Wednesday, May 31, 2023

May 31--Another Month Closes Out

Many people need desperately to receive this message: "I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them. You are not alone."  --Kurt Vonnegut 

    We close out the May theme of empathy. While technology and social media certainly have their downsides, the connection they have provided among people has been invaluable. No matter what the condition one is experiencing, it is possible to connect with others "in the same boat." Our common suffering brings us together and empathy supports healing. 
    Onward to June and summer fun,

And more baseball!!!!!
This is one of many "sittin' spots" 
outside Minute Maid Park in Houston.

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

May 30--Connected at the Heart

You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read. It was Dostoevsky and Dickens who taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, or who had ever been alive.  --James Baldwin

    I'm learning a lot about anxiety. Let me back up for a moment. At one of the very first 12-step meetings I attended years ago, the person leading shared on her multitude of fears. I thought at the time, "I'm glad I'm not scared of all that stuff." Well, it turns out that I had all those fears and more. 
    Back to anxiety. I never considered myself an anxious person until Something nudged me to look into what anxiety is. Holy cow! I am a living, breathing ball of anxiety, have been all my life, but it is so much a part of me that I didn't even recognize it. Maybe I should congratulate myself for living fairly successfully with it all these decades!??! Just like I dove in and dealt with many fears, I am now digging into my thoughts, beliefs and behaviors that are contributing to anxiety. It feels a bit like a Mount-Everest-size task, but I must continue with one of my favorite mantras: one day at a time. 
    I'm not alone in this, and I am grateful for that.

Anxiety feels like a black hole.

Monday, May 29, 2023

May 29--Thinking of You

Never be so busy as not to think of others.  --Mother Teresa

    There is quite a lot of "busy" in the world. It is easy to get caught up in one's own to-do list, drama and "shoulds," so that it is easy to lose track of others.
    There are three times in particular when I feel like I can set myself aside and really open to Spirit's guidance. Those times are when writing, teaching Melt Method and yoga, and doing coaching sessions. Allowing the nudges, ideas and promptings of Spirit to flow through is energizing for me and usually just right in support of the others. It's a win-win, which I guess is the ultimate truth of the quote above... thinking of others is good for both parties!
    Take a deep breath and send a blessing to someone you love ❤

Our deck garden, mostly herbs
with one pot of flowers

Sunday, May 28, 2023

May 28--Just Be Kind

It's a little embarrassing that after 45 years of research and study, the best advice I can give people is to be a little kinder to each other.  --Aldous Huxley

    Each day my prayer includes this: "Help us all to be kinder to each other and kinder to the planet." 
    I have a snoozing pup next to me on the bed. I've learned a lot from Barney. Though we don't know what breed(s) he is composed of, we know he has strong herding tendencies--he is much more relaxed when his people are organized and in sight. He is curious, especially with cats and bunnies. He can be very still, with just the slightest nose twitch; he can zoom around the yard and house at lightning speed. He's good at chilling out. He loves his people. He's quite vocal when he thinks we need a talking-to. He entertains us by romping with a dirty sock while we are enjoying meal time. He's smart and eager to please. He makes us laugh. He gets wildly excited at the suggestion of a car ride. He's a really good long-distance traveler. Belly-up for belly rubs is his most adorable position. I've learned a lot about kindness since Barney came to our house. 
    Today is a good day to practice kindness,

Focusing on a bunny...

Saturday, May 27, 2023

May 27--Acceptance--A Good Plan

You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.  --Harper Lee

    Walking around in another's shoes/skin/body is impossible. We can't really know all of what is happening with anyone, so let's all cut each other a bunch of slack, shall we? That's not easy, especially with what appears to be fear, ignorance, malevolence and stupidity running rampant nowadays. 
    I need this reminder from the big book of AA: 

And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation -- some fact of my life -- unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
Nothing, absolutely nothing, happens in God's world by mistake. Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.
For me, serenity began when I learned to distinguish between those things that I could change and those I could not. When I admitted that there were people, places, things, and situations over which I was totally powerless, those things began to lose their power over me. I learned that everyone has the right to make their own mistakes, and learn from them, without my interference, judgment, or assistance!

    Working on it!

