Life’s Straight Course vs The Roller Coaster

I would never ever, even if begged, bribed, or coerced ride a real roller coaster.  I don’t doubt the safety but wonder if my heart would just stop mid ride but I have habitually ridden those rickety tracks in life, living with passion and energy, embracing the highs and philosophizing my way through the lows, mostly with a ‘this too shall pass’ attitude.

I love feeling the thrill, the joy, the superman of it all but I find with advancing age that I now feel if I want this engine to keep running I had better slow my life to a more consistent speed.  Hmmm slow is the wrong word because I am not slowing, just attempting to keep things at a more constant rate with less revving and down shifting (is that the right term?) guaranteeing a smoother longer ride.  That’s the smart way…right?

Now who am I kidding……I am just feeling a little tired tonight and know that when the morrow dawns my current quiet joy is going to blossom, rev, and ride again!

Sweet energizing dreams all!

Big People

Big People

Almost every weekend I journey from Hamilton, where you may remember I am Queen and Granny Nanny privileged to be a daily part of G1 and G2’s life in a wonderful world of excitement, imagination and adventure filled with giggles, laughter and an occasional time out.  It is the most loving environment where I sometimes learn more than I teach….hmm truth be told more than sometimes.

I used to wonder if I had the energy and found I do and when tiredness sets in at the end of the day it us well earned and treasured.  My return to Kitchener for one or two nights is the chance to catch up with my best friends, otherwise known as Sister Act and SIL and other family and friends.

Friday night is typically dinner at our neighborhood fav eating spot Crabby Joe’s, where everyone knows your name or at least our names.  The gathering may be small or large depending on commitments and the next morning it is breakfast with more of the same congenial merry makers.

Kitchener and Waterloo are hot spots with lots of exciting things going on, great clubs, entertainment even dancing for those so inclined…at least that’s what I have heard. My days are usually spent puttering along and it occurred to me this evening as I looked around at Sister Act deep into a book, and me. curled up with my book that this is a pretty nice life.

Then I started to giggle, infectiously enough for my sis to start laughing although she had no idea what the joke was.  Finally she stopped and looked to me for an explanation.  “Well I said between chuckles, do you realize how tame our life is?  We joke, eat, drink and go to bed by nine most nights I visit?”

Yeah that’s what we enjoy.  Mind you we get all excited when an actual evening occurs.  When her staff Christmas Party comes up or some other evening event we are thrilled because, and are you ready for it?  We then comment on the fact that, “Tonight we actually get to stay up late, like big people!

My sister has noted that my shower singing songs that ring out each morning haves changed.  Without my realizing it my repertoire now imcludes the oldies but goodies; ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXY and Z, I’m picking up my baby bumblebee….and….I’m a little teapot….hmmmmmmmm.

Lower Than a Snake’s Belly on a Hot Rock

Lower Than a Snake’s Belly On a Hot Rock

This is a phrase I started using when I lived in South Texas and have no idea if I coined it myself or picked it up during some southern redneck exchange but I love it; the sound of the words, the feel, the completeness of it and Lord the warmth of it.

See I spit it out one day to express that I was a bit down and as soon as those words were out of my mouth a miracle of sorts occurred.  I laughed and chortles were chortled around me.  Heck I felt better!

With a smile in my heart I examined what it meant – such an odd thing to say I thought- but such a delightful truth.  I mean how low can you go and still feel good and feelin good is what I like.  Why through fear and sadness and joy I allow, no I make myself enjoy the misery or elation to the hilt.  I’m not exactly a drama queen although there are folk who may argue that point.  Hmmm maybe…sometimes but I prefer to think of it as exuberance.

Truth be told it was much more so in my younger years which probably  started, oh let’s see, around birth, having learned very young that I love to make people laugh.  Slip a little comment into a conversation and boom, instant mirth.  Sure makes the moment better.

“How are you?”

“Lower than a snake’s belly on a hot rock.”

I loved it and was just a shade miffed if  in fact I was swell and had to admit it by saying I am well.

Now I love rednecks and all folk of a different bent; unique thinkers, wordsmiths, otherworldly minds, rebels by choice or by genetic misfires who spurt out something different making you stop and realize you just heard something genius muttered.  I figure because they give us a different view, not locked in by anything they are all a breath of fresh air in a world of propriety and staidness.

