Wednesday, December 9, 2009
"You Alone Are You"- Shakespeare
It's interesting how sometimes things happen as if there is a pattern that is invisible.
Here, we are all busy to make others happy. We are cleaning the house for guests, thinking of the wishes of our dear ones and working so hard to be the Santa Claus. In the kitchen we are baking, cooking and constantly cleaning and wiping. Days pass by swiftly, afternoons succumb to nights quicker than ever before. The thought of going for the walk vanishes as we struggle crossing out the jobs from our to do list.
My friend says,- " But I had no time with my kids. Before I could sit and tell how my days are it was time for them to leave. They are more interested in their friends. Do you get into such feelings sometimes?"
"Oh yeh, of course. And then I am the one who has to drag me out from that hole - no body knows me better than I do." - I say.
I overlook the wrinkles and silver streaks on my temple and love the face I see in the mirror, because -"To love oneself is the beginning of a life long romance"- Oscar Wilde.
All these quotations one by one are dropping on my lap for the past few days.
This morning I was reading this book - "Life Lessons for Women". It is one of those Chicken Soup series book.
I want to share one story(from the book- not mine, mind you), but I'll tell it in short and in my language.
"I was looking for those free days, the days when my dear husband and I would be retired, the kids have their own lives, and we are free. We'll do lots of traveling, and do all the things we wanted to do .
But life happened differently. A chunk of our savings was drained out for taking care of our dear aged parents in their last days. My husband lost his job and sank into great depression after the 9/11 .He became a total stranger to me .
Our only daughter's marriage did not last too long. Now, she came to live with us with a baby while student teaching in the day time and working as a waitress at night. She was trying to get her teaching credential.
There was no one to care for the baby. We calculated that it will be cheaper for me to quit my job as an assistant special education staff than putting the child in a day care.
I lost my job of eleven years with all the pension and other things, yet it was the right thing to do I felt.
There were times when I felt down and depressed.
One such day while I took Allison, my grand daughter for a walk I remembered how my dad used to take me on his nature hikes. How I helped him plant in the garden- how he connected me with nature and the fact that I love nature.
I was almost unaware of this fact, it seemed. Now every day as Allison and I go out for our walks we discover new things. How the leaves turned yellow, orange, crimson-red and burnt - cinnamon in crisp autumn days until one day all the leaves were gone.
Then we found tiny bird nests tucked in those bare trees. Looking closely we discovered how hard the birds try, some times sowing leaves with thorns to make a nest, sometimes lining them with mud. Still some fail, and there are broken eggshells.
Yet, they try and start the mornings with chants. Still they show their glee with tweets and chirps.
One day I saw a huge v -shape on the sky made by the snow geese. One goose for some strange reason deviated from the group and got lost. In a while I saw the whole flock turned around looked for the stray missing member and picked her up. Then they went flying again. How amazing."
It brought tears in my eyes. This simple wisdom of the birds gives me a profound sense of the meaning of a family and a strange sense of self .
I hope I can help my friends who are feeling a bit depressed during this stressful time of the year.
May the spirit of the season perk you up.