Sparkling dewdrops on the grass

Friday, May 26, 2023

May 26--Carry Love

A man sees in the world what he carries in his heart.   
--Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

    I believe that each one of us comes into earthly life with love in our hearts. Alas, circumstances and people can damage that pure essence and warp the individual's perception of the world. Life becomes a question of whether or not we see the Universe as a friendly and welcoming place. 
    There is much going on in the world these days that seeks to implant fear in our hearts. Fear generates anger and all sorts of poor behavior. This is not good for anyone. For humanity to survive, we must carry love in our hearts, living the wisdom that we are all one with each other and our glorious Mother Earth. 
    Love casts out fear,
In the neighborhood...

Thursday, May 25, 2023

May 25--Thoughts on Aging

You can only understand people if you feel them in yourself.  --John Steinbeck

    Let's take up the subject of aging. A friend mentioned this the other night as a challenge in his life. We've heard the saying often: Getting old isn't for sissies. I certainly didn't understand older people and their aging issues until I became one of them. There are new experiences on every level. 
    Physically, I can't do as much for as long as I used to. There are things I did earlier in life, like repaint our entire house inside, that I have no desire to do anymore. I've cut down the size of my garden. I pace myself better to accomplish things like cleaning. Seeing my 83-year-old brother's challenges, especially with balance, is making me acutely aware of all the ways and places that folks can fall, and falls are the primary thing to put folks in nursing homes. I'm fortunate in that I'm very healthy and active, with minimal chronic aches. Those with major health issues have not only physical discomfort but also mental and emotional distress.
    Mental, emotional, spiritual issues of aging are abundant and complex. How do we maintain a sense of being useful after retiring from a lengthy career? How do we handle the challenges of illness and loss of loved ones? It's a proven fact that we attend more funerals as we age. Looking death in the face can be terrifying. Can we stay in our current home or do we need one more accommodating to our aging bodies? How is the bucket list going? Are we at peace with ourselves and others or do amends need to be made? So many questions, and we recognize--so little time. 
    Enjoy this day!

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

May 24--Kindness Starts with Me

You can either practice being right or practice being kind.  --Anne Lamott

    I do enjoy being right, I must admit. Being right, however, doesn't always feel good, but being kind does. I have little difficulty being kind to others, but being kind to myself can be another issue. 
    I should do this, I shouldn't do that. My ego wants right; my soul wants kind. Let's use this week's house cleaning for example. I generally clean when my spouse is away for a couple days in a 3-4 hour marathon effort, leaving me cranky and sore. This week I have decided to do bits of cleaning when he is away for a few hours here and there. This is a much kinder-to-me approach. "Right" would be to get it all shiny clean at one time (which lasts about 10 minutes with a dog). "Kind" is to get it done at a pace that satisfies me and works for me physically. 
    Even kinder would be to hire a cleaning service. Someday!

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

May 23--Laugh--It's Good for All of Us

The highest forms of understanding we can achieve are laughter and human compassion.  --Richard Feynman

    On most evenings, being the introvert I am, I hole up in the woman cave to watch sports (baseball, basketball, the occasional Chiefs game). This past Sunday evening, the neighbors were sitting in their driveway with extended family talking and watching the children play on the court. I decided to be sociable and join them. We had a delightful time chatting and laughing. They even thanked me for coming over. I always enjoy it when I make the effort to be sociable. Note to self: do it more often!
    Below are some funnies from Greg Tamblyn. 

Monday, May 22, 2023

May 22--Cleansing Our Vision

Those who do not weep, do not see.  --Victor Hugo

    If we can't recognize and feel the pain and suffering within ourselves, we can't possibly be compassionate with others. There has been an unfortunate demand over the past few decades of "do not cry," especially applied to little boys. "Stop crying or I'll give you something to cry about." I've heard that one; likely you have, too. That cuts off a vital part of human experience, one that is absolutely essential to being a healthy human in healthy relationships. Crying is soul-rinsing, a regularly needed self-care practice. I would add that it doesn't matter whether we know the source of the tears--it could be anger, fear, frustration or joy--just let them flow. The more comfortable we become with our own tears, the more we can be comfortable with the tears of others. I don't think anyone ever died from crying or from being around someone who is crying. Babies wouldn't survive without crying--it is a natural organic human bodily function. 
    Let's embrace crying, our own and others, with compassion.

