“Without hard work, nothing grows but weeds.” -Gordon B. Hinckley
I got home yesterday from my week of writing in the Poconos. It was wonderful in every way. To top it off I got a lot writing and soul searching done. I think the best thing I came away with was a new understanding of the gift I have now because of the years of cultivating I’ve already done. What I’ve come to realize is that it hasn’t just been my inner child’s need to be validated for the part she played it in making our dream come true. It goes much deeper and beyond that. It’s been her driving forces to tell our story that has made me a better writer. This has given me the opportunity to do what I have a real passion for and that’s inspiring others with my words.
As I was talking with one of the many accomplished writers there, I began to wonder what I’m doing here. The old saboteur started showing its defeating face. I could feel myself getting sucked into the belief that I was an amateur and I always would be. Then this writer started telling me about how he likes to garden and sometimes he just has to go out in his garden and start doing some composting. As you begin to pull this and that out of yourself all the good and bad stuff gets thrown together. Then you let it sit for a while. When you’re ready you start to turn and mix it up, and eventually it becomes the fertilizer that feeds the story’s you sow.
As the quote says above, I’ve learned too that without a lot of hard work, nothing grows but weeds. I think I’ve managed to grow a few beautiful flowers along the way. Now all I have to do is keep pulling the weeds that get in the way.
At the end of the mini series “Genius,” Einstein is dying, and as his long time secretary looks at him with sadness, he takes a flower from an arrangement and holding it in his hand says, “Look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better.”
I looked at Tom with a childlike excitement, and said, “I learned that all by myself!”
Just a few simple lines, and yet they hold within them a great awakening, opening up a whole new world for us. You don’t even have to be a genius to discover it yoursełf. It reminds me of when my father-in-law had his cataract surgery. He said he could see things with such clarity and crispness, and the colors were so vivid. When our own blinders are stripped away we can also say, ” I can see clearly now.”
“Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.” -Leonard Cohen, “Anthem”
Everything starts from a seed including us. I wonder if we live within that shell all our life with the seed being our soul and our lifetime here on earth being a gathering of all we need to slowly begin the painful process of cracking open. Many of us have felt the harder blows of life that leave an opening so wide that it goes straight to the heart of the soul. Whether our cracks are big or as small as a tiny papercut it is how the light gets in and once we experience the warmth it brings the more our soul craves it. Like our hands reaching upward we begin to sprout moving toward the unknown yet a knowing that it’s the natural process of who and what we were created to do. Yes, there is a comfort in staying within this place we’ve existed, and a fear of being exposed and vulnerable to the unknown. It’s never easy to step outside of our comfort zone to leave behind all that’s been a part of us, but the light continues to pull us toward it, and it is only in the letting go that we can fully begin to blossom in the fullness of the light.
Most importantly let us not forget in the process of breaking free…to ring the bells that still can ring, and forget out perfect offering. Look around there are cracks in everything. It’s how the light gets in.
This is Lucy & I resting after our morning walk or should I say chilling out as I ice my ankle and knee. Not to worry…I’m only trying to keep ahead of the swelling that comes with all the extra activity that Lucy has brought into my life. It’s a good thing, but my life feels a bit on hold right now while I keep a watchful eye on her. She wants to chew on everything so I try to catch her at it giving her one of her chew toys instead. Then there’s the housebreaking. I’m not sure if I’m training her at this point or myself to take her out about every hour.
I feel like I did when I brought my babies home from the hospitality. My life was their’s as I put my own on a shelf for a while and tended to their every need. I know I gave up my nice easy going life for her and while I think I should be saying to myself, why’d you do that? I have to say I find it worth all the work. She makes me feel alive in a whole new way, and that’s a good thing at my age, don’t ya think?
“When a knowledgable old person dies, a whole library disappears.” –An old African proverb
I read an article today from my local newspaper titled, “Older people have knowledge to share—if we just listen” by Bob Rudy. It caught my attention for several reasons, one being that I spent time as a hospice volunteer a few years ago listening to the fascinating stories of people’s lives. Not only was it interesting to me, but the way their faces lit up as they told their stories turned out to be a gift for both of us.
I’ve also been working on my families genealogy for over 20 years now. I was fortunate to start it at a time when my parents were still alive, and as I dove into it I found myself wanting to know more about what their life was like growing up. They’ve both been gone a long time now and still I have question I wish I would have asked. I can’t imagine what it’s like to have never taken the time I did though to get to know them. It is true as the quote states as each family member passes away, a whole library disappears.
