Mr Benn

I was recently asked this question:  If you were trapped in a cartoon world from your childhood, which one would I choose and why?  Well, it’s got to be Mr Benn, my favourite children’s animated programme of the 1970s. 

Mr Benn was an ordinary English gentleman, dressed in pin-stripe suite and bowler hat.  He lived at No. 52 Festive Road.  However, Mr Benn had a very surprising ‘other life’ in which he would often visit the Costume Shop in his town.  There, he would try on a different costume each time before walking through the second door in the changing room, “the door that always led to adventures”.   As he did so, he became the person from the costume and would have an adventure.  So, for example, when he tried on the space suit, he became a spaceman; when he tried on the Safari costume, he became a big-game hunter on safari and so on.  I loved this as a child.  How rich is the world of our imagination!

And for the writer that I am now, I can see why it entranced me so much back then.  For isn’t this what we do when we write or read?  Each time we open the cover of a book, it is leading us on an adventure, isn’t it?  And with each page that we turn, we enter a different world, another life.  We can be the characters in the book and live through their experiences with them. There are plenty of episodes of Mr Benn on YouTube.  One of my favourite episodes is Mr Benn Spaceman.

The above forms part of my Interview with the Authors on the fabulous Camilla Down’s blog, MeetingtheAuthors. I’m sure she won’t mind if I publish this teaser in advance of the full interview! So, who would you be if you were trapped in a cartoon world, and why? It’s a very interesting and revealing question! Have a great week. Much love, Anita.

Change

Whatever our circumstances, we all face change in our lives. None of us is the person we once were. This took me some time to realize. At first, when illness changes your life you can easily drown in self-pity and/or anger.  Read on to see how change can be such a positive event in life, making space for the new…. Continue reading

Perfect Reflections

This post is for Debbie Roth’s   #forgivingconnects and my #healingwordsmon and it’s about non-judgement.  Today’s poem is an extract from Perfect Reflections (which will appear in my new book).

Show me Your light
In the evil deeds of men
For dost not evil
Merely cover the good in them?
Show me Your light
In hurtful, vengeful words
For dost not pain
Merely cover forgotten love?
Give me the strength, Lord,
To proclaim what is true:
That we are all
Perfect Reflections of You.

– taken from the poem Perfect Reflections by Anita Neilson.

I have to say right up that I have been very judgemental in life.  This all began with a childhood habit which grew into an ugly spiritual boil before bursting a few years ago.  Only then, could I see my behaviour for what it was – embedded in fear.  Fear of difference.  But ironically, now I realise that every person we come across is different, unique, and to surround myself in this bubble of fear was only hurting myself.   And yet, I choose not to beat myself up over this.  I forgive myself for my years of judging on appearances; of laughing at those less pretty or clever than I; of being a little too spoilt for my own good.

Now that’s not to say I don’t struggle with showing love to those who commit acts of evil in the misguided belief that it will bring them the happiness they seek.  But they are on their own journey through many lifetimes, just as we are on ours.  We’re all at different stages, and who am I to say that my way is the right way?  I know that there will be others who compare themselves favourably with my ‘misguided’ standards.  It’s such a tricky one this.  Yes, show love and understanding to people who do bad things but also speak out if others are being harmed.  I’d value your thoughts on this dilemma, because I do battle with this.  Anita.