Conversation with Emma Jane AKA Jerseybean1307

On the 5th March I had a wonderful conversation with Emma Jane.  She runs a fabulous Instagram page @Jerseybean1307 which is where I first met her.  Running her page from Jersey, whilst juggling studying alongside she manages to keep posting frequently and interacting with many people daily.  Her posts are focused on positivity, mental wellbeing, kindness, and helping others.  I invited her along to have a chat, to learn more about her story and the person behind @jerseybean1307.  Here is how it went.

So, the reason for having this chat is to hear more about the people behind the accounts.

Ok that’s great.

So, what is it that made you start yours?

I’ve always loved the Instagram platform and view it as a community where many of us can join together no matter where we come from or what our background is and I like to connect and share experiences with others and for me this the perfect place to do so.

It is a great platform isn’t it,

It’s brilliant.

So what are the most valuable messages you try to get across?

That it is ok to not be ok, we all have good and bad days, flaws and scars and we need to feel free and be confident to share them rather than pretend and maintain an image that usually most of the time isn’t always real. To make people see they are not alone and there is support. Don’t be afraid to reach out, talk and ask for help and it will get better no matter what your situation is, keep faith and hope. Also don’t compare yourself to anyone you’re unique and special as you are. Mental and physical health are critical topics we should all feel able to share without judgement or fear.

To be able to talk openly about everything is something I hope for too.

Yes it takes time, but it will come at the right time took me years.

It’s a long process (I’m still getting there I think)

Step by step is all you can try to do.

Exactly, Baby steps at times but they are still steps.

Exactly

“Don’t compare yourself to anyone you’re unique and special as you are.”

@Jerseybean1307

I know you said you are studying at the moment, what are you studying and how to you manage to keep your page up to date and keep up with your work?

I’m a night owl lol, so I work most hours as don’t sleep well, I’m working from home on shorter hours which allows me to manage my page as well as study, I currently study mental health, psychology and also a digital course all online. I also am just newly appointed a peer support worker for mind. My passion is to help people and share experiences to give others hope, it can get better.

Oh wow. That all sounds amazing. So, this is something that you are literally doing full time then?

It’s not my full-time job but I want it to be. I’ve always been empathetic and a giver and helper to others be it family friends or strangers. I’ve had a lot of issues myself and I’ve always thought I need to take it all and put all the bad stuff to use and help others.

That sounds so good, to do full time I mean.

Definitely.  It’s what my purpose is I feel.  Using your own experiences to help others is very kind and strong of you too.
It’s taken me a while to get here and share but I made it. It takes time.

That is amazing, Which kind of leads onto my next question,
What are your hopes for the future for your page? Where do you want to see it going in the future?

I just want it to continue giving strength love and support to others, if it touches just one person then am happy. I want to use it as a platform to speak of my struggles to show others it does get better and that bad times don’t last but tough people do.
For the future would love it to keep growing far and wide.

Love that, people need to hear more of that.  It does get better.

It does

People can gain a lot of hope from others I think,

Definitely.  I love and believe that sharing is key as your story is another’s survival guide.

Growing far and wide, I think you’re doing quite amazing so you should be pretty proud with what you’ve achieved.

Thank you so much.

I would normally ask what keeps you motivated but I think you have answered that,

But what is it that motivates you on a difficult day? Like you said we all have them?

lol helping others and developing my mindset to learn new tips and skills to allow help to others and Myself. I also love to write and photography.

Motivation on bad days is faith knowing it will pass I’ve been through the worst it can only get better I also use and practise grounding techniques.

That’s lovely.
And very true,

It is.

Writing is my thing lol you’d never have guessed.

Is there anything that you would like to share in my blog about yourself, your account, or anything that you want me to add?

Sure, please feel free to share my link and I’ve a vast experience with many mental health experiences and physical illness, also with chronic pain, so anyone needing support or a boost or to talk can just check me out am happy to help anyone

That’s great, having additional, reliable people who are able to share their experiences are an amazing resource to have access too.  This is one benefit of using a social platform like Instagram, the vast number of people who can access it easily.

 I’ve a Facebook page as well, it’s called Daily Kindness which I can try to send a link for, anyone please feel free to join.

I will share the link for sure.  Do you have any questions for me?

 No questions but thank you for your inspiring page and what you do.

