Someone once wrote that in order to function in this world you need twelve hugs a day. The reference was to good mental health, but I contend that spiritually and physically everyone needs a hug a day at the very least. People that live alone are depleted of their daily hug. They might go for days, weeks or months on end before they get a hug and this drought in hugs might adversely affect them. Sometimes people who live in households with others are light on hugging, too. How, then, do they function? Is depression and despondency evident? I haven’t done enough research on this topic to make a scientific hypothesis. I can speak from personal experience though and make these observations: 1)Hugging feels good and is missed if not received daily, 2)Giving hugs is as good as receiving them, 3)Hugs can surprise the recipient especially if received from someone you never expected to get one from. There are some people who are fearful of hugging. “Maybe, my hug will be misinterpreted.”, they think.These fearful misgivings can be harmful as they might limit or eliminate hugging How sad it would be if hugging wasn’t allowed or was limited due to a person’s fear of the event. My theory is that it is better to take a risk of hugging someone than to deny yourself the experience, so, go out and hug someone today!
Yes, Virginia, a vegetarian Thanksgiving tastes really good!
It is good to learn something new as we age. Here are my latest projects, crocheted items. I have wanted to learn how to crochet and had tried before, but lost interest and never was able to make anything. I didn’t persevere. I didn’t have patience to try when I was failing. Now that I am almost 70 I feel compelled to try something that I never was able to master. It feels good to accomplish something that was once unattainable. I am sure there is a lesson here: If at first you don’t succeed, try. try again! Don’t give up. Be patient. When attempting something new seek advice from others who have learned how to do what you are trying.Whatever the lesson, I have enjoyed learning this form of stitchery and am now anxious to try making something else.
Sunrise or sunset, all of God’s creation is awesome.
Zippers main purpose is to secure an outfit. Whether they are used to keep trousers on or to keep a purse closed most zippers operate smoothly without ever getting stuck. Zippers are varied in the different colors they come in and in the types of materials they are made out of: plastic, brass, gold, nylon. Most zippers operate so normally that someone using them doesn’t stop and ponder the unique properties and technical mechanics which keep them working each and every time they are used. There are, however, zippers that get stuck. Small bits of material interfere with the flow of these zippers and frustrate their users! No matter how many times the user tugs and pulls at these zippers they don’t work.
Relationships in my life remind me of these zippers. My first major relationship seemed secure and functioned and operated smoothly for over thirty years.Then, it abruptly ended. No amount of pleading and tears,like the pulling and tugging of a snagged zipper could fix the broken relationship, or in the case of the zipper could repair it. The next relationship was similar to a zipper which is like one in a slightly worn outfit; it isn’t new, but it still works. This relationship seemed strong, durable until it, too, ended. There were misunderstandings, mistrust, and dishonesty in this relationship and it could not survive.Then there was the relationship built on trust and faith, kind of like a durable, reliable zipper. This relationship came together after a fifty year absence, it had weathered time similar to a zipper that had been used again and again and continued to work well. It was a secure, functional, attractive zipper which would have lasted for a very long time, but was ravaged by rust and simply wore out. The relationship was loving, filled with faith and trust and would have lasted for a very long time also except one of the people in the union died. A body worn out, a breath stopped, like a zipper which stopped working.
The last relationship in this zippered life is the one that was there from the beginning and yet ignored. This is the relationship with the maker of all the zippers. The maker knows the material of each zipper and knows what needs to be done for each zipper to function properly. God is like the zipper maker. He knows what each relationship needs to grow, develop and mature because He knows individuals. He is certainly the best one who knows me! In order for any zipper to work to full capacity, or any relationship to work to full potential seeking the maker’s advice is a wise choice. When I buy a zippered outfit I may not consult the master zipper maker. If the zipper works I will most likely buy the outfit. However, when it comes to decisions in my life whether it is concerning future relationships or any decision I might make I will seek the Master, the Maker for His wisdom and guidance because He has a plan for me!
For me Spring and flowers equal joy! In Spring bulbs that lay dormant suddenly emerge into full, colorful blossoms. After Winter’s cold, barren season and with warmer weather seeds begin sprouting tiny green leaves. Changes are evident everywhere as varied hues of yellow, orange,pink and purple landscape the hillsides. When I lived in Hawaii I didn’t fully appreciate the different seasons. Most of the tree’s leaves remained green no matter what time of the year. It took moving to Nevada and then back to California for me to learn to embrace the changing seasons. Winters in Nevada were cool, brown and dry. In California the winters were also cool, but the ground changed from brown to shades of green due to the extra precipitation. If there was no rain, then the grass and weeds stayed brown. Generally though, there was rain and with rain and the coming of Spring the hills and valleys were decorated with a rainbow of color. In Hawaii I would feel happy when I saw any flower. Whether pink plumerias, orange bougainvillea, purple orchids, or fragrant ginger sprinkled in tropical forests, all were a treat to see. When I first arrived in Nevada things were different. I felt as drab as the dusty brown hills and as dry as a desert lizard. I didn’t cheer up until the daffodils bloomed in the sunlight of Spring!
There have been studies which state that “Some people become more depressed in the winter months when days are shorter and darker. The sun and bright light seem to trigger a response to a brain hormone known as melatonin (produced by the pineal gland), which is, in part, responsible for preventing the ‘blues’ “…But it takes more than sunshine to bring me joy. Iris Murdoch wrote“People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.” It is not only the sun’s rays that bring me up out of the depths and lift my spirit. It is also the flowers that bloom in that sun.
God almighty first planted a garden. And indeed, it is the purest of human pleasures. — Francis Bacon
I am thankful that I have eyes to see the beauty of flowers, a nose to smell their scent, and a season to watch them unfolding. I am thankful for such simple pleasures!
I’m not Catholic and don’t have a complete understanding about that religion. However, the Catholic church chose a new pope and I was struck by the emotionalism of the event. Newscasters were commending the choice of the “first ever from the Americas and the first from outside Europe in more than a millennium. (ABC Breaking News).” Comments were made tearfully and joyfully by respected Catholics as they shared their excitement and speculated on their future in and out of the church. I was impressed at the demeanor and attitude of this new pope. His statements to the cardinals of “staying true to the cross” and to "Let us never give in to the pessimism, to that bitterness, that the devil places before us every day. Let us not give into pessimism and discouragement,"( Reuters Philip Pullella and Catherine Hornby) were words that Catholics and non-Catholics can definitely heed. If all people embraced the joys before them emphasizing the good in society instead of the evil wouldn’t it be a better place to live?If the teachings of Jesus were examined and sought with a heart-felt sincerity wouldn’t God’s will be done? And If all Christians took vows of selflessness serving the poor and treating others better than themselves wouldn’t this be a step towards living a more Christ-like life? The new pope took the name of Francis, after Saint Francis of Assisi. This, too,was a first and brought forth questions of his future intents. If, like Assisi, Pope Francis prays for God to “make him an instrument of thy peace” I am excited to see what comes next! My prayer is that God blesses Pope Francis and that God’s will is evident in all things!