Wagner’s Tannhäuser Overture brings calm in the chaos.
My eldest granddaughter is 5 years old today. I always wanted grandchildren. I knew they will change my life – just never how much my life would change. I am glad for their safe places and hope as they grow up they have an abundance of happy places!
Yesterday was an exceptionally warm day in Cape Town. I used it to mow the lawn, clean up outside and wash the dogs (and today it looks like rain). This journal entry comes from the dogs.
The dogs have two beds. One is a “normal round bed” and the other a (cat) cave. Benji is a Yorkie and Chutney a Chihuahua. Benji is very intelligent and Chutney 2.1 kg pure love. There is a competition for the beds. In summer Benji prefers the normal bed, but clearly as autumn progresses, the cave is becoming the favourite. Before going to bed, the two dogs lie in bed with us. The moment Benji senses it is time for bed, he jumps down and occupies the bed he prefers – the cave at the moment. Chutney tries his best to go unnoticed in the hope to stay in our bed.
That is some background. When I called the dogs in the afternoon to put the collars back, Benji, for some reason charges to the bathroom where their beds are. I find him deep in his cave. I realise the cave is his safe place.
That is when I started thinking about a safe space. When I Google “safe space” I realize there are safe spaces for marginalized people. It is a good thing and should be advertised widely wherever it is available. It is sad that we need safe spaces for people.
Benji made me aware that we probably all have a safe space and need a safe space. My safe space is my home. When I am sick I want to go home. When I do not feel well, I want to go home. When I am stressed, I want to be home. That is probably true for most people. Unless your home, your safe space, becomes an unsafe place, then you need another safe place. That is so sad. That is the result of domestic violence in most cases, I think. Really sad. But I also wonder about many other people and where they will find safe spaces during the COVID-19 crisis. Especially with winter coming on.
A happy place is something else, although still there is a negative. Benji, Chutney and I share a happy place – the Cederberg. Sometimes I am in my safe place, but the world is still a bit much. That is when I escape to my happy place in my thoughts and memories. Spending time with photos to recall the memories. Recalling the hikes Benji and I (and a few people) did. What is your happy place?
In the midst of the Corona-virus, it is important to have a safe place and a happy place. It is a tragedy that so many people do not have a safe cave, like Benji.
I hope the “new normal” that everybody promises includes taking care of the marginalized people better so that everybody will have a safe place and, eventually, a happy place.
The banner above this post is from my happy place. Many years ago it was a safe place for other people. Having a safe place is a basic need.