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Saturday in the park

Every time I visit Greenhead Park I think how much I'd like to do some community outdoor yoga there. Watch this space!...The place is a hive of activity on a sunny day. Tiny people on scooters whizz by, elderly folk out for a stroll, a lot of Dad's doing "Dad's day with the kids", exhausted-looking grandparents at the swings, gangs of friends pushing prams, ice cream no matter the temperature. Quite a bit of vaping and parents glued to i-phones (the walking dead) but at least I wasn't inhaling cannabis today. I've yet to strike up a really interesting conversation with anyone. This being Huddersfield, people are quite guarded and suspicious. No offence guys but it's true.

Being there today with Xavier reminded me how long I've lived in this town. The park holds many memories. Sometimes that can make a person feel pensive. Being a lone adult with a child in a busy place can also make me feel very lonely. It always has done. However, today I didn't feel that way. I'm curious as to what has changed. Well, I think this is the metamorphosis of a woman in her 40's.

Growing into and being comfortable in your own skin, if not totally then certainly more so. Things have been changing on the inside for me for quite a number of years. You can bet yoga and meditation have played their part. Self-discovery takes a hell of a lot of courage, to really look down the lens, to really get inside your life. You've got to go down before you can go up it seems!

I keep it simple these days. There is only one thing and one word that counts for me: Love.

I was beginning to get hungry and tired, never mind Xavier. We finished doing the mini's play park and balance-biked our way up to the big helter-skelter. Xavier loves going on with his brothers but they weren't with us today. Not for the first time in the last few years I found myself scaling some rather high ladders and trying to push Xavier up to the platform. At times like these a little voice whispers that I could technically be a Grandma.

Xavier's experience in parks is not always a joy. He has had children run away from him or call him the "crazy boy". I carry less and less tension about his differences with every year. And to be truthful I get more admiring looks from people who think he's a cutie, "ARHH" they say as they walk past. I think that's good?!

I was feeling a little lost when a couple of children seemed to appear, one from above, one from below. To cut to the chase Xavier was swept up by the older girl and her little brother. She said she would look after him. I went to watch from the boulder near the bottom of the slide. I could hear these two enchanting children talking kindly to Xavier, encouraging him, supporting him. The slide is probably suitable from 6 years old upwards, but my Xavier, 4yrs, is a mountaineer by desire if not design.

An elated Xavier arrived at the bottom of the Helter-skelter after much echo-y cajoling and of course this was the first of 3 "goes" before I thought it only fair to release those sweet souls.

I don't cry very often at all these days.

But I don't mind telling you I did gulp down some big emotion and swept a tear away as I sat on that boulder.


"Be the light" say Jesus, Buddha, all the big players.

These children didn't need telling, and I was basking in sunshine.

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