Thursday, 11 January 2018

The glimmers of dawn... Day 43

Day 43 (Friday 12th 2018)
43 people witnessed Lee de Forest, an early radio pioneer, as he broadcast phonograph
records for the first-time over radio waves from the Eiffel Tower in Paris on the
12th January 1908. As this was early days for broadcasting, nobody had a receiver
to pick up the signals. Although there are claims that these signals were received over
500 miles away and it is hailed as the first public broadcast. These days wifi uses
radio waves to connect users to the internet, so those of us using wifi to read
this should thank Lee de Forest. The Eiffel Tower was used as a wireless station
for many years. The photograph shows Gustav Eiffel's apartment in the Eiffel Tower
where he entertained Thomas Edison amongst others.
Today I need to encourage my youngest to pack, as he returns to university in the north east of England this weekend. I know he is having a wonderful time when he is there, but it still makes me so sad when he goes away. Part of being a mother...

Tamasin Sutton, the author of today's post, also chose to be based in the north east - leaving London for Newcastle upon Tyne. Some of you may remember her post entitled "Holding On" published as an Advent Blog on New Year's Eve 2016 in which, amongst other things, she talked about the reasons for her move. She works as a freelance HR consultant, with her own business TSHR Limited. Tamasin has over 13 years in various HR management roles across private and public sector organisations. Then in 2014 she decided to establish her own consultancy. She specialises in supporting SMEs and their leaders and has some great feedback from clients. She is qualified in the use of various psychometric tools, as well as being an NVQ assessor with the PTTLS qualification. 

She cares about the HR profession and the people within it - she is a Facilitator with Developing People Globally (DPG) supporting and assessing those studying for the CIPD Level 5 qualifications, as well as having co-established with Melanie Cheung Connecting HR North East - which enables networking and events for HR, L&D and OD professionals in the region. Tamasin is active on social media - you can follow her on Twitter (her handle is @TamasinS). To relax, Tamasin enjoys travelling, but she is happy to unwind with a gin and a chat - although, as her final paragraph shows, she has new, exciting adventures ahead.


This time last year I was in mourning. Suffering a loss I hadn't expected, I didn't want, and I didn't know how to process. I was conflicted, having made a move to the north east, seeing hope for a brighter year, maybe another defining year? Hopeful of a shift from the darkness to the dawn, but wondering if I could do that. Where would my professional life take me? How could I create something from scratch? Who did I know? Where on earth do I start?  You can read about my feelings from last year here.  

The darkness of the winter months consumed me, overtaking my thoughts, masking the glimmers of light, the dawn of a new era.  Perhaps that's too grand a descriptor, but for me, it feels pivotal. The despair, the longing, the grief for something so precious filled my nights with a darkness far more powerful than any eclipse of the sun. Like a few of the wonderful advent blogs relayed so far this series, people sometimes say insensitive or unhelpful things.  "it was for the best". "it wasn't viable". "it wasn't meant to be". It doesn't help. It doesn't help to dispel the darkness, or let you see the rise of the dawn, a new day, a new sense of hope. And how do you come back from that? How do you move on? Have I worked through this darkness? I don't know.... I was scared to look forward for a long time, to hope of a better outcome. I didn't expect to have these feelings.

Establishing professional connections in my new home town has been a challenge. London was easier, more open to the informal, the collaboration, new people. As I reflect on the last year I think about what I can do differently, more of, less of. I've met some fabulously passionate people in my region, one in particular, and she has become a partner in crime in helping to build a community. She provides glimmers of light when closed doors appear all around me. I am thankful for this partnership and for her unwavering passion for HR. It intrigues me that there is closure in many directions and I play a part in this. I can be easily put off when doors are closed, I wonder why people would be interested in speaking to me when they have so many established relationships already. But I then remember that I have something to give, I just need to channel it better, think about what is most important to me, stop the scatter gun effect.  How I respond to situations will make the difference.

I set out to do significant things this year, to build my business, spend time at home. Some of my plans have changed, they have needed to.  2017 was an opportunity for hope, for challenge, for love. 

And it delivered. As I lay on my bed with my precious baby girl on my chest (a whopping 9lb 11oz of her!) I am overwhelmed with love.  This is the dawn of a new stage in life. She is inquisitive, adorable and I am fascinated by every single thing that she does. She gives me something that I didn't even know I missed, or wanted. She is dependent on me, every day she discovers something new, and every day I see the dawn, and not just in the sense of early morning feeds!  Her smile is infectious, even at 13 days old. Her journey into the world was a stark contrast to the pregnancy, it was arduous, complex and unexpected.  Nothing prepares you for what is to come, or what can go wrong. But nothing else matters other than for that precious little person to be safe and healthy, even if you're left battered and bruised. Priorities shift and whilst the darkness still comes, especially at this time of great adjustment, the glimmers of dawn sparkle brightly, in glorious vivid colour, and I am truly thankful.


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