Sunday, May 21, 2023

May 21--You & I Are Not Alone

We don't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts. 
--Pema Chodron

    I found this interesting article in Psychology Today titled "20 Common Experiences When You Have Endured Relational Trauma." It's worth the read if this applies to you. Here are a few items that especially hit home with me: 

#2... Early on, you may attach to a substance or behavior (or both or many) in the absence of having someone safe, consistent, and stable to attach to. And when stress overwhelms you now, you may revert back to your old coping mechanisms. You may feel shame for doing so. This is addiction.
#7...You know the states of anxiety and depression well. You live with these realities. They’re a part of you as much as the color of your hair or birthmarks. 
#17... You can’t even remotely imagine what it would feel like to have a safety net underneath you. Your peers are swinging from trapeze bars with a big old bouncy net underneath them, waiting to catch them, and you don’t feel that underneath you as you swing. You’d give anything for that net. 

    Good food for thought.

Saturday, May 20, 2023

May 20--Light Up Your Face

If you see someone without a smile, give them one of yours.  --Dolly Parton

    Simple and easy. Even when I'm in a cranky mood, I try to be polite and kind to those I encounter throughout my day. Smiling gets the kindness ball rolling. 
    We have been blessed with much-needed rain here in south central Kansas. The yard and garden are loving it. Alas, there are a few hundred maple seedlings sprouting everywhere from the over-abundance of "helicopters" produced this spring. When our neighborhood was new, many silver maples were planted, and we are paying the price now. We don't have one, but our neighbors do, and the wind brings plenty of the seeds into our yard. Fortunately the rain makes pulling them out easier. 
    Enjoy your Saturday and make it good for others--SMILE!
A cute snoozing Barney to brighten your day

Friday, May 19, 2023

May 19--Some Days Are Like This

Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.  --Dalai Lama XIV

    I would add humor to that list, offering this from a local liquor store sign: ​ Cremation is my last hope for a smoking hot body.
    Today I am cranky and don't feel like writing here. I need to do some personal journaling to "move some energy." 
    Back tomorrow,
At the taco joint near
TX Rangers Field

Thursday, May 18, 2023

May 18--Back Home

We have so far to go to realize our human potential for compassion, altruism, and love.  --Jane Goodall

    There's a gigantic understatement. 
    I'm back home, more or less enjoying "re-entry." I'm having a mix of the joy of a great achievement and "what do I do with myself now?"
    Miscellaneous thoughts about the baseball quest... I've seen the Cubs play in seven places--Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Kansas City, Denver, Phoenix and Houston. The northernmost stadium is Seattle, southernmost is Miami. My favorite will always be Wrigley Field. I've been on stadium tours in Chicago (Wrigley), Boston (Fenway), and Baltimore (Camden Yards). I've been to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown--truly a must for any true baseball fan. Assorted friends went with me to some of the games, but I was solo for most of them, driving and flying thousands of miles. I saw wonderful things in many cities, such as the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. 
    My one remaining baseball bucket list item is to go to Cubs spring training in Arizona... next year!

The view from my seat, 
along with my celebratory ice cream.
New stadium, excellent video boards.
The final result.

This young woman played the National Anthem--
it was a goose-bumper, so awesome!

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

May 17--The Quest Is Complete!

We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.  --Epictetus

    Excellent words of wisdom, those are. 
    Hang with me here. I'm writing the full account of my final stadium for my own memory...
    I arrived at the hotel around 2:30 and took a pre-game nap. Hoping to find food near the ballpark, I left for Globe Life Field around 4:30. There was some traffic, but it wasn't bad. It took me about a half hour to get there. Google Maps guided me directly to Lot D, my parking spot, which was less than a mile from the ballpark. As I was walking toward the park, I asked two men in Braves shirts if there were restaurants near the park, and they directed me to "Texas Live!"--the mother lode of bars and restaurants. I cruised around to see what struck my stomach's fancy and settled on al pastor street tacos and an IPA. Then I headed over to the ballpark and cruised the whole way around the stadium, taking in the sights and concessions. 
    While roaming, I encountered three women who were taking photos, so I asked them to take one of me. 

