Upwards and Onward a year on.

Upwards and Onwards.


It is a  year now since my husband Ian died suddenly. I thought it was the beginning of the end for me after being married happily for 40 years.

Firstly it was family and friends who were my saving as I had not realised how important they were in my life. While married Ian and I did most things together ..Holidays , trips out , hobbies like our allotments. My friends and family had taken a backward step.

It was time for things to change .I know that sounds very cold but I needed to fill my life and try to enjoy it. It does not suit everyone to “Just get on with life ” but it was my way of dealing with what had happened…The longer you leave it the harder it becomes.

The allotments and long walks.


I  started by going to the allotments . It was the end of January and still not easy to start anything but it was nice to meet the lovely people I knew and to gossip about what we were going to do in 2015. I started by  having a word with Linda who gladly offered to help me with half of one of my plots .This relieved the pressure of trying to do too much at once. It was not the best planting year for me but it helped me adjust and to make the most of the long walks through Flackwell Heath.




We have had chickens for over five years and I never realised how important they were in my life. In January 2015 it was cold , wet and the last thing I wanted at first was to deal with them ..but they deserved to be fed , watered and be kept safe. I loved them and it gave me a reason for being .One year one they are well looked after and cared for .I talk to them all the time and tell them what my plans are and they always give me good advice!

Social life.


One thing about suddenly being on your own after 40 years is that you don’t know where to start.Luckily I have a little part time job in the village so I know a lot of people by just chatting (gossiping?) This kept me in contact and renewed friendships. had never involved myself in clubs etc., in the village but I was amazed at how many there were.

I joined the Womens ‘ every other Thursday night persuaded by my friend Marilyn.

Oasis which is a bereavement group in the village for people like me that have found themselves alone..they have social evenings with food and drink ,river trips and BBQ’s and much more.

I am no expert but  I do think the more you feel sad and do nothing the worse it gets. Contact old friends and family, do things that you would never have dreamt of before ,join clubs they are there for you (especially in the winter.) walk and take in fresh air,It does not have to be a long walk around the block will do. It’s amazing how many people you see. As better than sitting indoors watching day time TV .The husband Ian I have lost would not have wanted that for me.

Get a pet it does not have to be chickens ..get a dog ,a cat even a goldfish.


4 thoughts on “Upwards and Onward a year on.

  1. Until today I had forgotten to check in on this blog, I have so many bookmarked that it had slipped into the hidden section on my computer. I was shocked at the photo of you before you lost weight, we have known each other just over three years now and I couldn’t imagine you any different from how you are now. You have done so well with shifting the weight and well done for getting back onto it again this year.

    Well done for your positive attitude too. You have done really well over the last year in throwing yourself into new things and making a different sort of life for yourself. I really admire how you have moved forward.

  2. Thank you for those kind words. I never realised how positive I could be . I have always been an optimistic person and always feel that you reap what you sow but I think this last year I have amazed myself.
    There is no point in standing still as I could not change anything . I do need to lose weight and that is the one thing I’m struggling with but I will get there now Xmas and new year is over .. Watch this space .

  3. Your words are wise and positive and optimistic, Jackie. Gardening and chickens are works in progress and what’s more they provide endless subject matter for you to write about. After a lull in posting for different reasons, I’m finding blogging is opening up new possibilities.

    • Thank you Jenny for those encouraging words.
      It really has been a tough year so of course left a gap in my blog. Hopefully now it is upwards and onwards .
      Where I have my allotments to grow my vegetables is a beautiful place with fabulous views across the valley with peace and quite and friends…that and the chickens in my back garden .. A great medicine .

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