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The Halls of my Yesterday

When reading someone's latest post, I often feel that they must have been inside my head and written out my thoughts for all to see! But in a more succinct and beautiful way than l ever could. Yesterday the wonderful Erin posted about our yesterdays and talked about living with one foot in the past and one in the present.  

I let her post wash over me. I questioned myself and then l sighed. I inhaled her words.  

I felt that she had walked the halls of my yesterday. 

I do seem to live with one foot in the past. I tend to hanker after a simpler life, a world where I felt safe and sound, without a whiff of responsibility. Although I surround myself with furniture and bits and pieces I feel I can't part with. This is I think the way I fill the hole inside, it may replace the missed feeling of security that we children have when young and are rotected by our families, by our environment and by our parents. Some of us have been lucky enough in this world to live with the two parents who gave us life and in the bosom of a 'happy' family life.  

Those early summer days and evenings, were often spent wandering aimlessly but happily along the small lanes,the soft downs, the beaches and the coastline of my childhood. Talking with strangers without fear, nothing innate or infected to make us wary. 

Just passing the time alone, with siblings or friends or with friendly elders. Being offered a sweet and accepting without hesitation or inhibition. Then come the Saturday nights at the disco's, the hoping, the yearning, the excitement of not knowing. The anticipation of the unknown, the temptations laid bare, innocently ignored. 

I know this to be true, whenever I see my folks on one of my almost quarterly visits down to the 'homeland', I can relax totally. I can breathe without any sense of worry over the kids,-as their father is with them and if he isn't he wouldn't be fretting the way l do!- I can go to sleep without a care, for a few days. My Dad has checked and locked up the house, I needn't double check it. I don't have buy or prepare any food, no need to do a wash, to see to the dog and all that whilst being as a wife, mother and employed house-frau dictates. I can just be a daughter and for that all I need do is relax and breathe deeply of the soothing waters of mother and father.  

I believe this is a healthy activity, the appreciation of things past, their value and their position in a time and place. I do not feel it is maudlin, nor melancholic, although not to confuse, it can have a tendency to be emotional. When I hear a certain song or tune unexpectedly, I do sometimes find that my throat tightens up and I feel it raw with emotion, the tune riding my mind and breaking free, a hidden memory of a day when I was free from wisdom, knowledge and experience. The lost innocence of our childhood cannot be regained. It's intense magic stored away until our own children are drinking of our well, we relive it through them and it tastes just as fresh and oh the clarity! It's value is then appreciated fully now we are long grown, we then fill up with a longing for the simpler times.  

Regardless of our age, our decade or our journeys, I'm sure many of us feel that getting older isn't all it's cracked up to be!

p.s. I am enjoying this third period of my life, it is just that being a grown up is really tough and hard work, you know!?


  1. Girl.......I have learned to love getting a wee bit older. I don't have the burdens that I had when I was younger and all 4 of our children are grown!!
    We miss them terribly. And we don't miss them teribly. Does that make sense?
    We have decided that THIS....HERE AND NOW is the time of our lives!!
    God bless and keep you. Take good care and........

    Steady On
    Reggie Girl

  2. Sometimes my past is more present in my mind than today is. I can easily forget something that happened a minute ago - yet I can easily remember in minute detail events from my past - like they were happening right here and right now.

    That is so strange to me. I often wonder what on earth is wrong with me.

  3. Saz, you are so right to treasure those moments, when you are literally out of harm's way, and can retreat to the bosom of your parents again - You realise, I know, that you are very lucky still to be blessed with your parents' wit, warmth and embraces... I know how you value that.

    The unfair nature and patterns of life mean we can never go back to being an innocent child again - 'The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on, nor all your piety or wit shall lure it back to cancel half a line, nor all your tears wash out a word of it...'

    Ancient wisdom indeed...and it is not maudlin to want to hang on to pieces of our past, to wear them about us, nor to fill our homes with its relics, for we are also a part of that past, in my eyes...

