Gardens and Perception

IMGP0957Easter Sunday. It wasn’t typical. All of our adult children and their families had plans. So we decided to be spontaneous. We went to the Carlsbad Flower Fields. A place we’ve often heard about but have never visited. IMGP0958I have never been especially keen over springtime. I’m a fall breeze, winter storm kind of gal. I have always been enamored with color though. Spontaneous has not been a word generally found in our days. It is one we need to implement into our relationship more often. IMGP0959We took our cameras. Loaded them in a backpack. Both digital and film. A collaboration of new and old. IMGP0981The Hummingbirds were busy. They were picture perfect. A Raven perched on one of the statues. I turned to get a picture and it flew off just as the shutter whizzed. Missed shot. It happens. The Hummingbirds were more tolerant of paparazzi. IMGP0967Poinsettias were plenty. I had no idea there were so many varieties. Christmas at Eastertime. The Alpha and Omega. The circle of life. The ring of glory. He has Risen; we are Reborn. IMGP0971What direction is your life blowing? IMGP0972Hopefully the same direction as your spouse or partner. It’s a journey, my friends.

Listening to::

The sounds of Sunday. Birds chirping. Their conversations light in tone; heavy in whatever they are conversing about. The sounds of neighbors talking. When you hear their voices but not anything definitive when it comes to their words; Sunday afternoon drawl. Dogs barking here and there. The hum of the laptop.

Reading::

Have been getting the hitch out of my getalong and resuming regular reading of LES MISERABLES. My start date says: July 2012. (Yeah, I’m geeky that way. I like to note when I start some books.) It should not be taking me this long to finish reading it. [Insert sad face there]. Especially with a book that has passages like this: “You come out of the chapel and on the left you see a well. There are two in the courtyard. You ask: Why isn’t there a bucket and a pulley at this one? It is because water in no longer drawn from it. Why isn’t water drawn from it anymore? Because it is full of skeletons.”

Watching::

Not much as the general season winds down. MADAME SECRETARY: such a great show. Elizabeth Téa Pantaleoni, better known as Téa Leoni. Interesting tidbit: Her character’s name is Elizabeth on the show. I am intrigued with the ongoing implementation of PTSD after her character returns from nearly being killed in an assault in the Middle East. The focus of my Masters Thesis was PTSD — on the ordinary person, non-soldier. I will be watching the developments of this on her character as the show progresses. AMERICAN CRIME: The jury is still out on this one. There are so many layers — perception is key. AMERICAN ODYSSEY: DVR’d but not watched yet. I heard good things about the show on NPR. NPR can be trusted, no?

Pondering::

What it really means to be close in a relationship. Everyone you know has their own idea of what a perfect (father-son/daughter, mother son/daughter, sister-brother, sister-sister, brother-brother, wife/husband, aunt/uncle – niece/nephew, grandparent[s]-grandchild[ren], girl-friends / boy-friends) relationship should look and feel like. How we shouldn’t let what someone else’s relationship with their (father, mother, parents, sisters, brothers, grandparents, extended family, or friends) looks like, or our idea of perfect, blind us to what we actually have. How we should remember that the very way we perceive the relationship others must have with their people, is the exact same way that others are perceiving the relationships we have with our people. How when people tell us that they see us as having close relationships with our people, we should go with their observations, because maybe they see something in our relationships that we are unable, or unwilling, to see: perfection in its imperfection. How we need to stop buying into the notion that the “grass is always greener on the other side,” “their relationships are closer with their people than our relationships are with our people.” We miss so much of the goodness, the talents, the joys of our people when we allow that deceptive thinking to invade our hearts. IMGP0987How I, like so many other women, in particular, struggle with accepting that we are enough in the shadow of comparison to and by others. I believe that everyone has their purpose — in the here and now — and when we start to feel like we should be doing what others are doing, in an effort to measure up, and begin to entertain feelings of being less-than, then we are, in fact, interfering with God’s plan for us and, more importantly, His purpose for other persons. Whatever I am doing today, right now, for myself, for my husband, for my children, for my grandchildren, for my friends, for my coworkers, for acquaintances and strangers is enough. I am right where God wants me, doing what God wants me to do, to do less or attempt to do more would be fighting God’s plan and obscuring His ultimate purpose for me and my life in relation to everyone and everything else.

I love this quote: “About God’s unique call. I wonder sometimes at the damage done by a women’s movement that fought so hard and so long to persuade the culture that women can do it all—be wives, mothers, employees, employers, artisans, crafters of the ideal life. No ceiling, no boundaries, no limitations. But there are, aren’t there? Natural law makes it so. There are only so many hours, so much energy. We can’t do it all and we likely will burn ourselves out trying. The culture tells us we can. God doesn’t. God calls us uniquely to live as He created us and He grants us abundant grace to do it. He didn’t create us for burnout. That feeling of being stretched too thin, doing everything halfheartedly and nothing well? That’s not of God.” — Elizabeth Foss

It’s hard to stay focused on the reality of being enough. As women we keep hounding ourselves with, “I should…I could…” It’s time to let go of that crazy talk. Let’s just acknowledge that we can’t be everything to everyone all the time. And let’s be okay with that — for ourselves and others. Let’s be satisfied that we are doing all we are called to do and be, and let’s appreciate that there are others in our lives who are fulfilling their purpose by doing what we can not do right here, right now. Yes, there is always room for improvement in all relationships. Tread lightly though. 020Looking forward to:: Dinner with my neighbor and friend on Tuesday at Panera’s, followed by a movie and good wine at her home. Lunch with a former coworker on Wednesday. Dinner with one of my besties on Thursday; same bat channel, same bat time.

Not particularly looking forward to Tax Day. A refund is not in the cards for us, again.

Praying that one of our daughters has an uneventful and smooth surgery on Friday [gallstones &/or gallbladder removal]. Thinking of how she and one of her younger sisters share C-Sections and Gallbladder surgeries, while her twin and other younger sister had natural deliveries and (fingers crossed) no gallbladder issues. Life is funny that way. Prayers, as always, are welcome.

Him and her massages next Saturday morning. Our only real indulgence. Then visiting above daughter and her family next Saturday evening with dinner — and maybe some board games — in tow.

Next month’s meeting with my Creative group of friends. Friendships I’ve made online through various online art and writing courses –> lifting and shifting the friendships from Facebook to Real time. A process I’m enjoying with local Creatives and hope to expand to National and International Creatives one day. We’ve completed a couple of Soul Collage sessions and I’ve really enjoyed the process and, of course, the company. 051052053054 I am also going to jump-start my ancestry research this week, and pick up where my father stopped decades ago — utilizing this age of advanced technology, by ordering a DNA kit from Trace Genetics. It’s time. 055Projects:: Looking forward to starting this project for the summer. Why? Because I want to know what the fox said. Enjoy your week, my friends.

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