Tuesday, March 31, 2015

31 March 2015

When did we see each other face-to-face? Not until you saw into my cracks and I saw into yours. Before that, we were just looking at ideas of each other, like looking at your window shade but never seeing inside. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.   [John Green, Paper Towns]

These past 8 years of writing Gratitude have taught me so much more than I can even fathom. I’ve learned there is Hope out there, wherever this little writing goes. I’ve “met” and “got to know well” many people whose voices I’ve never heard, NOT to mention I’d likely NOT know them if we bumped into each other. Literally.

I used to wonder, in the early years of this Practise, why the “backstory” or “details” of the people sharing was such a curiosity to me. I made stories up and assigned details as though I were the great and powerful Oz.

Eventually, I started to “know” people and stories and was present-tense as details continued unfolding in their lives as well my own. It’s been a remarkable thing, perhaps the most remarkable thing in my Life and World, this little Practise and all of YOU and THEM who touch my Life in myriad ways. Daily.

Light In. Light out.

I love you, Currie

Monday, March 30, 2015

30 March 2015

Jealousy always has been my cross, the weakness and woundedness in me that has most often caused me to feel ugly and unlovable, like the Bad Seed. I’ve had many years of recovery and therapy, years filled with intimate and devoted friendships, yet I still struggle. I know that when someone gets a big slice of pie, it doesn’t mean there’s less for me. In fact, I know that there isn’t even a pie, that there’s plenty to go around, enough food and love and air.
But I don’t believe it for a second.
I secretly believe there’s a pie. I will go to my grave brandishing my fork.
    [Anne Lamott, Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith]

I’ve thought a LOT like this, and yet I am no longer brandishing anything. I’m relaxing my grip. I am realising that when I have had something so wrong as a BElief, perhaps the only thing needed is to Let It Go.

And don’t pick it up again!!!

These are the words I want on my gravestone: that I was a helper, and that I danced.   [Anne Lamott, Grace (Eventually): Thoughts on Faith]

That sounds spectaculicious to me, too. I’d prefer BEing an Encourager, and that I danced. And laughed. And lived right up til the very last bit of The End.

I love you, Currie

Sunday, March 29, 2015

29 March 2015

For all it's problems and difficulties, life is mostly a wonderful experience, and it is up to each person to make the most of each day. I hope you are successful in your life, but look to the heavens and the earth and especially to other people to find your real wealth. Wherever I am, wherever you go, know that my love goes with you.   [Elizabeth Berg, Dream When You're Feeling Blue]

I agree. Now. Can’t say I did until really recently. I’d often fall back on the idea of This Now BEing a sort of rehearsal for The Real Now.

I’ve been “nesting” or some would say “sorting” mayBE even “clearing” my Life of the unnecessary. I have been preparing my art to give to hospice. For whatever they can and want to DO with it. It feels extraordinary, although it is much more of an energy “draining” thing than I’d imagined.

Wherever I am, wherever you go, know that my love goes with you…

Yes, this is what I want to say. Or what I hope “YOU” hear. This Now is all there ever is. It might NOT seem to make sense to you Now, you might feel quite the opposite or something even I canNOT imagine.

No matter what, know: my love goes with you…

I love you, Currie

Friday, March 27, 2015

27 March 2015

As Sidda joined Vivi in staring out into the darkness of the fields, where hundreds of sunflowers grew, she thought: I will never fully know my mother, any more than I will ever know my father or Connor, or myself. I have been missing the point. The point is not knowing another person, or learning to love another person. The point is simply this: how tender can we bear to be? What good manners can we show as we welcome ourselves and others into our hearts?   [Rebecca Wells, Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood]

Tenderness is such a quiet thing. It often catches me by surprise. The feeling comes like waking from a deep deep sleep. It washes away the mud and the muck through which I so long saw Life and the people in it.

The matter of good manners has never quite rung true for me. I don’t know if that would make sense to anyone else, but at least I understand.

Yesterday I had yet another amazing visit with the chaplain from hospice. With him I am fearless. I will go where I’ve dared NOT go, all the while knowing I am safe. And never, really EVER, have I been alone.

I’ve missed the point, too. BEing tender is NOT silly. It’s actually BEing real.

