As you know, for a long while I have vacillated between thinking I would be crazy to quash my newfound social life, and longing to do so for my own sanity.
Well, I’ve cancelled my fun weekend plans.
This is because I am sick (not immobilized, just still dragging). It is also because I have come to think that one of the reasons I am sick is because I dread rather than anticipate such plans. Perhaps my poor sick body is telling me things that my mind refused to fully realize or to act upon.
I did read that it is common to get sick after a divorce. That makes sense to me. After holding yourself together for so long, you are finally able to breathe. Suddenly you find yourself in a new place. It is scary and disorienting, even when one is thankful and looking forward.
Besides, we know that mothers (and any parents responsible for child care) aren’t allowed to be sick, almost never get sick. They can’t! Who would keep the ship from sinking, who would run the show? Who would care for everyone else? Psychologically, we don’t easily concede illness. Better to carry on, ignore any minor maladies.
When everyone else was sniffling and hacking earlier in the season, I did every homeopathic thing to stave off illness. It was, however, beyond foolish to kiss someone who had been sick when he still seemed sickish (to me, not he). So, yes I got what I deserved.
Is being wracked by cough good for the stomach muscles, by any chance? Just trying to look on the bright side.
True to form, I pretty much continued in mother mode and ignored my upper respiratory infection, but instead of taking its leave by sheepishly creeping away, it forced me to pay attention: it worsened.
I poured on the tea and TLC and continued on my merry way, in my mind. My body refused to follow. I couldn’t inhale without pain, I couldn’t sleep. I had no energy.
Months later, the congestion and coughing still linger. Earlier this week I seemed to be relapsing, no doubt abetted by all sorts of family, work, financial, and romantic dilemmas. It was as if all of those boxes were on top of my head, so heavy for my weakened frame to carry.
What to do?
Listen. Stop and listen to that little voice inside.
Pause and ponder the wisdom of my fellow wordpress writers.
Step back, chill, think, recuperate. Meditate. Nourish, rest. Pray.
Revel in the beauty that is all around us. Appreciate being a part of this beautiful, fascinating world.
Read. (Though reading several books, I moved this recommendation, in the comments, to the front of the queue.)
Listen to music. Exercise, walk.
I am usually happy, but now I feel less restless. I am “a piece of the continent, a part of the main”. At the same time I am loosed from the things that had been heavy on my mind, nagging at me, interrupting my peace.
It remains to be seen how lonely “loosed” will be.
For now I feel lightened, as in both unburdened and illuminated. I feel emotionally washed clean, so bright that it slightly hurts.
This morning I thought: you know, when we are so emptied of all that was in us, the advantage is that we can build from scratch, start anew.
It is springtime, after all.
*Dichotomy: a contrast between two things that are opposed or completely different.
Earthling I am,
Searching, wondering, wandering, fearing.
But to the heavens I belong,
I am never alone,
I am held
in the hollow of a hand,
together, no matter how
All of the
in my dichotomy.
I awoke abruptly and too early. The birds outside my window were holding some sort of convention and they couldn’t seem to come to any agreement. They squawked and squealed and were much too loud, too raucous, for my early-morning sensibilities. I wanted to say: behave yourselves, birdies. There are enough nesting materials out there for all of you!
I was awake but still groggy, still on autopilot, and this is what popped into my head as I sat there in bed:
Wear your compassion on your sleeve. Keep a song in your heart and a reality check in your pocket.
So that is my Morning Thought, a good thought for me, and I thought I would share it with you. I hope that your day is happy!
I have been carrying around a twenty-dollar bill all week, being careful not to spend it in anticipation of once again meeting The Entrepreneur.
If you have been reading here, you may recall that about a week ago I talked about a local itinerant merchant whom I called The Entrepreneur. At the time that he last approached me, I didn’t have much cash and I was in a hurry. Even though I wasn’t going to purchase anything, he gave me a bracelet. I wear it all the time now. I like it, and it makes me feel happy to think of this unexpected gift.
I went to the store a couple of days ago, walking in the beautiful weather and taking extra-long to get where I was going. This was because I stopped often to gaze at drifts of daffodils and the high clouds in the bright blue sky, and to pet dogs. (All the dogs in the neighborhood seemed to be taking their owners for walks this fine day).
On short jaunts I try to travel without a purse, cumbersome nuisance that it sometimes is, so I just had my credit card in my pocket. I was walking along, on the slate sidewalk of course, noticing the various lemony and deep yellows of forsythia, when I remembered my twenty-dollar bill. Hmm. I hadn’t seen The Entrepreneur all week, but, life being life, I’d better go get the money, just in case. It took only a few minutes, and then I continued on my way.
As I approached the store, I saw, standing right in front of the door, my merchant with his wares. Eureka! How was that for timing and placement?
