during ‘The Journey’ in Embercombe (see here) i realised that it was about time that i reclaimed some of my happy childhood family memories because unfortunately i tend to give more attention to the unhappy and painful ones. my brain certainly falls straight into the ‘negativity bias‘ that some scientists believe exists and that makes the brain behaving ‘like Velcro for negative experiences but Teflon for positive ones‘ Rick Hansen.
for me this is not about dismissing the painful and difficult moments that have shaped some of my beliefs and behaviours – or my fears and freedoms as a friend called it this week. no, it’s about balancing these with all the many amazing ones that have been and that i don’t want to take for granted.
and like with so many other little shifts before i found that, magically, as soon as i consciously opened my heart some unexpected gifts fell right into it: a long phone conversation with my Dad this week where he told me about their recent holidays where he took his second wife and their son to the bed & breakfast in Austria where we spent years of happy family holidays. and for a glimpse of a giggle we shared this memory of mountains, sweet cocoa, cow bells and prim roses that the mentioning of the familiar name brought up for both of us – and i cherished this rare moment of having my Dad all to myself because i usually would share him with his wife and their son (who is always the one to answer the phone).
and yesterday i randomly went into a charity shop in Crystal Palace while waiting for a friend and happened on these three shot glasses with their faded gold rim: exactly like the ones my parents used to have when i was a little child and didn’t even know what a shot was. they hardly ever used them except for an extremely rare after-dinner schnaps when they had friends around. and then it was always very, very important that these glasses didn’t end up in the dishwasher which would wash away the golden rim – and i wonder how often i might have held these glasses when washing or drying them.
i bought all three – i like how the gold around the rim has actually worn off a bit like my happy childhood family memories. but there’s still a clear trace of it and given we don’t have a dishwasher at home now it will stay golden…