I love you, Currie

Thursday, March 26, 2015

26 March 2015

Some things I cannot change, but 'til I try I'll never know.   [Stephen Schwartz, Wicked: The Complete Book and Lyrics of the Broadway Musical]

I’m comfortable with knowing the difference BEtween those things I CAN and those I canNOT change. Despite that, I find myself open to trying things, things that may by themselves seem inconsequential, yet gathered together and considered again, can make all the difference I never imagined could BE different.

I've heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason bringing something we must learn. 
And we are led to those who help us most to grow if we let them, and we help them in return.
Well, I don't know if I believe that's true, but I know I'm who I am today because I knew you...
   [Stephen Schwartz, Wicked: The Complete Book and Lyrics of the Broadway Musical]

There are so many people, over my Life’s Time, who come to mind [and heart] when I hear these words. It isn’t always a happy thought, but there’s always JOY in the remembering.

People, it seems, really DO need people, for so many reasons we’ll never BE able to put our fingers on… We aren’t here, together, BEcause someone got it all wrong; we’re here and together BEcause we need each other.

I love you, Currie

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

25 March 2015

I trust so much in the power of the heart and the soul; I know that the answer to what we need to do next is in our own hearts. All we have to do is listen, then take that one step further and trust what we hear. We will be taught what we need to learn.   [Melody Beattie]

I’ve battled against this realisation. I still find myself insistent that I don’t know or canNOT DO whatever it is I think or even just imagine I must DO. It seems a pretty risky way to BE, Now that I see it there.

Recently I’ve been feeling the need to organise, let go of, and put things in the sort of order others can understand. I’ve simplified myself and my stuff little by slowly these last several years, yet it seems essential to remember this is NOT a one-size-fits-all.

A man went to Istanbul, his first visit there. On his way to a business meeting, this man lost his way. He began raging at himself for getting lost, until a realization allowed him to transcend his ire. "How can I be lost? I've never been here before? “  [Melody Beattie, The Lessons of Love: Rediscovering Our Passion for Live When It All Seems Too Hard to Take]

I know…

I love you, Currie

Monday, March 23, 2015

23 March 2015

Don't you worry if everything seems so difficult right now. They will get better, just give it a try. Don't be too harsh on yourself if you seem to be trying & trying but nothing seems to be changing. Don't be annoyed by the multitudes of flaws that surround you. Don't seek perfection - you will never attain it. Instead, thrive for betterment, taking each day as a new step. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.   [Kapil Ramdass]

Sometimes I worry so much. I worry that I try too hard. That I want more from myself than I am capable of giving. And then in the midst of all this “Worry-Currie” BEing, I remember something.

It is NOT what I accomplish, what I DO, or even what I finish. It is enough that I keep living Today. Keep giving Life all I’ve got to give.

For a writer, life is always too short to write. I will just try my best during what remains of my life.   [Yu Cao]

This says so much of what I’m grappling with these days. I keep thinking that I have to DO more and I must Finish Things I start. I have to put things in order. Leave BEhind me some sense of where I am/was.

I love you, Currie

Friday, March 20, 2015

20 March 2015

One swing set, well worn but structurally sound, seeks new home. Make memories with your kid or kids so that someday he or she or they will look into the backyard and feel the ache of sentimentality as desperately as I did this afternoon. It's all fragile and fleeting, dear reader, but with this swing set, your child(ren) will be introduced to the ups and downs of human life gently and safely, and may also learn the most important lesson of all: No matter how hard you kick, no matter how high you get, you can't go all the way around.   [John Green, The Fault in Our Stars]

Life is peculious. I’m noticing this more Now that Mum is gone. Everyone has a litany of complaints and side commentaries. Things that annoy us are pretty much universal. And we carry on, all of us, as though Time will BE forever and the offenders and annoyances are mere distractions.

Distractions of our own choosing, I might add. We’re NOT victims, any of us. NOT really, but that is like the so many other things we’ll eventually need to let go of in Life.

It is true that we canNOT take anything with us come The End. We canNOT even BE sure of what happens to all we leave BEhind.

