Last One Standing

“Each young person is a poet of sorts, trying to sort out the poetics of their inner life and its relation to the great world around it. Each elder is a philosopher of sorts, trying to sort out the meanings and gleanings of a life as well as the necessary implications of the presence of death.” 
Michael Meade

Many years ago, when I was in my mid-twenties, I hosted a channelling evening at my house. My sister was there, and an Aboriginal friend of ours, her mum and another Aboriginal woman who was a school teacher, and another friend who was staying with us at the time. Me, Simone, Vynette, Leanna, Liz, Tara. Six women of varying ages, sitting in circle on our lounge room floor.

I was nervous because it was one of the first times I had channelled in public, even though they were my friends. But they were very supportive, and so I closed my eyes, settled into meditation and began…

Afterwards we shared cups of tea and a lovely supper spread around my kitchen table. Leanna always brought enough food to feed an army. It’s those Aboriginal values around family and food and love. And of course I am a country girl at heart who always has well-stocked biscuit and cake tins in case visitors arrive.

I never thought anything more of that night until months later. On a crackling international phone line a woman spoke to me from America. Unbeknownst to me Leanna had taped my channelling session and posted it to a friend. Who had shared it with another friend. Finally it had arrived at this woman’s house, a farmhouse in the mid-west, and now she was inviting me to join her group of Elders.

I was the youngest by thirty-three years.

We met by teleconference, and also in meditation. We even shared emails. It became a very important group to me, one I learned much from, and one where we did regular energetic work together for the world. Just a bunch of old people at home, working magic. I was very ill back then so I had the life of an old person too. I fit right in.

In the early hours of this morning I spoke with the last member of the group. There had been twenty-eight of us, but slowly our numbers have dwindled. Last Thursday Kaya died in her sleep. Then there was only two. I spoke with Connie this morning. She is blind now, and going into care. She has cancer too and this part of the road will be short. She is done.

I am the last one standing.

I had a little cry. A big one actually. And then I rallied. It’s my turn now. My turn to repopulate the group. This is how it always is. I was young once, and now I am aging. I have wisdom and teachings of my own to share, and I am the custodian of more that have been shared with me.

That’s the cycle of life, and I am ready.

I’ll keep you posted. Much love, Nicole  xx


Before the madness, tea…

“If you are cold, tea will warm you;
if you are too heated, it will cool you;
If you are depressed, it will cheer you;
If you are excited, it will calm you.” 
~  William Ewart Gladstone


In the middle of all of this editing and birthday excitement we’ve also been dealing with madness of another kind this last little while.

Ben’s elderly mum, a staunchly independent woman in her early nineties, is needing more and more help to stay in her home. Which is where she wants to stay!

The family has rallied around; bringing her food, taking her to doctors’ appointments, paying bills and managing her household, proving company and care. But things are changing quickly. Suddenly I feel like I need to check in on her every day. Will she remember to take her medication? Is she eating? Is she safe? Is she okay emotionally?

It’s a place many families suddenly find themselves in.

And we live far away for most of each month, although we’ve radically modified that recently to be able to keep a better eye on her.

This morning I’m sitting with a cup of tea, thinking about what to do next, and how best to support my mother-in-law. It’s comforting to know that all of her family are thinking about that too, and we’ll find a way, together, to navigate this next stage of her life, but it’s a sad and worrying time.

Meanwhile, my Melbourne Breakfast Tea hasn’t quite fixed everything, but my goodness it helps.

Sending much love to you and your families, Nicole  xoxo