Anticipation

“Well,” said Pooh, “what I like best,” and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called.” 

A. A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

I wonder how many people find themselves a little depressed after the Christmas hustle and bustle?

Sometimes the anticipation fueled by our expectations sets us up for disappointment.

Which reminds me of the year my sisters and I figured out how to open and preview all of our Christmas presents.

I’m not sure who figured out a single edge razor blade would cleanly cut the tape of the wrapping paper. A few careful slices here and there and we had it all within our grasp.

Our  super sleuthing evolved as we took on each and every package under the tree. Proudly we declared no wrapped package could or would defeat us.

Because we did not understand the consequences of our prank, our ego and pride combined in such a way that the basic components of the Christmas season were lost before we even realized something was missing. We’d reached the point of no return, losing that element of surprise which immediately took away the one thing that there has no substitute–anticipation.

“Sometimes what we lack is the thrill of anticipation or the delay of gratification. We enjoy things far more when we’ve really desired them but had to wait for them. The real value is found in our self-control and patience, which allows us to delay gratification and build anticipation. Letting desire build is an abstract way to achieve balance and moderation in your life… Moderation just may be the answer to boredom – go figure!”                            Cristin Frank

I am…

B…simply being…

~Peace~

 

Healing Prayers

“The common man prays, ‘I want a cookie right now!’ And God responds, ‘If you’d listen to what I say, tomorrow it will bring you 100 cookies.” 

Criss Jami, Killosophy

Waiting.

It is not easy and I am not especially good at it.

I’ve been waiting to hear from a surgeon about scheduling a procedure I need to have done.

I have been waiting for several days.

Yesterday, I reached my limit and spoke up. I am learning in today’s health care environment, you HAVE to speak up.

The end result, thanks to my physician listening to me and taking action, I saw a surgeon this morning. My procedure will be Monday.

But–there’s more to the story.

As I drove to my appointment, I prayed I’d get on the schedule quickly.

After my consultation, I was told there is a spot open for Monday.  Thank you, God. An added plus, I’d just had my annual physical so I had all the pre-op studies done–yay, me.

Driving home, I remembered there was an estate sale I wanted to check out. What a grand diversion–at the next stop I put the address into my phone and made my way to the sale.

There was a little bit of everything at this sale. I wandered around until I came to a room filled with books. I knew I’d found my spot. Nothing caught my eye until I saw this little black prayer book–so appropriately titled, Healing Prayers.

The best example of a God wink I’ve seen in a long time.

I am…

B…simply being…

God bless.

~Peace~

Ego

“Patience, he thought. So much of this was patience – waiting, and thinking and doing things right. So much of all this, so much of all living was patience and thinking.” 

Gary Paulsen, Hatchet

I’ve had zero patience with myself this past week. My self talk has been especially nasty.

I’ve blamed it on the heat–maybe I’m dehydrated. I’m tired–maybe I need a nap. I did just get home after traveling and indulging in those late conversations fueled by excellent wine and amazing company.

Maybe…

All those ideas are basically old excuses made so I can dismiss the negativity. I’m a pretty quick study and I have that worn out puzzle memorized–connecting all the dots is a snap and in a matter of minutes every uncomfortable question is excused away.

Case closed–moving on.

NOT so fast, girl friend.

I’ve discovered any issue explained in such a neat and easy fashion must be flagged as dangerous. More often than not, I’ve read or heard something that stirred up something in my past that remains hidden in my subconscious mind.

It gets tricky trying to understand what triggered the internal alarm that alerted my insecure and fragile ego. This summer I’ve been pushing hard against all those walls I’ve constructed over the past sixty years. I suspect the answer may be as simple as slowing down some–giving myself more space a little more time.

Right now, at this very moment, I’m thinking it’s time to pour the wine, take a deep breath, and give thanks for all the good surrounding me.

“We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them” 

Albert Einstein

I am…

B…simply being…

I am blessed and I am grateful.

~Peace be with you~

A Morning Prayer

Re-sharing from a few months ago because I ran into some of the same challenges today. 

