Instead of judging,
a compassionate response
makes us feel better
(perhaps not at that moment)
at the ending of the day
Source of picture unknown
A topic suggested in somewhere in the blogging 101 commons is “on my wall.” I’m in and I’m intrigued. I read a couple of my fellow bloggers posts and feel even more interested. For example, The Little Novice (https://thelittlenovice.wordpress.com/) wrote a lovely one that notices lights, among other observations made in the post.
I got to thinking, what is “on my wall?” There are family pictures and lots of framed embroidery samplers many of them created by a woman who does primitive folk art work. There are pictures on my wall given to me by a dear friend, there are angels because I have collected them/they have been given to me since one of my first jobs.
But one thing that I often try to stand near hangs almost hidden in a corner of our kitchen. It has hung in nearly every place we have lived for a very long time. It was a “gift” to me because really, I was not supposed to have it. It belonged to my sister-in-law who was sadly killed in an automobile accident when she was in her early thirties. Honestly, I don’t know how we came to have it. It is one of the things I prize highly.
I’ve tried to attach a link to a picture at the end of the post. It is written in what I believe is Arabic. The letters are brass with a blue background and I have framed it in blue with a white mat. I thought it might be a saying, but I cannot find it explained as such. I only know the translation because it was written in pencil on the cardboard backing of the letters. It reads, “You have many gifts which you must remember.”
When my sister in law died, it became mine, I think because I was drawn to it, even though I did not know -right away- what it said. I don’t know if anyone in my family has paid it much mind, but it informs me in many ways. It reminds me to be grateful more and to whine less. It informs my world view, and I hope many of my days. It helps me remember stories, loved ones and special events. The death of my sister-in-law caused my husband and me to affirm our lives by having a child. I believe the words for many reasons, not the least of which is this. Her death really gave us the courage to start our family. Life was humming along and I don’t think we would have our oldest child had she not died.
I like to think she knows that, her spirit guiding and watching over us. She died overseas and we did not get to say goodbye to her. Her unexpected gift is something I cherish. She is a gift I remember, and offer a silent prayer of thanks to, when I see the words on my wall.
You have many gifts
I remember each one
Informing my life
Cold windy weather
Inspires sitting on the couch
With my family
The Reverend is busy snooping on someone’s computer (!) I tried to break into her thoughts, and help her to reconsider such behavior. She is hiding behind the lame excuse that she could better assist if she had all the information to help someone that they aren’t ready to share. I keep trying to remind her that she doesn’t need to be perfect or control the universe, but she so wants to help others. She is unable, at this time to display any kind of moral fortitude. Sadly, today I find her weak and way too curious about stuff that she should know she has no business rooting around in. I’m trying to be understanding with her because she started back on her diet today, and there are all manner of tasty goodies here for her family. Perhaps when you reply you can give her a gentle talking to. Under other circumstances I find her easy to talk with but today I can’t engage her in conversation.
Since I’m all knowing I figured I’d help her and you by responding to your e-mail. Besides, I know you’ve felt estranged from me over the years and I want you to know that even when you felt farthest from me and when your life was at its worst I was always watching over you. I knew you were strong but your proposed letter to Qays is one of the most poignant and touching letters I’ve ever read. It confirms your strength, capacity to forgive, and willingness to move ahead.
All your life, whether you know it or not you have been working on becoming the tremendous woman that you are. I’ve watched in wonder at your growth over the past year. Whether you know it or not, you’ve taken leaps and bounds with seeming ease and with great grace. You
risked your heart when Qays walked backed into your life and you’ve rightly identified that it is this risk that is making you whole. I always knew you were one of my most brilliant children, a star that lights up the lives of so many. No matter how harsh things have been for you,
I can see by this letter that you haven’t allowed experience to harden your heart. On the contrary, you’ve let it soften you and open you to the teachings contained in the good and the bad that you have encountered.
Many are never able to incorporate this paradoxical lesson into their lives. This alone should have you walking on clouds for a long time.
Perhaps the greatest strength of your letter is your ability to explain the purpose, express your needs and yet create no obligation for Qays. This is a gift of redemption and grace that you give to both yourself and to Qays. These words speak of my Holy Spirit being alive in the
world through your thoughts and words and actions. I know you have felt at times that you could not find me, but I am present in your embodiment. You, and others like you are reminders that my spirit lives in the world whether I am called Buddha, Allah or God. You are blessed
my dear child and you are a blessing to so many. The only change I’ve made to your letter is through the miracle of spell check which suggests that over-analyze is hyphenated. Otherwise I wouldn’t change a thing.
Eternally Yours- if you want to find me,
P.S. I’m sure the Rev. will be back in touch soon. Have faith in her, I do.
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