Thank you very much for taking the time to speak with me, I look forward to writing this up and sharing it on my blog.

“My passion is to help people and share experiences to give others hope, it can get better.”

@Jerseybean1307

Meeting Emma Jane has been brilliant.  Her Facebook page Daily Kindness is available here, https://www.facebook.com/groups/621614252124789/?ref=share  It is a brilliant page, and just like her Instagram page is frequently updated.  All while studying.  With the brilliant positive mindset that is shown, and the hopes that have she has for future I am sure this isn’t the last we have seen of @jerseybean1307.  I wish you all the best for your studies and your future career, the hope and positivity that you spread across your social media pages is simply amazing.  Thank you for meeting with me to share the person behind the page.  It has been a pleasure getting to know you.

There are more conversations to come, getting to know the stories behind the pictures that are promoting a positive, hopeful environment across social media platforms.  People are using their own personal experiences to help others, to encourage others, and support those around them.  The community of people we have around us is a powerful thing, and together it is amazing what we can achieve.  Even with us all taking baby steps.

Photo by Susanne Jutzeler on Pexels.com

For all the mums.

Today is a day where many are celebrating the title of becoming a mum.  Many are hugging their little ones, or not so little ones.  

Today though isn’t a day full of smiles for all, there are many people out there who, for a variety of reasons, are alone.  Without their babies which makes this a difficult day. 

This is for you all.

“Take time to understand why we are feeling the emotions we are and use them to boost our strengths, rather than fuel our weaknesses”

@butterflieswithrainbows

I know it’s a tough day, it’s one you’ve been dreading.  Whether it be the first, second or even tenth Mother’s Day on your own I know it doesn’t get any easier.  People say it does right? You are waiting for that year when you wake up and it doesn’t hurt, or when you can walk past all the cards in the shop and not feel sad.  When you can watch the TV and the adverts won’t make the tears in your eyes burn, or the constant reminders on social media won’t make you feel like a complete fool.  It’ll always feel a little different, maybe always a little sad.  That’s alright, because you are a human being, and you have feelings.  Nothing will take that away.

Sometimes the hardest task in life is learning to accept our emotions and feelings, teaching ourselves to listen to them and learn from them.  Understanding why we are feeling the emotions we are and using them to boost our strengths, rather than fuel our weaknesses. 

This isn’t the first Mother’s Day I am spending without all my rainbows, and the guilt is overwhelming.  I am not going to lie; I hate the run up to this day.  I feel like I am letting them down, letting the people supporting me down, and that I have failed in my role as a mum.  One thing I have been learning on my journey to recovery though is that some guilt is non-controllable.  The guilt that is being felt is not out of doing something intentionally, therefore is this a ‘guilt’ I should be carrying?  Can that guilt be turned into something different? Maybe remorse?  I am truly sad that I can’t spend another Mother’s Day with all my rainbows however it is beyond my control.  I cannot change this.  Somehow although the sadness remains, it is less of a burden to hold on my shoulders than the feeling of guilt.  

So, when you are sitting there thinking about your rainbows, and the reason why you cannot hold them in your arms on this day.  Embrace the emotions for what they are, they are real, they are justified.  For you are a mum, and you deserve to have these feelings.  I hope you are able to hold on to the positive memories you have and look to the future.  Utilise the strength that you can gain from this to increase your momentum on your journey, day by day the finish line will become clearer.

“Understanding why we are feeling the emotions we are and using them to boost our strengths, rather than fuel our weaknesses”

I would urge you to still mark today as a celebration for yourself regardless, celebrate your motherhood, celebrate your tenacity, your fight, your strength, your love.  Write a card, letter, poem to your child so that wherever they are, you have had the opportunity to tell them how you feel. 

I included in my letter how grateful I am to have been made a mum, and even though I can’t hold my youngest again this year, I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity to have seen all my babies demonstrate just how much like their mum they really are over the last year.  Sometimes a bit too much like their mum, but I guess that’s ok too.  Thoughts, emotions, and hope combined are a powerful thing.  They can create such a boost in motivation, in your drive to succeed, and fight.  

However you are spending this Mother’s Day, I wish you the opportunity to take some time to celebrate being a mum, in being you, and being brilliant at it, because it’s hard and you’re amazing. 