Young children have a way of doing that.

Funny I love that phrase so much cause I hate slithering retiles.  Cannot even look directly at them, which by the way makes the last Harry Potter film difficult to watch, and is annoying to those around me as with eyes cast down I keep asking, “Is it gone yet?”

But just think about it.  Feeling so low you must stretch out and let the warmth soothe you.  Well out of that can only come renewal.  Embrace the moment that is.  If you must be sad, glad, fearful do it well then let it go.

Books of the iPad

Charles Dickens
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Books of the iPad
 
When I was a child I wanted to be a writer. Actually I knew I was going to be a writer. I remember the exact instant this information came to me, what the day was like, the actual smell of summer, my foot as it moved from the curb to the road. Strange isn’t it how there are some moments of such clarity that they are almost photographic, that for a millisecond you actually stand outside yourself and watch?  It was not a decision as much as a done deal and I remember wondering exactly what I would write. Why murder mystery of course, published and all best sellers.
 
I have spent the fives decades between then and now making half baked attempts at writing and full baked excuses why I could not do it. And I must admit it has taken considerable effort to resist the urge to take pen in hand. Almost as much effort as it would be to actually give in and write something. No, that statement is wrong. I have tried writing and it is hard work, an investment, a commitment, and a lot of pressure on the brain cells.
 
Oh, I’d make a good start, and then the next day my mind would just flit after some other butterfly of a thought. And as of a few months ago, this year, 2011, I ran out of excuses, and had face the real reason I don’t write – fear, of so many things.
 
The purpose of explaining the above is not to lament my failure, but to recognize what it takes to write and write well. My experience makes me very appreciative of those who are published. When I read I can see the author putting down each word. I imagine the blank page and the first letters appearing whether by pen or keyboard. I appreciate. I savor.
 
Now we come to the Books of the iPad.
 
I love the convenience, the thousands of choices, the categories, and the authors, all there for my choosing.
 
What I find amazing and at the same time sad are the free books. It’s good for me but feels a little like a slap in the face to some great writers.
From the free list..just a few..
 
Tolstoy, Roosevelt, Lincoln, Einstein, Alcott, Austen, Bronte, Dickens, Conan Doyle, Emerson, Fitzgerald,….and on and on and on.
 
I picture the making of each word, phrase, sentence, and paragraph. The work, the creativity, the ALL of the whole thing.
 
So, I feel I just want to acknowledge them, somehow, to say thank you.
You, my heroes of the past may be free, but you are in no way devalued!
Thank you iBooks!

 

The Woman on the Train and What is Wrong with Enlightenment

Peace

The Woman on the Train and What is Wrong with Enlightenment

Last year I travelled to Toronto by train every day for three days. The first morning I chatted with a woman, not the one in the title, but a very nice gal who was a teacher doing some work for the Ministry of Education.  She was fascinating and we clicked.  Going home that evening I saw her again at the train station and we picked up our conversation from the morning.  This went on each of the three days.

When I got to the station at the end of the third day I did not see my friend right away so chatted with a pleasant woman while we waited for the boarding call.  The woman said she had been to a hospital in the city for an appointment.  I didn’t pry into her health issues and she talked a bit about her life.  There was something very strange about her, an aura, a radiating peace.  She appeared to be smiling even when she wasn’t, speaking softly but with great power and at the same time seeming amazingly humble.  I was in awe just looking at her and could not understand why.  I felt for some reason I was in the presence of greatness but could not give it definition.

I spotted my friend further down the queue and knew she would be looking for me so I excused myself even though I did not want to move.  Shaking my head in puzzlement I went to join my friend.

On the train this strange woman was sitting by herself in one of those sets of seats where four face each other.  I asked if we could join her.  We three chatted about nothing in particular.  Then this strange woman looked at me -into me-and told me her story quietly.  And all else ceased to exist.

She said her appointment had been to assess her status.  She said that her mother and two sisters had died of cardiomyopathy (a deadly heart condition).  It was genetic.  I whispered to her, “And you have it too?”
She nodded.  The only cure was a heart transplant but it could not be done until a certain point had been reached in her condition.  I knew from experience that often when patients reached that point their condition often worsened and they died before a heart came available.  And still she radiated joy and incredible peace.

