Waiting


How many times in life do we wait? If we think about it, we probably spend most of our lives waiting for something! Sometimes good things, sometimes bad things–but it seems like minutes, days, weeks are spent simply waiting….

window

  • For the bus or a friend to take us to work; or our car to warm up.
  • The divorce papers to go through or the wedding date to arrive.
  • Nine months of wondering what sex the baby will be or wading through the adoption proceedings, or if the in-vitro took.
  • Wondering if the kid will ever be potty trained and then if they will ever grow up to be respectful, loving adults.
  • For vacation to come–or even the weekend.
  • The doctor’s call with results of the tests.
  • Months of treatments and sickness to be over.
  • One more minute of sobriety turning into years.
  • Enough money.
  • Your birth family to show up one day.
  • Morning to arrive and a glorious sunrise/bedtime after a grueling day.
  • The kids to all get along.
  • Forgiveness.
  • Waking up every day with joy and no worries.
  • Never looking back.
  • For your dog to actually talk.
  • The end of that triathlon, marathon, 5K.
  • Life to really begin.
  • The perfect blog piece.
  • The yelling to stop or the bruises to heal.
  • Summer to come or maybe winter if you like snow.
  • A miracle.

wpid-1030131800_20131030212315667.jpg

How many more? What are you waiting for…? We wait for so much!

It feels like we’re often standing on the edge of a cliff and we don’t know what’s down below. But as we get closer, our heart thumps in our chests and peering over can be the death of us. So, we must just stand back and be patient–something that is not a virtue of mine!

Today I wait to hear the final word on the new job. Nothing huge really in the grand scheme of the list, but for some reason I feel nervous. Sleeping will be hard tonight–I’ll be up tossing and turning and, well, waiting. Why couldn’t they have emailed today?

But such is life: dots of doing little things connected by endless moments of waiting. So that, my blogging friends, is what I will continue to do…..

wpid-20141214_130339.jpg

Advertisements

I’m Sorry


“Love means never having to say you’re sorry”…a very old line adapted from a book from the 70’s, “Love Story” by Erich Segal. I was thinking about this ‘truism’ today and found that I disagreed wholeheartedly and realized that I did since the 70’s. It always felt like a false statement to me somehow, but it hasn’t been until recently that I’ve begun to figure out why.

If we are human we are certainly going to err: within our friendships, our relationships with co-workers, children, spouses and even the casual encounter. An unintended comment or even a purposeful one in the heat of an argument can cause deep pain in someone else, someone who we may or may not love.

But as a human, it’s my belief that we should try as hard as we can not to cause pain, physically or otherwise. It happens though–certainly I have many times with words. I’ve been quick with these words when I’ve felt my pain has been deep and have justified saying things that may have made sense to me but clearly hurt the other person.

With time, I usually try to say I’m sorry, but often hit against walls. Because love or caring means you do have to say you’re sorry.

Sorry only works when two people engage in an act together though. The other half of sorry is forgiveness. Sometimes forgiveness may be “given” to someone unknowingly, as in the case of an estranged parent or sibling. And this kind of forgiveness we may be doing for ourselves.

But forgiveness when attached on the other end of sorry are like the fitting of a key into a lock that opens worlds of possibilities. If there had been love, and each person truly feel their part in this exchange, then a deeper connection is forged. I know because I have experienced it. You have gone through a war together and come out stronger, scars and all.

When the opposite happens and one gives and the other turns away, this then puts an end to hope and continuing the human connection. More often than not, I find this is the case–that most cannot or do not want to forgive or say they are sorry. Maybe they feel they are not responsible in any way and aren’t willing to give even a little for the sake of peace.

Or maybe it’s simply that people are just stuck–stuck in the muck of their lives and don’t have the energy, time or inclination to do something bigger because it takes too much energy. I really don’t know, but it always saddens me each time I see or experience it. Putting out the gesture of peace and having it denied seems somehow inhumane in the true sense of the word.

It saddens me because it reflects a greater truth about our world. That we as humans just can’t say we’re sorry or forgive one another on a global level either. Our pride, ego and ethnocentrism keeps us from simply admitting that maybe we too may have done something wrong and that for the greater good, we just need to let go as ethnic groups, countries and tribes.

The ability to complete the sorry/forgiveness cycle globally seems imperative to us as a human race in the long run. And while for me as an individual I know I’ve lost people along the way I continue to try.  For the ones I’ve managed to keep because we’ve said we we’re sorry and forgave each other, I am extremely grateful. And for the rest, I can only hope someday they see that ultimately saying sorry and forgiving is really what the world needs for our interconnected futures.