Photo by Godson Bright on Pexels.com

“To You;”

Do you ever just stop, to take in your surroundings? Sit somewhere to really slow down? It is such a magical thing to do sometimes, and can really make you wonder, and think. The beautiful sunshine we had the other day was just the perfect weather to take a nice long walk. It wasn’t too hot, but at the same time it was not that cold either. So I was able to take that much needed time to just sit on the bench, by the river and observe the world going by. For those few moments completely switch off from the craziness of everything, to observe a sense of ‘normality’ in a sense. For those few moments there were no worries running through my brain, no anxieties making me shake, and no fears telling me to run away. For those few moments it was just nice to sit, watch, listen and write.

I am writing this to you, to all of you. To the new mums sitting on the bench with your babies tucked up so neatly in their prams.  I’m so glad you got out the house today, to meet each other and have your chat.  To see you both smiling while rocking your babies, you both seemed so at ease.  I hope you manage to keep it going and carry the example of friendship forward as your children grow. 

To the grandfather chasing their toddler grandchild up and down the riverbank, while she screams at the ducks.  I love you; you are amazing.  You haven’t stopped playing with that little girl and she hasn’t stopped laughing.  The amazing memories you are creating, and you may not realise it, but they will be cherished forever.  The patience while teaching her to ride that scooter, when dragging it is obviously a lot more fun, it’s to be commended.  I hope your family appreciate you.

To the couple sitting on a bench, taking selfie’s like no one’s watching.  You’re amazing.  Living life and enjoying the weather.  Documenting your walk with some pictures of you both and enjoying each other’s company.  You look so happy together. I wonder how long you’ve been a couple for.  You do look cute together. 

To the mum who’s feeding the ducks with her little boy, trying to convince him the bread is for the ducks and not for him.  You’re doing great.  I love hearing your laugh, and your words of encouragement.  You keep saying the right things to make your little one giggle, helping him to be brave enough to feed the ducks.  You seem to have a good bond and that’s so nice to see. 

To the fitness fanatics getting sweaty and running around.  I am watching in awe, with slight jealousy, and nothing to do with that fact you might be cute.  Keep the motivation going, you actually have no idea how many people you inspire or who you inspire.  Or make smile! Keep going, I’ll be watching for the next exercise, and maybe take some notes.

To the lonely looking person sitting on their own with their headphones in, are you ok? You’ve been looking at your phone for a while now.  I don’t think you have looked up at all. Even though it is a lovely day you have your hood up, and your sleeves pulled down over your hands. You look sad, preoccupied, there aren’t many people alone here, but I see you.  I hope the rest of your day goes ok. 

To the person reading this, just to say there is always someone, somewhere thinking of you, wondering if you are managing ok.  Hoping that you are able to do all you need to do to get through the day.  Who can manage a smile when they think of the things they have achieved.  Who can hold on to that hope, that even if you don’t think you are doing ok, you are doing better than you realise. That if you recognise you are doing ok, you have the confidence to celebrate that.

So this is written to you. 

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

What has The Solution Focused Approach done for me?

              I thought I would write this blog on how much the Solution Focused Approach has changed things for me.  Although I have a long way to go, I have learnt so much, it has been a journey and a half.  I have not loved every step of it, and I have fought some steps.  However, I believe in this approach and can see the benefits, as a result it has changed my daily life, in many ways as you will see.

              I had never heard of Solution Focused Approach before I met the team at Family Based Solutions (FBS).  So, when I was referred to them my initial thoughts were along the lines of ‘great another therapy to fail’ (sorry guys) but it is true.  You see at the time I was referred I was in a terrible place, mentally, socially, and physically.  I had nothing really to encourage me to keep going so the motivation to actually engage with anyone wasn’t there.   

              I won’t ever forget the first phone call I received; I was actually at work.  That call changed my perspective almost immediately.  I say almost because like anyone who has been let down, hurt, and left alone I assumed that the same thing would happen again.  The only difference this time though was that call.  There was something about the words that were used, I couldn’t put my finger on it at the time, however now I understand it better.  The phrases used, the words used were hopeful, they were planning for the future, and despite not knowing me I was spoken to like a human being and not a patient.  Only being one phone call, and me not knowing who it was I spoke to on the phone I went back to my office with a little bit of hope that day, that someone might be able and willing to help.

“The image in our minds that we wish to be like, and that we can achieve, one day.”

