life-is-beautiful (1)

The post about nothing

The ordinary is beautiful.

The ordinary is beautiful.

I was a big Seinfeld fan back in the day. The show about nothing seemed a perfect idea, because after all, it wasn’t really about nothing was it.

It was about nothing significant. Nothing special. Nothing out of the ordinary.

It was just ordinary life with its twists and foibles and injustices and humour…always humour. In that sense it was about everything. Every life.

This post is about nothing.

It’s about nothing special, show-stopping or incredible.

It’s about the everyday.

I haven’t blogged for a while. Actually, I have blogged but it’s been in my mind as I drove around Auckland, or diced onions or watched TV on a lazy Sunday night. I just haven’t committed this ‘nothing’ to my keyboard.

Sure, I’ve had challenges. My laptop blew up. Poof! Our house in the UK took forever to settle (bloody lawyers!) and the stress was overwhelming. After three weeks of phone calls to England in the wee hours of the morning we were walking dead. Then when it did settle, the lawyers held onto our sale proceeds for seven days! What did Shakespeare say ‘first kill all the lawyers…’

The dog’s  greyer around the muzzle, the kids have exams, my Englishman has been better, then worse, then better – recovery isn’t a straight line – and we all seem to go up and down with him. I guess it’s company. After all, who better to offer empathy than someone who also suffers from visits from the black dog from time to time?

We visited the local Buddhist temple – Fo Guang Shan – to steal some quiet and admire the spring flowers.


I took time to grab the stunning sunsets from our spot on the hill.

Another ordinary sunset.

Another ordinary sunset.

And to pick the Spring flowers from our rambling au naturel (messy) cottage garden.

The ordinary glory of Spring flowers, happens every year.

The ordinary glory of Spring flowers, happens every year.

But I’m not using any of these as excuses. I haven’t blogged for a while because I didn’t want to be visible. I just wanted to get on with my ‘nothing’. I didn’t want empathy, or advice or help or even attention. I just wanted to get on with it. After all whilst it’s nothing to you, it’s been my sharp sharded reality for a few months now.

We’ve had visitors staying – a nice local family with a dying dog. We had a rental inspection, and I almost internally combusted trying to clean the carpet on my hands and knees. It’s Spring, so weatherwise (as with all things it seems) it’s two steps forward one step back.

There’s been dinners with friends and early morning writing sessions on ‘From Pavlova to Pork Pie’ which is coming along, albeit slowly.

Last week, school finished early for a teacher’s meeting and as Miss Fliss made her way home a school-mate was killed on the Pakuranga Highway.

It struck me that his day started ordinarily, probably with cereal – six Weetbix and half a bottle of milk, if he’s anything like my teens – then a ride on his new motorbike to school.

And then it ended.

It all ended.

Although we didn’t know him, my mother-heart sobbed.

I grabbed my kids and ‘checked in with them’ – probably too casually. I sent prayers and thoughts and strength to his grieving family and all the while I wondered about this mystery.

How all our lives are nothing, and yet simultaneously, something.

Something incredibly precious.

Tell your people you love them. Grab this nothing-day and make it matter. Suck the marrow out of life and chew on its bones. All that ‘nothing’ is worth so much. It’s so fragile and beautiful and fleeting and yet so deeply etched with meaning.

Today, I’m going to live as I’ve written. Today, I’m going to live my nothing, as if it’s the most special gift I’ve ever been given.

Will you?

Life is ordinary, and yet everything.

Life is ordinary, and yet everything.






'The post about nothing' has 10 comments

  1. October 19, 2015 @ 2:05 pm Sarah

    That last photograph and sentence are so powerful. Thinking of you and your family xxx


  2. October 19, 2015 @ 9:19 pm Vicki Jeffels

    Thanks Sarah. It is though isn’t it. xx


  3. October 19, 2015 @ 10:02 pm Robyn

    Thanks for sharing this. It’s so important to be reminded of how fragile our ordinary days are from time to time, before a disaster forces us to remember. Something about having a kid that keeps it in the forefront of my mind now, I’ve been more aware than ever of the delicate little things that happiness hinges on since baby came along last year.


    • October 20, 2015 @ 8:24 am Vicki Jeffels

      It’s amazing how becoming a Mum does that. I remember cradling my first-born in my arms and thinking how I would fight to be there for him every day of his life, even when the black dog called and suggested I ditch the struggle. Thanks so much for commenting Robyn.


  4. October 20, 2015 @ 4:32 am Midlife Singlemum

    OMG how terribel about Fliss’ friend. I would have sobbed my mother-heart out too. I hope the income from the house sale in the UK is useful for whatever you had it earmarked for. Lovely to have you back on the blogosphere. Lots of love xxx


    • October 20, 2015 @ 8:26 am Vicki Jeffels

      Hiya, thanks hun! Yes for now it buys us some breathing space whilst we focus on building our businesses, publishing books (!) and getting through the Summer – a quiet time in this part of the world. Been thinking about you with all the horrible stuff happening in your beautiful little neck of the woods. Beautiful Israel – why oh why does it struggle so. Sending love and strength. Don’t forget to carry your frying pan with intent! Vx


  5. October 21, 2015 @ 8:50 am Jean

    Beautiful words, and images, and I’m sorry to hear about the school friend. As I drove to a meeting yesterday I passed the scene of an accident outside a college. I later learned it was a student who had been knocked down and killed as he tried to cross the busy road to get to college. So sad, and even though I didn’t know him it was a blow. Life is so fragile, thanks for the reminder xx


    • October 21, 2015 @ 5:24 pm Vicki Jeffels

      Oh that is so sad. I sometimes wonder how we live with the knowledge that life has this antithesis – death. I’ve realised lately there’s only one way to reconcile with this truth, and that’s to live life as if it is a treasure. We just never know when it will be gone. ss


  6. October 22, 2015 @ 8:07 pm Di

    So pleased to see you here. Yep #onelifeliveit is the way to go…. hard at times, but that’s life I guess.


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