    We are very alike, we too - I am off to read that recommended blog now xox

  4. I sometimes wish I had been born into the early eighteenth century, languishing in a Jane Austen or Thomas Hardy setting. But then again, I would have probably been very poor and hated it. But there are definitely times when I do not feel comfortable in this era. Or being a grown-up!

  5. I often lie in bed and drag memories of my late grandparents to the forefront of my mind so that I can visit with them. A few months after my mother died, I cried to my aunt that I couldn't remember her voice. She told me to listen to my answering machine voice and I'd hear it quite plainly. I never knew how much we sounded alike...memories are the hallways of our soul...
    wonderful post

  6. I feel you on this one, you're humming. Actually you opened this up for me on another level. I wasn't really thinking about my past perse, but that time period and before even. Those decades, the way that society worked then. You've stretched my intention and I like it even more, that we can each visit an idea and leave with pockets full.

    (that you hear me, you honour me. thank you.

  7. Eventually my parents came to rely upon me rather than vice versa and you are right being grown up can be difficult. However, I was saying to my elder brother while holidaying with him last year exactly what you just said. It felt great not to be the responsible person for a while. He chose the food in the supermarket, he set the washing machine, he made the bread, he drove and determined when we needed to get back to the car because the meter was running out. All I had to do was be me and be waited upon which was great but even better was the feeling that whatever happened it was his responsibility to deal with it, not mine.

  8. Is it something about this period of life? I'm in a veritable watershed these days, as my daughter approaches her 12th birthday and I look beyond to what's ahead...and what I'm going to lose. Find myself getting hopelessly stuck in the past if I'm not careful. I really want to enjoy this time of life, and not live it in either the present or the future. It takes courage to do this, I find. My grandfather said getting older isn't for sissies. Thanks for the post.

  9. As I grow older I do remember more of the past. i think its because we realize how dear those times were too us and the people of our childhood. i think of my past often as i have an illness that does not allow me to be the same person as i was before. i really try to focus on has to be the best day for me. i wake up , i am breathing, its a good start. tomorrow comes soon enough.take care. love your blog.

  10. What a truly beautifully written post and thoroughly evocative. I felt such nostalgia reading your words and a great sense of peace - that is some great writing to have that come at you from the page. I think that our fifties is a time where it can be horrendous as we become the sandwich generation of dependent adult kids at uni and dependent parents needing additional care. Empty nesters with the loss of the family life as they knew it – some benefits to having the home to yourself and more freedom – but then the change of role with parents when you assume their cre – unless you can pap the poor old dears away into a care home that is!.
    In other cases, it can be superb if you have a great relationship with your partner and relish the kids being away and if you have no upward responsibility because your parents are still active, mobile, fit of mind and body. Enjoy the hiatus – this can be the time of our lives. And yes, I miss just being a wee me now that my parents have gone. Great, great post that has made me very wistful.

  11. Dearest Saratouts, that was a beautiful post that touched me deeply, especially knowing that it was not always peaches and cream. To know that you feel a peace and contentment with us swells my heart.
    Nostalgia hits you hard as one ages,it is a fact of life, prompting us to remember and to learn not to make the same mistakes your parents did.

    I love that you have received so many comments that are full of recognition...and understanding.

    See...even though I am supposed to be taking days off for reading time, I cannot stay away, afraid to miss a post.

  12. Saz, you are so knowledgeable, I had never even heard of an Enid Collins' bag - It's almost timeless, isn't it, fitting in very well with the boho styles still prevalent today! x

    Saz, this is for Handbag Diva - The Word Verif is frozen on "Loading...", so I cannot post - It seems to be a common problem - I have now disabled mine....x

  13. Beautiful post, Saz, and I love the picture, too....Peace - D

  14. Beautifully evocative, and very hopeful that we do relive our innocent times through our memories and hopefully our children. It sounds like you are so lucky to have such stable and constant parents to retreat to occasionally!