I love you, Currie

Thursday, March 19, 2015

19 March 2015

You can listen to silence, Reuven. I've begun to realize that you can listen to silence and learn from it. It has a quality and a dimension all its own. It talks to me sometimes. I feel myself alive in it. It talks. And I can hear it. You have to want to listen to it, and then you can hear it. It has a strange, beautiful texture. It doesn't always talk. Sometimes - sometimes it cries, and you can hear the pain of the world in it. It hurts to listen to it then. But you have to.   [Chaim Potok, The Chosen]

Daily I learn to listen. Daily I learn to love the sweetnesses of Quiet, Silence, and Pausing.

I used to BE someone who didn’t know how to BE quiet. How to wait. How to hear what is important. And I often tuned people out. Is it any wonder that so late in Life I discover something I thought I disliked is actually my preference?!

Music is a total constant…  a song can take you back instantly to a moment, or a place, or even a person. No matter what else has changed in your or the world, that one song says the same, just like that moment.   [Sarah Dessen, Just Listen]

This is utterly true.

I love you, Currie

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

18 March 2015

All any of us wanted, really, was to know that we counted. That someone else's life would not have been as rich without us here.   [Jodi Picoult, Handle with Care]

I wonder if it really is that simple. Many of the conversations I have had all throughout my Life have been about making a difference. Sometimes it was a person who made it. Others the Time or Place in which things happened.

For years Now I have wanted to BE of Service. I feel drawn to this notion that my BEing Here and Now are for a purpose. And yet so many of my days are just quietly inconsequential. I think that when my Light goes out, the worst thing will BE that I canNOT make any difference anymore.

What if it turns out that a life isn’t defined by who you belong to or where you came from, by what you wished for or whom you’ve lost, but instead by the moments you spend getting from each of these places to the next?    [Jodi Picoult, Vanishing Acts]

Playing What If?! is one of my favourite pasttimes. Trying to turn my head round and tilt it so I can see what I couldn’t until Just This Moment. So much of the time, I think that’s all Life is…

I love you, Currie

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

17 March 2015

I hadn't realized how much I'd been needing to meet someone I might be able to say everything to.   [Elizabeth Berg, Talk Before Sleep]

I’ve learned so much about what I need that I often wonder how I managed BEfore knowing this. And I suppose that explains a LOT of my unhappiness with Life, too. Having someone who I can say EVERYthing to, who doesn’t laugh, roll their eyes, or seem fidgety and impatient, this is NOT something I have really had.

And yet, cancer is teaching me far more about my needs and somedays I can actually see things from an entirely new perspective.

I will come back as a little breeze. You will feel me on your face, and you will know that I am still listening. So you can still talk to me.   [Elizabeth Berg, Talk Before Sleep]

This describes what I think I have always BElieved. A person dies, or mayBE just is disappeared from my Life, [far more common in my experience] and I still feel him or her, just BEyond the shadow round the corner.

Sometimes my writing is my someone. Which I suppose would make YOU my someone by extension. Hmmmmmmm…

Sometimes it seems like a little moment brings a whole world with it.   [Elizabeth Berg, True to Form]

Well said.

I love you, Currie

Monday, March 16, 2015

16 March 2015

It is not that I'm so smart. But I stay with the questions much longer.   [Albert Einstein]

This is key, I BElieve. Somehow or other, despite NOT learning from DOing it, I’ll find myself answering too quickly. BEing uncomfortable holding tight and waiting and seeing.

I have so many things that spark my curiosity. So much so that I often chase rabbits down their little holes BEfore I see the predicament I’ve got into.

Pain is a pesky part of being human, I've learned it feels like a stab wound to the heart, something I wish we could all do without, in our lives here. Pain is a sudden hurt that can't be escaped. But then I have also learned that because of pain, I can feel the beauty, tenderness, and freedom of healing. Pain feels like a fast stab wound to the heart. But then healing feels like the wind against your face when you are spreading your wings and flying through the air! We may not have wings growing out of our backs, but healing is the closest thing that will give us that wind against our faces.   [C. JoyBell C.]

It’s a funny thing, the way things unfold and BEcome whatever they are. Even the “bad” stuff holds me in awe of its infinite possibilities.

