It’s been a lovely, lovely weekend and soon I will tell you all about it, but today I just want to share some things that have done wonders in cheering my heart in the hopes that they might cheer yours as well. XO
This little girl who arrived in the world yesterday afternoon. Her sister didn’t make it but she did and just seeing her little stalwart survivor self wobbling about makes me smile and take courage.
This gorgeous post on what people really look like. Hint: “Women have cellulite, men have silly buttocks.”
This handful of wildflowers picked at sunset while I was meandering with my goats. Now it’s on my kitchen table in a tiny blue vase making me smile whenever I go in the kitchen.
This 3-part series that has brought inestimable healing to my heart and the hearts of many who have suffered spiritual abuse of any kind. I feel like there must be sunbeams shooting out of my heart because it feels so light now.
This beautiful little creature who got himself stuck in a water bucket before I happened along to rescue him. I felt like I must’ve stumbled into Brambly Hedge. 🙂
This post by the wonderful Anne Lamott:
“A dear friend has a grievous skin condition that has not yet been probably diagnosed, and she is in the deepest rashy misery every day, especially at several peaks hours. Her whole back looks so painful that you want to start scratching it for her; plus shoot her up with a little cool and refreshing morphine. It may be dreaded Japanese river rash.
Her doctor will eventually figure out what it is and be able to treat it but in the meantime, nothing helps, she could open a thriving black market in prescription unguents, although she is a Nana of 70ish–let’s say fifty-21 and may not your black market typo. She is deeply spiritual and active in her mental and psychological health, with a rich self of humor, yet she feels terrible about feeling so terrible. She’s feels guilty.
She said, “I have friends who are coming through chemo, whose bodies have been ravaged, yet they manage to say positive and grateful. So I am trying to keep it in perspective.”
I said, “I am not heavily into perspective at this time. Please call again during regular office hours. In the meantime, it’s awful to hurt and itch at this level every day. I do not accept it on your behalf. It’s a nightmare. I am going to file a brief itch the complaints department.”
She laughed, but said, “It could be so much worse. I have a friend with melanoma, and another who has shingles. Mine will pass.”
I said, “Stop! That is crazy talk. Suffering is suffering.”
How did we get so brainwashed that we can’t even say, “I am climbing out of my skin; and I hate this, and I need extreme comfort right now, even though that may not be convenient for everyone else in this family?” And how do we get back the right and ability to care for ourselves when we are very down and uncomfortable, the way we would for a friend–the way you would take care of me–even though 90% of the world may be in worse shape?
We just do. We start our new 24 hours over NOW. We cannot take care of others from a true and profound place if we blow ourselves off. It’s just the way it is. We can offer what we have: an apricot tree can offer apricots.
Yet, it is so radical to insist on the right to our own care and rest and love and aid. It breaks the contract we signed at 4 years old, to take care of everyone else in the family first, especially dad and then to make do with whatever was left; PLUS, in general, not to have any needs at all.
So it is an act of disloyalty, and there will be payback, and if we stop the train to get help, the long bony finger will appear in the sky, pointing at us, and saying, “You know the rules.”
So here’s my plan: this Facebook page will be available for everyone to complain about stuff their families said they must suck up, or stuff their husbands or children or girlfriends make them feel ashamed about.
We take the action, that we are worthy of being heard and deeply cared for, and then–and only then–the insight will follow. That if someone is suffering, see if you can. If someone is thirsy, get him or her a glass of water, even if it is you.
So for today, 1) feel free to mewl and puke and spew here about how the last few days have been a nightmare or how much your feet hurt a lot of the time, even though you know that amputees do have it much worse, or how much you hate hate hate your current weight, or what an absolute asshat your son has been lately, or how scary you just find all of life on earth some days, and how you can’t get your Internet working and have been on the line with snotty tech support for so long that you may have had a nervous breakdown. will read every single post, and believe complainy-spoiled-overly-sensitive old me, I will GET it.
2). Baby yourself, all day. Radical self care, naps and lotion on the Auntie thighs and maybe too many scrambled eggs and also a basket of raspberries that possibly could feed a family of three for the day, and the new issue of People, or the new Mary Oliver collection.
Okay? Start your engines. I want to hear some nice juicy complaints: for instance, I was on planes and at airports and in cars for 22 of the last 36 hours, a flight got delayed and i missed a connection and I was trapped at the Newark airport forever, and was completely bitter and enraged, even though I got paid for my lecture in Richmond and sold lots of books, and got to be a writer when I grew up.
You can do it. I’ll be right here.”
Are there any quotes, stories, experiences, or people who’ve cheered your heart this week? I’d love to hear about them.