Posts Tagged: growth

rounding on fifty and asking questions

I came across a bunch of thought provoking questions, which I thought would be great way to reflect via some blog posts during this week leading up to the aforementioned LANDMARK BIRTHDAY.  Some of the questions are “meaning of life” kinds of things, others get you probing who you are and what makes you do the things you do.  Some are very simple – although I do believe a simple and fast answer to a seemingly simple question can bring sometimes astounding and often deep answers. 

Mostly I just think it will be a fun way to check into who this gal has become as she rounds 50, and maybe (hopefully) illustrate some of the things I’ve actually learned over these 50 years. 

(I’m not going to tag you as one would do in your standard meme; but I would love to hear your answers to any of the questions – whether in the comments or on your own blogs.  If you're so inclined – tag yourself!)

 

What does love feel like?

Peaceful.

 

What made you smile this week?

  • Seeing the face of my niece as she carried my flaming birthday cake while everyone sang.  Nobody loves a birthday cake as much as Elaine and the various pictures of her smiling at her own birthday cakes over the course of her life are a testament to that.  If you saw Elaine’s birthday cake smile, you’d smile too.  (Elaine’s birthday cake smile – beautiful thing number 30.)
  • Seeing my bathroom scale register another notch below last time – even after the excesses of the pre-birthday party.  And I'm not just talkin' cake. 
  • The rapt look on the faces of some tiny kids sitting on the floor of a bookstore next to their dad as he read stories to them.  (A dad taking time out of a shopping trip to plunk himself down on the floor and read to his tiny kids – beautiful thing number 31.)
  • Hearing the voice of my cousin Ian over the telephone receiver.  (The familiar and not-heard-in-a-long-time voice of a loved one – beautiful thing number 32.)
  • Trying on the new nightie I had to buy because I’m sharing a hotel room with some family members this weekend and it wouldn’t do to sleep in the absence of bed clothes as I do at home.  Despite that my use for a nightie is limited to when not sleeping at home, or around the house after I’ve gotten up, I didn’t by the 40% off one as I was first inclined, instead I bought the gorgeously pretty one, the one that feels so soft and natural, and loved the minute I first saw it.  As I laid in bed this morning and admired the thing hanging on its hook, I smiled again, glad that I was able to buy myself this birthday present that was not the least bit practical but made me happy.  (My new nightie – even more beautiful for all its impracticalness – beautiful thing number 33.)

 

What are your favourite simple pleasures?

Hanging laundry on the line.  Clean sheets.  Open windows.  That first sip of coffee.  Walking.  The smell of dirt in spring.  Rainy days.  Lilacs. The smell of the woods.  Barbeques.

 

What is your fondest memory from the past three years?

It has to be this party.

 

What book has had the greatest influence on your life?

If I had to narrow it down to one, I think it would be The Secret Garden.  Certainly the first time I encountered that story I wouldn’t have known of the lessons inherent in it:  that in the natural world one finds healing and true meaning in our existence; and that nurturing things/people outside yourself brings is what brings true happiness and fulfillment; and that beauty invites spiritual awareness and growth. 

But now, having read that story a number of times over my lifetime, it's clear that my perspective and understanding of all these things is a major force in how I view the world, and how take meaning from my life and what’s happened in it.  Occasionally, in my denseness, I need to re-visit these lessons – but they are lessons that I know deep within me.  That story, The Secret Garden, beautiful thing number 34.

 

I'm finding beauty, are you?

feel the waves

 

“There’s no secret to balance. You just have to feel the waves”
~ Frank Herbert

I've had a couple of conversations with people lately about a yearning I'm feeling this summer – that some sort of change is wanting in me.  I'm not exactly sure what that is, I need to get with a journal and paints and do some serious reflection about what the hell it is that I want.

I've been here before – and it was summer then too.  Maybe it's just a desire to hang on to the summer, or to engender in me the feeling of peace and "slowing down" that comes with it.  It's summer, but there's peace missing.

Something's off balance.  It's not a particulary bad feeling – if one weren't up for changing or growing or enhancing, life would seem pretty dead-end, wouldn't it?  Or maybe that's just the ever restless me.  I don't feel balanced unless I'm moving, otherwise some sort of vertigo sets in.

Face forward, that's my strategy.  If you're always looking down you might miss the signs.

Bike ride 10
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"Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving."
 ~Albert Einstein