Turned out to be a longer sabbatical than I thought it would be but a much-needed one. Things are still rough as my spine is not fixed yet, I am being sent to a vascular doctor for my feet and lower legs and just had endoscopy which showed up one large ulcer and three smaller (not small…just smaller) ulcers in my stomach. I go back in six weeks for a repeat to see if the meds are helping.
I have wanted to write on this topic for a while. It seems the world wants to keep dividing instead of multiplying or uniting like we should. We pass around more labels than ever before and labels belong on soup cans. And I look at the destruction that has been done to my country over the past months and think with such sadness of how we all came together after 9/11 to join forces: No division and no fighting just bringing unity. I pray it does not take that again for us to wake up.
So, what has laid on my mind and heart is this. Every time we pass on a picture of ugliness, or racism, of killing, of extreme negativity we are helping keep it alive. Did you ever think about that. We think we are helping but all we are doing is reminding people of things that keep people divided. There is just so much craziness that if I did not have the complete faith in God, my Father, in Christ, my savior, I might succumb to the fear so many have. I just know that God takes care of his own. And I also know that when people are in a state of fear or anger, they do not think rationally. I truly believe that we need to have better investigation of these crimes and I believe the media needs to quit feeding info to keep people stirred up.
I have never constantly pushed my health issues in the front for everyone to see. Why? Because I don’t want pity, I don’t want attention, I just want to serve the Lord and if it means doing it hurting then so be it. I believe Satan keeps throwing these things at me so I will stop working for the Lord but I will not stop. And I know when I can not go a step further, God is carrying me.
So, lets talk about unity. We can not have unity if all we do is use labels. Labels divide and make distinctions between us. When we label others or ourselves, we are drawing a line saying they are different from me. How can you unify if we are always putting labels on everything. I remember watching a Black man teaching his daughter who started school for the first time and he had her repeating things like….I am good, I am not bad, no one is better them me, I am kind, I am beautiful. I thought it was beautiful because he was trying to prepare her for the ugliness that can occur when we send our kids off to school. And where do these kids who yell out obscenities and name calling learn how to do this? Someone has TAUGHT them whether it be the parents, the grandparents, the siblings…someone close to the child has taught them to hate and name call.
This is my take on these riots. When they destroy property and hurt people, they cease being a rioter and become criminals. Some Blacks were out there trying to get people to stop fighting and to talk but they would not. They even tried to set a journalist on fire and the journalists said it was too dangerous to stay and cover the story now. When has it ever been that bad in our country before besides Ferguson and Baltimore and this case. How is this helping the situation? Or is the hate and name calling increasing the violence? I think adults should be able to discuss and I do not think any person, cop or not, in their right mind would be showing up with the intent to kill, not with the way the hate climate is right now. There will always be ugliness in the world, on the internet and we have to make a choice to NOT fall into their games to get us to react. I recently had a “self-proclaimed Christian” make disparaging and insulting remarks about me and because I have known this person for years and years and know what they are truly like, I just had to smile and go on my way. I could have let myself get drawn into the drama that they like to stir but I do not like games and I definitely do not like the drama. Life is full of choices and I don’t need flowery religious pictures and quotes to get my point across. Life is full of choices including being happy and we have to choose just like we have to choose to not get caught up in the hatred, racism, and games people like to play.
I remember being told once that this person learned to fake it til they made it. I asked what they were talking about and they said “it is all a choice. If I am scared, unhappy, sad….I fake the happiness until suddenly I realize that I am. So loved this picture on being brave.
image from https://www.facebook.com/HebrewSeniorLife
Sorry for posting so much but I am laying here feeling pretty yukkie. Seems the third day is always the worst and then uphill. This topic is one of my passions. I hear people call animals “dumb animals” and treat them like they have no feelings and it makes me sick. I have said this before, if you do not know if what you do hurts an animal, then do it to yourself first. If it hurts you, it will hurt the animal.
Also, I want to ask people to stop thinking of animals as objects. Parents get children animals and when it does not work out, they take it to the shelter. Here a feeling animal has grown attached to a family only to be abandoned. And it shows in their looks. All animals want is to be loved. If they are wild, love them from a distance but do not abuse them. If they are domestic animals, please treat them like what they are…feeling, living beings and not a toy that you can just give away when you are tired of it, not something to make money with without concern for the animal but a living, feeling, breathing being.
Ok, back to animals feeling. If you really look at animals, you will see emotions in animals and research has shown that they do feel. Animals often say their pet is smiling and others will scoff at them. And animals feel fear, pain, sorrow, loss, excitement, joy, contentment. Where did some humans get the ideas that only we humans feel these things and they can mistreat these wonderful creatures? Animals show expressions and give actions because they have no words to tell us that something bothers them, that they are tired, that they want to be left alone, that they are hungry, etc and if we pay attention we soon learn our own pet’s expressions and sounds.