IMG_20151102_130103

Poem: Golden Love


window

As dawn quietly seeps through the window

It’s blue light seen behind the vessel-like trees

Peering at me

I raise my arms to the morning sun

In salute to a new day

Praising the earth’s beauty

On my yoga mat

The peaceful island floating in bliss

Branches stretch towards the heavens

And I look there too

Mindful of those who have come before

In the amber of the room

I sit in meditation

Praying for joy

Hoping for healing

Asking for forgiveness

And giving gratitude

My window of blue light

Opens out forever into a world

Of golden love

A Poem For Mother’s Day


I heard a poem read on the Writer’s Almanac yesterday and it seemed so poignant to my life. It’s funny how things seem to float into our lives just when we need them. Recently it feels as though I have been having difficult relationships with past and current family members of mine. The communication lines are breaking down and every attempted discussion seems to break down into some sort of argument. This is never what I intend and I am not usually doing the arguing. Mean words have been said to me as of late by more folks than I would like to mention. Some that should still be considered close and one that once was very near and dear. Another me might have taken all this to heart and become very depressed or self-blaming. And the fact that Mother’s Day is tomorrow, my sadness would have been huge. But this is a new me and I am handling it all with strength and wisdom. The poem I am going to share meant so much. It’s amazing to me how someone can  so perfectly express the things I am feeling in just a short piece, with simple words strung together! But then, that is the beauty of good writing. Happy Mother’s Day.

The Land of Beginning Again

by Louisa Fletcher

I wish that there were some wonderful place
In the Land of Beginning Again.
Where all our mistakes and all our heartaches
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a shabby old coat at the door
and never put on again.
I wish we could come on it all unaware,
Like the hunter who finds a lost trail;
And I wish that the one whom our blindness had done
The greatest injustice of all
Could be there at the gates
like an old friend that waits
For the comrade he’s gladdest to hail.
We would find all the things we intended to do
But forgot, and remembered too late,
Little praises unspoken, little promises broken,
And all the thousand and one
Little duties neglected that might have perfected
The day for one less fortunate.
It wouldn’t be possible not to be kind
In the Land of Beginning Again,
And the ones we misjudged
and the ones whom we grudged
their moments of victory here,
Would find in the grasp of our loving hand-clasp
More than penitent lips could explain…
So I wish that there were some wonderful place
Called the Land of Beginning Again,
Where all our mistakes and all our heartaches,
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a shabby old coat at the door
And never put on again.

 

Is Peace Preferred?


I toss a question out to my audience: do men or women tend to be more aggressive? And who tends to be more forgiving? I’m pondering these questions a lot lately because I’m at a stage in my life lately where I want to make peace with people I may have had negative encounters in the past. It feels time now to put things aside and concentrate on making things right. This process started even before my accident actually. I reached out to ex-husbands to make amends and found some conversations very cathartic, even joyful. But in many cases, I find some people to be unwilling to be forgiving or have a discussion about why.

Often, to me, if I try to recall the digressions that might have occurred, they seem minor. Or so distant that one would think the waters of time would dilute the sting that keeps the other person from being able to move on. I surely do understand if one has had continued difficulties with someone over and over why they wouldn’t want a continued relationship with that person. That makes sense to me I suppose.

But I am always fascinated and awed by the stories in which a mother forgave the murderer of their child. They say it gave them peace and closure. Rather, hanging onto the hate only perpetuates the sense of loss, anger and destroys the person feeling these negative feelings. Would I be so evolved? I’m not so sure. I even heard of one case where the mother befriended the murderer as her own son! And they both were healed in the end.

On a much smaller scale, aiming for peace, I believe does give one a sense of well-being. I know it does hurt when I try to reach out to someone who I’ve been estranged from and they don’t respond. That leaves all doors closed. When I was in high school an English teacher of mine was teaching us about improvisation. He said, “If someone asks you a question and  your answer is no, then that ends the conversation and it’s the end of the skit. Always say yes so you can continue.” I’ve found this is sound advice for life too in most cases. When I reach out to someone in peace and they say no, then that’s the end. Even a maybe is better than a no.

Getting back to my first questions though: are men or women willing to be more forgiving? I have certainly lost a couple of women friends along the way. But I admit (and my audience can disagree), I personally have found it harder to make peace with men. Maybe it’s an innate stubbornness? Or a difficulty communicating about hard issues? Or a discomfort letting go? It could be because the friendship level is different also, so when approached for healing, they aren’t quite sure what to make of it.

What I do know is that when peace does occur after either a short or long time, there is a great sense of healing and release felt. It seems to me if we could put this to use on a more global scale, imagine the changes?! If leaders only knew what good it would do short and long-term for them and their people to simply decide it was time to set aside their past. To just decide that today is a new day,  to forgive their murderers, land takers or whatever and cooperatively put down arms. If two people can do it successfully, then why not nations? It makes so much sense. And once done, it feels so right. It means not dwelling in the past and being willing to forgive. You don’t always have to forget everything that has happened. But if you’ve either received or given forgiveness, then you have created wonderful energy in your life with the ripple effect generated outward into the world.

