Looks like I may be on my way to a very new beginning after all! I don’t really believe in New Year’s resolutions. You can make a new beginning and commitment any time of the day or year. I read a couple of messages today, one said, thank God 2020 is over. We don’t know what’s coming.

New Year's Concert 2021

Ricardo Muti on the screen, me on the bike

We need to appreciate all we have while we have it. Don’t wish your time away!
Today for the first time I actually watched the Vienna New Year’s concert on New Year’s Day! Years gone by we would meet for a service and then go to lunch with our community. Now in the Covid pandemic lockdown, it is just the two of us in person and the rest of the world virtually. At midnight we joined with our Vienna community in a zoom prayer call.
This morning we had smoked salmon for brunch. Then I did what I have NEVER done in my life! I sat down and watched the Vienna New Year’s concert from the golden hall of the Musikverein, here in Vienna, just a couple of miles away from where we now live.

Musikverein

Just a half hour walk

First I wanted to see how Ricardo Muti looks now that he is older. I have a photo of three of my sons at the Salzburg Festspiele with him. It was in the transition period as the oldest one was leaving the Vienna Boys Choir (WSK – Wiener Saengerknaben) and the third one was just coming in. We had that phenomenon every two years a few times as our five sons went through the WSK together, two at a time.
Then I was moved by his message to world leaders. We need music and culture. Exactly what Mother Moon said during her four rallies of hope in 2020. Every one of the rallies of hope was framed in a cultural programme, as was the world summit in February of 2020. It was beautiful to hear our Austrian Summit participants testify that it was the best conference they had ever attended. Then of course the ensuing fact that NOBODY caught the Coronavirus during or as a result of attending the summit was also an amazing commentary.
Yes, and the other thing I wanted to say was I finally got on the home trainer! My legs and back have been so sore. My physiotherapist urged me to exercise until it hurt but then to allow time to heal afterwards.
Since my second operation, I have not been without pain, except occasionally shortly after I have taken my full dose of medication. I tried the cycling on the lower chair contraption about three times, but the home trainer was just too much strain on the new knee joints and surrounding tissues. Yet today, despite the fact that I still had the knee and back pain, I got on the home trainer as I turned on the New Year’s concert. Then I tested the pedals. It was a bit of a struggle to get up onto the pedals in the first place, but once there, I could turn the pedals and did my twenty minutes.

Home Trainer

Exercise

Yay! Way to go! Even my back felt better afterwards, even though I spent the next couple of hours lounging in an armchair as I watched the rest of the concert.
I am being kind to me.
Lately I’ve started using a luxury body lotion I originally bought as a gift while I was still working at the UN. We have a duty free shop with lots of special and international stuff to help the staff feel more at home in this foreign country. I used up the first tube over a year ago and thought of my grandmothers. I dedicated the caressing and massaging motion to all the women in my ancestral lineage as I knew they had all sacrificed so much just so that I can be here. I cherished the luxurious vanilla fragrance, and I remembered my grandmother’s scarred and bruised legs. I notice my own legs, even though they never were anything nice to look at, are now all dried out as well as scarred by the two major operations that I have just had. I think of all the cells in my body which carry the DNA of my ancestors and I thank them for just being. I cherish my own body as the temple and instrument which allows me and them to exist in this time. I learn to love myself and my body. And then I am again overcome with tears as I realise I have never allowed myself to rest, to appreciate, to feast, to celebrate. And what better time than the present to say thank you, to all my grandmothers, my mother, my aunties, but also my father, my husband, my sons. I say thank you to the universe that I can appreciate and live, in gratitude.

And before I forget, here’s my vlog thought of the day: https://youtu.be/zCM9IibxfwA