Animals showing fear. Can you see the fear in their eyes?
human showing fear
image from louisdietvorst.wordpress.com
Bears showing love
image from lindsayreddick.blogspot.com
Humans showing love. Amazing how similar is it not.
image from funnybabyanimalphotos.blogspot.com
Animals Showing Anger
image from m.inmagine.com
Human showing anger
image from goodreads.com
Animals showing grief
Humans showing grief
Amazing when you look at animals, really look at them, their expressions are so much like our own and that is because they do feel. They feel the tone of our voice, they feel any thing physically done to them be it love or hurt, they feel loss when they lose someone or one of their own and they even feel anger….just like us. And they smile and show joy just like we do.
Animals showing happiness
image from somethinwonderful.blogspot.com
image from slices-of-life.com
image from fanpop.com
Baby Smiling and showing happiness
image from ididafunny.com
Animal loving a human
image from youthvoices.net
What is sad is that humans are the biggest threat to animals. Is that not horrible. These beautiful, smart and feeling creatures and we are their biggest threat. People take their land which takes their habitats and food. People use them in horrific ways such as in dog fighting. People slaughter them in horrendous ways. People mistreat them and injure them and most of their deaths are because of humans. Is it not time that people quit treating them like objects and started treating them as the magnificent creatures they are?
I read a statement today that struck a chord with me. It was on Livestrong and had to do with patience but I think it has to do with emotions and life itself. The statement was “having just the right amount of patience” and was in reference to waiting on cures in cancer and treatments and realizing that some patience was called for but how much?
I think that statement “the right amount of” can apply to our emotions and even things we do in life. Anger is ok…if you have the right amount of anger but if it is over the top, then it becomes destructive….just like what we are seeing in our world today. Some people have lost control of their emotional monitor and it has taken total control of their lives. Every thing they see and do is in anger and frothing at the mouth in hatred. When it consumes our lives…it is not the right amount.
A lot of the harder emotions, we have to learn when is it too much and when do we need to do something about it. Sadness is a normal emotion but when it consumes our lives, then something is out of balance, just as when we get consumed with grief and do not work through the grief and are still carrying it years later and crying and finding no joy in life. When we lose someone, we will feel the loss the rest of our lives but when we are so caught up in the loss that we can not enjoy life, then something is out of kilter.
image from beautywithtimefades.tumblr.com
Some emotions and other things in life, when out of control or too much, are like thieves in the night and rob us of the joy that is ours to behold in life. I think sometimes people take these emotions and nurse them and nurture them because they are afraid to let go of them as if something must be wrong if they do not feel sadness or grief forever. And so they are afraid to allow joy and happiness in for then that means they did not care enough about the person that passed away or is gone. Some people feel that they are never supposed to feel happiness again after the loss of someone and deny it in their lives and that is simply not true. If you allow grief to work through you, the joyful moments will come again. It is when you stop yourself in the grief process that you stagnate into a pool of nothing but sadness and grief. And knowing what the right amount is I believe comes by whether or not it consumes your life.
image from searchquotes.com
All of life is like a recipe and we need all the right ingredients. Yes, some sadness, some anger, some joy, some pride, some pain, some strength, some money, etc…all the right amount. Sometimes things get out of wack and the recipe is messed up. But, it is still our choice on how we handle it. If we feel too much sadness all the time, then we find out why and we do something about it. If grief has consumed our lives and we are still crying years later, then we make ourselves go back and work through the grief. If we are consumed with anger, then we figure out why and make ourselves use anger to accomplish something not as a run away train that demolishes and damages all around us.I have found that even love needs to be just the right amount. If we love someone so much that we sacrifice ourselves and lose ourselves than it is not the right amount. Love should include ourselves and when we make someone our sole life, we will be disappointed because we expect the same love in return and that does not always happen. People love in different ways. I have heard people say this below and that is a sign that the loving the person is doing is too much on one person and not enough on everyone and themselves. It needs to be the right recipe.
Pride has to come in the right amount too. Too much pride and we will fall. But we must have what I call self pride…pride in yourself enough to be honest, moral and ethical. Self pride is in handling oneself with respect and not doing things that make yourself look bad. But it too must be just the right amount.
image from meredo.com
Just the right amount….how is your life going? Is anything taking over your life until the happiness has seemed to disappear? Is anger, sadness, etc dominating your life? We all have those times where we find ourselves off course, but what is important is what we do to get back on course.
