|“We all have complicated histories. When was the last time your past experiences informed a major decision you’ve made?”Complicated is a simple word for it! I’ve been thinking about how people fill their retirement. One can become invisible after leaving the work force.
Christopher and I content ourselves in painting, writing and gardening with occasional family gatherings. After busy lives, we’ve chosen to retire into our own peaceful environment. Others have been far more adventurous, travelling and discovering new things.
I have been totally impressed by my friend Sandy, who has overcome an abusive relationship and now lives in a small coastal community and has brought about positive changes to others around her.
Sandy joined the local choir, a journal-writing group, and then became a member of the Country Women’s Association. (CWA)
Sandy became secretary of the CWA, and after several monthly meetings, where people sat listening, empty handed, Sandy suggested a knitting project. This then became a weekly gathering. Knitting squares developed into making blankets for the ‘wrapped in love’ project, which have been sent overseas, or fill more local needs.
A physio attends the CWA, and through her work met an elderly obese woman, who was confined to her room in an old age home. Previously she’d sat eating and watching TV. The physio found out that she enjoyed knitting, and suggested joining in with the project of knitting squares. This she has done and became so involved with it she lost 15 Kg.
This project has become a wonderful community project, and has filled a place in many, what could have been, lonely lives. I do admire what Sandy has achieved in a few years. I had hoped to insert a photo of the wraps, but it doesn’t want to do that, sorry! One raised $150 for the local hospital last year. They are colourful squares with diagonal stripes on some making patterns.
Inspiration and creativity can change other’s lives. I’m sure many of you are doing that through your writing. Good books, a short story, an article, a post on your blog, are all ways in which others might be inspired. I found Sandy’s story very inspirational. Do you have any stories that you can share?
I read with interest your comments about knitting squares. I’ve been knitting squares for a while when I watch TV in the evenings. They are just piling up in a corner – I didn’t know what to do with them. Your post inspired me to go out and look for a local knitting group that may be doing what your friend has done. thanks!
Joanne, I do hope you can find something similar. If not I can give you sandy’s contact e-mail.
Thanks. I’ll let you know.
Thanks Joanne, I wish you luck!
My sister volunteers at the ‘Wrap with love’ headquarters in Sydney, packing, sorting, despatching etc. It’s an amazing organisation.
Small world! I’m sorry I didn’t manage to get the photo to work, as it showed 3 completed rugs.
Thank you M-R. I guess I remember my mother’s ‘good works’ and always feel rather selfish that I don’t follow in her footsteps. My father was the more contemplative one, and I follow more in his….though I do admire those that do. Mary and Martha? We need both, thank you for reminding me of this!
In a word, no. But I’m sure your delightful post will generate some – and appears to’ve done so already, dear Ba ! There are people like Sandy, and there are people like you. Neither is actually better than the other; for I am convinced that your character brings as much to others a do Sandy’s activities.
I like your story. Here’s mine. http://marthakennedy.wordpress.com/2014/05/08/all-aboard/
Have just read yours Martha, a delightful glimpse, and I loved your Christmas snow balls!