              Those first few meetings I had where a bit of a whirlwind, but the remaining memories of them are how the focus was always on what was going well.  For me this was no mans land.  This was something no one had asked me before, and I can’t tell you how many times I would annoy people by answering with “I don’t know” which believe me when I say that, if you say it enough you get a response like “Can’t you think of anything, even a small thing that’s gone well?”  I still say I don’t know now, but only when I don’t know the answer to something which is massive!

              With a Solution Focused Approach I quickly learnt it isn’t needing to look at where you have been on your journey.  Like the many types of therapy that I have been to previously where the history of events would be scrutinised and examined in great detail, sometimes meaning I would leave the sessions more traumatised than I started them.  It is more about looking at where you want to go, what can you do to get there, and how far you have come.  The achievements and how you have overcome the bumps in the road.

              The wonderful people at FBS soon discovered I can be quite stubborn though, and still get stuck on the history of stuff, so I make them work.  I’m learning this is all part of recovering, and moving forwards, one step at a time.  Having the confidence to work towards your preferred future.  Most days I can now look back purely to see just how far I have come, it isn’t an easy view admittedly, but it’s a personal journey and the different way of thinking has helped massively.

              Learning to look forward and change my own focus and perspective has definitely been an interesting experience.  I still have not got used to being asked how I am doing, and what do I want to do.  Allowing me to have the choices and to be in control of my own journey.  These are all the steps which get broken down into even smaller than baby steps, but I have learnt that that’s okay.

“The craziest thing of all is that this all started from one question that I had never been asked, – what are your best hopes?”

              So, on an individual basis this approach has helped me massively, in my confidence, without which this blog page wouldn’t exist.  I would never have had to confidence to share parts of my story, to speak to others about their stories.  It has even given me the confidence to throw some of the questions back at the FBS guys at times, which is quite humorous I must admit.   My view on life in general, on the importance of hope, and keeping that alive in everyone.  That hope goes hand in hand with motivation, without the motivation to keep going hope will fade, yet without hope the motivation to keep going will soon diminish. 

              As a parent this approach has made me so much calmer, in the fight to get my rainbows home it has allowed me to listen better.  I hear what they tell me and can respond to it in a much better way.  The best conversations happen when you end up with a child who looks at you and says “what, you’re not going to tell me off?”  and you can simply say “No, are you going to tell me what you have learnt from this?”  To recognise things that as a family we are doing well.  Like any family there are some terrible moments, don’t get me wrong.  There are teenagers, a pre-teen and a toddler involved which means no day is ever completely smooth sailing.  However now it is a case of looking at each day, thinking how we overcame each obstacle, and being proud of what we have achieved.

              The work FBS has done has spread across my entire family, not just with me.  This has included the amazing online chats that are available to everyone to watch on their Facebook page and YouTube page, I would recommend watching them.  They are the best conversation starters if you watch them with others, and good if you need a laugh at times.  They have a great sense of humour and outlook on everything.  The confidence and ability they have instilled with my children to enable them to use their voice, as well as allowing me to support that as well has made a remarkable difference.  All this by only focusing on the future family we want to be.  The image in our minds that we wish to be like, and that we can achieve, one day.

              I wonder at times why it took so long to find FBS, as I think things would have been much easier if I had met them a long time ago, however I am more than grateful for the impact they have made and continue to make today.  The changes are long lasting, and something that will be instilled for years to come.  Hopefully something that I will be able to pass on to others as well.

              I hope that you can see how much this approach has changed things for me, from hopeless to hopeful, from unmotivated to mostly motivated, and not wanting to give up.  The willingness to want to improve, and change for the best, to recognise strengths not just within myself but in all those around me.  To recognise that it is ok to reach for your dreams, and in order to do that you will take steps forwards, backwards and hit bumps in the road.  The craziest thing of all is that this all started from one question that I had never been asked, what are your best hopes?

Donations to Family Based Solutions can be given through this link, this will enable them to continue to do the work that they do, and help the families that they do. I am only one family of many that receives help, and would love to see this help continue on for others.