I fell behind on my to-do list today.

I’ve learned there is no way to push or rush my thoughts into words.

Maybe I have Spring Fever? It certainly feels like Spring is in the air today!

Today I’ll share a Morning Prayer from Rabbi Levy. This will give me some time to gather and sort through my thoughts.

I’ve been reading a lot of material on memoir writing these past few weeks. It is interesting and encouraging to read other writers have experienced some of the same types of angst I’ve encountered lately.

Yes, my friends, I’m being assigned another round of lessons on patience, self-awareness, and perseverance.

A Morning Prayer

There are so many things I take for granted. May I not ignore them today. Just for today, help me, God, to remember that my life is a gift, that my health is a blessing, that this new day is filled with awesome potential, that I have the capacity to bring something wholly new and unique and good into this world. Just for today, help me, God, to remember to be kind and patient to the people who love me, and to those who work with me too. Teach me to see all the beauty that I so often ignore, and to listen to the silent longing of my own soul. Just for today, help me, God, to remember You. Let this be a good day, God, full of joy and love. Amen.

Levy, Naomi. Talking to God: Personal Prayers for Times of Joy, Sadness, Struggle, and Celebration (pp. 23-24). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

I am…

B…simply being…

God bless.

~Peace~

Thanks once again to Kimberly Salimeno for letting me borrow one of her great photos. Love you, my friend.      

 

 

 

Choices

“How would your life be different if…You stopped allowing other people to dilute or poison your day with their words or opinions? Let today be the day…You stand strong in the truth of your beauty and journey through your day without attachment to the validation of others”
― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Bein

Journaling has helped me be more positive and grateful for the gifts I’ve been given while appreciating the work I’ve done.

I’ve had wonderful teachers. I listened attentively, absorbing their words and gleaning from their wisdom.

I’ve encountered challenging lessons. I studied each course, working hard to master each task assigned.

I’ve written daily, digging into my past, asking difficult questions about my family and the roles I’ve played over my lifetime.

I’ve been patient, praying for an open mind and a forgiving heart, all enabling me to learn and grow.

Slowly, after months of quiet soul-searching, I feel there’s been an internal shift. The weight of my past–all those over-stuffed bags I’ve carried around all these years–is reshaping itself. I’m beginning to feel more steady and stable; self-confidence is crowding out fear allowing me to feel I am in control of where I go from here. I’ve prepared. I am ready.

All those lessons and life experiences have been building the foundation for my future. I’ve been undergoing a slow metamorphosis. My guardian angel is urging me on–reminding me this is my 65th year. Stay aware, Barbara, she advises, time waits for no one.

I am ready–to thrive, grow, and enjoy every single day.

I am grateful.

I choose…
to live by choice, not by chance;
to make changes, not excuses;
to be motivated, not manipulated;
to be useful, not used;
to excel, not compete;
I choose self-esteem, not self-pity.
I choose to listen to my inner voice,
not the random opinion of others.

And so it is…

I am…

B…simply being…

God bless.

~Peace~

A Morning Prayer

I fell behind on my to-do list today.

I’ve learned there is no way to push or rush my thoughts into words.

Maybe I have Spring Fever? It certainly feels like Spring is in the air today!

Today I’ll share a Morning Prayer from Rabbi Levy. This will give me some time to gather and sort through my thoughts.

I’ve been reading a lot of material on memoir writing these past few weeks. It is interesting and encouraging to read other writers have experienced some of the same types of angst I’ve encountered lately.

Yes, my friends, I’m being assigned another round of lessons on patience, self-awareness, and perseverance.

A Morning Prayer

There are so many things I take for granted. May I not ignore them today. Just for today, help me, God, to remember that my life is a gift, that my health is a blessing, that this new day is filled with awesome potential, that I have the capacity to bring something wholly new and unique and good into this world. Just for today, help me, God, to remember to be kind and patient to the people who love me, and to those who work with me too. Teach me to see all the beauty that I so often ignore, and to listen to the silent longing of my own soul. Just for today, help me, God, to remember You. Let this be a good day, God, full of joy and love. Amen.

