How many sayings are there about that infamous glass of water and how full it is or isn’t? This morning as I lay in bed, I got to thinking about this glass and the water in it. It isn’t about perspective, meaning do you look at the glass half full or half empty. It is about that water and what you do with it. Sometimes you can have a full glass of water, but it has had so much added to it to make it full that it is just a brown muddied mess. You don’t really want to deal with the water in your glass because it makes your life more difficult. Your glass of water is of little value to you as it is. It isn’t bringing you joy or helping to make your life any easier, more fulfilling or interesting. When your glass of water gets cloudy or dirty it might be the right time to dump most of it out and start over.
You may refill your glass with serendipitous rain or snowflakes that you catch, you may get a little water from a friend’s glass, or maybe you have access to a tap and that is how your replenish your water. No matter how your get your water it is adding some freshness to your life. It may be completely clear, like a new pallet for you to fill in or it may be infused with some glorious color from your friend to help you get on your way. Likely even if you can’t see it there is some color from the past still in there, a piece of your soul looking to shine again.
2015 was a year when I realized that my glass may have been full maybe even overflowing, but my glass of water had so many things in it that it had turned brown and muddied. Just because I was good at something did not mean I should do it if it was not my passion or did not bring some joy to my existence. Just because it was financially easier did not mean that I should not explore the economic harder road. People pleasing and peace making isn’t always best. What appears to be the easy road, may actually be the harder road.
It isn’t always possible to walk away from things, because life has certain obligations of family, food, shelter and essentials of existence. I know from experience even if you can make a change it usually isn’t easy or comfortable. I also have learned that sometimes the best thing you can do is dump out some of that water in your glass, maybe be just a little or possibly nearly all of your water. There is not a magic amount to let go. No sure answer what is the right amount of water for your glass at this time. The right amount for your glass of water in life is ever changing.
2015 was a year of so much change. I emptied most of my glass. I was sure that by now I would have an answer and my life would be on easy street and make lots of sense. Instead I have learned so much about myself and what is possible. Yet I am not sure what the answer is or if I already have found it. I find myself occasionally dancing out in the rain holding my glass to see what drops from the sky I might catch and loving every minute of the dangerous exposure of falling or making a fool of myself. Other times I have had people share a splash of their brightly colored water with me and found unexpected joy. In 2015 I have also found that my true friends and family are there cheering me on as I explore my life and my ever changing glass of water. I find myself adding colors to my glass of water and watching the sunlight of life filter through it and guide me on my way. Sunlight is different each day and each hour. Life is the same ever changing. Sometimes I still find the need to pour out some of the water from glass again, unsure if it is right thing to do, but knowing that no matter what I will survive the change.
In 2016 I want to be open to the possibilities and what I can do with my glass of water. I want to share my glass of water with others. I want to accept the joy and wonder that I find with what I have in that glass of water and all the colors in it that is my life. I am hoping that in 2016 you too will enjoy your glass however full it maybe and open yourself to the possibilities of what you may do with that crazy glass water you have called life.
I have always been a type “A” personality with a little bit of Lutheran guilt thrown in. That has always made an outstanding employee, devoted, hardworking and driven. Unfortunately those traits also make it hard for me to balance work and home life.
Lately I have been reading a collection of spiritual books. They have been really challenging me to realign my way of thinking more importantly the way I live. I read a book published by Pope Francis, when he was still a Cardinal, another by the Dalai Lama on happiness, a book on wisdom and compassion with a Buddhism bent, and couple on woman’s empowerment. They have given me so much to think about. It has been lots of fun, challenging my point of view, and full of many of moments of reflection. I am not sure where this will all end up but I have created lists of ideas I want to revisit. Quotes that really hit home and provided inspiration.
I have been looking at my lists everyday; reorganizing them, deleting some of the items, and moving others to the top with a high priority. Some days I move an idea from one list to another. I don’t know what all this means with these lists, but I am starting to see some changes. I am starting to recognize some of my short comings and what I might want to move toward.
All this reading exploring different points of view and ways of looking at life and the world has reminded me that I want to enjoy my time here on earth. Enjoyment comes from so many sources, but most of all it comes from being true to yourself, and being a giving member of the human race. Being comfortable in your skin is not easy to achieve but letting going of things that you can not change or control and embracing those you can move you toward that inner peace. Setting limits, so that you don’t get lost in that desire to satisfy others at your expense will give you the time and energy to work on those things you have never found time for before . These books were full of things I have heard and read so many times before, but like so many of you I said yeah, yeah tell me something I don’t already know. What is difference this time is I am actually trying some of this out now….today… not waiting for tomorrow. Hold on to your hats as I actually try to embrace life find my true self more often.
I have been offline for the most part recently. I traveled away from home in January for work and then I broke a shoulder. I had lots of personal things going on and really did not feel sharing. When I blog, I want it to be something more than woe is me. I want each post to give at least one person who reads it a one moment of pause, reflection, inspiration, a smile, a laugh, jog a memory, or shed a tear. I never want you to feel the time you spent on my post was a complete waste your time.
I was laid up with the fracture such that typing was slow and cumbersome. I was ready a few days into the discovery of my broke shoulder to have my life back. I did online research and talked with my orthopedic surgeon about my type of break. Together with the doctor, I examined two options and I elected the most restrictive option initially, but with the shortest period of restrictions and most complete physical recovery. I will freely admit that it has been rotten being so restricted. I have been on restricted movement for four weeks and have two more to go until the intense restrictions are lifted. Or at least that is the plan and so far things look to be running on schedule.
During the time I have been laid up, we have had four contemporary colleagues and friends who have passed away. It has caused a lot of reflection here. RangerSir and I have started to reexamined our end of life directives. We are making updates and making sure everyone is on the same page regarding our wishes. We did them when we moved to Montana and not have reexamined them in too long. Not only have we started looking again at our end of life plans, but we also looked again at how we were spending our current lives. We left the high stress, competitive lifestyle of Fortune 500 companies behind for a reason. We are again talking about those reasons. We were raised with the good Midwestern work ethic, and Lutheran guilt. It makes us great hard-working employees, and we easily find self-induced guilt to make us work longer and longer hours. We have been reminded time is short. We need to do our best job; give 110% and the go home and embrace the life we want to live. Here is to working towards that goal
Life is busy. There are not enough hours in the day for all we have to do; all we want to do. We are trying to be the best worker; a good employee; a great spouse; a true friend; wonderful family member to our kids, parents, siblings; a fabulous pet owner; a contributing member of the community; and an honorable person. It is a huge list and we are constantly trying to be all of those and yet no where on that list do you see a mention of self.
Lately I have been that person, striving to be what everyone else needs and wants. Not unlike so many others. The trials that have been going on in our country and the world remind me that time can be short. Take time out. Be good to yourself.