Family Based Solutions – Online Social Fundraising Donation Platform | Givey

Family Based Solutions supports families where there is child to parent abuse and families recovering from domestic abuse. We adopted the solution focused approach in 2014 and quickly saw the difference this approach made to children, young people and families. The approach allows families to identify and expand on their existing knowledge and resources by exploring instances of success and individual strengths

www.familybasedsolutions.org.uk

Charity No. 1149383

Interview with Talking Matters Most

On the 24th February I had the pleasure of virtually meeting with Hanna.  She runs her page @TalkingMattersMost on Instagram.  Hanna is from South Wales and started her page in 2020,  she keeps this up to date posting messages to promote positive mental health, promoting positive wellbeing, and with over a thousand followers now is keen to continue to share her positive message across her platform.

We met and had a lovely conversation covering the history of her page, and how it came about.  Including future hopes and dreams.  We even got talking about current thoughts and feelings about being in lockdown across the UK, and how that feels.  Here is how our conversation went.

I think I explained to you the other day about my website and the blog posts I am writing after talking to people behind the accounts on here. I think this is such an important thing, and people have a wealth of knowledge, and such important stories behind their pages.

I agree, I think it’s fantastic what you’re doing.

Thank you

So the first question I have, is quite broad.  Can you tell me how your page came about? How it started? and why it started?

I decided to start the page after many conversations with my friends and colleagues. Everyone I was speaking to was struggling with their mental health during lockdown-as was I- so it gave me the idea. My outlook has changed drastically over the past few months too and it’s important to me to try and stay positive- the account helps me do this whilst (hopefully) inspiring a little positivity in others too.

The name came about because it’s exactly how I was feeling at the time, talking to people about what’s on my mind seems to help me the most. And after speaking to others, it seemed to help them too.

That makes a lot of sense. I agree with the name choice. It is a very true statement as well.

When you say your outlook has changed, in what way?

I think my outlook has changed because of the way life has changed since last March, think I’ve gained a lot of perspective- what really matters and what I really need in my life.

love that, looking at it all with a different positive perspective rather than a restrictive perspective.

What keeps you motivated to keep your page active?

What keeps me motivated is the fact that people are following, commenting, and liking what I post, I suppose as long as people continue to engage with my content, I can see the value in carrying on.

Definitely. That is a great motivation isn’t it.

That leads quite nicely onto my next question. What are your best hopes for your page in the future? Where would you like to see it going?

To be completely honest, I haven’t thought about it- I’m sorry if that’s not the type of answer you were after, for now, I would like to just keep posting content that people like. If there’s an opportunity to grow it into something else, then I’ll likely pursue that.

I think that’s perfectly fine. Not everyone thinks about these things.

I think reading your answer the fact that you want to keep posting content that people like, is a hope.

And that’s pretty amazing.

I am really glad that you have managed to make something positive come out of this lockdown period. Even though you and the people around you were finding things hard, you had the courage to do something about it. That is so inspiring.  Is there anything you want to ask me?

We all may be in the same storm, but that doesn’t mean we are sailing the same wave.

Is this something you’re hoping to do more full time?

I work part time, but with events that I have experienced outside of work over the past few years I have decided to put it into words and start my blog.  Everyone has a story, the passion behind the content people share, which is what makes me interested in knowing why others have their pages, and why people do what they do.  What is it that inspires people to keep going, to keep motivated?

Everyone is different, and we all look for inspiration, and by talking to others, posting blogs on different profiles, telling these stories, I am hoping to create this safe place where people can read the blog click on the link to your page and see your posts.

Everyone does have a story, but I think it can be dangerous to think like that sometimes- don’t let that undermine what you managed to achieve.

I hope this will encourage others to avoid the negative posts which are sooooooo easy to come across online.

Some people are of the mindset that someone’s always worse off…which is true but in a sense both get hurt. Does that make sense?

Exactly. we might all be in the same storm. but our boats aren’t on the same wave.

Spot on.

@talkingmattersmost shared some amazing insight with how everyone does have their own story.  Knowing our own story, learning from our story, and using our story to inspire others is a powerful tool.  @talkingmatttersmost was developed out of listening and recognising what the people around one person needed.  The courage, tenacity, and bravery for one person to take the steps to react to those needs, to encourage conversations and create something to meet the needs of others in such a difficult time is inspirational.  People like Hanna are who will continue to spread the kindness, and message of hope.  To keep the faith in human nature going, that there are kind people who will listen, encourage others to talk when you need too, and empower other to do the same.  As we discussed, there are times when we all may be in the same storm, but that doesn’t mean we are sailing the same wave.  Everyone will experience it differently.  All we can do is be kind, listen, and remember that talking matters the most.

Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on Pexels.com

We are 2 months live!

Hello everyone.

It has been a busy few weeks, as you have seen by some of my posts on my Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages I have been writing lots of little quotes and phrases.  I have been enjoying doing these, sharing the little phrases that have been helping me through the difficult days, or even the good days when I think its just all too good to be true! (we all get moments like that right?)

I have started to have some virtual conversations with some amazing people who are running pages over on Instagram, these people are posting positivity quotes, promoting healthy self-care tips, and wanting to share their own experiences of managing their own wellbeing during difficult times.  Many of these pages are run by individuals, and I couldn’t help but wonder what their story behind their page is?  So, I asked, like I do.  Sometimes.  Actually, to be fair it took a lot to send those first few messages, but I did, and I am so glad I did. 

When I get an idea, I think things over, and I keep thinking until I convince myself it isn’t going to work.  Some of the brilliant people I have been talking to over the last year have been helping me to have the confidence to follow my dreams, and to aim for my best hopes.  So that’s what I did.  (I need to write about their impact on the path my life has taken, and how much it has changed.  See another idea!!!!!)  As a result of this I have spoken to some of the kindest people, who like me, want to share kindness, empower others to have hope, and encourage people to never give up.

My hope is to be able to create a safe place online, using Butterflies with Rainbows to accumulate these interviews so that everyone can see these accounts, why they were created without having to go trawling through the internet.  To boost mood, self-confidence, encouraging people to be proud of themselves, and their achievements.

Now there are hundreds of people sharing their experiences out there and I am only one person, so this will grow over time, but it will be fun to watch it grow, and exciting to carry on meeting (virtually of course) all the new people from all over the world.

Other news – I think there will be a small number of items available soon from the Butterflies with Rainbows store.  I think I am going to be using Etsy for the time being anyway, if anyone has any suggestions PLEASE contact me.  These will include postcards (using the quotes which have been written by ME), letters of hope, plus more.  Over time content will increase, but it’s still early days.

Finally – One of my other Rainbows came home, That’s 3 of them home.  One more to go!  I can’t tell you how good this is.  There will be more on this VERY SOON!!!!!!

So, as we creep up to Butterflies with Rainbows being live for 2 months, I can honestly say it has been an amazing whirlwind, and so exciting.  To read the messages from people, they are truly touching, and I love every single one.  I am excited for what the future holds and look forward to sharing the journey with everyone.

Photo by James Wheeler on Pexels.com

A little update and a smile.

It is a new month. For some this may mean a new target, a new goal, a new something.

Nope! I am going to keep plodding along if that’s ok with you? Who’s with me? (to be honest if it isn’t ok, I am plodding anyway) In a slightly strange time at the moment I am not attempting to take on the world, I am quite happy at tackling my bed sheets (seriously though, anyone else finding changing those like a miniature workout these days!) Anyway, its a new month, this means another month to be YOU!

UPDATES!!!! There is a website update. WOO HOO, now don’t all celebrate at once. Really please, one at a time. The mindfulness page is up, and content is starting to go up. Little by little it will get more interesting, and interactive. I don’t want to overwhelm people.

The quotes that some of you may have seen appearing on my facebook page and twitter page are now available on here. I may not have got the settings quite right so if they are not making themselves big enough to read I am hoping someone will let me know (please) and I will get it sorted somehow.

Other updates, Some exciting writing coming your way, so stay tuned. The purpose of this space is beginning to develop, having met some AMAZING ladies the other week I have been left with lots of inspiration and too many thought processes at times. This is where the mindfulness page came in handy.

Butterflies with Rainbows is 4 weeks old today. So THANK YOU for 4 weeks of kindness, support, encouragement and most of all HOPE and for BELIEVING in this as much as I do. You are all AMAZING. Keep going, stay strong, and remembering that if all you have managed is those bedsheets, that a huge achievement today.

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Pexels.com

At the end of the rainbow.

