Merry Eostre


So my dear and diverse readers in blogging land, I’m going to diverge from my normal protocol (well mostly) and stick my toe into the potentially controversial topic of religion.

Today as most of you know is Easter here in the US. And some of you may also know, because I have mentioned on my blog before, I am not Christian– although I do tend to be a very spiritual (and respectful) person. But there is one thing that I have found over the years perplexing (and maybe slightly tiresome) that I’m going to put out to you all.

Why do people–like almost everybody I bump into–feel compelled to wish me a Happy Easter and assume this has meaning to me? This has been going on for days leading up to today and each time I hear it, I just wonder what they think when they say it. Do they think that I too am Christian and celebrate this particular holiday or is it just something to say instead of: gee, it’s a nice day out?

To me it would seem the more appropriate thing to say might be: Do you celebrate Easter? And then this might open a conversation. Or they could even discuss their Easter plans and say: What a great day for Easter. Then it leaves the other person open to speak of their plans if they have any, or just listen if they don’t.

If someone is a completely different religion, say Jewish, wishing them a Happy Easter, is not particularly relevant to them. At Christmas time these phrases (Merry Christmas!!) happen too, although folks seem sometimes to be a bit more aware and sometimes offer a ‘Happy Holidays’ just in case.

I understand that people aren’t trying to be rude or anything, but it’s more about awareness of ones interactions with people and who they might be. Like the adage: don’t assume. Just because you believe something and it has meaning to you, doesn’t mean it does to someone else (even if it has meaning to a large population). It’s maybe not a big thing really. Just a small politeness. A tiny way to say: hey, I’m me, but maybe you’re you and it’s OK. We can all live here together with our own beliefs, traditions and truths. A way to keep trying to connect our world on a more individual level and not lump everyone into a category. Maybe if we tried this and took the time to get to know each person we met rather than treat them as a reflection of our own insecurities, there wouldn’t be so much hate and fear.

So what if I said to you: Merry Eostre. What would you say and how would you feel? Would you take the time it hear what it means to me? Or will you remain in your own story till the end…??

I hope you all had a wonderful, peaceful and blessed Sunday.

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The Crazy Man?


I readily admit a feeling of doom and gloom, not just because of yesterday…but life in general has been seeming blah. I’ve been working over-time to keep my spirits up, and during my meditation this morning, my old thoughts crept in. Those dark and bleak thoughts where I convince myself that I don’t know how to be positive for very long, that life always seems to put stuff in my path to make me feel low or lost.

Luckily, I don’t stay in this place very long these days…but it stinks that I go there at all. It seems like a shadow that follows me, on sunny days as well as rainy. It lurks just around the corner, like the crazy man smoking the cigarette by the lamp-post–the one that is a bit scary and mysterious all at the same time.

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But happily some good things are happening to get me out of this slump I’m in, thank goodness. By luck, an old and dear friend is visiting. We all know there is nothing like friends to cheer us. Being surrounded by love and those that accept us for who we are without trying to change us is so important as times like these, especially when we are at odds with ourself and questioning our sense of self. For someone to take time away from work and to pay to visit really means a lot to me.

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The other good news (although slightly bittersweet) is that my old home will finally close on Monday. It has dragged on for over a year and I’m really ready to be done with it all. In the end, it didn’t turn out as well as I would have liked, and I was probably a sucker. Sometimes I am nicer than I should be and folks take advantage of my good nature. That was the case here. But hopefully I will gain some Mitzvah in the book of heaven? Or I am creating good Karma or at the very least the whole darn thing will be over once and for all.

I will miss that house and all its beautiful memories. This apartment can never compare in many ways: the gardens, the peace, the lake, the woods, the birds, the sunsets…. But its time has passed. And I am so grateful to be here with my Mom.

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And I’m so blessed for the friends I have now, who accept me, even when I disagree and speak my mind. They seem to understand my moods, my faults and how I can be different. I am lucky that I can call on them to vent, to cry or to be silent for they will always listen and not judge me.

So even if the world may change in a way I might not like or agree with, my tiny world will stay the same as long as I have those near and dear to me close by. And we will continue to keep our world filled with love, kindness, empathy and compassion for each other at least–and there’s usually some left over for others that may need it too.