The writing behind my right ear says
    I'm wearing the t-shirt I had made for the occasion. On the back is a list of all the stadiums and when I was there. There are Cubs patches on both sleeves. 
    This being the completion of my quest, I decided to celebrate with a scoop of ice cream, Blue Bell brand, of course. I settled into my seat looking straight down the first base line. The stadium is quite cool. There were several home runs. When a Ranger hits one, fireworks explode. They also do funky things with the lights during pitching changes. There was no one in the seats on either side of me, so I didn't really talk with anyone until... there was a woman to my left sitting with her three adult sons. She came over to me and said, "Are you a Cubs fan?" "Yes!" She asked, "Are you here by yourself?" "Yes!" She said, "I was sitting over there wondering if I could ever do this by myself." I started telling her about this being #30 stadium, which brought in the woman sitting behind me, who then asked about the list on the back of the shirt. We had a lovely chat and the first woman who came over to talk said, "Safe travels to you, you are an inspiration to us all!" 
    The Rangers won 7-4. I walked with hordes of people back to my vehicle and slowly made my way through the traffic, onto the freeway and back to the hotel. 
    Homeward bound, happy and satisfied with 30 adventures well done!

P.S. More photos to come when I get home to decent internet!

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

May 16--#29 is in the Books

When someone is crying, of course, the noble thing to do is to comfort them. But if someone is trying to hide their tears, it may also be noble to pretend you do not notice them.  --Lemony Snicket

    Let's allow tears to fall where they may and not be so distressed by our own or others' tears. Let 'em flow!
    Stadium #29 on my list, Minute Maid Park in Houston, is "in the books." My friend did all the driving, no small gift in Houston traffic. He treated me to a lovely Mexican dinner at Irma's near the ballpark. Then we walked all around two levels of the stadium for me to gawk and take pictures. There were lots of Cubs fans seated around me. Despite our supportive cheering, the Cubs lost 6-4. This is not uncommon--the majority of Cubs games I've seen in person have ended with the Cubs losing. That will never deter me, however!
    Today it's off to Dallas/Fort Worth for #30, Braves vs. Rangers. 
View from our seats

Orbit, the Astros mascot

The home run train

Monday, May 15, 2023

May 15--Bliss!

If you send out goodness from yourself, or if you share that which is happy or good within you, it will all come back to you multiplied ten thousand times... The more love you give away, the more love you will have.  --John O'Donohue

    Sunday's theme was water. It has been raining in Houston for a couple weeks and it has continued to pour on and off since I arrived on Saturday. Ditches and creeks are getting perilously full. It was good weather to stay in and nap. 
    I had my first float experience at Blissful Waters Float Center in the Woodlands. WOW!! I was in the Starry Lights room where the rectangular tank has blue light "stars" in the ceiling. The water is warm, about 18" deep, and you float--it's not optional, because of the level of epsom salt in the water.  It's an hour of pure heaven. I used a Nekdoodle around my neck to keep my ears comfortably out of the water. I don't think I fell asleep. I also don't think I have ever been so relaxed, and I loved being naked in the water. Interesting after-effects included peeing a lot, and my achy shoulder of a few weeks was ache-free. "Blissful" is correct!
    The rest of the day was lazing around my friend's house, all zenned out from the float. We binge-watched the series "Ted Lasso." It's a hoot! 
    Monday's adventure--seeing the Cubs play the Astros. Stay tuned 😉

Sunday, May 14, 2023

May 14--Happy Mother's Day!

The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day.  --David Foster Wallace

    This sounds like the process of raising a child. There are "myriad, petty little unsexy" things one must do every day to accomplish the goal of raising a youngster to be a successful adult. This is an excellent quote for Mother's Day! 
    I have started the final trip of my every-MLB-stadium quest. I am in Houston, Texas, staying with friends. As a Mother's Day treat to myself, I get to do my first float experience--I'm really excited about that. Tomorrow evening I'll see my beloved Cubs play the Astros. Then I'll head to the Dallas area on Tuesday for the Rangers game. Stay tuned, lots of fun and photos to follow...

