I’ve been pretty careful about skirting around some issues for the purpose of respecting people in my life – or protecting people in my life. This has been a little frustrating, but par for the course of ‘going public’ with my blog.
Originally I wanted a spot I could write anonymously (other than my journal). A venue where I didn’t have to edit myself. I had hoped to share and help others with some issues I haven’t addressed yet. It is what it is though, and I do have to edit myself.
Yesterday, after my post about my son I felt pretty rotten. I shared my concerns with a writer friend who told me not to edit it – to stick with what my gut told me to write.
And he was right. I wrote from my heart and from the place I was in right that second.
So consider this an amendment of sorts.
My son is kind-hearted, funny, loving, intelligent, and good.
My frustrations yesterday had to be looked at. Examined. Because the fact that I was having a physical reaction to something that wasn’t even intended to piss me off, definitely deserves to be contemplated.
If I have learned anything in the past few years, it’s that most emotions stem from fear.
I am scared.
I am fearful that I haven’t done enough, taught enough, instilled enough and the clock is ticking on my sons childhood.
He will be 18 in March of next year.
I want him to say ‘thank you’ when people do kind things for him. I want him to see someone obviously up to their elbows in work and offer a helping hand. I want him to be aware of his surroundings and make sensible choices. I want my son to know and show gratitude.
I can want these things for him until I’m blue in the face – but I can’t make them so.
I have tried to teach by example. When I missed his first step, his first laugh, a school assembly, I hoped at least he would grow up knowing the importance of hard work. Knowing that providing for your family is important.
I’m demonstrative with my gratitude, my love, my compassion. I want him to see those things in action and have them become a part of who he is.
I’ve never beat him, never told him he was less than and never has he gone without a meal or an article of clothing that he required.
My son has had the best of me and my time is almost up.
He’s going to be in the worlds kitchen while it’s population is carving, cleaning, juggling tasks. And I don’t want him behaving the way he did in mine.
I tell myself ‘God doesn’t have grandchildren’. I also remind myself that it took me a long time before I knew half of what I know today.
I guess it all boils down to that age-old wish. I don’t want him to make my mistakes.
But this isn’t about me.
I could have handled yesterday a lot better. So obviously, at 43 I still have a great deal to learn. Why be so hard on a 17-year-old?
I am happy. I am off the hedonic treadmill and go to lengths to be sure I don’t visit that apparatus again!
I wondered today, if I asked everyone to take a week to come up with 3 things that make them happy, what would they be?
That in mind, I thought I should do the exercise first and found there was no way in heck there were just going to be three things!
This will be part 1 of ‘Happy and I know it’ because there’s just so much to say!
I brainstormed and these things came flowing out first:
The unexpected, scents, laughter, LOVE, giving, harmony, nature, imagination, innocence, music, animals, simplicity, synergy, absence of ego, rhythm, anticipation. I added: Faith, sparrows, having ‘enough’, beautiful actions, learning, kindness, compassion, gratitude.
In no particular order – a little on a some of the big ones for me.
Laughter. I’m talking the real deal – eyes closed, authentic, almost no sound coming out laugher. Side splitting, tears in my eyes, can barely breathe laughter. And if you’re laughing, I’m laughing. SO contagious. My son makes me laugh at least once every single day.
Imagination. From reading to movies, dreams and writing – expressing myself creatively or losing myself in someone elses creativity – that’s a big one for me.
Love. Love for a child, love for friends – loving complete strangers and ok, that first kiss and having butterflies in the tummy. This has to be my number one. Love is absolutely, I believe, what ‘it’ is all about. I’ll never forget J.K. Rowling telling Oprah how she thought of the passengers on one of the 9/11 flights – how they KNEW they were going to die, and the last thing they wanted to do was reach their loved one and just get to tell them “I love you”. Powerful. Truly powerful. They weren’t thinking about work, or their cars or their jewelry. It all came down to love.
Gratitude. Oh am I ever grateful! For everything I have, for everything I don’t have. I’m grateful to have ‘enough’. I don’t want more than that. I’m grateful for every breath, every moment, everything. I say ‘thank you’ every night. I get down on my knees, squeeze my eyes tight and bow my head and say ‘THANK YOU!!!’.
Compassion and kindness. I love seeing these in others and strive to practice them myself. Being of service to each other is so important. Forgetting ourselves, getting lost in bringing joy to others results in absence of ego.
Scents. Wow. We have the obvious – rain, fresh-cut grass – puppy breath, bacon cooking (or is that just me?). Some of my favorite scents though are attached to memories. I keep a bottle of mint sauce (that reminds me of tea time and a blue checkered table-cloth) in the fridge, just for an occasional sniff.
My Nannie’s green house where she grew tomato plants. I had recurring dreams of that smell … the plants mixed with the warm wooden planked floor and the soil. I could sit in there and just breathe that in all day long.
I love the soap she uses too – and the smell of her bed sheets after they were hand washed and line dried. Dreamy. ^_^
Anticipation. I LOVE being ‘next’ in line. I love Christmas Eve. I love that feeling BEFORE an upcoming event. I think this is because there’s still that delicious excitement buzzing in the air. It hasn’t happened yet – it’s not over. I love, love, love looking forward to something.
Music. Opera, classical symphonies, every decade, every genre, music makes me so very happy. Andrea Bocelli brings me to tears, Freddie Mercury’s voice elicits goosebumps. Music makes my heart and soul leap! And Theres nothing like a live performance, love that throb you can feel in your chest from the speakers!
Being deliciously tired is another thing that makes me happy, and I’m feeling that now. So I’ll wrap this up with a couple of quotes that I didn’t come up with.
“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.”
― Dalai Lama XIV
“By not seeking your own happiness, you find it”.
— Unknown (to me at this moment … I’m seriously tired lol)
Tired, but HAPPY!