 

 

 

Forgiveness


It’s all about forgiveness. Maybe being in the second half of my life it’s becoming much easier to forgive. Maybe it’s that there are so many to forgive and so many that need to forgive me! We can start with all 3 of my ex-husbands for instance!

Just recently I wrote my 1st ex. I met him when I was just 17 yrs old…sheesh, just a baby. And then we married when I was 21. It wasn’t a long lived marriage. But recently his name came up in conversation with my Mom because he still lives in the area where I went to HS. So I thought: hmmm, I bet I can find him on the internet. And sure enough, I did–address and all. So I popped him a letter. To give a background, he was 9 years older than me and well into the hippee era. Thank goodness for that, because when he found me in bed with his best friend, his ‘peace, love and granola’ attitude served me and his friend well.

When I wrote him recently then, I had no idea how he would react. I was reaching back through the years. I’ve been on this cathartic path the last few years, sweeping away my demons and making peace with my youthful mistakes. At any rate, it took a bit, but eventually I received this most thoughtful and sweet letter back! I cried my eyes reading it-and while it said nothing about forgiveness, I knew I had been. It was truly a beautiful moment. Someone I had deeply wronged (and the incident I mentioned above was only one of many bad choices I had made with this husband) had the goodness in him to put the past aside and move on.

So, too, my second ex am I fortunate enough to now have a facebook relationship. Again, I was the one to reach out first a year plus ago, as I was putting away my fake Christmas tree. Oddly inside the box (which I had never noticed before) was a hand written letter from many, many years ago from him! It was right around our divorce and his birthday. It was so sad and pitiful and gave me such a pain in my heart. Many things went on in this relationship between the two of us I have to say. We both must take responsibility here. He was raised in a very substance abused family and had it flowing in his veins too. This made our marriage very volatile. When we were good, it was maybe the best one I was in, but when it was bad…well, it was the cavern of hell. Because of this, again I made poor choices and it all came tumbling to a sad ending. But when I found the letter, on New Year’s Eve, again, I found him on the Internet (how could we forgive without it!) and called the number I found! There was no answer, but I left a message: you might remember me, you were once married to me. Through a circuitous route, after losing he lost my numbers, we did eventually speak. A 2.5 hour conversation, one where we could finally hear the other person’s words. And after all those years, all was forgiven. Just like that….

My last husband, the father of all my daughters, well, I am still working on that one. He isn’t ready to forgive me yet. I have asked, but…. I messed that one up badly. Hurt him, three kids, the kid’s relationships with each other. And for what? His only transgression was being a man. I thought I could find a knight in shining armor that would give me flowers every day, write me love notes all the time, tell me I was beautiful constantly blah blah blah. Instead he was many other things I didn’t appreciate until I had dated countless men after we were divorced. He was a wonderful father, a good provider, funny, caring, hard working, handsome even, athletic and smart. But I was too young and foolish to get it. So I wait for that one to come. Maybe someday…

I’m not sure forgiveness coming from a priest or God would work for me. Getting it straight from the person I’ve wronged is so cleansing. I surely can see the value in it though and I’m not dissing it by any means. Whatever works. But holding onto something and not forgiving is so harmful to one’s soul. The person may feel that he/she is hurting that other person, but truly they are only putting holes in the fabric of their heart. There is such a freeing feeling when someone forgives you or you them. A sense of peace washes over you and it allows space inside you for other more important things that the negative energy was taking up.

For me though, forgiving myself is that hardest task. Some days, when I’m hammering away in the pool doing my mile and I feel strong and bold, I feel I can forgive myself anything. But others, when an ambulance call didn’t go right, and my boss is crabbing at me, and people at work are talking behind my back, and I remember I don’t have a boyfriend–it’s those times I think: all the things I ever did make me a bad person and I can never forgive myself and why should anyone else? These are the times though, that any of us who may feel this way, must scoop way down to the bottom of our psyche, and realize our worth. Whatever may be bombarding us from the outside, is just that: the outside–not what’s in us. And what’s inside of ourselves is a work in progress. A person that might make a mistake, but hopefully would say they are sorry if they do. Someone that tries the hardest they can to do the right thing in the moment that they are in. If it turns out to be the wrong thing, they will correct it and not do it again. And most of all, don’t dwell on the past, for it is gone. And that’s the beauty of forgiveness. We are all here now, in the present. Whatever we did then, it’s over and done.

I’m forever amazed at the mothers forgiving their child’s murderers or abused children forgiving their parents. But it happens. It makes them all better people. And that’s our goal while walking this plane of existance isn’t it? To be the best we can be.