Not everyone has the chance to turn their lives around when they hit a midlife wobbly. I was given that opportunity after I became redundant as a fulltime mother in my early fifties and found myself struggling with empty nest syndrome. By the beginning of 2010 both my daughter, Kiera, and my son, Alex, had left home, leaving me at a crossroads in my life. To be honest, the empty nest experience came as quite a surprise. I know it seems crazy but I never saw it coming and in order to deal with it, I took drastic action. I remember thinking at the time that if the kids can do it, so can I and with that in mind, I left home as well. I left not only our beautiful family home and the city where I had spent most of my adult life but also my husband, Peter, who was still working in the city. This was something I needed to do on my own and I was fortunate to have a very supportive spouse and the resources that enabled me to up sticks and relocate to the country.
So, I waved goodbye to Durban and made my home on a nine-hectare (23 acre) smallholding in the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal. Peter remained in Durban for another two and a half years before selling up and joining me in the country. And together we have never looked back.
I started blogging in 2011 as an attempt to keep in touch with family and friends as we all went our separate ways. It was easy to feel quite lonely and isolated on our smallholding in Nottingham Road and blogging helped me to feel connected to the “outside world”. However, writing soon became a creative necessity for me and now I write, not just to stay in touch but to reflect on and record this wonderful story of life. The title of my blog is a play on the word peek. Before I got married and used Peter’s surname, my maiden name was Peek. So, it’s both a peek at life and a Peek at life.
Moving to the farm gave me the opportunity to determine how I wanted to live my life. In the early days, there was much navel gazing as I attempted to start over and writing played a critical part in my passage of self-discovery. I am now in my early sixties, a grandmother and still very happy living a simple, country life.
[Just a note on the use of songs as titles of my posts. When I started my blog, I wanted to reflect the role that music plays as a soundtrack to my life and, often when I write, words trigger memories of songs and lyrics. However, after 8 years of blogging I decided that it was no longer necessary to include music as a regular feature.]
In solitude we give passionate attention to our lives, to our memories, to the details around us.