1. If rocks could talk

if rocks could talk - meet sylvia-rose Oct 28, 2021

I was going through life and all was well. In an instant, it all changed and I was on my knees, feeling lost.

I am Janet Jones and I talk to rocks, well, I talk to this rock. I have walked 260 miles and had 65 conversations with a rock on the beach I named Sylvia-Rose, to talk about how I can heal my broken heart after losing my son, Murray. 

‘Murray is no longer with us’, my ex-husband said over the phone at 12.20 am, 15th of July 2019. Those words are etched in my heart forever. 

Two years after losing my 22-year-old son in a climbing accident, I sold the family home in Yorkshire and moved to Stranraer, a small town in South West Scotland, to hide. Living in the place where my children grew up, surrounded by people who had known me for many years was difficult. I felt I was being watched. I didn’t want to be watched, judged, or pitied. I wanted to hide from the world and I had no idea how long for.  

Stranraer allowed me to do that. I lived alone and knew only two people in a town of 10,000. Weeks could go by and I wouldn’t see anyone. I could drink as much alcohol and eat as much junk food as I liked without comment. I didn’t like myself at the time so even I wasn’t judging me.  

There was a method in my madness. I wanted to die. I figured if I consumed enough food to layer my heart with fat, I would have a heart attack. My children would be upset and friends would miss me for a while but I would be free from this excruciating pain that no one could see or do anything about. Grief is a dark and lonely journey. 

In 2011, I naively named my business Happiness Millionaire. I was now on the ground in the dark and didn’t believe I could ever live up to that. I almost deleted everything. A friend stopped me, suggesting not to look at my business for a while and see how I feel in time. I couldn’t imagine ever feeling any different. The future seemed like an endless tunnel of darkness I had to exist in and pretend I was doing OK so friends and family would leave me alone. 

Time was passing and death was avoiding me. Winters were dark, cold, and lonely and my house sat at the side of a very cold sea loch. Promising my daughter, I wouldn’t do anything ‘silly’, I resisted the temptation of walking into the loch to end my life quickly. My dad died by suicide in 1994. I know that legacy well and I didn’t want my two remaining children to live that. However, these feelings brought me closer to Dad. I suddenly understood his logic.  

As the Happiness Millionaire, one nagging thought rolled around my mind; no one was coming to rescue me. The only person who could rescue me was me. I knew this. I used to teach it but could I do it? Some days, maybe. Others, definitely not. Things had to change or I may not be able to keep my promise. Part of me was still holding out for a heart attack.  

The heart attack diet I had put myself on was taking effect. I felt pressure on my heart creating a crushing feeling. My blood pressure was increasing and I was feeling exhausted and lacked any motivation to change.  My body carried an extra two stone (28lbs or nearly 13 KG) a lot for my 5ft frame. Also, it wasn’t very visible so I knew I was getting my wish of visceral fat.  

Most mornings I would wake, promising myself ‘Today would be the day things change’. Then I would crawl back in bed. No one could see. No one knew. And it was easy to lie in a text. Promise after promise until one day and lots of self-negotiation, I decided to put my hiking boots on and walk out of the door along the beach and keep going. With no agenda, and no one expecting me to be anywhere, the day was mine, like all the other days were but today would be different. Because for things to change, I had to change. 

I recently moved from Yorkshire to South West Scotland. If you have read my book, Happiness Millionaire: Positive Images for a R.I.C.H and Powerful Life, I introduced you to the lamppost I walked to most mornings. That journey helped me walk back to happiness many times, including after losing my lovely son, Murray, in July 2019. 

Since arriving in Stranraer, in August 2021, walking along the beach has been therapy. One day, I stumbled across this rock. I immediately felt a connection. I am not sure I understand why. It felt like the rock was female. Again, I have no idea why but I knew we would get on, I also knew she would play an important role in my healing journey.

She is 2 miles from my house, so a 4-mile round trip. Perfect. We have such a strong connection and walking to see her brings peace and purpose.  She needed a name. On the 1st of October, 2021, I asked my Facebook friends for their help. 

There were many suggestions but Sylvia-Rose won because Sylvia was the female suggestion of Sylvester Stallone from Rocky, the movie. Representing, courage, bravery, strength, and a determination to change things for the better.

Rose represents the power of love from the Rose quartz crystal. It is also my mum's name. Powerful! đź’›

I visited, Sylvia-Rose many times in October. On the 23rd of October, that morning I struggled to get out of bed. I dragged myself along the beach and when I arrived, we started talking. It felt automatic to write out the dialogue on my Facebook page and share it with friends and family.

We then went on a healing journey together.

You can read our first conversation, about the effort it takes sometimes to face each day after a big loss, HERE. 



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