In 1983 Galway Kinnell won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. I’ve read a few of his collections in awe. I ran across these words from him and it really touched me.
I’ve written so many pieces about love and how right and wrong it can be. Mr. Kinnell’s words actually make a lot of sense to me. I love the line: “If you’ve been through enough relationships, you begin to suspect there’s no right person, just different flavors of wrong.”
I’ve often written the words, we attract who we are. You may have been in relationships where you totally grew to hate or severely despise the other person. Why? Because some of that very behavior we despise in another person is within us. We attract and are attracted to people who cause us to take a deeper look at ourselves. I’ve always maintained that God put certain men (and people) in my life to teach me some valuable lessons. If you take the time to sit back and think on past relationships with honesty, you’ll realize that person showed you things about yourself that you needed to know. It may have been painful but the lesson was there to learn. For me, that’s what Mr. Kinnell means by wrong in some complimentary way.
In loving someone else we can only give what we have. Period! We can’t give them what we don’t have. We also can’t be for them what they aren’t. The bible refers to it as being unevenly yoked. I refer to it as loving equally. When it’s not equal there will always be someone who has more power. There will be someone who gives more. The only place that leads — is to resentment. So how do you know if you’re in an equal loving relationship?
When you know within your heart that everything you have and can do, your partner already has and can do for him or herself.
No one comes without static cling. We’re all flawed. It’s literally impossible to find someone who has every single thing we desire in life. I guess the idea in this piece from Mr. Kinnell is accurate, we find that special person who is wrong for us in just the right way and our scars fall in love. If done with an open heart and complete honesty, we heal those scars through love.
What do his words mean to you? Please share.
Like you, throughout my life, I’ve had some disappointments with jobs, relationships, family and friends. I’ve been in the “pit” when I felt so low I wondered if I would ever smile again. Like Lucille Ball says, “You have to keep busy and make optimism a way of life.” It’s easier said than done but whenever I find myself going to a dark place because of some life event – I’ve learned to busy myself. Go for a walk, clean out your closet, bake a cake or volunteer your free time. What you can’t do is wallow in self-pity. If you focus only on what’s bringing you down, it will keep you down.
This lovely quote can be attributed to Dr. Mitchell Perry, a psychotherapist.
I’ve always felt that judgment is one trait that all humans share. It’s ugly, but we do it. We all know someone who judges others constantly, with vigor, and others who simply make snap judgments. I personally believe we judge other people by the way we perceive ourselves.
What irritates me is for a person to judge a “situation” they themselves have never encountered. Years ago I worked with a woman who judged everyone for everything. (She was a miserable person. We’ll call her Miss Judgment.) Another woman who also worked with us had been very ill and out on sick leave a lot. She came back from one of her sick leaves with a different appearance. She had on a shiny blonde wig. Miss Judgment took one look at her and blurted out: “Why does she have that ugly wig on? You can tell it’s a wig! She looks silly! I would never wear a wig!” I looked her straight in her face and said, “This is not a known fact but she has battled cancer which is why she has been out so much this year.” Miss Judgment’s total expression changed and she felt bad but it didn’t stop her from continuing to judge others. Some people are really that miserable. The only way they can feel good about themselves is to constantly judge and pull others apart.
I’m making a diligent effort to not judge what I don’t know. We all have different situations, different upbringings, different environments and different issues. I read a statement from someone once on judging and he said it’s an “undo-it-yourself-project”.
So perhaps the next time you find yourself in a situation where you’re judging someone’s situation that you’ve never encountered, you’ll remember this wonderful quote and you won’t do it.
Being born in the late 50s and raised in the 60s I often find myself having conversations with other baby boomers (people born during the demographic post-World War II baby boom between the years 1946 and 1964) about simpler times. All baby boomers will agree, much has changed since then. I’ve always felt that the digital age has ruined children. It amazes me on Christmas day that we don’t see more young people out and about riding new bicycles, skateboards and the like. When I was a child my siblings and I couldn’t wait to get outside to play. We might stop in for a brief bologna sandwich but we were right back outside playing, and we wouldn’t come in until it was dinner time or the street lights came on, whichever came first. I credit the childhood obesity problem to this new digital platform. Game Boys, Xbox, Nintendo, IPads and flat screen TVs in their bedrooms.
This Ecard made me laugh because it’s true. “When I was 10 – Outside was the best thing for play.” So here’s to all of you who remember the good ole days when outside was all you had to play with. Our children have no clue how wonderful that really was.
Being a woman has its challenges. Any woman reading this will agree with me. For centuries, it’s just the way it is. We are mothers, fathers, employees, cooks, housekeepers, taxi-drivers, and many of us balance our household budgets attempting to avoid falling off our own fiscal cliffs. We give and give until there is absolutely nothing left. There always seems to be one more thing to do. In short, we’re tired as hell!
In 2013 I’ve made a conscious decision (not a resolution) to take some time for myself. I want to do something every single day that I can say is “just for me.” It could be stealing 20 minutes to read a chapter in a book, or going for a walk in the neighborhood. At this point I’d appreciate simply sitting still for 30 minutes with my eyes closed.
Steal a little time for yourself in the upcoming year.
