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A long while ago someone once gave me, at the most difficult time in my life, a good piece of advice; she said “Small steps.” At the time I did not understand her advice, but came to understand it over time, often as I fought against something I could not change, and tried to make things improve quickly, when only time, and small things would make the difference.

It was a lesson that I learnt well, and I am grateful every day for the advice my dear friend Avril gave me.

So fast forward to today, and we said goodbye to the hundred year old door, (see previous post with that title) and a new one has took its place; a set of UPVC French windows (or are they just double windows over here given that we are in France, and, thereby all the windows are French!)

As I said in my previous post we had no choice and had to be practical. We had a new frame built and to tie it in with the rest of the house we painted it blue, but decided to leave the door white to show that the house has stood the test of time and this is its latest addition.

Since having it installed we have had cold and windy rainy days and it has been a joy to stand in front of it and not feel a puff of the wind that was ferociously blowing at our house. The light it allows into my kitchen is fantastic and now when I stand cooking I look out at this…

I love it. But more than anything we finally feel as if we are getting somewhere, achieving and really starting to get our life on track in France. It is a small thing having the door fitted, but it is something that makes us warm and makes us feel empowered.

Another reason for my post was that someone asked me about my recent post, ‘it all depends on how you look at things I suppose’; She asked “how do you know that when bad things happen to you, that it means that life is not telling you to give up.” I asked if by that she meant was life telling us we should go back to England, and she said ‘yes it was.’ My immediate response was to explain that we could not go back even if we considered it (which we are not) because, apart from not particularly liking the way England is now, we would have to rent at our time of life, which would be a nightmare in England with animals, and our money would not last long from our house if we went back.

I have thought about this since then and have surprised myself that I answered her in such a materialistic way. In fact after considering it here is my answer…

When I say life shows you the way, I think it shows you the way and teaches you lessons to enable you to move forward; yes sometimes the lessons are hard but they are ALWAYS about moving forward (although we may not feel that at the time) and never about going backwards, after all what would be the point of that?

I do see life as a journey, my biggest inspiration has been ‘The road less travelled’ by M. Scott Peck, and as you learn things in life those lessons should make you stronger to enable you to keep going, and be able to deal with adversity in the future.

I suppose my friend was saying how do you know life is not telling you to change what you are doing, or where you’re going, and go back to what you know, how do you know life is not telling you that you have made a mistake? Again, what would be the point of that? I believe that if it is, then the lessons will become harder until you listen, but they will always be about moving forward and not back.

Importantly life does not only send you hard lessons, it sends you good things as well, to tell you that you’re on track and need to keep going; and I know from some of the lovely people we have met, and others who are now in our lives that we are on track. I listen to all my lessons not just the hard ones!!

As I said in my previous post it all depends on how you look at things; Do you look at it from a positive angle and ask what can I learn from this to carry on? Or do you look at the negative things to use as an excuse to give up, and go back to what you know? That is not an adventure my friend.

Where there is good there is bad, and where there is bad there is good. Everything goes in a circle, but if you just focus on the bad then that is all you will get because you fail to see the good, or allow it a way in. Negativity begets negative things. If we are being told to give up this adventure then we would not have been able to get the door. I know we will have the roof before the winter, I believe!

I will say this though: When you really want something badly and it does not happen then listen, because life is telling you it is not the right thing for you, no matter how hard it seems that you cannot have it. Something else will come along instead if you just believe and keep the door open…..

Moisy