Life is so hard and we make so many twists and turns and have to make so many decisions that sometimes we wonder if we are doing the right thing. I have learned many things along this trail of mine and now am in the last third of my life and have found that these things sure make life so much easier. Sometimes we complicate things when we do not need to.
Below are things I have learned along the way and that took me years to learn and to reach the point I am at. I am not always right but one thing for certain….I am not always wrong either. Life is what we make it and if we can slow down and simplify life a little, then the life we can make is one that is so much more beautiful.
image from mekanna.blogspot.com
OLDER THAN DIRT WISDOM
Only our Creator knows when we will die. We will not die a day sooner or a day later, so leave the dying to the Creator , to our God and focus on living.
I get asked all the time am I worried about dying and my answer is no. I am too busy living and enjoying my loved ones and enjoying life. I will die when I am supposed to and no sooner.
Making decisions requires five things. It requires you to listen to God, to your head, to your heart, to your head again and finally listening to God again. Our hearts are wonderful things but sometimes they make us make decisions based on guilt, pity or some other emotion and then we find that we are miserable.
How we are made
I love this expression for it is so true. We were created with TWO ears and ONE mouth. I believe the intent was for us to listen twice as much as we talk. And because we only have one mouth, make what goes in and comes out be extremely gentle and easily digested.
Standing up for what is right
It is so easy to be passive and ignore the tragedies and wrong doings going on daily. We can not change the world but we can change what is in our corner of the world, one piece at a time….starting with ourselves. It is amazing how good it feels to stand up for what is right instead of going along with the crowd.
Distance makes for clarity
Sometimes we can be so close to something we can not see the reality. Stepping away for a while gives us that 20/20 vision we need to make smart decisions
Friends are a wonderful thing. Keep in mind 345 “friends” on Facebook does not make them friends. They are acquaintances. If you come through life with only ONE close friend, you have come through life with something very precious that will last you your whole life. And if you think that everyone on your Facebook is your friend, they are not. Watch people move from group to group once they are seen as they are. Real friends do not do that. They do not take advantage of your good heart or your generosity. They value you and they stay your friend. They may not always agree with you but they are honest enough to tell you the truth.
Never let a day go by without telling those you love that you love them. Actions speak louder than words, but they still love to hear the words too.
Never let the sun set on your anger. Each day that you allow anger to continue, it becomes easier to stay angry and never heal the gap. “Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame.”~~Benjamin Franklin
Someone has to be the first to say I am sorry. Being sorry that there is a dispute does not mean that you are wrong. It means you are sorry that the difference in opinions or actions caused a riff.
When you find yourself angry, first ask yourself why. We are complex humans and sometimes we are angry because we are hurt, or tired or frustrated. We all get angry at times. But, remaining angry is our own choice.
We are not indispensable
In life here on earth, everyone can be replaced. No one is indispensable. Someone can always do the job we were doing. Never think you must stay where you are because something might fall apart without you. It won’t. Life will go on.
Communicating with Others
We all speak from our own “place” and we all use different words with our own definition. What means one thing to someone might mean something entirely different to another. Always ask “what do you mean by….?” for it saves many arguments. And don’t react until you are sure you know what the other person is Really saying.
It is OK to Say NO
It really is ok to say No, I can’t. …No, I don’t want to….and not get caught up in things we really do not want to do. I remember too many times agreeing to do something and then wanting to kick myself afterwards. Those that love you will still love you if you say no. They might get mad for a little bit, but they will get over it. Don’t say yes out of guilt. You will hate yourself afterwards. And the more you learn to say no, the more you will find you have time to do the things you really love, with those you love.
Take Life in Bites
I read once that the first bite of food, no matter the item, is the best taste. Each bite after dims in great flavor as your taste buds get used to is. I love going to buffet’s and I take one small spoonful of each thing and sit and savor the flavors. My plate looks like a sampler. So sample life one bite at a time. Too much of something dulls the excitement and flavor. Remember the days of youth. How exciting things were. Rekindle that as a child. We don’t have to have everything but we can feel like we do by enjoying what we have.
Laughter is a great healer and helps you to get rid of stress. I have laughed til I cried even in the midst of really hard times. We do not have to be all serious or sad or down and never laugh again just because something bad happened. Laughter often serves to break a tense moment, and to keep us from getting angry over something that really is not worth getting angry over. It helps to relieve tension in one of the most beautiful ways. Laughter is a choice. Laugh a lot and enjoy life. And most of all, learn to laugh at yourself. I do it all the time.