Levy, Naomi. Talking to God: Personal Prayers for Times of Joy, Sadness, Struggle, and Celebration (pp. 23-24). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

I am…

B…simply being…

God bless.

~Peace~

Thanks once again to Kimberly Salimeno for letting me borrow one of her great photos. Love you, my friend.      

 

 

 

The Puzzle

“Writing is a job, a talent, but it’s also the place to go in your head. It is the imaginary friend you drink your tea with in the afternoon.”
― Ann Patchett, Truth and Beauty

This short little quote describes how I feel about my afternoon writing sessions.

I’ve discovered, because of my persistent dedication of time these past months, providing unquestioning and gentle patience while coaxing out memories, experiences, and life lessons, a figure has slowly emerged from the shadows of my mind. I’d always known she was there. I’d never asked who she was–I don’t think that piece of the puzzle was meant to be as easy as asking that simple question. To get that answer, I had to earn it. By establishing a consistently secure place, that mystery person I’d always thought to be my imaginary, silent, but always encouraging friend, was, in fact, me.

Writing has helped me pull myself together–literally and figuratively. Where it will take me is still unknown and is nearly always surprising. These afternoon writing sessions remind me of one of my most favorite people who would set up a place to do super-sized puzzles over the cold winter months. Like Clarice, I’m working on the outside edges of my life’s puzzle. That middle part is going to be quite a bit more tricky.

“Ever since I was young I enjoyed solving puzzles and having the pleasure to see the bigger picture afterwards. But even after all that, I found that life could be the most challenging puzzle we have to face. It’s one of those things that even if you have all the pieces and could see the whole picture, it still takes time and patience to solve it. At times, we feel more at ease not knowing the whole picture, not knowing the whole level of difficulty or number of pieces that we’re missing, but just building up one piece at a time. The problem with this approach is that the only clues that we have for matching two pieces are the shape and a small glimpse of the image. We so often find comfort in building up the corners and the borders but very rarely do we adventure in the middle of the puzzle. We’d rather work little by little holding on to our safe border and only move towards the center when the pieces are still in touch with our borders or roots. On the other hand, you could be one of those people that just jumps in the middle and builds up on every piece you have in order to get small portions of the truth of the bigger picture every now and then. Not having your borders or corners in place might mean that you don’t need to know your limits in order to realize that the puzzle will one day come to an end. Nevertheless, every piece is equally important and it gets handed to you at a time where you have at least some matching piece. That doesn’t mean you should only focus on one point or piece and limit your possible connections. Spread out and you will find even more connections. The truth of the puzzle information comes in different shapes and colors but in the end it’s all connected. Information might be divided, spread out in different areas, different people, different experiences. What’s important to remember is that every piece is meant for you. You might throw it on the side now and use it later, but it will forever remain a part of your bigger picture. Work on your puzzle, with patience and care in moving forward and with a hopeful spirit that it will all work out in the end for your highest good!”
― Virgil Kalyana Mittata Iordache

I am…

B…simply being…

I send you all love and wish us all peace.

 

 

 

 

Patience

“No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted. It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude, and humility. All that we suffer and all that we endure, especially when we endure it patiently, builds up our characters, purifies our hearts, expands our souls, and makes us more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called the children of God . . . and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire and which will make us more like our Father and Mother in heaven.”
Orson F. Whitney

 

It appears God has assigned some very specific lessons for me these past few weeks. His lesson plans seem to be very focused on teaching me the virtue of patience.

I was not being the most appreciative student today. I was feeling very annoyed, frustrated, and angry about some of the challenges that have come my way. I knew it was time for me to take some time away and work on gathering my thoughts and myself together.

Writing always soothes my restlessness. Thank God for that. I began to search for quotes and prayers about patience. My post begins with a quote I found and ends with a prayer. This prayer is written by Naomi Levy, originally titled, A Parent’s Prayer for Patience. Thank you, Naomi, I’ve adapted your prayer to my needs today.

