and yet so very different.  Sometimes your face appears in me, sometimes your voice and oft times I have called the dark chiding hateful voice sometimes spiralling in my soul – you too.  ‘You are just like your father’ you would accuse, and he would sometimes say ‘you’re just like your mother’ and then in another moment I would be different to her.

The constant family comparisons …  The fascinating DNA lottery that gives us both blue eyes, me with blonde hair, you with dark.  Father and brother with brown eyes, father dark haired, brother fair and so on and then our myriad talents, skills and personalities – our very mysteries of making, born and nurtured.

You were born in Scotland.  I loved that – it marked me out, made me more exotic!  Yet some how Scotland rubbed off, as you left it at 18 years of age; it did not hold in your voice and there were only small clues in our Sassenach lives … some words, some poems, a Broons annual …  So a lot of your life was left behind there and I hardly knew any family from back then, except for my Nanna.  You often compare me to her – your mother … my popularity, my nature you said … that which is so different from one, is so like the other; now there is one particular photo of her cradling a baby me and looking at it now, you know exactly where I sprang from …

It is not for me to compare us in nature, since she left this world when I was six  … just too young for remembering much except the gifts of sixpences and dark chocolate she would save for her grand children’s visits to the dark little flat in Birmingham.  But there is just one more happy story, amongst the many stories to be unfurled …  You in hospital mum, having just given birth to me and Nanna comes in to room so excited and cries “where is she, where is she”, wanting to meet and know me for the first time.  And always that story was told with such pride and laughter.

And there is so much more, so many stories, so much to say and yet really, so little.  Now it boils down to this – the blaming has had to STOP for me.  I try to journey away from that, from so called past misdemeanours.  It has taken so long and I kept on blaming until recent history; even when I had tried to fix, to analyse, to change.

Then one day I literally woke up and realised, that all those dark words and actions were not really you.  Through out all your life you have done the best with what knowledge and resources you have had; and so then I was just left to love.  And love changed a lot, love created a force field around me and radiated from me, to stop me barbing and griping … and with out that, you had to love more too.  Now it’s not a complete cure … there are times when I am tired or facing a low moment and it surfaces again.  Yet I know, come what may, that I have escaped hate and guilt and I can always say, truly, that I love you.

  I love you, mum.

     Sandy Bach xxx

PS: My mother lived with Parkinsons Disease and if you would like to donate to the excellence cause of care for, and research into this condition, please follow this link…

My Valentine Gift from Mum …