It was my sister in law who famously described me by saying “She gets PEOPLE fatigue”.
She was describing my lively social nature that has such a short battery life. What can I say? It’s only taken me about 100 years to accept that The Natural Habitat of this beast really is the quiet mountain.
Now, it’s one thing to know something about yourself. It’s entirely another to know that someone else GETS it! Not that you’re seeking some sort of validation. H3%ck no, we’re too old for that! It’s just so lovely to feel that gentle voice mirroring back to us those beautiful words it’s okay,
Okay to be weird.
Okay to different.
Okay to go at a pace that isn’t exactly textbook, but a pace that feels right just for YOU?
Isn’t that what we all want!? To shine our Weirdo Lights bright so that other weirdos feel empowered to let theirs shine bright too?
I’m sending you thoughts of love this week and I’ll be looking out for your special light. Okay?
Some weeks back, I got into an altercation with a dodgy auctioneer. The joke’s on me, because I have known him for years and let’s just say he has never claimed to be a saint.
I think human nature is always to HOPE. I have certainly fallen into the trap of thinking that if I am nice enough, if I perform better, if I say/do all the right things that I will be the lucky one who escapes the slaughter of the bullies and narcissists.
But it never works out that way because people do the things they do because of who THEY are, not because of who WE are!
I think I had forgotten this for a moment, as one lesson after the other in this vein kept popping up as though the Universe was saying “Hey Lee, I don’t think you got that lesson girl, let’s give you a double-dose next time bam $%*£!”
Now I can say with certainty, I GET IT! I GET IT!
Take a leaf out of Maya Angelou’s book, “When someone shows you who they are, believe them; the first time”.
And stay woke,
P.S. The pic I chose today is just something that I love because her face is so full of stories. Don’t you think? Wouldn’t you love to meet her and just listen for while?
The first are TAKERS. They walk into a room and you feel the energy drain. They are suckers of information, time, energy, resources and will leave you feeling depleted and frazzled if you let them in. Ask the kids. They will tell you who these people are.
The other are GIVERS and it is these people who I have plenty of in my life. This week, the givers were in top form. Compliments, free dresses, information pertaining to a legal matter, girlfriends calling just to say thanks, logistical help with the kids, a cleaner with a thing for sneakers. Gosh, I even saw a fresh hot cake come into the front door, fresh out of the oven of another and straight into my heart for no reason but kindness,
I’m rooting for my GIVERS all over the world. I think we’re going to find each other and I think we’re going to beat the takers to the finish line.
…besides, they’ll be so busy causing their own storms they won’t even notice the rainbow when we bank it.
Love you my Givers and and I never ever take a moment for granted!
Miss Brown was one such teacher for me. In a sea of unkind, cruel faces she smiled. That’s what I remember about her. That she smiled and sometimes all it takes is someone smiling at you when you are a little person overwhelmed by eczema, family conflict, and maths to know that the world is okay.
My son may or may not remember his Grade 1 teacher but I will. She’s the kind that makes each child feel like they have their very own personal tutor and cheerleader. I have watched him grow and flourish under her covert strategy to “stretch” him. Teachers like her are rare and we are the lucky few.
Then there are those teachers who really should not be teachers and boy, oh boy, have I had some of those in my life. Back when corporal punishment was still allowed at school in South Africa (yes, I am giving away my age), one particular teacher who I still have the displeasure of seeing as an adult, took his role as “disciplinarian” so far, that many of the children that he beat up still have PTSD as adults.
Another gremlin teacher was the one who in my last year of high school, when I called the home phone (again, I am giving away my age) of the young gentleman who I had romantic links to…took the phone away from him and spoke to me. Yes, she was at his home and she was not there to give him English lessons. She made that very clear to me.
It was World Teachers Day last week. I wrote a couple of thank you notes. I also processed some of the old emotions related to teachers that were not so cool. That’s how these little memories came into story form now.
It’s also the reason I need to give a shout out to my MOM friends who have to be teachers every day of their lives but have also had to formally become teachers this year because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Girls, I see you. I see you struggling to keep yourself sane. I see you carrying the emotional load of your family. I see you trying to create balance. I see you dying of loneliness. I see you having to put your dreams on hold for another year. I see you watching as things fall apart. I see you cooking endless meals, doing endless shopping, providing snack after snack. I see you trying to limit screen time while seeing the need for technology. I see you having to deal with your judgy in-laws, neighbours, and the rest of the peanut gallery. I see it all.
…and I salute YOU! This Teachers Day and always because we are all in the shit together.
I had to dig deep this week. So bloody deep this week. For patience. For strength. For resources. …and it was my little people who held me with their warm apple pie, fresh out of the oven, as I put my feet up after having held a sacred space for friends who lost their mother and had to bury her within 24 hours, in keeping with Islamic protocol. Apple pie, warm apple pie and my people saved me on Monday.
I had to dig deep this week. So bloody deep this week. For restraint For compassion. For calm. As I witnessed one human being abuse their power over another …and again, it was my people that brought me back, reminding me that my dear Aunt who passed on (a few months back) had her birthday this week and how she made the world’s meanest chicken pie. So, I made a chicken pie, said the rosary and we celebrated her life, with cake and all!
I had to dig deep this week. So bloody deep this week. To accept the many many wonderful doors of opportunity flying open in my face; To find the words to acknowledge the phenomenal teacher my son got as a gift for his Grade 1 year on World Teachers Day; To salute my daughter for standing up for a friend who was in trouble at school; To contain the love in my heart for the beautiful bottle of red wine my husband came bearing.
…But here I am this Friday, having just heard of the passing of one of my best friend’s dads.
And, so I dig deep again, to find that well of love inside me. It’s hard at first… But sure enough it springs up! Springs up! Springs up! Offering glimpses of light.
Don’t you love that!? That we are able to receive the gift of LIGHT when we need it most? Do you have a name for that which is always available, which is infinite, which is always accessible?
I’m just so grateful and I wish you that and so much more, my friends!
As you know, I practice GRATITUDE daily but I also have a weekly practice that I want to share with you. I’ve been practicing this for over 15 years now.
Every Monday morning, I wake up just a little earlier than 5am (which is my usual prayer and meditation hour). The extra 15 minutes gives me time to time to write down stuff some.
I look to the week ahead and ask for special help with all “challenges” that are imminent. Deadlines, people, …things that I know are going to be hard! I write them down and I BURN that piece of paper.
The act of burning doesn’t make the challenges magically vanish! Don’t be silly. It simply empowers me to see them for what they are. Things that can be sorted. Some by me, some by others, some in the skies in ways I may never understand. Right?!
Here’s where I need your help, friends: I’m looking for a NAME for this practice of burning the piece of paper. Let me know if you have any ideas.
And do let me know if you are going to try it too. I would be so honoured!