My friend and I got off the train before that woman’s stop.  As we walked away, my friend asked if this condition was serious.  I told her that the woman is walking with death.

I think of her often and feel I was blessed to have been in her company.

Enlightenment – and finding it has been on my mind for a long time. I have read some things that made sense but I also read a book on enlightenment that just didn’t feel right.  It calls for us to wake up in the the morning and start jumping and yelling YES! YES!  It says that to be financially rich have friends gather around and shower us with money, literally. It said a few things that perplexed me.  It might come to your mind that I am frequently perplexed.

But then the thought came to me recently………the woman on the train was true enlightenment.  She was one with God, the universe or whatever our centre is.  No yelling.  No jumping.  Just incredible peace and joy and love and gentleness and humility.

I don’t know if I will ever see that kind of thing again.  I just know that for a short time I was closer to purity than I have ever been.  And I am humbled.

No Crying..No Sadness..what the heck are we doing?

No Crying..No Sadness..what the heck are we doing?

*Disclaimer:  This does not apply to every parent, but there are enough that it is now making the news on a daily basis.

I woke up this morning to my fav radio program and the He and She of it were in a big discussion about Bambi and Walt Disney in general and the stories that make our kids cry.  Like it was a bad thing.

There has been a fair bit in the news lately about what we are doing to our young; wrapping them tight in bubble wrap for protection, not letting them experience rejection, not letting them face the facts about life and death.  The thought is that we are shielding our children from reality and that will mean they are unable to cope when suddenly on their own.

A local news show recently did a piece on the number of first year university students who experience depression, to the point that they cannot function.  Having lived a sheltered protected life they are not prepared to leave home and manage in a world where they must stand on their own feet. 

My fav blogger, The Domestic Fringe addresses this.  And does it well.  Bill Gates has his say also (Google Bill Gates 11 Things and other speeches.)  Dean Koontz has also addressed in his books how we sanitize our children and ourselves so that when life intervenes we do not have the immunity to stand up to it and survive, stronger than before.  I guess the list would be endless.

We don’t seem to want our children to be “uncomfortable”.  Life is joyful.  It truly is but there are tears, hardship, unfairness, and inequality.  These serve to make us stronger.  And often the joy comes from conquering and when we don’t conquer, we learn and grow. 

Stories that make us cry, teach us.  Bambi, Old Yeller, The Lion King and the circle of life.  Those stories taught us love, joy, to believe, to live.  One comment this morning on the radio was,”Someone always dies. What is this?”  Well someone always dies be it a much loved pet or human.  We learn to treasure our memories.  We learn the cleansing wholesome effect of crying.

So cry world…..and experience joy!

Attempting Chapter One..wild horses..gremlins et al

The first Chapter. The Manifesting Manual by Jafree Ozwald and Margot Zaher…….Will it work??

I found this first chapter a little overwhelming.  It seemed pretty simple at first by asking me to determine exactly what I would want to manifest.  Not too hard to figure out.  It also says in the intro that to increase manifesting abilities you must do Chapter Nine every day for ninety days.   Will check that out when I get there.

It got into comparing the mind with wild horses and I was uncomfortable with this for some reason.  Then it got into Negative Gremlins which hold all our negative thoughts and steps in how to eliminate this.

Somehow there was a fair bit of discomfort, and I was not sure if this just does not make sense to me or if in fact the negative thoughts are that difficult to deal with.  I did the three exercises or meditations.  One was for fifteen to twenty minutes, then another for thirty minutes and then a third.  I decided to combine them into one session and set my timer.  I did not make the whole time so will try again later today.

So it seems to me that this first part was about determining exactly what I want to achieve and shifting my energy from a negative to a positive.  It’s about letting go of doubt, fear, skepticism, isolation and separation.  All of existence is energy never ending.  It’s about curiosity.  It’s about Joy.

So far I am buying into this.  I have known for a long time now that circumstances may not change but a good day vs a bad day seems to be in the attitude.  I have also found that a positive attitude definitely attracts good things.  I just want to live it more consistently – to be better at it.

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