Can't wait to tell you all about it!
My float room is called Starry Night, YES!

Saturday, May 13, 2023

May 13--A Good Cry

I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil.  --J. R. R. Tolkien

    Tears an evil? Maybe fake manipulative ones. Alas, tears and I have been very good buds for the past few months. My dad used to say of me, "Yes, her water always was close to her eyes." 
    I refer to crying as soul-rinsing. Our bodies are energy, and sometimes the best way to move out stuck energy is to have a good cry. It was quite common during yoga teacher training for someone to start sobbing on their mat. Yoga moves a lot of energy, and sometimes the only way to let go is through tears. 
    One way to inspire tears is watching a sad show or movie (or alas, reading the news these days). I would offer for that purpose "The Art of Racing in the Rain." It's an excellent movie that left me sobbing. 
    If you are with someone who is crying... let them cry! Let them have their flow no matter how uncomfortable it may make you, no matter how driven you may be to try and fix the situation. 
    We cry for many reasons, and no reason. It's all OK. Tears are cleansing and holy.

Friday, May 12, 2023

May 12--Learn & Be Useful

I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others. You'd be surprised how far that gets you.  --Neil DeGrasse Tyson

    This sounds like a very successful way to live, good for Tyson and those with whom he interacts.
    If one is observant at all, knowing more about the world each day is a relatively easy task. Knowing more about the world includes knowing more about oneself, because it is through each individual's "lens" or personal psyche that one perceives the world. 
    Last night my husband and I went on an adventure to Newton. There we learned that Genova Italian Restaurant is quite excellent. It's not fancy, but the food is great, the service is fast and friendly, and we'll go back. It is totally worth the 30-minute drive. 
    Lessening the suffering of others at first sounds like a lofty task. But it may just take a smile or a kind gesture. There's no one on the planet who couldn't use more kindness. I especially encourage being kind to folks who serve us in some way. 
    Let us throw kindness around with wild abandon.

Adopt a pet--a great way to lessen suffering!

Thursday, May 11, 2023

May 11--Purity vs. Holiness

The story of human intimacy is one of constantly allowing ourselves to see those we love most deeply in a new, more fractured light. Look hard. Risk that. 
--Cheryl Strayed

    Richard Rohr's "Daily Meditation" from May 10 is titled "Purity is Not Holiness." He offers these words from pastor and public theologian Nadia Bolz-Weber describing how emphasizing “purity” leads us away from holiness:
Our purity systems, even those established with the best of intentions, do not make us holy. They only create insiders and outsiders. They are mechanisms for delivering our drug of choice: self-righteousness, as juice from the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil runs down our chins. And these purity systems affect far more than our relationship to sex and booze: they show up in political ideology, in the way people shame each other on social media, in the way we obsess about “eating clean.” Purity most often leads to pride or to despair, not holiness. Because holiness is about union with, and purity is about separation from….

To connect to the holy is to access the deepest, juiciest part of our spirits. Perhaps this is why we set up so many boundaries, protections, and rules around both sex and religion…. But when the boundaries, protections, and rules become more important than the sacred thing they are intended to protect, casualties ensue.

But no matter how much we strive for purity in our minds, bodies, spirits, or ideologies, purity is not the same as holiness. It’s just easier to define what is pure than what is holy, so we pretend they are interchangeable.
    I am a casualty of modern-day religion. I've experienced the glaring self-righteousness of those seeking purity. It's not pretty. An outstanding example is the current separation in the United Methodist Church over LGBTQ--one side seeking purity, the other holiness. 
    I'll take holiness.
Grass shadows on the sidewalk...
Every step we take is on holy ground.

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

May 10--Guilt & Shame

Everyone behaves badly... Give them a proper chance.  --Ernest Hemingway

    Three strikes and you are out? Forgive seven times seventy? How many proper chances are too many? I certainly can't answer that one. 
    Here are some excellent words regarding shame and guilt from Richard Rohr:
What we call Original Sin in Genesis perhaps could be better called Original Shame, because Adam and Eve describe themselves as feeling naked. Some of the first words of God to these newly created people are “Who told you that you were naked?” (Genesis 3:11). Next, in a lovely maternal image, God as seamstress sews leather garments for them (3:21). The first thing God does after creation itself is cover the shame of these new creatures.

