The love goes down …

I have been quiet for a little while here on the blog. And just this week I have realised I have been quiet within myself, for some months now. Not really myself. Not seeking company. Wintering if you like within. Not cold and frosty, just cat-like content within the walls of my own quiet hearth.

I’ve just had an operation, a hysterectomy, and I’m home today. And all is well.

I’ve been debating whether to even share this latest here and now with you.

view from st vincents paddington

I had five nights in hospital in Sydney doped up on Endone and other lovely drugs until the penultimate day when I refused all heavy meds just to get a real sense of how my hurts were truly traveling. I woke in the middle of the night and for the first time all week, the chatter of work and day to day worries had returned. We talk a lot about being mindful but I realised how utterly blissful it had been to be mind-less for those few days. How long has it been since you have had the headspace to read a page turning novel? How long since you have had regular day-time sleeps or just sat and stared out a window at a late afternoon lightening storm? Or woken early and watched the sun rise, the whole beautiful show from pink to blue?

Happy to be out the other side.

Happy just to be.

To be.


In a week of quiet reflection I was thinking about when my mum had a hysterectomy many years ago, experienced through semi-whispered conversations at some vague moment in my teenage years. And those of my family and close friends who have since been through it or some different, even scarier challenge. And how, on reflection, I wasn’t really there for any of them. Concerned yes but there? Really? Sympathetic? Empathatic? Understanding? In the deepest closest way? I would have to say no. I was on the sideline rooting for them. But that’s different to being on the playing field - with them – part of the same team.

It got me thinking that life is a series of clubs.

I am now part of The Hysterectomy Club.

At different points along the way we suddenly find ourselves admitted to a new club and set out on a whole new round of figuring out what the hell is happening.

I’m thinking about The Pregnancy Club when the line turns blue and suddenly everywhere you turn you see babies and mothers pushing prams. Or the Pelvic Floor and Everything Post Birth Club that no-one ever talked about because if they did you would probably never get pregnant in the first place. I’m thinking about The Being Bullied at School Club, The I Will Never Have Children Club, The Parents of ‘Adventurous’ Teenagers Club, The Breast Cancer Survivor Club, The Divorced Club, The Friends Who Have Lost Friends Club, The Losing Your Partner Club, The Gone Broke Club, The Club of Broken Hearts, The Dicky Thyroid Club, The Children Who Have Lost Their Parents Club. The list – as life randomly throws its best curveballs at us – is endless. I know you will have memberships of your own.

I have a glamorous 80-something year old friend Lorraine who has a favourite saying: “The love goes down.” Until this week I’ve never really understood what she meant. But all of a sudden I get it.

I wasn’t anywhere near the playing field for my mum or older sisters or friends. But they have variously been there for me. When I became a part of the same club, the love flowed down.

Just as when my daughter and son or nieces or nephews or younger friends will face their own similar challenges in the future. The love will flow down.

It’s not that as youngies we don’t care. We just haven’t lived some things yet and until you live them, no matter how hard you might try to empathise, you just can’t know.

Have I crossed a threshold? This week I realised I’m a card carrying member of more clubs than I’d care to count. It comes with getting older. But you know what, it’s not a bad thing, it’s a bloody beautiful thing. This whole getting older business, this getting of wisdom – not buying it, not stumbling on it, not winning it – this getting of wisdom is the gift we receive for having lived through all the trials and tribulations of life.

Have I crossed a threshold? I dunno.

I still feel like a 24 year old in my head.

Then again, it could just be an Endone flashback ;)



    … a tale of opium and spanish señoritas

    A Spanish señorita has stepped on to the stage in our garden.

    Neck proud and erect, earrings dangling, skirt flouncing.

    spanish senorita opium poppy

    A whirling flurry of passion immersed in her own red dangerousness.

    opium poppy red skirt flying

    A blurred oblivion of colour and movement.

    pink underside opium poppy

    But behind the facade of bravado and foot stamping she has a trove of quiet secrets, secrets that she keeps close and well concealed.

    The tantalising question is

    hidden secrets opium poppy

    Who will she choose to unlock them?


      Art in the Vines at Renzaglia Wines

      Art in the Vines Renzaglia Wines

      We are in a huge state of flux at the moment.

      Re-envisioning a new and quite different future for Red Moon. Trying to redesign the blog too. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, Steve and I are getting glimpses of a life where the kids need us less, Darcy now an independent driver having got his Ps last Tuesday, Maddy last spotted in a bathhouse in southern Japan. I can sense we will be negotiating a redundancy package before too long lol. To be honest, it’s taking me a bit of getting used to.

      We took some time out yesterday to visit Sandy and Mark at Renzaglia Wines at O’Connell for their annual Art in the Vines.

      These guys fill my cup.

      Remember I took you there last year …

      A straw bale house in the country. Sandy with her beautiful rock work and drought tolerant plantings … thriving under a scorching hot sun.

      flowers at Renzaglia Winessandy's planting renzaglia wines

      Pulling together a great crew of artists and friends …

      musos and fans

      Mark with his winemaking …

      Renzaglia Wines premium reds

      This was the first time I’d seen the full range of labels we’ve been working on together for the past year or so.

      It started with a complete rebrand which I think Sandy would admit was a bit like letting go of her firstborn.

      Then a website.

      An initial label.

      And now a growing range, of premiums and commercials, some yet to be released.

      renzaglia wines range

      It got me thinking about rebrands and I can’t help but feel that we’re going through one of our own right now. Evolving into something new. I keep reaching for the rudder but we are definitely being carried along by a tide that’s out of our control.

      Sitting out at the Renzo’s yesterday looking at the straw bale home they built themselves, the gardens planted with thought and care, the vineyard in full leaf and a lovely event that is still in its infancy but will grow naturally with the rest of it … it all just made me take a step back and relax. Of course the wine might have helped too.

      I have been a mum for nearly 23 years and I know you never stop being a mum.

      But when you have been something for so long it’s hard to think of yourself as anything else.

      It’s scary.

      But it’s a little bit exciting too.

      Margaret Hogan sketch at Renzaglia Wines Art in the Vines

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          Hi I’m Margaret. I live in Australia.
          I sprinkle creative magic onto businesses
          over at red moon creative.
          When I'm not there, I'm here and now, doing my own creative happy dance – primarily to avoid housework and other
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