In 2013 – BE THE QUEEN! Happy Holidays!
Many of us were raised with our parents teaching us, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything.” Gossip is venomous! It sells magazines and promotes dissension. Men and women alike are guilty of it, but women tend to do it more. We all know someone who never has anything nice to say about another person. These people have a need to feel superior to others. If you had the chance to look into their lives you would find they are miserable.
The worst part is that we usually gossip based on limited or false information. Would we act the same way if we knew the whole truth? Probably not! I’ve arrived at a solution for people who come to me with gossip. I stop them in their tracks. Why are you telling me this? That usually brings about immediate silence as well as a dumbfounded look. The truth of the matter is: you can’t engage in gossip unless you have a willing participant.
Gossip will not go away but if we all could practice “nice” the world certainly would be a better place. Tend to the weeds in your own backyard!
If I had one dollar for every time I’ve used this quote or told someone else about it, I’d have a nice stash of cash. People are always showing us who they are but unfortunately we keep missing the message. You can apply this thought provoking quote to all types of life relationships. Whether it’s professional or personal, it will happen. When it does, you have a choice to make.
Ladies and gentleman please read these words closely. It’s not what someone says – it’s what they do that matters.
So many of us have stayed in relationships well past their expiration date because we hung onto words when actions were what we needed to be paying attention to. I’ve had many late night girlfriend conversations where the words “But, he told me…….” came into the conversation. Love is a verb. It’s action. If you pay attention in the early stages of any new relationship the other person will show you exactly who they are. When they do – believe them!
When someone shows you lack of integrity or dishonesty the first time, know that this will be followed many other times, and at some point in life it will come back to haunt or hurt you. I worked at a company for many years where the owner put me through pure hell. I saw the writing on the wall after being there for two months but I stayed anyway. We sometimes have to deal with things we don’t like in the name of financial survival. When I finally got the courage to leave years later, my spirit took a beating but looking back over the abuse I realized that I was shown very early on and chose to ignore it because of a fat paycheck. In hindsight it wasn’t worth it.
Whatever relationship may be affected in your life, when someone shows you who they are the first time – Believe them!
Before you Pray – Believe!
I’ve always believed in the power of prayer and I really do attempt to pray before things fall apart. It’s human nature to fall to our knees when trouble strikes but we must remember to pray when things are going well also. A pastor told me years ago that if I say nothing except “Thank you Lord” that was sufficient, so I try to start each day by saying Thank you. A little goes a long way. There’s a saying “Leave it at the altar.” Make your request to God known and leave it alone. There are only three responses to our prayers. Yes, No and not right now. Your relationship with God will let you know what the answer is for you. Faith is a powerful thing.
Before you Speak – Listen!
Listening requires a lot of discipline. We’re always busy thinking of our response to the words we hear that sometimes we fail to hear the message being delivered in our conversations with others. I’ve learned that many disagreements could be solved much sooner once we learn how to fully listen.
Before You Spend – Earn!
Credit cards are the root of all evil. Many people will be in shambles come January 2013 when those credit card bills begin showing up because they financed Christmas day. If this economy has had any lesson, it would be: before you spend earn. Imagine how much peace of mind you could have if you weren’t in debt.
Before You Write – Think!
I’m amazed at some of the things I read on Facebook and online in general. It’s easy to sit behind a keyboard and write hateful things to people you don’t know. It’s also very cowardly. The bottom line is that every word you write becomes permanent. Every email, chat, and post becomes permanent. Nothing is sacred online.
Before You Quit – Try!
It’s been said that the moment people get close to success, they give up. The reality is that you can’t be successful if you don’t even try. A New Year is approaching. 2013 could be the year that your dreams finally come true. Maybe it’s time to stop talking and start doing. You just might win. Life is a game but you must be present to win.
Before You Die – Live!
Life is for the living. Sometimes you have to ask yourself, “If I died today, would I be satisfied with the life I’ve lived?” That old saying is true – Live each day like it’s your last – it just might be. Live-Laugh-Love.
One thing that’s certain about life is its ability to teach you who you are. Life knows what you are capable of! The only reason life has taken the time to point out your shortcomings is because Life wants to teach you who you are. I’ve always been a firm believer that these lessons will continue to come back around until we get them right.
Make a vow right now that in 2013 you will be devoted to stopping the things that do not honor who you are and who Life wants you to be.
I’m always reflective during this time of the year. I tend to quiet myself with a mental assessment of the current year and what I’d like to do differently in the New Year, or better yet, how I can challenge myself. I outgrew the resolution roller coaster in my 30s. For me, it’s a waste of energy and too much pressure. You know, the “I’m going to lose 20 lbs, exercise more, stop swearing, save more money, go to the gas station before the gas light comes on..”
What I do instead — I ask God for things. Not things in a material sense but things that I feel I need to be a better person. For example, last year I asked for DISCIPLINE. Like many of you I procrastinate. The year before that I asked for BALANCE. You get the idea. Every year I ask for something else.
So am I more disciplined and balanced than I was before I asked for those things? At times I am. When I find myself falling off the wagon I simply restate my vision and keep one foot in front of the other.
How are you living?