This must name something that is fundamental within us. We live, not just in an age of anxiety, but also in a time of significant shame. I find very few people who do not feel inadequate, stupid, dirty, or unworthy. When people come to me for counseling or confession, they always express in one way or another, “If people only knew the things I think, the things I’ve done, the things I’ve said, the things I want to do, who would love me?” We all have that terrible feeling of a fundamental unworthiness. It takes many different forms, but somehow it appears in each of our lives, even if we do not acknowledge it.

Guilt, I am told, is about things we have done or not done, but our shame is about the primal emptiness of our very being. Shame is not about what we have done, but about who we are and who we are not. Guilt is a moral question. Shame—foundational shame, at least—has to do with our very being itself. It is not resolved by changing behavior as much as by changing our very self-image, our alignment with the universe. Shame is not about what we do, but where we abide.
    We all experience shame at some point. It does not feel good. Let us cut each other a break. 
Alan Seeger Natural Area,

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

May 9--Learn to Love

People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite. 
--Nelson Mandela 

    Amen! We have nearly infinite daily examples of people who have been taught to hate, all the way from the mass shooters to our elected and appointed officials. The madness must stop, and I believe it will, but only time will enable a more loving mass-consciousness to prevail. 
    Let us learn to love--it makes life easier in the long run for all.

Colbert Hills Golf Course,
Manhattan, Kansas

Monday, May 8, 2023

May 8--Comparison Is a Joy-Killer

One is never fortunate or as unfortunate as one imagines. 
--Francois de la Rochefoucauld

    Or, as my mother often said, it's never so bad that it couldn't be worse. I suppose there is the corollary: it's never so good that it couldn't be better. I'm thinking that is where this quote is headed. 
    This quote invites comparison. It's always possible to find someone in a worse condition or a better condition than one's present circumstances. It is human nature to compare, and I don't believe that is necessarily a good thing. We've heard the phrase "there but for the grace of God go I," which is dreadful. It implies that God has somehow chosen to favor me and afflict the other person. Nope. On the other hand, constantly comparing to those more fortunate leaves us discontent with our current circumstances. That may be OK if it inspires constructive action, but it can also generate loads of unhappiness. 
    Staying content in the present moment, while often a challenge, is the place to be. 

Astronomy Picture of the Day, May 6
"Twilight in a Flower"
Credit & copyright: Dario Giannobile

Sunday, May 7, 2023

May 7--Compassion Demands Action

Compassion is an unstable emotion. It needs to be translated into action, or it withers.  --Susan Sontag

    I think of all the compassion that snaps into action when a natural disaster strikes. The devastation is unimaginable, yet compassion and resilience rise to the top and take over in recovery. 
    That's a big example. A small example is the act of giving blood. I'm healthy, and I do this regularly. It takes only an hour of my time every eight weeks, my common blood type is very much needed, and it may save someone's life. Big needles don't bother me. It's a bonus to me because it makes me eat in a healthy manner to keep up my iron levels. 
    There are examples of compassion all around us. It is what makes folks adopt animals. It is a commitment to love and care for a critter for years. I believe humans are naturally compassionate--we are cared for lovingly when we enter this world and as we grow, we seek to share that loving care with others. My son has said that he and his wife want their son (my grandson!) to be a compassionate human, and they are nurturing him to be passionate about compassion. 
    Today is a good day to be kind.
More Colorado beauty,
compliments of our compassionate Mother Earth

Saturday, May 6, 2023

May 6--Make Someone's Day

There is a wisdom of the Head... there is a wisdom of the Heart. 
--Charles Dickens

    I experienced the most lovely kindness several days ago. On my way to teach MELT and yoga, I stopped at QT for coffee. The place was packed. When I moved to the line to pay, there was a man in front of me with his young daughter, both with handfuls of stuff. He turned to me, said, "Just coffee? I got it." I was surprised, happily thanked him, and went on my way. How sweet! When I got out to the pickup, I thought, "Did he pay, or did I just steal this?" I laughed, feeling certain he is a man of his word, at least in this instance. Plus, what a neat gesture for his little girl to witness. It made my day.
    Kindness rocks--spread it around.

