Saturday, January 23, 2010

Ten Happy Things

I was invited to share ten things that make me happy. I am glad to do so. Indeed having so many things to be grateful for, how could I not? To keep the list flowing, I list them in no particular order, without the strain of even designating them a top ten; they are ten good things, and there are more.

  • The running, welcoming hug that I get when I come home and enter the door. Recently, it is most often daughter Maggie that greets me so joyfully. No matter what the day has contained prior to this, this moment feels so right.
  • Liberty and choice. I can choose for myself. When I need or want a change, it is mine to attempt.
  • Memory. I am glad for the continuity and meaning the past brings to my current moment, as well as for the occasions to just think back and remember good times.
  • That cool, clean glass of water when I am thirsty that just hits the right spot. It satisfies and refreshes. Nothing could make it any better.
  • Connection and conversation with another person. This grows even better with friendship.
  • Music. What a way to transport into emotion, especially when you can participate in it. The variety and subtleties of the energies and feelings in it make me feel more alive.
  • Faith. There is so much that could be said here. I will highlight the difference it makes to me to feel that God loves me, to know that whatever might be going on right now that it is going to be OK.
  • Laughter. Would it be like having to explain a joke, to explain why laughter and humor enhance happiness?
  • Work. There is something fulfilling about having something worth doing and trying to do it well.
  • Of course I must say my family!
That is ten for now. Good night.

Monday, January 4, 2010

How cold is cold.

The other day, I had a coworker tell me that once it is below 20 degrees, it all feels the same.

That is easy to say until you have to go out in negative weather! Things can get colder, and no matter what someone tells me, I say that I can tell the difference.

I still remember the night I had to change a flat tire at minus 40. The air was still and heavy. My breath formed its own clouds of frost. My fingers began to feel separate from my body other than the sting they gave me and my (diminished) ability to control them. My nose began to rebel against its job as air warmer and lung protector. My toes began to tell all the other parts to quit complaining since at least they were still getting some blood flow. I was grateful to get the job done and get on my way.

I am sure several points could be made out of the above, but for now, I will just quote this very practical one my wife recently emphasized, "Promise me we will get to live somewhere warm someday, or at least be Snowbirds."

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year, New Lists

I am not sure why, but while the new year season seems to bring numerous lists in the media of the year past, it makes me want to start lists for the new. Maybe it is because of thinking of all the things I did not keep track of the last year, I want to start new and keep better track.

This is particularly true of my days. I feel motivated to have a journal, to use my day planner, to set some goals. When I look back on the journals that I do have, January is the month with the most entries by far.

Well one list I do want to keep this year is a list of books read.

First entry: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby. This man suffered a stroke of some kind affecting his brain stem that left him without control of his body. (Reference locked-in syndrome). His means of communicating became by blinks of his left eye. By those means he was able to write a book.

In his last visit with his father before his stroke, he remembers giving him a shave. Now himself being the subject of being given shaves, he hopes that he was gentle with his father. He also reflects on how his over 90 year old father has his own "diving bell" of his apartment, due to stairs, frailty etc. His father cannot really come to visit him, so their most direct contact is the few words his father speaks over the phone.

His "butterfly" is how his mind can let him soar in memory and imagination.

I enjoyed this book, most especially how it served as a springboard for me to ponder. How happy I am to be able to give and receive hugs from my kids today!

Well, happy new year to all. Fill it with wonderful things.