I am currently “between contracts”, “resting” , “economically inactive”- describe unemployment as you will but it does mean that I get to listen to alot of radion, which I love.
Libby Purves and her collection of guests midweek can be depended upon as a breath of fresh air especially if the alternative is the endless finessing of a PowerPoint slide!
This week’s programme ticked many of my illogically stacked boxes. There was Sally Magnusson, talking about the effects of music on the state of confusion ( a state of mind and fear for many of us as we age), Stephen Isselis, the cellist who is at the top of my play list (and will motivate me as I have more time to practice at the moment), Dan Hurley, journalist who is discussing if cognitive training can make us smarter (useful as I continue to compete with thousands of very smart, younger people in the jobs market) and then, Tommy Hanover, a registrar based in Westminster, who’s first clear qualification is his voice. Like a smooth, warming single irish malt. Thank you very much, I don’t mind if I do ; )
Tommy explained how he ran the gauntlet of emotions on a daily basis, as many as fifteen encounters which sees him meeting the very personal arenas of births, deaths and nuptials, where the ability to read someone quickly when they walk through his door would appear to be an essential skill, along with a degree of warmth that is so evident in Tommy’s voice. He says that he was often needing to have a quiet lie down at the end of his working day ( Personally, I find the need to lie down after buying appropriate cards for each life event!). Tommy is to perform the first same sex marriage at midnight, 29th March 2014.
My three kids grew up having Uncle Peter and Uncle Eric at every notable family gathering. Their struggle to be who they are is oft noted in the re-telling of family history. Here are people who have rigorously tested their own relationship before they considered running the gauntlet of societal and family norms. They have agonised over disclosure and then decided they can probably make a go of it. “Making a go of it” garners various levels of support and, in the often mourned demise of the extended family, that support can come in various guises.
My son has recently accepted a very public proposal from his lover and partner. I am very happy to say that he accepted – (and about time too, say their nearest and dearest !).
I consider my boys to be fortunate. I am envious of the supportive cohort that consists of their friends, work colleagues, and siblings. We, as the older generation, are there for them in varying degrees but it is their peer group who provide the buffers in this world.
I hope that the 29th March 2014 is executed with respect for our young people, especially those who feel alone and unsupported in making the most important and dramatic discoveries about themselves. God alone knows its difficult enough if you feel even slightly okay about growing up and, as a world, we need to strive to make growing up more joyful and on as many levels as possible.
Support groups and charities abound but we all seek, to our dying day, the support of who we understand to be our family group. It’s our gut instinct and, as Stephen Isselis says of his cello strings, ” In Gut We Trust”!