Without coffee, life would be impossible... 😉😉

Friday, May 5, 2023

May 5--So Many Mysteries

Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another. 
--Carl Sagan

    Live and let live. What a concept!!! If we could all stay out of other people's business, we would not have legislatures like the one in Kansas debating who can use which bathroom or play on which sports team. A person's sexuality is no one's business but their own, and that's just one example. 
    Each of us is unique, precious and unrepeatable. It tickles me to no end to look at my grandson and consider what a magnificent mystery he is. Where did he come from? What have his past lives been like? Why did he pick this particular set of parents? What are his talents? What will he bring to our world in the future? 
    We all began life as these precious mysteries. Let us enjoy each other's awesomeness!

We all started here.

Thursday, May 4, 2023

May 4--So Much In Common

Remember that everyone you meet is afraid of something, loves something and has lost something.  --H. Jackson Brown, Jr.   

    What an excellent, simple and profound statement! I am afraid of old-age illness and dependency (very common), I love my family dearly (very common), and I have lost both my parents (very common). Could we use this idea to take it a whole lot easier on ourselves and others?
    Fear, love and grief--we all experience those. It's what we do with them that matters. Fear... do we hide from the world, buy a machine gun and kill those we fear, join a riot at the Capitol, or is there some other way? Love... as my wise younger son told me yesterday, love starts with oneself, and if you can't do that, you can't love anyone else. So you don't need to search for love; apply it to yourself and the rest will follow. Loss... not just about death, we face loss on a regular basis. Allowing ourselves time to grieve is both a loving thing and one that can help with any fears relative to the loss.
    We have much more in common than we regularly acknowledge.

Near Fort Collins, CO

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

May 3--Understanding Creates Community

In time we often become one with those we once failed to understand. 
--Patti Smith

    I said often to our (usually upset with me) teenage sons, "You won't understand why we do what we do until you get married or have children of your own." While that didn't make them any happier, it was the truth. Now that our older son has a son of his own, much has become clearer. "OH, I get it now." 
    I also find this quote manifesting in my MELT and yoga teaching. As I get older and experience more assorted aches and/or injuries, I'm learning ways that sore bodies move or don't move and how to adapt my teaching to support a more comfortable practice for all. 
    Understanding is a great thing.
We need all of us to make our colorful world!

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

May 2--Help--Everyone Needs It

The only way we will survive is by being kind. The only way we can get by in this world is through the help we receive from others. No one can do it alone, no matter how great the machines are.  --Amy Poehler

    Asking for help... one of the toughest things to do, but absolutely necessary to make it in this world. The thing is--we all want to be helpful, we generally like it when someone asks for our help, but to go the opposite direction--that's another story. Asking for help is often considered a sign of weakness, but the opposite is the truth. It is a sign of strength and courage. 
    Let's face it. For each of us, there is a huge amount we do not know how to do. Nobody can know everything. It makes good sense to seek help from those who do know. 
    I think it is dependency that so many of us fear--that we will be in constant need of help. I certainly dread the thought of that. As I get older, there are more things that I cannot do or don't want to do, so asking for help is becoming more routine. 
    I know there is still within me that 4-year-old screaming, "I do it myself!!!" Fortunately my adult self has learned that asking for help is OK, necessary, and usually the easier way to go. 

CSU Gardens--it takes plentiful
help to create such beauty!

Monday, May 1, 2023

May 1--Happy May Day

Compassion is not a relationship between healer and the wounded. It's a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others.  --Pema Chodron

    After a month of coming up with my own or random quotes, I've decided to dive into another one of the National Geographic quote books, this one being "Daily Kindness--365 Days of Compassion." I need compassion, you need it, and so does our world. 
    We all have our dark side. If we hide and deny it, fearful of it, we will be fearful relative to others. They might see, heaven forbid! So we start with compassion relative to our own journey through assorted dark places, and then we have compassion for others. 
    We tend to be mercilessly critical of ourselves. This is a choice. It does not have to be that way. Consider one way that you could be kinder to yourself today and just do it!