Tuesday, 5 July 2011

1st holiday without Clive Gott - part 3

After a good night's sleep I was eager to get into the sunshine. Mum enjoyed a bath in the tub big enough for two. I tried to erase any 'should have' thoughts and instead smiled at what 'had' happened. I thought of the copper bath at Salthouse Harbour hotel in Ipswich.

We joined Nip and Ellie for a delightful and delicious breakfast. Hilton know how to do a good spread. Including pumpkin marmalade with walnuts! But what else?! We ate on the sundrenched terrace.

Nip went to play golf with his friend. I wondered if he was going through a 'should have been with Clive' time? 

Us girls got the shuttle bus down to the hotels private beach area. It was very pleasant but we all decided we prefered the hotel. After a while Mum and I had a walk along the waterline. Bliss.
I had my new bikini on and loved it!

Clive might not be here but I am savouring the time with Mum, Nip and Ellie. My huge lesson from Clive's death is to make the most of NOW and literally 'love the one you are with'. These were moments to appreciate with Mum. We did a 'moment check-in' and savoured all the sensory inputs.

Last time she was in Vilmoura was last autumn with my Dad and brother, who was facing challenges at the time. We both created a new happy moment together.

Still in positive mode we decided to have lunch at the beach. The decked area was just like where Clive and I had enjoyed a coffee on the last day last time. Today I smiled at the memory. Mum and I had a Pina Colada and once again I took comfort from the warm breeze.Yes the scientists can tell me it's all about air pressure. I choose to feel it is Clive around me. It helps so I refuse to knock it.

 I felt calm, serene and relaxed.

We returned to the hotel and soaked up more sun and banter with Nip and Ellie. I have also been reading Elisabeth Kubler-Ross's 'Life Lessons'. Wow! That is a whole blog in itself. An amazing book I want to share with everyone. It is helping me so much - thanks Molly.

I had decided initially not to blog about this trip. I wanted time off and out. But then I began to think about others who will undoubtably have to face a first holiday sometime after losing a loved one or any major change in life. Maybe this could help?

I also thought ahead a little and suggested a drink with a friend on Monday night to avoid a possible downer.

I put on my favourite long Monsoon dress that Clive had spotted one day and wanted me to have it. I could have left it at home but no, why?

Ellie said I looked stunning. She is so very lovely. Nip is a lucky man. She is beautiful inside and out.

Ellie and I
Me, Mum and Ellie
Once at the Marina we went in a Sports bar. Clive and I had been in here. I did something for the first time. I asked for the Leeds vs Wigan rugby game to be put on - and they did! 

I think Mum was stunned! I was so proud of myself! I was pleased I cared about the match and even more pleased at how proud Clive would have been bringing Leeds into Vilamoura! We posed for pictures by the marina wall and at half time left Leeds winning!

Leeds were winning at half-time!
Tonight the four of us dined together. Mum was on form telling many stories of her experiences.  Nip said she should write a book too! I loved how lovely he was with her. If he teased her he would gently squeeze her upper arm just as Clive used to. I also really liked him to speak about Clive, especially when he repeated some of his sayings. If you want to feel close to a lost loved one spend time with those who also spent time with them. They are right there.

We met up with the others and ate ice cream. I felt so mellow. So relaxed. So glad to be here.

Next stop was the 19th Hole. Tonight Ellie and I went with our desire and danced! For almost an hour we wiggled and sung just on the footpath outside the bar. Ellie is truly stunning and several times she kindly and swiftly dealt with male advances. So did I! Here was one we danced to.

Tonight was about 'dancing like no-one was watching'. I lost myself in the music, the warmth, the ambience. I kept glancing at an empty chair. In my mind Clive was there, watching me with adoration. Grinning with delight that I was there, in 'our' bar; having asked for a Rhinos match to be put on; dancing with a massive grin on my face to songs such as:-

Ellie squealed at seeing me smile so much. She said it was brilliant. I thought so too. It was healing in action.

My feet were throbbing by the time we got into bed. But so was my heart and it was as happy as it can be right now.

Elaine x


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