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Posts Tagged ‘life lessons’

I do. Even if I’m not doing very much of it at this very moment.

Yesterday I received a notice from Pinterest that someone had pinned one of my French Bulldog drawings from one of my boards which features only my own Frenchie artwork. (I have others I’m working on, but they’re not active yet.)

I don’t know why I feel so inordinately touched when someone pins one of my drawings, but I do. Why do I still feel so surprised when someone appreciates my work? Since many people actually do, I thought to share a drawing I did not too long ago of a grey wolf.

I have a deep fondness for wolves and feel very connected to them. I actually feel connected to all animals, and my work in Frenchies has simply been part of my path. When I visited the board where this kind person had pinned my French Bulldog pencil drawing I was greeted not with just Frenchies, but drawings of all kinds and subjects. I was entranced. They reminded me of how much I really do love to draw. I felt inspired.

I realized I need to make time. Not find it, but make it. It’s a challenge in an overly busy schedule, but when I looked at all those drawings, I felt happy. I felt happy because I know that that’s inside me. And I don’t have to draw for a reason, such as working on my portfolio or illustrating one of my picture books; I can draw just because I like to draw. It’s seems like such a novel idea, yet it’s hardly a new one.

And so, once again, I am offered a lesson I haven’t yet learned – different time in my life, different presentation, somewhat of a variation on a theme. I do believe that we all have lessons to learn in our lives, and we will be given them again and again until we catch on. Sometimes I feel like a pretty slow learner, but I’m sure it’s all unfolding exactly as it should.

And for those who’ve read this post, and who very possibly agree, I thank you for stopping by, for briefly being part of my world and perhaps sharing yours, both of us unfolding together.

 

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WomanThinkingBW-2On my path in life I have been told this numerous times by those who have guided me along the way. When life is going smoothly, we can understand this and can breathe a luxurious sigh of relief. Feel happy, even. But when things are not going all that well, in one way or another, a fairly immediate response to that same statement sounds something like, “Seriously? This is exactly where I’m supposed to be?”

I don’t know where so many people got the idea that life should just sail along and bad things should never happen to us, but it’s a pretty commonly held belief at its core. Intellectually, we all know better, of course. Things happen. That’s life. But on some deeper emotional level, many of us are truly taken aback when life throws us the usual curves it dishes up. Somehow we should not really get injured or  ill, certainly not seriously, (occasional colds being the understandable exception); we should not lose loved ones, nor have to suffer terrible financial hardship; everything in GirlThinking-2relationships should be able to be worked out to everyone’s satisfaction in the end; our children should be grateful and well-behaved; we should not lose our jobs; our homes should never catch fire, nor our cars break down in the middle of nowhere … these things just shouldn’t be happening. Right?

And yet they do. And in the midst of all the mess that is a part of life, I am repeatedly told that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. As are you.

I know when I step back that it’s true. I can’t control a great deal of what life brings to me, but I can control how I react to it, and in that, I AM exactly where I’m supposed to be. I’m in the ideal spot to look at a situation, grasp its reality, and respond to it in the highest and best way possible.

Every obstacle we meet in life can be looked at as an opportunity to grow, to further develop the abilities we have to handle life and everything in it with love, dignity and grace. Of course, we have the option to feel miserable, to whine, complain and throw tantrums, but when we’re done with that, having found it’s gotten us nowhere, we can still try and figure out why what’s happening is happening, why it’s such a challenge, and then do something about it.

So even as I will sometimes want to sit and whine and/or do nothing in the face of various challenges, I remind myself that I am exactly where I’m supposed to be. And there may be a reason for that; I have something to learn. If it’s not a good place, what do I need to do to make it better? I can actually be grateful to be given this chance to grow.

It’s a different perspective … and surprisingly effective when given a try.

 

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WingbackChair2If you’re sensing that there may be a bit of a double-entendre in that title, you are so right.

Here you see a photo of a wingback chair, new to me. In some ways, it seemed to have arrived in my possession as a consolation (prize) to offset a number of things I found myself having to deal with recently. And, being an item that I’ve wished I had for such a long time, I find it not only the most wonderful reading chair possible, but also one that consoles me when I curl up in its winged shape.

There really are times when we feel we’ve spent as much of our energy as we have coping with whatever is on our plates. But wait … the Universe has one more challenge to throw our way. Really? I say. Apparently so. In Living in the Light, Shakti Gawain writes about problems as messages. She says that when there are problems in our lives, it may be the Universe trying to get our attention, to tell us something we need to be aware of, something that needs to be changed. If we pay attention, we learn from the messages; if we don’t, the problems often intensify until we start to pay attention.

So I’d say I’ve been smacked quite smartly about now. And I am paying attention.

But back to the chair.

I’d gone across the street to my neighbors’ house to discuss something relevant to said problem and we chatted for an hour or so. When we came out, I noticed a wingback chair sitting at the end of another neighbor’s driveway in the spot where he usually puts out his garbage or recycling. Could that chair really be there for someone to pluck? I immediately sat in it. Possession is 9/10ths of the law, right? Mmmmm – comfy. He was mowing the lawn so we waved him down to see if, indeed, this chair was there for the taking. It was.

In no time, I had this chair, which had been in his family for quite some time and is in excellent condition, in my living room just waiting for me to grab a book and read. He was happy it went to someone he knew and I was thrilled to have it. (And of course, he has visiting privileges.) Somehow this chair appeared in that spot in a very brief period of time … it seemed meant for me, a consolation for an array of recent difficulties and for which I am very grateful.

I sit it in it and read and I sit in it and contemplate … exactly what is the message I’ve been assiduously avoiding that I needed such a wake-up call? Of course, I’m quite sure I know, and now I have someplace to sit and plan what steps I next need to take in my life. Funny how things work out.

 

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When we cease to learn, we truly cease to be alive. Along the way, here are a few things I’ve learned:
* If I leave my Sunday paper on the sidewalk where the delivery people toss it long enough, even though that’s all of 20′ from my front door, someone will definitely take it.
Claude-On-Sidechair3* If I don’t keep an eagle-eye on how much water Claude drinks while I’m making coffee/preparing their breakfast and meds – because who knows, maybe last evening was really his last meal EVER – he is sure to anxiously consume copious amounts and promptly throw it up in the only appropriate place, the w/w carpeting upstairs.
* If the barometric pressure changes overnight, I will wake up with a sinus/migraine headache and there is no way of heading it off the night before.
* Having a sufficient supply of eggs, milk and bread on hand is always comforting.
* No matter how nasty symptoms from a virus/cold/flu are, eventually they subside and move out. (The catch is trying to remember that while in the middle of it when all you want to do is sleep until it’s over.)
* The unconditional love of animals is a soothing balm to whatever ails the mind, body and soul.
CloudySunnySky2* Temperatures in the single digits eventually become double again.
* Behind the clouds, fog or overcast skies, the sun is always shining and will bathe us in warmth soon enough.
* Buried in the symptoms that make us feel like crap when we’re ill is always the opportunity to learn, (yet again), that we are always safe and loved no matter how we feel. A challenge, yes, but still an opportunity.

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