This week has been about self-care. And about time, too.

Where I live, we have been fortunate to enjoy some beautiful spring sunshine, and it has been very warm indeed. Despite my reservations about spring, I have now been enjoying the array of flowers and blossom, and trying to see them as symbols from Hugo.

Beautiful blossom.

Beautiful blossom.

On Monday evening, I found myself thinking on that day twelve months earlier I had last held Hugo, last sung to him, last read to him. I had last looked at his beautiful face, last stroked his lovely soft hair. It was the last time I had seen my gorgeous baby.

I miss Hugo so very much.

Tuesday marked the first anniversary of Hugo’s funeral. The last of the first anniversaries. Tuesday’s glorious sunshine mirrored the weather of the same day last year. I visited Hugo’s garden, and found it hard to believe that my baby had already been there for a whole year. The windmills and solar-powered butterfly were spinning away in the strong breeze, and combined with the toys, stars and vibrant flowers made his garden seem full of life and activity. The new little stones in the hexagonal planter were sparkling in the sunshine, but the camera doesn’t really pick it up.

Hugo's garden - I captured the shadow of the solar-powered butterfly on the wall of the planter.

Hugo’s garden – I captured the shadow of the solar-powered butterfly on the wall of the planter.

Hugo's toys, and the sparkly stones.

Hugo’s toys, and the sparkly stones.

The day of Hugo’s funeral was a celebration of life, and love. Hugo’s first birthday was spent at the laptop getting #HugosLegacy trending (with the help of so many wonderful people); the first anniversary of his death was spent sprucing up his garden.

This anniversary was about love for me. Self-care. As well as visiting Hugo in his garden on Tuesday, I tried to keep myself busy with various things. I went to the gym and had my nails done with pretty new sunshine colours. I sat in the garden with my book, which to be honest I found difficult to get in to – and ended up falling asleep.

New nail colour.

New nail colour.

A sleep in the sunshine is restorative. A bit like being that solar-powered butterfly in Hugo’s garden.

Self-care doesn’t solve everything, nor does it make things better. But feeling revived and a bit more full of life, even if only for a while is good, so I’m aiming to do more of it.


The Reading Residence

16 thoughts on “Self-Care

  1. Wry Mummy (@wrymummy) says:

    I continue to be amazed by what beautiful words you write out of such grief, Leigh. I love how you’ve created Hugo’s garden and captured that shadow of the butterfly as you spent time with him there. I’m glad you took some restorative time when so much is going on emotionally. Your nails look gorgeous. Love Jess x


  2. Katy (What Katy Said) says:

    I love those butterflies, I have been meaning to get some for Mr F’s mum’s grave. Hugo’s garden looks so lovely, such a celebratory space. Glad you are taking care of yourself, can make all the difference x


  3. sophieblovett says:

    This is so sad, but so full of hope. Well done for taking the time to look after yourself – it can be easy to dwell in pity and loss but it is so important to look to the future. You are so incredibly strong. Love your new nails too 🙂 x


  4. Kate /PoutingInHeels (@KateLPortman) says:

    Hugo’s garden looks wonderful! So full of life, colour and beauty, well done. I’m so glad you’re trying to focus on self care more, it’s important and it does and can help. Even superficial things like having our nails done (yours look fabulous btw!) can really help put a little spring in our step. Much love xxx


    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Thank you lovely Katie, we’re sorry Hugo is in his garden, but pleased with how we have been able to make it look for him. Self-care is about self-worth I think, and very important therefore. Thank you, I’m pleased with my nails too xxx


  5. Stephanie says:

    Love that butterfly shadow in Hugo’s garden which looks so colourful. I also like the idea of napping in the sun being akin to solar charging ourselves, I definitely think there’s something in that, take care lovely xx


  6. Harriet says:

    Hi Leigh, this is another lovely post. I’m glad to hear you are doing a bit of self-care; it’s really important to be kind to yourself when you have so much to do in terms of grieving/healing. Beautiful photos too. Love Harriet x


  7. thereadingresidence says:

    Such beautiful photos, Leigh. Self-care, even if just a few snatched hours, can be so restorative and a nap in the sunshine sounds lovely. On dealing with even more difficult times than normal, with the anniversaries, you totally need these times, and I’m glad you’re managing a bit. Your nails look fab, too x Thanks for sharing with #WotW


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