hiraeth

IMG_7757It has been a spectacular Spring. The flowers have been massed in abundance, banks of geraniums with no green leaves to be seen the flowers are so thick; roses in profusion – some of the red ones with stems 1.5 metres long! In all my time here I’ve never seen anything to compare with it. The massed succulents planted to make a wall of spines to deter geese, have doubled in size, with their prickly leaves capable of ripping holes in the toughest of hands. Planting them was a trial, so was digging them up and hand weeding around them proved impossible!
Plans are afoot for a new basket-weave patterned bricked surface in the courtyard and a refurbishment of the small garden area with succulents. It will be easy to look after and more dramatic than the present planting. What is there and has been so carefully nurtured over the years will still have a place, but maybe more clipped and groomed. Much change is afoot here at Poddler’s Creek, often the case at this end of the year. We like to have a major clear out, rethink and sort out before the New Year comes in. This year some jobs will be done that have waited quite a few years – some doors replaced, screen doors put in place to prevent snakes wandering in if they feel like it. It hasn’t happened yet, but could in theory, as they are about and active now the weather is warm enough. We’re talking the shy red-bellied black snake, but also the brown snake, a lethal snake that almost took the life of our Annie last Summer. She recovered well after a serious dice with death and is now the most expensive cat around!
There are so many memories and new ones being made all the time. All the family are firmly bonded to the property, to it’s peace and calm, the majesty of the old gum trees and the ancient hills. Some of us are still climbing the hill with picnics to watch the sun set and walking the bounds just for pleasure. The kookaburras mark their bounds daily, morning and night with their calling and cacophony. The magpies do the same with their melodious carolling and group singing. Other birds visit at the same times every day – the sulphur-crested cockatoos, the black cockatoos and the galahs. The black ravens never leave, crowing and cawing, watching and waiting. They nest in the big gums, raising a baby each year, a big puffed up demander, who calls for food and to be fed constantly, even after it can feed itself.
Even Barnaby the koala has been grunting and making his pig like sounds recently. It usually indicates that he is changing trees and has come down to the ground from on high. He is impossible to see once he has climbed to the top branches and is perfectly camouflaged in the river red gums.
Being away even for a few hours produces what the Welsh call hiraeth* and it has become impossible to imagine not being here. It is sometimes hard for us adoptees to have that feeling of home because something is always missing for us…we have a hole in our heart where our mother was so briefly and is now gone forever. Nothing every repairs that hole, no reunion or compensatory action can make up for that early loss, the primal wound we experience and which some of us feel acutely, other are not aware of now, but may be in some future time. Because you don’t experience it now doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, it just means you have not brought it into your consciousness. Maybe you will, maybe you won’t. It will be your choice, your journey through the adopted life. So many try to tell us how we should live, how we should define our adoption, what we should call the people who are our family and even adoptees have been known to insist on defining the adoption of another adoptee. It can’t be done, but what can be done, is for others to develop a greater understanding of the adoption experience, a genuine empathy and compassion for our experiences and an open mind with regard to the politics and business of adoption which prevent progress and are a hot-bed of lies, hypocrisy and greed.
*Hiraeth is a longing for one’s homeland, but it’s not mere homesickness. It’s an expression of the bond one feels with one’s home country when one is away from it.
As soon as I step over the border into Wales my hiraeth evaporates. I am
home

Urban Dictionary: hiraeth.

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4 thoughts on “hiraeth

  1. “what can be done, is for others to develop a greater understanding of the adoption experience, a genuine empathy and compassion for our experiences and an open mind”
    Oh Von, yes, I wholeheartedly agree. The idea of “Hiraeth” is compelling, and perhaps hauntingly evocative to an adoptee…
    Beautiful post…and it’s true Spring does seem especially profuse this year!

    • Thanks Kim, good to see you here again.It seems we are having one of those prolific years that come our way every so often, some say every 7 years.It will I think be prolific in many ways and I hope for all who need it.

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