Reading, Revitalising, Regenerating

Often we look so long at the closed door we do not see the one that has been opened for us.      (Helen Keller)

Recently life has been filled with frustrations; organizing new cards, finding old receipts and worrying about replacing the stolen new car. Our family and friends have been absolutely wonderful and so supportive. They shine a bright beam of love into our lives and we feel so fortunate to have such positive people around us. They are the door that has been opened to us and we appreciate each and every one.

But sometimes something will unexpectedly trip you up and forces you to look at the closed door. My dark blue backpack was discovered under the water at the end of a jetty. It has been there for two weeks. Discarded. Thrown away. The things that supported me and my life, considered worthless.

In that pack was my reading glasses, spare pills, writing pad, the pen inscribed with my name etc. Everything smelt of black mud, death and decay. Unable to be resurrected everything had to be abandoned, tossed in the bin, removed from my life. I have washed a black pashmina shawl and a folding shopping bag four times in strong detergent. They are hanging on the line in the vain hope that sunshine, rain and wind may take away the smell of decay. Fingers crossed.

So what has pulled me out of the morass in my mind and allowed me once again to see the open door? A writing friend asked me to read a draft of her latest novel to see if it is ready to move forward on the road to publication. Reading the 324 pages gave me the space I needed to regain my perspective and reset my thinking from negative to positive. I gave myself permission to leave everything unattended while I read Falling Pomegranate Seeds: The duty of Daughters by Wendy Dunn . I found myself immersed in a 15th century world of power, courtly intrigues, life and death drama, failed relationships, love and redemption.

How magical reading is in times of stress. It transports us to another time and place. A good book entertains, a great book entertains and informs.   It can change our perspective. By the end of the manuscript I was thankful for what I have and the life I lead. After all, a robbery is insignificant in the overall scheme of things. Distressing? Yes. Devastating? No. It is simply a hiccup to be managed, dealt with and forgotten.

purole flowers



13 responses to “Reading, Revitalising, Regenerating

  1. I relate so much to your story, Glenice. I was mugged a few years ago in Barcelona and in the bag that was taken was a half written novel, glasses and a book I was totally absorbed in (all personal items of no use to anyone else). I think it’s so easy to allow these events to grind us down – Reading is a great way to overcome the negativity. Good luck! Mary


  2. Reading and writing are my passions, Mary. It’s how I make sense of my life and keeps me sane (although a few friends may question that statement). Mugged? In Barcelona? Now there’s a story. I hope you have written about the experience (or is it still too raw?). Please tell me, was your novel ever published? Thanks for posting and sharing your story


  3. Good for you Glenice!
    You know, you might be better off if the shawl and the bag don’t recover. Because every time you see them, they will trigger a reminder of a negative experience you’d rather forget.


  4. So true, Lisa. It was definitely for the best that they had to be, I must admit, reluctantly discarded. Thanks for posting


  5. Glenice you are amazing how you are coping with all of this – I get the shakes every time I think of the day my purse was stolen at Southern Cross Station. I think I went into meltdown. Not sure I wouldn’t have the same reaction now:) I dips me lid to you!


  6. Reblogged this on charles french words reading and writing and commented:
    This is a wonderful post on the power of reading.


  7. I agree. We sometimes need to be knocked out of our comfort zones for a fresh, new perspective. Excellent post.


  8. I once read a quote (I don’t remember it verbatim) that said: reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.
    Reading is the great escape.


  9. Thanks everyone for your support and encouragement


  10. I can relate to your loss. When I moved from California to the south of France, nearly half of my shipment was ‘lost’. For me, the most painful was the decades of journals, poems, stories…
    Reading and writing have been my rock in some very dark times and they are also my joy. Lea


  11. A wonderful way to move on while being entertained.


  12. Beautifully written, and such a poignant, heartfelt story. Thank you!


  13. Hate the thought of what happened to you, dear Glen, but utterly delighted to hear reading my new novel child helped a little to get you through a dark patch! THANK YOU so much for reading Duty of Daughters!


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