Never Defend Something Blindly
Believe and have faith in what you believe in but always make sure you are defending it with facts and not just emotion. When you defend something, ask yourself “why?” and the reasons should be more than “it’s wonderful” or “it’s great”. You should be able to tell valid reasons. Otherwise we become like the groupies who follow this or that star all over the globe but can’t really give you a good reason why. When you have your reasons…good valid reasons…defending your position becomes much easier.
Don’t Depend on Others for Happiness or Validation
Our happiness should never hinge on “things” or “people” for those things can disappear. It comes from inside us. Neither should we let someone be the only thing that validates us or tells us we are worthy. For they are only human. Learn to validate yourself. You know when you have done a good job or when you have done something worthy. Be proud of that and validate from within that what you did is good.
Treat Each Day Like It Is Your Last
Every day is a gift. Treat each day like it is your last and see the wonder and awe in each one. Live your life as if today is your last, making sure to mend all fences that have been broken, making sure to say I love you often, making sure to always do your part.
Refine your Moral Compass
We usually know when we are doing something we should not be doing. If we are feeling uncomfortable, unhappy, angry, etc with what we are doing….it is time to step away from it and figure out why. Sometimes, people know they are doing wrong and just do not care. That is why it is so important that we refine our moral compass to be that of knowing right from wrong.
Value The Important Things, Know What Can Be Lost and What Destroys
These 3 things once gone you can never get back: Time, words and opportunity
These 3 things in life can destroy a person: anger, pride and unforgiveness.
These 3 things in life are the most important: Love, family/friends and kindness
whatever value you place on yourself…others will too. We teach others how to treat us. If we do not treat ourselves with respect, no one else with either. If we do not stand up for ourselves, no one else will either. And if we do not love ourselves, how can we expect others to?
Life and what we do is a choice. No one forces us. There is always a choice. It may not be what we want but it is still a choice. But, when we make excuses instead of choices….then we are just opening doors to failure. Choose even if you make a mistake.
Remember that life is not a dress rehearsal. This is the real thing and there are no retakes. Before saying or doing something destructive…stop and ask yourself if it is worth it. For every word and every action there is a consequence.
“Write the bad things that are done to you in sand,
But, Write the good things that happen to you on a piece of marble.”
Write in sand so that it will soon blow or wash away. And Write the good thing in marble so that you will remember them forever.
Have you ever noticed that we use colors to describe emotions? We say we are red-hot, feeling green as in sick stomach, feeling blue, and even “oh my day has been a rainbow of colors”. Perhaps colors give us feelings and we don’t realize it.
Red is a warm color and often used to imply fiery emotions as in red heads have hot tempers. Prisons and psyche wards have learned that using pastels helps keep the emotions more level and so pale blues, pinks, greens are seen as calming.Do colors really affect how we act and feel? Studies have been done to test this and have found:
“For an all-natural brain boost, skip the pills and hit the colors.
In the latest and most authoritative study on color’s cognitive effects, test subjects given attention-demanding tasks did best when primed with the color red. Asked to be creative, they responded best to blue. “Color enhances performance,” said study co-author Juliet Zhu, a University of British Columbia psychologist.”
When I taught school in this tiny country school where my key to my room was a skeleton key, one teacher painted all the old desks all different colors using bright blue, bright red, bright green…well you get the idea. And she wondered why her kids were bouncing off the walls.
I have read a lot on feng shui and how the balance and what we live in affects our lives. I also have read on the colors and how pastels are supposed to be soothing colors and bright colors are energy colors. I never thought about how the colors affected us from the standpoint of negative or positive and safe feelings until I read this post. Zhu says that colors that make us feel danger affect us one way and red is one of those colors. We see red on stop signs, on red lights, on the ambulances with the big red cross and those are all scary things. Blue…we see the ocean or the sky or something that seems more serene.
I think we have overused some colors and maybe we should start using some of the other colors. For example, I loved Blanche’s use of the word magenta to describe not sad but not glad…that sort of in- between feeling that you can’t describe.
How about azure for that person whose eyes are so blue you feel like you could fall into them? Or ash grey for when we are feeling really puny and under the weather. And then there is aquamarine when you are feeling relaxed and floating. And then there is amaranth for when you are feeling flushed and giddy.
There are so many colors now that we could have a whole pleura of words for emotions. There is byzantine, burnt sienna, cadmium red, Caribbean green, carolina blue, cerise pink…and the list goes on. Have you all got any suggestions for the emotion to go with some colors?
I found them here…go look at the long page of colors on Wikipedia.
Meanwhile, I think I will go try to eat something as I am feeling a little rackley….you know…was feeling down but on my way up blue. 🙂