"We become what we think about." ~ Earl Nightingale

Welcome to Sacred Ruminations

I hope you'll look around & leave comments
then visit me at my new blog ...

Giraffe Journal

and/or website ... Labyrinth Journal
both self-hosted at WordPress
where I publish as myself
rather than under a

I've not had much time for posting or blog visits, but if you're interested I hope you'll find time to check out my new blog, Giraffe Journal or my Labyrinth Journal website ... both self hosted at WordPress.

Thanks for your visit and have a delightful day ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Day 17 Allowing Myself to Receive (My Sacred Life)

In the Fall of 1989 I my overloaded schedule included a series of workshops for teachers to be conducted within the same time frame that I needed to prepare my own classroom environment and write lesson plans for the start of school. I'd done it all before and this should have been a piece of cake ... but it wasn't because "life" interrupted my plans.

In the midst of coping with the sudden death of my mom and the unexpected announcement from my husband of 21 years (best friend for 33) that he didn't want to be married any longer (both within a two week span) ... I tried to conduct "business as usual" without letting anyone know of the turmoil in my life. My friend A (who was one of the few friends who DID know of all this because my friend J didn't keep her mouth shut as promised) exploded at me one day calling me "selfish" for refusing to let her take over some of my workload. She said (and I quote here because I can still hear her words echoing in my head):
"Dammit! You're so selfish. You always do things for everyone else, but you won't let me do anything for you."
Exhaling here to release the rush of old feelings surfacing as I recount this incident ... I recall how she took me by surprise ... rocking my already shaky world a bit more. I had never considered doing for others selfish, but I realized in that instant that all things have multiple meanings ... depending on your perspective. Of course, I let her help ... and over the years since then, I've learned to ask for and receive help graciously.

I've long since forgiven J for breaking her promise to keep my secret. (Back then it felt awful because I wondered what I'd done wrong to cause all this bad "stuph" to happen, but now I know it was all perfect ... just what my soul needed to grow.) In retrospect, I'm grateful she activated my support system by calling all my friends with the news I couldn't share myself. I've discovered it's often impossible to repay those who help you directly, but you can pass it on in remembrance and gratitude.

So it is that today I'm allowing myself to "take in" the lovely comments people have left on this site in response to my offerings. I feel blessed you happened by and honored you took the time to introduce yourselves. My circle of virtual friends expands ... my cup runneth over.

I share this memory with you as a gift ... hoping it will "resonate" ... if not with you directly, then with someone you meet along the way. We all "get by with a little help from our friends."
Hugs and blessings,


thailandchani said...

Reciprocity is a concept that is somehow diminished ~ and I'm not certain why. (Well, I have my ideas, far too lengthy for your comments forum. :)

Still.. you're right, your friend was right and learning to receive is just as important as learning to give because that's what community is all about.

Quite a lesson there for you. :)

Suzie Ridler said...

Wow! Those are super powerful words with a twist that does resonate with me. It's true, if we don't allow others to care for us we are denying them that priviledge which we of course see as a burden but really isn't. It's harder to watch people suffer.

I am so sorry for your big and painful losses, I'm sure it made you so much stronger but my goodness, that's a lot to go through in a short amount of time.

storyteller said...

Chani and Suzie,
Thanks for stopping by again. I appreciate your comments.

My dad used to say, "What doesn't kill you always makes you stronger."

One amazing learning for me through all my struggles is the recognition that pain doesn't kill ... it just hurts like crazy until one day it passes, as all things do.

I love the phrase in the Bible (used so often) "Now it came to pass" ... because one day it occurred to me that "everything passes", nothing "stays" forever. Change may be the only "constant" ... along with our choice to respond with love (or fear). Then, of course there's serendipity which seems like God's way of remaining anonymous. But I'm rambling ... so I'll stop now.

Hugs and blessings,

heartinsanfrancisco said...

If so many of us weren't raised with the societal idea that needing help equals weakness, we wouldn't be so stubborn about asking for it. or feel that we had failed.

I have come to realize that if I really and truly could do it all by myself, I would have been born, alone, on a desert island, and would never have lived among others of my species.

We are all meant to be a comfort and a resource for one another.

Blessings to you for having had to learn under such difficult circumstances.

storyteller said...

H in SF,
Amen sister! Learning how to ask for help when we need it is sooooo essential for our well-being (yet difficult for so many to actually do). Thanks so much for stopping by, sharing your wisdom, and extending your blessings. I am grateful, indeed.

Mother of Invention said...

Wow! What a lot you had to deal with then. You sound very strong, then and now. (Okay, you are a bit older than me and I suppose you could have taught in in Gr. 7 if you were teaching in '66.)

I would have crumbled and taken help from anyone...probaby asked for it, but I am kind of wimpy and ultra-sensitive, youngest of 3 girls, and used to just having help. My dad would say your losses helped build your character. (He also says that of grey hair and wrinkles!)

Anonymous said...

There's a saying I like that it's in our giving that we receive, and your story illuminates how it's also in our RECEIVING that we *give*. Sending you blessings of gratitude and a great big hug!

storyteller said...

Thanks for stopping by, leaving a comment, and BIG HUG back acha! Where would I be if Carol hadn't given me the book leading me to Taos where I met inspiring women like you.

By the way. I love my candles ... created with your love & inspiration! And I forgot to mention in one of my comments to YOU today that I appreciate the link to Etsy. What an amazing resource I didn't know existed!
Hugs and blessings,

storyteller said...

M of I
I didn't see you comment until I published the previous one to Carla! Thanks for stopping by. I'm relieved to report that I was completing Student Teaching in 1966 (working with 2nd and 6th grade classrooms) so I couldn't have been your 7th grade teacher after all :)

Raising 3 girls show ME you're strong. Parenting is not for sillies.

Methinks I like your Dad. I've got LOTS of grey hair (that change started in my 30s and is still going strong) and wrinkles (thanks to my Dad's side of the family) and have always viewed them as signs of character, wisdom, maturity, etc.