Monday, February 2, 2015

Garlic & George Michael...

I took my twin nephews Connor and Wesson to play laser tag, video games and bumper boats this past weekend. Midway through the day I asked if they had a way to speak each other, different from the way "normal" people talk. "Like in our minds?" one asked. "Yes," I said, hoping they would say something resembling telepathy. "Auntie Jaclynn," one said looking at me earnestly in the eye, "That is IMPOSSIBLE!"
I have to admit I felt a little silly for asking the question, but a girl's gotta try.
Throughout the day I joyfully watched them disagree. "Yes it is." "No it isn't." "Yes it is." "No it isn't." "You're confused." "You are." "YES, IT IS!" "NO, IT ISN'T!" Curious at to who was right I did an internet search on what they were arguing over. Turns out they were both right - or wrong, depending on which way you look at it.
I'm not around kids very often so observing their interaction was quite hypnotizing. At one point I said to one of them (forgive me for not remembering which), "You two are around each other all the time. You get along really well." To that, I got this response, "We don't get along all the time, Auntie Jaclynn. But we'll always be friends. We're bwothers!" Note: the r is replaced by w to ensure his words are not taken out of context. The certainty to which he said them have provided an internal smile that has yet to disappear.
Another uplifting aspect developing are little signs winter won't be here forever.
Two months ago I planted it clove after clove. Only inches apart, I pressed them one after the other firmly into the earth and blanketed them with wet and mushy leaves that had fallen from nearby apple trees. That was several months ago and at the time a maternal worry was present as I planted - how will they ever make it? To soothe myself I imagined them warm and cozy anyway, and these words came to mind - To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.
Ahhh. George Michael is singing over a speaker at the coffee shop I am at. Bump. Bump, bump. "Well I need someone to hold me but I'll wait for something more. Cause I've gotta have faith. I've got to have faith. Because I've got to have faith, faith, faith."
I don't know how to explain this invisible force but whatever it is I am sure thankful it comes at just the right time. For now I'll say thank you to the boys, thank you to the garlic, and thank you George Michael - for restoring my faith.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Love is...

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Over and over again I read those words; at least twenty times in all. At first my heart and mind were hung up on what I did wrong; I'd dishonored, I'd boasted, I'd lost hope. I felt guilty for not living up to love's standard, and worse I felt completely inadequate in its presence.

Yet, when I reread love's words again, objectively this time, my eyes landed on it keep no record of wrongs. I realized that I'd been doing exactly that; logging and tracking mine and others actions and behaviors and in doing so had been holding love at an arms length.

Love's stream is constant and its gifts and lessons are here for me every single moment. 

I learned a great lesson today and even though it is still difficult to fully comprehend love's depth, I now have a road map on how to be a more permanent fixture within love's arms. And, last but not least I've learned that love just does, just is and is there just because.


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Inspiration or Obligation...

Isn't it interesting how we take on other people's anxiety as our own? I had an experience recently where a friend planned on moving in with her boyfriend. She showed me a building where her cats were going to stay, separate from her boyfriend's house. I instantly felt negative about her move, as her cats were a big part of her life and their living outside was not something I thought she wanted. When I shared my concern with her she smiled and explained that I must have been picking up on her anxiety about the move. She explained it wasn't her boyfriend that was against the cats being in the house (he actually looked forward to their addition), it was that she was anxious about inhabiting his space.

We behave in ways that we believe will make other people feel better, but in doing so we jeopardize our own well-being. Taking action from a state of inspiration rather than from a place of obligation is the fundamental difference between being helpful and not.

Give only when it feels good to do so. 

If taking action feels good, do it, if it doesn't, wait. The inspiration to act will come at just the time, at just the right moment. If you give yourself when it feels good to do so, you will flow seamlessly with the stream of life, or at least that's the plan. It seems inspiration hasn't quite hit me yet, so I guess I'll take my own advice and wait...      

A Walk in the Woods

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

A Song Speaks...

Soon-to-be tomato
I've been waking up way too early lately and I like it. It's a time and space for me only. I don't have to answer to anyone, or be anything I don't want to be. I just get to be. It's a long, deep inhale and exhale where I oxygenate my soul.
My favorite and latest emergence.

Also, I've noticed songs playing in my head. Sometimes they are quiet and barely audible, and sometimes, like yesterday morning, a song will overtake me, make me to stop what I'm doing, and ask me to find the meaning it holds, which at that time was "Hold On" by Wilson Phillips. After I wrote the lyrics on a white board, I took a step back and read them aloud. It was surprising how spot on they were with what I needed in that moment; reassurance.  
This morning's song was Salt-N-Pepa's "Let's Talk About Sex." Its rhythmic cadence transported me back in time to the backseat of my friend's mom's convertible. With the top down and wind blowing through my hair, I sang the risque lyrics at the top of my lungs, something I would have never been allowed to do in my parent's presence. This moment, unknown to me at the time, was a a pivotal one. I now see it as a step towards breaking protective cocoon of childhood and replacing it with the uncertainty of adolescence. And all that from a song.   

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Just My Luck...

Today is not my day. I know it's not the end of the world and another day will more than likely come tomorrow, but for now I've found solace in my bed. I share my feelings for the sheer fact that I can and that maybe by sharing a vulnerable and sensitive part of myself would help sooth me a bit. 

I'm aware of my desire to take all these emotions and give advice or learn some lesson from how I feel but I don't think this is the time.

This is the time, however, for a pity party, reserved for one. This is the time for super soft and striped Dr. Seuss-like socks. This is time for Willie, my fattest cat's face pressed up to mine. And, this is the time I don't want or need anything other than to be left alone and listening to Helen Reddy's 1973 hit (below).

P.S. I hate paragraphs in block alignment but I can't get it to align left. Isn't that just my luck?!  


Monday, June 2, 2014

Gardening as Art...

Green, for now

There is such a delicacy to a garden when it's first planted. Cats, not only my three but the neighborhood felines as well, deposit their goods and uproot my tender seeds leaving them defenseless and lifeless.

The pea at right has made it past imminent danger and grips tightly to its metal post, and to my delight has upped its chances of survival, despite my youngest and most violent kitty lurking in the background.

At times any cat, mole, insect or crazed weather pattern overwhelms me to the point I consider fencing, netting, and/or insect repellent to keep my dear ones safe. But when I sit and look at my fear objectively I realize the problem has little to do with my garden and more to do with a desire to control the uncontrollable.

My garden also reflects an unconscious need for success, not that that's a bad thing, but when that need makes the experience stressful and the gardening  process takes on a less than enjoyable tone, I take notice.

Whether you're a parent raising a child, an artist painting a piece, or a creator envisioning a dream, any project at some point, to some degree takes on a life of its own between preparation, maintenance, and tending to. Its failure or success, despite what you may or may not do, is out of your hands. The balance between control and letting go is a fine one, but when you find it the art of living is at your fingertips.

Enjoy the view...