  15. Thanks for the kind comments all!!

    It is great when I write a post fluidly like this one and seemingly out of nowhere, but on the back of reading Erin's wonderful post I felt that my comment may turn into a post and it did...I love the way likeminded people I have never met touch me and inspire me!!

  16. I really like this post! Thank you for sharing!

    My past too sneaks into my mind and it makes me feel so so happy inside. I was about 7 years old just lying on the floor looking up at the beautiful blue sky and the shape of the clouds and i can hear a aero plane in the distance and nothing else...i remember it like yesterday :)

  17. Isn't it strange - I see wisdom, knowledge and experience as giving freedom, not reducing it?

  18. The key is to grow up without growing old. This is why a young heart is important.

  19. Tough and hard work, indeed!

    Here's something I do whenever I want to travel back in time. I don't know what you had in the U.K. for drawing while in school, but in the U.S. almost everybody used Crayola-brand crayons. Well, smell being about the strongest associative to memory, the mere act of sniffing a box of those crayons transports me back to my earliest years, if only for a few moments. To anybody wishing to recapture their youth for a bit, I recommend keeping a box of Crayolas (or U.K. equivalent) within reach. Whenever you need a little break from the now, take a sniff. Less expensive than drink, less harmful than most drugs, and if you get the urge, you can also draw a picture :-)

  20. Aging sucks. Getting older is not as bad I as thought it would be when I turned sixty ... however ... I am not going to ever admit to any more 'years', 'numbers' ... this is fine, thanks, I will just stay right here.

  21. Oh, I do know! And your post spoke so clearly to me, stirring up feelings almost exactly the same as your own - except I never got to have those trips back home to the bosom of my family, leaving behind (in total security) the kids, dog etc, because my Dad died a year or so before I got married.

    I think it was Alvin Toffler who wrote about 'Future Shock' and how we now live in times which are changing so fast that it's hard for us to adjust. It's very new in evolutionary terms to have to cope with this, and some of us manage by living (as you say) with one foot in the past. I'm sure that's where some of my insecurity comes from. I want to hang onto things, and I hate seeing houses knocked down, rules change, new developments, etc. I want the comfort of the feeling I had in my childhood, of permanence and peace.

  22. Very profound and so true. As we get older our responsibilities can feel heavy sometimes. I too bathe in that feeling of protectiveness when i visit my parents. Lie in their sunroom whilst I am made a meal or a cup of tea, and feel total ease for a while.

  23. The wonderful thing about the web is that something on somebody's blog will kick start a memory and take us back to the past.

  24. Funny you should write this as I have one in my 'drafts' that is of a similar theme. Although I think there are treasured moments all around, we just don't notice them until they're gone. I'm trying to live for the moment a bit more and it does feel very good!

  25. I think the whole getting older thing depends a lot on health. I've chatted with patients at practices I used to run, folks in their 80s working or vacationing, jogging....well, they sure didn't feel old, but they were largely in good health.
    And I'll bet positive attitude helps as well.....which is also a mite easier with good health.

  26. Everything that you have said in this post is so true. My childhood seemed to be so carefree. Even school and exams seeemed to be a doddle by comparison with life now.

  27. Hi...A truly lovely post and a delight to read. My heart slowed down and I felt peace wash over me as I read it. Now the time is here for me for the reversal of roles and I find myself in the 'front line', caring for an increasingly dependent, confused old lady who is swiftly becoming the child. I think becoming old is not all it is cracked up to be and I dread the thought of my children becoming my carers when although my nest has emptied, I still assume that role for them. Oh the nostalgia and foot in the past is still there. It passes so quickly and I'm sure when I call in to check on my mother she still sees the little girl in a pony tail standing on the doorstep. The circle turns. Take care.x


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Thanks for stopping by!

Take the weight of your feet, draw up a chair and pour yourself a cuppa. Leave your troubles at the door and together we shall ride out the storms.
I will walk a while in your shoes...

Saz x

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