It’s the sunniest day, clear blue sky with only the smallest of clouds seen floating by in the sky.  The sounds of birds singing their songs in the distant trees, the laughter of the children echoing from the distant park, and the not so silent engines from the cars heading out for their days at the beach.  As I sit here alone, behind the closed doors of the house wishing I had the energy to join in with the activities taking place in the sunshine.  Wondering what was packed in the cars, a picnic? Maybe even a football or a frisbee? Hoping that the people heading out for the day would have a lovely day.  The songs from the birds seemed to go on forever, it never ended.  Where did they get their energy from?  Did they have any that I could have?  Listening to the laughter coming from the park I began to think; when was the last time I visited a park?  Sat on the swings and pushed myself so high and felt that freedom with the wind rushing past my ears the higher I got.  Climbed across the monkey bars as I held my breath hoping that I could do it that one time without letting go, or getting to the stop of the slide and taking in the view before speeding to the ground with a smile on my face.  It sure has been a while.

              Listening to those joyous sounds suddenly made those hands on the clock move quicker than I had ever experienced.  Before I knew it, the morning was over, and as the afternoon set in the clouds became thicker and heavier.  The wind started to blow through the trees with more force, making the leaves fall a little and fly through the air; the sun became disguised behind a shade of grey as more clouds appeared and coated the sky.  The birds became silent, like they knew what was about to happen.  The sounds from the park started to scatter into the far distance, and before long the sounds of raindrops started to hit the ground.  Slowly at first, but began to get louder, faster, and then quicker and even louder.  As I stood up and looked out of the window there I could see as clear as day, the beautiful musical raindrops hitting the windowpane.  In perfect synchronization and creating the most creative patterns as they draw their tear drop streaks, parallel to each other as they race to the bottom of the window. 

              That’s when I saw it in the distance, the very feint begins of colour beginning to appear.  I was sure I could see it.  Red, Orange, Yellow, Green; I am sure they were there.  I looked harder and I could see Blue, Indigo and Violet too.  Yes, there was a rainbow.  With a bounce in my step I put something on my feet, grabbed my rain jacket, and off I went.  After all, they say at the end of the rainbow you find your pot of gold.  This is what I needed more than anything.  I had nothing left to lose, I had nothing at all.  It was worth a try.  I walked at a fast pace, constantly looking up making sure I never lost sight of the beautiful colours in the sky.  Every time I looked up the raindrops fell in my eyes and shook me up a little bit more.  I knew I could do this.  I knew my days in that dark house were over.  I was tired of hearing that everyone reaches their pot of gold.  It was my turn now.  I had to get there soon.

              Before I knew it, I was running, the colours were getting brighter, and the sun was beginning to try and break through the clouds.  I felt the beating of my heart in my chest as the excitement began to build.  Was today going to be my day?  Was I going to make it?  Could I keep going long enough to make it to the end of the rainbow?

              I turned the corner just as the last raindrop fell with a little splash in the puddle at my feet.  I stopped with a sudden jolt.  I rubbed both my eyes with disbelief, wiping away all the raindrops that had taken up residency in my hair, and on my face.  I had made it to the end of the rainbow, I don’t know how, but there were the colours clear as anything, gently kissing the green grass.  With the sun shining it was almost looking like diamonds shining.  As I walked closer, I became even more confused; where was the pot of gold that I was supposed to get?  There was not anything here.  I was standing in the most beautiful green field, with the most breath-taking rainbow but no pot of gold.  With a heavy heart I sat there, and I cried.  I cried as much as it rained that afternoon, I wondered what I had ventured out for, what it was that I was hoping for.  Wondering if I should have just stayed locked away but knowing that I needed to do this, I had to try.

Just then I heard it.

“MUM!”

A New Adventure.

Monday 4th January 2021.

Today is the day a new adventure begins. With a hundred and one questions, and even more worries I can’t help but wonder if this is the correct path to follow. Taking a leap of faith I am going for it. I am hoping that there will be some followers joining along the way. Now this adventure will be fun, it will be funny. There will be many times when we will share some laughter, even share some tears. Will you join us? Can you help us spread the message of hope? By joining together and working harmoniously everyone can look for the positives in many diffierent situations. Looking at things from other angles, in different lights, from the height of a butterfly, through the lense of the rainbow, you will be surprised how amazing the world can be. How brilliant your reflection really is, and just how powerful hope can be. We are looking forward to sharing this journey with you all, hearing about your hopes and dreams. Sharing the excitement of the future, and spending time caring for each other.

“Hope lies in dreams, in imagination, and in the courage of those who dare to make dreams into reality.”  – Jonas Salk