There he was, wearing his usual smile and dressed in his usual hiking gear (long shorts, low boots, dark T-shirt). He did indeed look as if he’d been hiking for a few days: slightly disheveled, grimey, rugged and sinewy. He was about my size, which would be quite slight for a man. He had backpacks, front packs, and bulging cargo pockets full of the jewelry that he was selling.
The first thing he said after I greeted him was, “Here, we have to move away from the store.” OK, but why, I wondered. He wasn’t selling stolen goods or anything illegal. Maybe he was supposed to have a license to sell wares? I’ll have to check into that; I’m not used to feeling like I have to make my transactions in a clandestine manner. But, all we did was move down the sidewalk several yards. Maybe the store owners allow him to hang around as long as he doesn’t obstruct their doorway with his commerce?
He didn’t even remember that he had given me the bracelet, so he was not expecting payment for it in any way or dwelling on who was beholden to him. No matter the reason, isn’t that refreshing, in this day and time? He just smiled and showed me what he had on hand to sell:
“I got these. These are nice. And I got more. These are $10 each. Do you like these? Or how about these? I got earrings…”
He sold me three pieces of jewelry for $20, quite a bargain I thought, and then he thanked me profusely. When I turned away from him and was just about to walk into the store, he called after me, “Hey! Thank you…”
“Thank you!” He waved to me and smiled.
He was so full of genuine gratitude. I loved that. We should all be so grateful and gracious.
I think “The Lost Art of Gratitude” shall be a future wordpress post.
(Thank you for reading ; )
TMI, I decided.
The several comments are great though, so if you’ve wandered here, you can read the comments and then go on over to another post if you’d like. You are cordially invited to visit any other.
Have a happy week,
I remember from university literature courses how the Romantic poets found their emotions reflected in Nature. Ever feel like you were born in the wrong century? I might do without cell phone, television, ipad, computer, automobile–if I could go wander the moors amidst the heather and come home to the warmth of a fire and the glow of candlelight, a stone hearth and freshly-baked bread.
Fortunately, I have an imagination and a selective one at that. There is never any consumption wracking me in a cold hard Romantic bed, for instance, and never any livestock, or at least any requiring me to wake at dawn to feed them. I’m sure that there must be a black stallion, however, upon which a dashing man in a black cape rides to my rescue when it starts to rain.
Oh wait, that’s Austen… Sense and Sensibility, I think. (So much for my imagination!) That would make me, rescued in the rain, Marianne Dashwood. (Would I rather be Elinor? I am probably more like Elinor. She was sensible and responsible and didn’t wear her heart on her sleeve. She probably would have done so only on wordpress.)
So, you see how my feeble mind works.
Here is your latest dash of Romanticism, and any of you who have been following here can deduce therein where this present-day damsel is with regards to her romantic dilemmas:
A Killing Frost is Expected.
A killing frost is expected
in the hill country far from here,
where the scillas blue and snow drops bloom,
happy, delicate even in their profusion,
while here I stuggle to know
what is love, what is illusion.
There are no answers in your eyes,
while mine, moody blue,
deep and pure,
Restless as they are,
how can I be sure?
Is not what we are hoping for.
I kiss you with all that is in me,
with all that is in me and more.
A killing frost is expected,
But how can I be sure?
Not only should I give credit to Austen, but to the Moody Blues as well. Good for any of you readers who picked up on those allusions; I seem to have borrowed the band name, played with titles, and channelled Nights in White Satin : “We decide which is right,/And which is an illusion”. Is there anyone else out there who heard this song as a little girl (0r boy) and envisioned it as Knights in White Satin? Clear into adulthood I did, and I pictured the lead singer on a white stallion, rescuing said damsel, of course. At least I am a consistent romantic.
I note also the Romanticism in The Story in Your Eyes. “Listen to the tide slowly turning/Wash all our heartaches away…”
For me, for us here, the bottom line is this: we can’t count on any rescue, we can’t wait for the knight on his white stallion or Austen’s Colonel Branden to rescue us from the rain. We have to do our best, be strong, make our best decisions with the information we have at hand and in our hearts.
Thank you, kind readers, for your thoughts heretofore. They are always welcome and always a pleasure. Camaraderie is a wonderful thing.
I’ll keep you posted.
The rain reflects my mood,
Sufferings and such,
Like a stone skipped over a pond,
After the skimming of the surface,
Brief bouncing for joy,
The stone finds its place.
What have I cast aside?
Fun, for integrity,
The physical for the cerebral,
Luxury, for simplicity,
Together for alone,
Decadence for the convent.
I do believe the nuns would take me.
“She has a bit of a sense of
Even in pain,”
Says the Mother Superior.
“We could use her around here,
It’s so dreary and somber,
Though I love
The flying buttresses
Of the chapel.”
And the novices nod.
“If she can cook biscuits, can iron habits
And has strong knees,
Then, if Thy will be done,
She can join our club.”
A mere mortal pebble
of this world I may be,
But always thinking.
‘Tis a gift, from the Lord.