When life tests me, teach me, God, how to respond with wisdom. When I grow irritable, send me patience. When my fury rages, teach me the power of restraint. When I become fixed in my ways, teach me to be flexible. When I take myself too seriously, bless me with a sense of humor. When I am exhausted, fill me with strength. When I am frightened, fill me with courage. When I am stubborn, teach me how to bend. When I act hypocritically, help me to align my deeds with my values. When mundane pressures threaten to overwhelm me, help me to remember how truly blessed I am. When I lose my way, God, please guide me on the road back to Joy, back to Love, back to Peace, back to You.  Amen

I am…

B…simply being…

Love and peace, Y’all.

 

Sharing

I have been sitting at my desk for sometime trying to corral my whirling thoughts. There is so much running through my mind it is hard to pull it all together into something I can share today.

A couple of things keep repeating themselves. I am discovering that writing is a very positive, healing experience for me. What I need to stress is that I am not writing to elicit sympathy. I am writing to share my experiences with those who may be dealing with some of the same issues–either in their lives now or in their past. I believe we are here to share the lessons we’ve learned. By sharing, two things will happen: I will be able to move on and readers will learn from me, hopefully saving them some time and heartache.

While researching quotes about grief, I came across a paragraph written by Miriam Toews. Finding this was like having that chance encounter at the grocery store when you run into an old friend–that friend who knows exactly what you need to hear as she greets and hugs you warmly.

Writing helps me create order out of chaos and make sense of things. It helps me to understand what I’ve experienced, what I’ve felt and seen, so it becomes easier to handle. On the other hand, I don’t want it to be just a cathartic experience, an outpouring of grief or whatever it is. 

My mind had turned to grief because of the newest terror attacks in Great Britain. Even the words of that sentence strike me as wrong. How could I be talking about an attack that killed many people with the descriptive word, ‘newest?’  We live in a world where tragedy seems to be a daily breaking news event. This morning I realized that terror attacks are becoming so common I am no longer shocked. For me, that thought stirred up a whole new level of grief. The memorial concert for the victims of the Manchester bombings had not yet happened when this new series–yes series–of attacks took place.

How can we find a way to understand any of this when these attacks, involving our brothers and sisters simply out living their lives, happen so quickly?

This quote attributed to Cheryl Strayed, gave me some comfort as it reinforced my belief that we are all in this together.

The healing power of even the most microscopic exchange with someone who knows in a flash precisely what you’re talking about because she has experienced that thing too cannot be over estimated.

If there was ever a time for us to take that extra second for patience and kindness, it is now.

I am…

B…simply being…

I love you.

Peace

 

Be Kind…

Our world has become so busy it is difficult for any of us to be patient.

My patience was put to the test today. As a fairly new person to the retired world, I am still learning. A note for other new members–social security payday is Wednesday. The message here is that Wednesday and Thursday may not be the best day to shop. Especially if you live in a community with a lot of retired people.

Sigh…

Cell phone use is dangerous in many situations. Cell phone use while shopping is probably not dangerous–although today it was pushing every hot button remaining on my personal dashboard. From what I observed today, aging does not improve your ability to multitask. Talking on the phone and grocery shopping in a very busy  grocery store will not make you friends. Be warned, my friends. Those of you shopping and those of you talking. Take my warning to heart, be aware, and be kind.

We have so many resources at our finger tips but so little time for each other. If I could make my own rule for a day, my rule would be NO electronics for that entire day. Listen not only to those around you but to your environment. Listen to the wind, the birds, the people around you. Talk to each other. Have eye contact. If you have not done that for a while, make eye contact and feel the power.

In this world where we are alerted with every change in the “world-wide web”, I wonder if I don’t know more about “movie stars” than I do about my own family?

The weekend is coming. Earth Day was last weekend–maybe this could be Human Day or Person Day or…whatever you want to call it. I suggest we all be more aware. Pay attention to our personal interactions. The phone will always be there. The person we are with may not–cherish them and the moment. We all have heard the stories of how things can change in a second. It will not always be someone else. Some day the regret of those lost minutes will catch up with us all.

I am

B…simply being…

Love and peace, y’all.