May 5th, birthday gratitude entry:
I think that this post may piss a lot of us off. So, let’s get that out there right at the start. What I’m going to share, posit, opine is not a popular perspective and is far from the easiest way out (or, rather, through – as I’ve been saying that “the way out is through.”) All this to say: enter at your own risk.
I’m going to be 54 in two days. In these short number of years, I’ve gleaned a decent amount of wisdom. But I am so far from knowing it all. So. Far. (One of the ways I’ve grown in wisdom is to know that I do not in fact know it all. Who’s got me? Mmmmmmhmmmmmm…)
While I do not know it all, here is what I currently hold, albeit loosely:
1. We’re here for a reason.
2. I think that reason may be to experience Love in all its aspects.
3. Because forgiveness is a huge chunk of Love, someone must be the Offender and the other the Forgiver.
4. We get to be both throughout our days here in skin on earth.
5. Nobody does wrong willingly.
6. Unaware I was living in and from my pain, I’ve hurt others.
7. Unaware they are living in and from their pain, others have hurt me.
8. See #3 again. It bears repeating.
9. Chocolate is the nectar of the gods.
10. Popcorn is a close second.
“This new day is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on the yesterdays.” – Emerson
Did you know that we are more likely to recall an uncomfortable memory than a happy one? I think the study reported that this may be the case with the purpose being self-preservation. If you can readily remember the bear that made you hightail it outta there, you’re more likely to live should you cross paths again. Problem is, we’re also more likely to remember people’s hurtful behavior towards us amidst some real good stuff.
“This is where it all begins. Everything starts here, today.” – David Nicholls
Mom was beautiful with her long hair and pretty smile. I did not get a chance to really know her as I lived with my Gram and later my Dad. We didn’t see each other but a few times and then she moved out west. When I was pregnant with my third child, she passed. This is my fondest memory of her: at a community center, a group of hippy-ish cats were gathered, singing “Morning Has Broken Like The First Mornin’” and, when the group prayer was made, she voiced, “Please keep all my children safe, God.” She cared in the best way she could. I love her for this. What I aspire to emulate about her is how she never spoke a cross word about anyone. That’s pretty freaking enlightened and I’ll take me some of that high vibe, thankyouverymuch.
My Dad is tenacious, sharp-witted, so intelligent, and has an eye for beauty. An avid reader, he is passionate about politics and justice. Most agree that I look like him. We both enjoy music, abhor crowds, and think coconut macaroons are the bomb. My fondest memory is when Dad drove through an horrendous snowstorm to attend my son’s Christening.That tendered my heart and I am thankful to this day for his efforts.
My Dad and Stepmom have a couple of children together. When I was raising mine, they were in the busy-ness of parenting theirs as well. It was an overwhelming time for all of us, and we chose not to stay in touch.
Oh, ever the starry-eyed dreamer – me. I held expectations of all four of us that were unreasonable and I only understand that now. Wisdom unpacks herself through time and experience. What I’ve come to believe is this: we meet others as deeply as we’ve met ourselves. There is a world filled with people who are Surface Dwellers, not yet having the knowledge and then the courage to plumb the depths of their own hearts… so as to be able to meet others in the Depths.
We can only love others as deeply as we love ourselves.
You’ll get no judgment from me. I threw that stone down a while ago. What good would shaking my fist in the air do anyway? I am on the journey of Braving the Wilderness, as Brene Brown says, of being courageous to sit within my own self and find the Truth, the Love, the Way.
“If you are going through hell, keep going.” – Winston Churchill
Expectations are a cray-cray thang. On one hand, it sounds perfectly perfect to “expect” that a parent or an adult is going to know the most beneficial way to act with children, but I suggest that some of us have expectations that exceed the abilities of those around us… and that, perhaps, preferences would give everyone a bit more breathing room. (I no longer expect that people act a certain way or that a situation unpack exactly like thus; I hold loosely to preferences for actions/events.)
And this is why I am most thankful to my parents. They have helped me discern the vital healing perspective of preferences over expectations. Preferences flow. Preferences allow for the other to continue on their journey. Preferences are unconditional love.
Preferences: I AM STILL ME regardless of your decisions and actions.
Expectations: “without your doing this, I am upset/unhappy/unfulfilled/angry/incomplete.”
In addition, I have learned the valuable life lessons of perspective. Shall I choose to see my difficult childhood as an opportunity for growth or an obstacle over which I continually stumble?
I choose not to keep yesterday’s newspaper. The info may or may not be accurate, and the news is days old. Recycle the paper, Lis. Better still, use it as kindling to help others out of hell.
“All things are difficult before they are easy.” – Thomas Fuller
If you’re reading this and thinking that I have no idea what I’m talking about because if everyone only knew the shit you’ve been through…. Okay. I would ask you this then. Is thinking about all that shit, is living in bitterness, sadness, anger, regret, shame making you feel any better?
Maybe it’s time to let go. The song I picked for my parents is one which speaks of “learning to let go” and I like this because letting go is a journey, Sacred Reader. A journey. For all of us.
Just real quick, refer to #3 above. And, if perchance you’re still holding onto a stone, I pray you let it go. Detach from it as part of your identity. You are not what happened to you. You are not a victim of circumstances. You are a powerful, playful, precocious, loving, loved Being… so stand the heck up and move on.
Dad, Mom, Ma. I love you all.
You. Complete. Me.
Much love & hope,