Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘gratefulness

Coping Skills

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It’s getting hard to miss the memes questioning what the deal is with 2020 so far. There is one showing the frame for a couple of swings installed next to a brick wall. Yeah, it kinda feels like that. I guess with a global pandemic for a backdrop, any other situation which arises can feel like a slap in the face. The clear video of a white police officer slowly and arrogantly suffocating a black man was a serious gut punch with reverberations riling up centuries of prejudicial inequalities.

It’s getting hard to cope.

I am not surprised to have read somewhere of a trend toward moving from inner cities to the suburbs. I am truly grateful and totally aware of the precious benefit we enjoy in having acres of green space where we can stroll to breathe in the calming balm of all that nature offers.

There was a hint of a break in the cloud cover yesterday that teased of blue sky on the way but in classic 2020 fashion, it disappointed. The sunlight never broke through a gauze of dirty white that mysteriously found a way to hang around.

Our endurance is being tested. I see it as a challenge to how we frame our perceptions. There is no beginning or end when it comes to the span of time. There won’t be a single day which can be measured as the end of the coronavirus pandemic, just as there isn’t an identifiable moment when it began. Same thing for racial prejudice.

We are on a continuum. Life is a big, long ride. Figure out a way to cope for the long haul.

I suggest we mind our manners, take care of ourselves first before helping others, but by all means, seek to help others. Maybe release our urge to so vehemently control outcomes and discover a deeper awareness of what unconscious fears are actually coloring our perceptions.

Put a little extra effort into loving ourselves and in turn, nurturing greater love for others and the world we all share.

What a lovely way to cope with the challenges of life: coping by loving.

Group hug! [after the pandemic, I mean.]

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Written by johnwhays

June 20, 2020 at 7:32 am

Thankful

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Words on Images

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Written by johnwhays

January 31, 2018 at 7:00 am

Sunday Two

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Wintervale‘s November version of the Second Sunday event is coming up this weekend. The theme Cyndie has prepared involves “Gratefulness Collages.” In the month of giving thanks for our bounty, I expect the creative arts project will most likely be well augmented with bountiful offerings from her kitchen, too.

Materials are supplied, but if you’ve got any interesting old magazines lying around, feel free to donate them to the cause.

As of last night, the forecast for Sunday looked sunny, which would be nice for an afternoon stroll to see what inspiration the horses might offer. Of course, the chickens will be eager to say hello, too.

They love company as much as we do!

Make sure to let us know if you plan to stop in for a visit between noon and 3:00. Cyndie’s contact information can be found at the link for Second Sundays, above.

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Written by johnwhays

November 7, 2017 at 7:00 am

Repost: Lucky Guy

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With my thanks to Rich Gordon, whose inquiry inspired me on Tuesday to revisit my memories of the Himalayan trek I did with Gary Larson back in 2009, today I am republishing something I wrote at the end of all the posts about that trip. From the Relative Something archives (with some updating edits), I bring you May 16, 2009’s “Lucky Guy.”

I’m feeling really grateful lately for a lot of things. Mostly, people who have enriched my life. I’m a lucky guy. Lucky to know so many special people with whom I have been able to connect, and who join me in discovering the subtleties and nuances of ourselves and our world. I was born into a family, siblings and parents, who certainly made me the person I am today, and they have all always been a step beyond ordinary. As time passes, I am learning more about what that has meant for me and how it contributes to the person I have become.

I am lucky to have Cyndie and my two amazing children. Those of you who know me understand how lucky I am to have Cyndie in my life. And I’ve said many times that my children have taught me more about myself than I wanted to know at the time, but that I now am eternally grateful to have learned; and who better to learn from? I have also been blessed by knowing and becoming a part of Cyndie’s family.

I am lucky to have a friend in Gary Larson, a connection that was somehow made before either of us were aware of it, so at the time we met, we were both sure we already knew each other. Lucky to have discovered Pam on the trek. The whole group I traveled with have me feeling like I’ve won a lottery. Then, looking at the big picture, I’ve won that lottery of wonderful groups over and over. My soccer friends, cycling friends, Brainstorms’ virtual friends, lifelong EP friends, coworkers who became friends. What luck! I sometimes feel I don’t deserve to know people like Eapon and Chris and Andy. Rich, Steve, and Curt, Julie, Rhonda and David, Suzanne, Ann. Thank you, Laura, for allowing me to be a friend. Howard and Judy, Grace, RJ, and Ian in Portugal and Walter in New Zealand. David, Paul, Steve, David, Kevin, Todd, and Eric. Hal. Jodi and Jody. Kym. My other Gary. Murph, JC.

Some of you, I don’t see so much any more, but you’ve made a lasting impression that keeps you in my thoughts. You continue to contribute to who I am and to my feeling of being a lucky guy for knowing you.

Some folks say you make your own luck. If I have, I would be happy to take credit, but my thinking is, “How lucky is that?” As in, I am so lucky, I even lucked out and made some of my own, without even realizing it!

You are all good people. The named and the still to be named. Did I mention Warren? Or Ed! There are two Eds. And John. There are quite a few Johns. Katie. Judy, Linda, Elliott, Mary and David. Elysa and Julian. In this moment, I am thinking of you all.

I am a lucky guy.

2016 Dec addendum: The luck doesn’t end. Since the time that post was written, I would add, David, Ward,  the entire Rowcliffe family, Pattie, Tom & Sue, Bob, the Morales family of Dunia, Marco, Marco, & Jose. George and Anneliese. Doobie. I’d add Katie’s name a second time, because I feel doubly lucky for the ensuing years, as well as all the staff at the day-job. 

Good people, indeed —the named and the still to be named— as this is far from being complete in naming people who have enriched my life.

Just like the moment that post was originally written… today I am lucky to be able to think of you all, once again.

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Written by johnwhays

December 8, 2016 at 7:00 am