The other reason this subject is close to my heart is because I am a story teller myself, and as the younger generations calls us, I’m an older person myself. I like the phrase that getting older is not for wimps, because it is a time in a humans life when we have to work really hard to hang onto what we have. Sometimes it even feels like your slowly disappearing, fading into space as we lose our hearing, sight, coordination and many other facilities that make you feel like a child again. But ask us to tell you one of our stories and we become energized. Our eyes will light up, and just maybe we’ll feel like our lives matters once again, and you’ll hear a real live story like the ones you read in a book you borrow from the library.
Sometimes you just have to let someone else’s voice speak for you because they say so clearly what you can’t find the words to say for yourself.
Thank Maya Angelou for the wonderful wisdom you left behind.
“One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.” –Jack Karouac
As I read this quote the first line to the hymn “Blessed Assurance” sang in my head: “This is my story this is my song,” that one day I will find the right words in our human language to describe the simplicity of God that He’s shown me in my own life. We are the ones who make things more difficult than He ever intended them to be, but learning that is a lesson for each of us. Because we are all so different it’s as if we speak another language at times to each other. I’ve learned to accept that. Maybe I’m just not the one who can bring that clarity into their life. That being said, as one who is impelled to inspire, I love finding different ways to express the simplicity as it is reveled to me in my own life. This is my story, this is my song to be an extension touching pen to paper, letting go of ego, being One with God, letting the right words flow as simply as they come.
When I was growing up, to hear that I was pleasant, pretty, good or worthy in anyway was a no-no. Being ok with who we were in anyway was considered selfish, and that might make us into a conceded person.
Then I married a guy who could see nothing but the goodness and beauty in me. He couldn’t understand why I didn’t see what he saw, and I couldn’t understand why he didn’t see what I really was according to my standards. It wasn’t until I began to understand how uniquely God made me as well as everyone else, that I could begin to entertain the thought that I had a purpose all my own. That made me special all by itself I realized. When your mind opens up to a new understanding a shift takes place in us creating a change. I could remain where I was stuck in the place of nothingness or move forward into my purpose driven life. I stepped out in blind faith. Doing what I always wanted to, but never believed enough in to actual do it.
Wayne W. Dyer puts it best when he says, “there’s a place deep within us that wants to feel fulfilled. That wants to know that I make a difference. That I’ve left this place, this planet that I’ve lived on better then when I arrived. That someone’s life has been profoundly touched because of my existence.”
Honestly, who doesn’t want to know that their life matters somehow?
It’s a long way off from what I was taught, but I can finally say I’m happy to know that my existence counts for something. By being the person I was created to be means that I can touch someone else’s life in a positive way, and that’s a good thing I can live with. It’s not about me or you, but about allowing ourselves to be the best version of who we were created to be. Because in doing that we become an extension of God reaching out touching each other, making a difference, and it all comes through simple by being our true-selves.
Sometimes the events in our life really knock us down. It’s easy to feel lost and unsure of where we left off once we’re able to get back to living our life again. Something feels changed in us and we wonder how that’s going to affect the purpose and passion we had before this all happened. It seems like a great time to re-evaluate what we are doing. What is that purpose? What is the intention I hope to create from it? And do I still have the passion to keep moving in that direction? These are the questions I’ve been asking myself as I try to get refocused. So, I open up the book, “The Way of Serenity.” Picking up where I left off before things got so bad for me. This is what I read today.
“It’s all About Joy”
“Everyone needs a reason to hope, and what gives us greater joy then to know we are loved. Seeing true joy in another person allows us to believe that joy is possible and attainable. In this way joy can even be contagious. It can spread beyond ourselves and make other people’s lives just a little bit more joyful too*.” The words jumped off the pages as a reminder to me of why I live my life the way I do. The world can be full of so many things that strip away our joy. It seems like we are always being pulled into the disillusionment that fear, hate and judgment creates. Some of us are meant to be the warriors who fight the good cause, and some of us are meant to keep that joyful hope alive as a reminder that it does indeed still exist, creating hope. Yes, to know we are loved is the greatest joy, but to show that love for others is what builds upon the very love we crave for ourselves.
Tell someone you love them today and be a part of the contagious joy it creates.
*Chapter 15 page 88