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The Good Battle


There are certain moments in life where we are given a gift that sets us free. News that lifts us high and helps us to remember life is good and beautiful. Lately I have been given many of these moments and for them I am truly grateful.

It is so easy, with our fast paced, whirlwind lives, to take life for granted. To forget our connection to family and friends. We press on so hard into our daily tasks that we may not stop to look around us to see the wonders that abound. They are all around if we just take a second to see them.

Feeling compelled by life to have material wealth, we sometimes lose spiritual well-being. We take jobs that make us unhappy or keep people near us that really prove to have negative energy.

Because I am getting older and finally see the wisdom in serenity rather than money, my choices from now on will be very different.
This is my promise to myself.

As my Mother heals, I reflect on my good fortune to be able to be near her and help get her stronger. It is a blessing that such an awful thing can actually turn out to be something wonderful because it has bonded us so closely together. She is an amazing woman and together we are invincible.

And I also got a new lease on life today, which I will not take for granted. I’m grateful because I know that not everyone is as lucky as I am. I wish it could be so for all whom I love. But together we fight the good battle, and we’ll win anyway.

Because in the end, our spirits will all collide and meet somewhere someday anyway…….

Blessed


It’s rare these days that I have as bad a day as I did today. Or that I post something that is down in the dumps or negative. Over the years of my blog I’ve worked so hard to try to be upbeat and more positive in my life. But today I think maybe the storm left some residual pressure that has left my life a mess.

Everything that could go wrong seems to be. The most important thing is a major family emergency. And really, all things being equal, it’s the only important thing. But the other things that stressed me out were such bad timing, that for the first time in a very long time I really thought I might not be able to cope.

This blog has helped me so much to do just that: cope. My writing and sharing and meeting so many wonderful and dear people on my journey here has literally put my life back on course towards  a more content and peaceful one. It helps me clear my mind and soul while sorting out difficult moments or simply sharing my insights toward light.

Some may not understand this venue and some have other ways to get on during difficult times. To each their own. And this is not my only coping method, but it one of my very important ones. Especially during times of extreme pain or stress.

I’m feeling it now as I may be heading towards something extremely challenging. I do not know for sure, but I sense a potential change. Only my really dear and close friends respect what I am going through while most concentrate on their own lives. It’s a rare thing that people can put their own stuff aside (their anger, hurt, stresses, frustration) for the moment to concentrate on someone else’s needs. It’s a gift to be able to do it and only the kindest most compassionate of people can. And I am blessed with some who do.

And with them I will get through all my upcoming challenges. There will always be lonely times in my life anyway I know. Lonely because I say what I feel and am brutally honest, but those that really know me, love me anyway.

The Blessing Of Friends


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A neighbor stopped me on my walk today and said: I thought you were gone already. This is a neighbor that doesn’t usually talk to me–not unusual for my small New England town. We chatted and I explained my move and departure dates, and how good it feels to be downsizing.

I realized that I’m clearing out a whole lot more than material things. With this gigantic move to another part of the US, I am able to dump the clutter of ‘friends’ that really are no longer significant to me and my circle.

With something huge like this, whether it’s an illness, a death in the family, a divorce, a move or another monumental life change–the people standing across from you start to wear their true colors. Those that claimed to be your good friends, may really turn out to be those that just wanted things from you, say for instance all the furniture you were giving away. And then: poof, they are gone! You never hear from them again.

You look around, and only a fistful are standing on moving day. Some that have known you for a very long time, and some new. Some couldn’t make it, but were sure to see you before you left. Those colors are easy to see: painted with love and sadness for seeing you go.  These are the ones that will stay in touch somehow and be your friend through time.

I have these friends from other places, from other moves. They are dear to me still. Friends don’t go away just because distance is placed between you. And they aren’t made because you give them something, not material anyway. It’s a connection from the heart and nothing can break that bond.

My Mother always said: a sign of a real friend is something who when you call them on the phone and say come, hangs up and starts walking, no questions asked. No excuses, no whining, no backing out.

I’ve been blessed to have many of these kinds of friends through the years. And for them I am grateful.