A Lot Can Happen in a Day

There are times when you feel like you’ve got nothing to say, and times when you think you have too much. I haven’t written a blog post in months because a lot has happened to me this year, making me think I had nothing to say. But recently I’ve found I have too much, and so it is with relief and more than a little relish that I return to my blog, hoping to still find some of you here.

The first thing to tell you is I have found myself in my forty-sixth year of life and my sixth year of writing, and in all this time I’ve started to notice that some of the best decisions in my life have been inexplicably taken out of my hands. And that whenever I need a helping hand, guidance or inspiration, these things have had a tendency to pop up from nowhere.

To begin with, you can’t fail to have noticed that social media channels have people sharing a myraid of quotes online. I know, I know! Some people find these annoying but as a lover of words, I have always been moved by beautiful, poignant quotes and can’t help but enjoy and yes, be inspired by the best of them. So, I’m adorning my blog with a few of my favourites, along with my own thoughts about how I began to notice each one was actually a signpost of truth.

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I’ve started to realise that everything that ever made me really, properly happy had nothing to do with wealth, professional achievement or any kind of recognition. It has, in fact, occurred when I’ve had nothing; being at my lowest ebb before accidentally falling into something wonderful from what I’d first thought was a great and terrifying height. Like Alice tumbling down the rabbit hole, there have been so many incidences when I thought there was either going to be no landing or a very painful one, and I have inadvertently stumbled upon a wonderland.

Much of it is documented here, in almost six years of blogging – the days when we were so broke we had to go begging to a neighbour for a Christmas tree from his back garden, which turned out to be the biggest, most beautiful tree we ever had and the most hilarious time was had by all trying to drag the monster indoors.

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When five years ago my husband and I  planned and arranged a beautiful wedding in the Greek sunshine, only to have to cancel it for a simple, outdoor ceremony in front of just twenty people because of an unprecedented wave of financial setbacks. The venue became a woodland setting beside a waterfall in Fort William, the wettest place in Britain that chose to live up to its name on the day, and which turned out to be the most funny and unforgettable experience of our lives. Jumping into our best man’s car immediately after the ceremony, my husband and I looked at each other, both soaked to the skin as the rain stopped and the sun chose that moment to come out for the first time, and my heart nearly bursting with so much happiness I can recall it as though it were yesterday, I said, ‘let’s do that again!’

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I know that Mark Twain quotes can be found all over the internet, but I hold this next one especially dear, as it reminds me of a beloved friend who, in the regrettably short time that I knew him, changed the very course of my life. The dear friend I’m referring to was someone I met on Twitter, whom I was soon devastated to learn was dying of cancer, but who didn’t leave this world before telling me to get on with doing what makes me unique before I run out of time.

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Then there was the house that we loved and prayed hard we’d be able to buy, that we had to move out of earlier this year. Devastated, but unable to do anything to keep it, we went in search of another, and happened upon what is now the most astonishingly beautiful place in our world, a cottage tucked far away in the incredible Lowther Hills, in Scotland, and which makes us a whopping 50-70% financially better off than we were this time last year, as the cost of just about everything – from the rent to the energy bills – has been slashed. Our previous home was the thing that made me start writing, the place my husband and I hoped to buy from the proceeds of success, that I’d swore I’d only leave when they carried me out in a box. Now I know that if I’d sold the right amount of books, we would indeed have bought that house and, by now, the mortgage would be crippling us.

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And we have never, ever, been happier. So how is it, after all these years of yearning, trying and working so hard, that these newer, brighter futures just appeared to happen by happy accident? Because, to add a further quote from the Beatles:

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And so to that thing I do each day for the love of it: writing. I lose my will to live when a new, aspiring writer asks me or someone else to read the part of a book they have started, because they need to get feedback and confirmation from another person that they’re on the right track and can do it. As though they need anyone else’s permission to go on with making something that is creative and unique to them. Hey, you – yes, you! Listen to the unique and inspirational, Elizabeth Gilbert:

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And to the people constantly complaining on social media about the bad things life has dealt them, while others have received a devastating diagnosis, lost their homes, their jobs or someone very dear to them, and still manage to show up each day with a smile and a positive thought, here’s one of my own:

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To the writers, creatives and all dreamers out there who are still chasing happiness in the shape of fame, fortune or recognition, I want to tell you a secret: it isn’t where you’re looking and it doesn’t need to be hunted down. As we were told as children when trying to cross a busy road full of motorists who race on by, seemingly oblivious to us:

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Okay, I added that one for fun 🙂 But my message is this: all you need to get to the other side of your road is within you right now, on this day.

…And a lot can happen in a day.

Heather Hill

Mum of five (not the band), I am an author and comedy writer based in Scotland, UK

10 Responses to “A Lot Can Happen in a Day

  • Welcome back! Good to see that you’ve come through the bad stuff with your spirit and sense of humour intact

  • I really enjoyed this blog post Auntie Heather 🙂 very inspiring!

  • Lovely post and even lovelier to know that you’ve found your happiness.

  • Inspirational words, Heather. Thanks for sharing and it’s great to see that someone’s adventure is working out. It’s not the destination……..

  • You’re right, sometimes you’ve got to keep doing what you do and let the other things just happen. Great blog post.

    • Thank you Briony! Sorry, I moved my blog recently and I seem to be missing notifications when people leave me a message so hope I’m not very late replying. X