Monday, February 8, 2016

What I'm Reading: End of the Affair - Graham Greene

I used to do a lot of audiobooks.  Once, when looking for a new recommendation - I saw that Colin Firth had just finished reading for "End of the Affair" because he found the book so poignant.  My library didn't have it and my commute has since changed (most days I take the train and don't drive) so I'm back to print reading.  Anyways, I was in the mood for a compelling fiction read and this one did not disappoint.   I read it in record time and thought it was both high in drama and a page-turner and very smart with some excellent lines.  Definitely one I recommend.

"The desire to possess in some, like avarice: in others the desire to surrender, to lose the sense of responsibility, the wish to be admired.  Sometimes just the wish to be able to talk, to unburden yourself to someone who won't be bored.  The desire to find again a father or a mother.  And of course under it all the biological motive."

"When I began to write our story down, I thought I was writing a record of hate, but somehow the hate has got mislaid and all I know is that in spite of her mistakes and her unreliability, she was better than most.  It's just as well that one of us should believe in her: she never did in herself."

"If I were writing a novel I would end here: a novel, I used to think, has to end somewhere, but I'm beginning to believe my realism has been at fault all these years, for nothing in life now ever seems to end.  Chemists tell you matter is never completely destroyed, and mathematicians tell you that if you halve each pace in crossing a room, you will never reach the opposite wall, so what an optimist I would be if I thought that this story ended here."

""I'm sorry," she said, and I had the impression that she meant it.  She had a lot to learn, in the way of books and music and how to dress and talk, but she would never have to learn humanity"

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Little Blue Truck

My boy reciting (practically verbatim) the entire Little Blue Truck story to himself - with perfect inflection, animal sounds etc - while I enjoy my coffee and quiet morning --- hard to be better than this.   Happy Sunday.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Happiness

"I measure happiness in moments, " writes Elizabeth Lesser.  I surrender to her great words over and over again.   I used to strive to be "happy".  When, inevitably I wasn't - whether for a day, a week, an hour - I desperately tried to remedy it.  What's wrong?!!  My marriage, my house, my job, my family, my LIFE.   I panicked and tried to solve the equation.  Looking for the concrete x.  The missing link. The puzzle piece in the wrong place.  Upturning everything....

There is no answer.  There is no holy grail.  It is only waves.  Waves of happy, waves of sad.  Waves of frustration.  Waves of elation.  You ride them while you have them.  You release them when they break.  You keep going forward.   You never stop learning.  And never stop trying.   You never give up on yourself, on your path toward deeper consciousness, on your path toward peace - with it all.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Bowie

The internet is filled with stories of David Bowie after his passing yesterday.  A friend of mine posted "Dad, we didn't always see eye to eye but we always had Bowie...."   We also grew up with Bowie blaring through the speakers.  My dad's taste in music was eclectic and wonderful - on a given Saturday we might wake up to him blaring Bowie, or dancing to Billy Idol, contemplating with Pink Floyd, rocking with the Rolling Stones or just "groovin'" (his word) to  Sinead O'Connor! :)

Parents are funny.  The process of both becoming an adult and a parent myself has made it so much easier to see them for what they were/are.  Just two flawed humans doing the very best they could - especially for their kids.   Mistakes were a plenty and so was the love and good intention.

As we say goodbye to a rock legend, I thank him for his bravery, vision, and genius.  He will never die because the music that brought fathers and daughters together, or helped someone truly dance (!), or just make their own experience as a human a little easier will live forever.   Thank you, David Bowie.  You were a gift.


Friday, January 1, 2016

welcome, 2016

Another year here.  One of my favorite parts of this blog is flipping back and seeing what was on my mind, what were my goals, what was I working through....  I've been posting here for 5 years (!) so some good work has been done.

Ever the reflective person, I love taking this moment in time to think a bit about what was accomplished last year and look forward to what I'd like to do in the new year.

2015:
I set the word action as my mantra for the year.  and I did it....  leaving the security of a job I'd had for 8 years.   My new work experience was wonderful.  It gave me more time with my family, reminded me of my strengths, and met some inspiring new people.  What I hadn't really expected, was what it would teach me about myself.  Changing my environment, meant seeing patterns as my own - not the result of a job, or a person, or anything external.  Learning that ---- processing it deep in my bones --- was a gift given to me by 2015.

2016:
This year my word is strength.  Strength over self doubt.  Strength over fear.  Strength over the external.  To be a pillar of my own.  No matter the wind, no matter the circumstance to stand tall in what I know is true and believe in myself and my ability,   "Anyone to whom you've given responsibility for your experience, please take it back...." will be a daily meditation.

It's a happy day.  A fresh start.  I have a beautiful son, a marriage grounded in love, friends who are honest and also trying their best, and all the strength I need.

Happy New Year ~~~***


Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Elizabeth Lesser - everytime.

Via her FB page.  "This week between the holidays always throws me off kilter. I like routine; I like knowing what comes next, and so the “in-betweeness” of this week stirs up uneasiness, insecurity, bewilderment. But the “in betweenness” also makes it the perfect time to go within (if you can get away from kids on vacation, houseguests staying too long, family you are visiting, etc.) and ponder your New Year’s resolution. It takes a sense of bewilderment and insecurity to know what you want to let go of, and what wants to be born within you. It takes sitting in the discomfort of bewilderment long enough to ask yourself the deeper questions: What am I ready to release? What is calling to me? How can my own change contribute to a world that needs wise, kind, strong, awakened human beings? I make the writing of my New Year’s resolution a spiritual practice of sorts. The same thing happens every year. Right after Christmas I go into a weird mood, a slump, a confusion. I rattle around in my own head for a while, until I finally remember what this week is for. Finally I let myself rest in the discomfort of being “in-between” and I snatch some moments each day to contemplate what I want to let go of from the past year, and what I want to give birth to in the new year. I’ve been re-reading two books to help me frame my questions and resolution. Because I’ve been so upset about the state of affairs in our country, I’ve been studying Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s small masterpiece, Strength to Love. And because I am a devotee of the Sufi teacher, Hazrat Inayat Khan, I’ve been reading his book Mastery. I like re-reading books that have been important lights on the path—I always find something new, something clarifying. I hope you’ll take some time in the next days to find inspiration and to consider a resolution for the New Year. I’ll share what I come up with on New Year’s day."

Friday, December 11, 2015

This week

A few journaling prompts from the 5-minute-journal.

What made this week great:
1.  Doing the pickups/dropoffs at Joe's preschool.  I love seeing him and his friends "in their element."
2.  Addressing my Christmas cards.  Sending/Receiving them is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season.
3.  Finding an hour with my husband to keep up with Homeland.

This weekend we'll celebrate Christmas with my side of the family.  My siblings and nieces and nephews will be in for the weekend and we've got plans to take the 6 kids on a Polar Express train ride, do our gift exchanging, and attend our annual big family party.   Merry making for sure.


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