I love you, Currie

Friday, March 13, 2015

13 March 2015

When it's new and important, you have to rest in between times. And anyway, even when I like a person there is a weariness that comes. I can be with someone and everything is fine and then all of a sudden it can wash over me like a sickness, that I need the quiet of my own self. I need to unload my head and look at what I've got in there so far. See it. Think what it means. I always need to come back to being alone for a while.   [Elizabeth Berg, Joy School]

The thing is, I need to “come back to BEing alone” for little and long whiles. I didn’t always understand this need. Didn’t even want to admit it to myself, much less anyone else.

Now the spaces of BEing alone feel different to me. It’s NOT about someone else or BEing with someone else. It’s about learning to BE myself with myself. Learning to listen and to share my own truths.

But it seemed to me that this was the way we all lived: full to the brim with gratitude and joy one day, wrecked on the rocks the next. Finding the balance between the two was the art and the salvation.   [Elizabeth Berg, The Year of Pleasures]

Life is a dance…

I love you, Currie

Thursday, March 12, 2015

12 March 2015

Everyone thinks you make mistakes when you're young. But I don't think we make any fewer when we're grown up.   [Jodi Picoult]

I thrive on making mistakes. Some of them are actually rather fun, yet all of them are great teachers. And nowadays, making mistakes is more real than ever. At least for me. If I spend more energy than is in my tank, so to speak, I have all that time of refreshing the batteries to look for the lessons and gifts of DOing More than I presently can.

Sometimes, when you don't ask questions, it's not because you are afraid that someone will lie to your face. It's because you're afraid they'll tell you the truth.   [ Jodi Picoult]

I’ve noticed this reluctance in me anymore round listening to the stuff and nonsense others preach, shout, and point out as “dangerous” or “wrong” for me. I’ve been like that to others too much to NOT see straight through it.

And still, I deeply value those brave souls who tell me when I look really tired. When they give me a way back in when I’ve gone outside myself, that is priceless.

Extraordinary things are always hiding in places people never think to look.   [Jodi Picoult, My Sister's Keeper]

I think they always show themselves. Almost always…

I love you, Currie 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

10 March 2015

You can’t replace people you love with other people…But you can trust that you’re not going to run out of people to love.   [Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams]

I don’t mind letting you in on this little piece/peace of my mind. I’ve learned more about what Love really is since the moment I BEgan to BE Mum’s caregiver. Of course, this bit of the Journey has taught me so very much and opened my eyes, ears, and heart to a World BEyond any I’d imagined.

There is a slowness to my capacity for DOing. I’m always reaching for the place that doesn’t judge, label, or critique. I am learning, like a blind person learns, to feel and navigate my World Now. Somehow there is so much more space Here with Mum gone.

Remember how we use to pray to get invited to birthday parties? And they only asked us because we were so grateful we'd do anything, stay late and help the mothers wash the cake pans. I'm still that girl, flattered to death if somebody wants me around.   [Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams]

Somedays, well, somedays I feel just like that. I want to BE a part of things. I want to BE connected. I want to reconnect. I’m still unsure of it all, but I DO love it…

I love you, Currie

Sunday, March 8, 2015

8 March 2015

Bravest thing about people is how they go on loving mortal beings after finding out there's such a thing as dying.   [Anne Tyler, The Tin Can Tree]

I’ve been quiet this past while. I’ve been thinkingandfeeling, resting, reflecting, and I’ve been listening to God and trusting the way Life is playing itself out. I’ve been colouring and drawing and watching Downton Abbey from the very first to the very lastest “chapter” yet again…

I understand Now why we’re always advised to take our Time after a loss to make BIG decisions. I’ve been wondering if I should just STOP this writing, if it would matter?! I canNOT answer most of my questions, but there are a few I’ve started to make sense of.

I‘ve decided to stay where I am, despite the awesome invitation of my brother and sister-in-love to come live in their home in Atlanta. It took a couple of weeks and several really deep conversations to come to this place, but once I arrived I knew I was/am Home.

I have decided to BE. In deciding that, I’ve concurrently chosen BEing over DOing, thus the lulls from me, the dropped ropes of conversation…

I’m still here. I still love you. I’m surely thinking of you, though you might NOT have heard from me in awhile…

I love you, Currie