Strange you may ask, yesterday my daughter handed me a bunch of photos that we had taken a few years ago. Some of them happened to be around 2008 – how weird is that. In 2008 of course we were all younger. My kids were younger and we were more “parents” than we are now. They needed us more, or so we thought. As I looked at the photos of my children’s fresh faces and indeed ours too, I began to think about the wisdom we have all developed since 2008. In 2008 my kids were still just kids. Naive and fresh of heart and expectations. In the years that have followed they have all learnt new things. They have learnt how the world works and as a Mumma it has been hard watching them learn, and hurt, and then rejoice in the learning they have received. When I look at their fresh faces, I wonder what they would have thought if they had known what the future held for them. Albeit a small future really in the scheme of time. We are talking 6 years. I guess 6 years is a long time in their life – its almost a third of their lives, 6 years to me doesn’t seem so long. Except sometimes it does!! Although a lot has happened in that time. As I look at my face in 2008 I can see a younger woman full of expectations. Not ever thinking that I would develop cancer, that I would need treatments to get me to 2014. Operations and lots of self learning. All good learning of course. I have learnt to accept people as they are in an easier way. I’ve learnt that people make their own decisions for themselves and wether or not I think they are right is not really my business. I mean I can feel for people and I can watch them work things out and I can almost feel that they are going about things the “wrong way’ but thats my expectation – not theirs. I’ve learnt that family is very very precious. That the growing together of experiences makes a family closer. I don’t know if its because Im a child of the 10 pound pom generation but families for me haven’t had a lot of meaning. My “family” were all in another country so it was hard to make relationships with them in the beginning. Especially as they were so far away but we didn’t have text and facebook and emails to keep in touch. I didn’t really know what Nan’s and Grandad’s were or aunties really. Like I knew I had aunties and Uncles and Nan’s and cousins etc. but I didn’t realise the relationship you can have with them. Very special relationships that I’ve only really found in the past 10 years or so. Ive also learnt to slow down and not to pressure myself, because what does pressure do? It only ends up bringing tiredness and stress and injury. So Im kinder to myself and those around me. Im keener now to sit with a family member and chat than push myself to the end of the earth for what reason? I still like to exercise and I still enjoy the adrenalin of pushing myself to the edge, but I do it less and I feel better for it. I feel restful and in control. I guess thats the main thing Ive learnt since 2008 – to rest and be in control of me and my time. To use my time wisely and to let no one else rob me of this time too easily.