My brother-in-law shouldn’t eat chocolate; it gives him migraines. I never asked him, but believe he would love to have some chocolate. Want to, but don’t. What about me? I have nothing preventing me from eating chocolate, sometimes in excess, or an entire two layer cake, or a whole 10” pie. Want to, and do. It’s mostly treats that sit of my shouldn’t list – something I rarely consult. I have a boatload of great excuses to do, like I deserve it, I’m just enjoying myself like everyone else, and the best one, it’s the quickest and most available kind of happy I can find. My should list, something I often ignore, is quite small, full of healthy, not fun, not tasty, not comforting, and not easy. I don’t have a don’t list, but I should. I guess I don’t have good enough reasons to say no, which makes me think, what would it take to get a reason for each don’t? And if I found some, would I listen? I think there’s lots of people like me, ignoring don’t; maybe impacting others, but mostly themselves. Is don’t so unimportant? Why is do so important? It’s time for reasons.
I’ve written before about how I can’t remember certain things right after my husband died; my mind, capable of knowing what I could handle, protected me from everything unbearable. I’ve also written about how we don’t have the ability to both forgive and forget. It appears my mind is the best judge, therefore remembering is not unbearable, for if it were, it wouldn’t be lodged in my head or heart. Sad memories are part of life, but the memories that make me and/or someone else feel bad, the ones I wish to forget, they’re there for more than just continuing to hurt. It’s to remember not to make the same mistake. We drove a half hour to a beautiful kayaking pond only to find we forgot the paddles. We never forgot them again! It’s to think about trust. I can forgive, but that doesn’t mean I can trust again. I heard a story about a babysitter who, after putting the children to bed, invited her friends over, something not allowed. She apologized and was forgiven but never asked to babysit again. Instead of wishing to forget, why not ask why should I remember. Some memories are there for a reason.
People of the Masks: “Our women were leaders, not followers. If I ever find one of your moccasin prints inside someone else’s, you’ll be scraping fresh (animal) hides for the rest of your life.” How easy it is to follow in someone else’s footsteps instead of doing whatever it takes to forge new paths, make new discoveries. If it were easy the vaccine for tuberculosis, the telephone, an MRI, and eye glasses would have been discovered long before they were. The earth isn’t flat and the sun doesn’t revolve around it – statements so bold, those who made them, were considered crazy and heretics! I have plenty of ideas for new inventions, like lawnmowers built like an electric razor with three floating cutting heads because lawns are shaped more like a face than a tennis court. But where can I send these ideas? I’m creative with recipes and in my workshop. I find it gets boring just following, wearing what everyone else wears, staying in line, or stop, go, plod, plod, repeat. It can also be comforting to follow directions when heading into new territory, to fit in more than not. But I’ll add something new, different, or creative whenever I can!
While in Colorado I noticed the lack of humidity immediately; the heat as well, or more like the intensity of the sun. I used the phrase, closer to the burner, several times as I felt the heat roasting my head! I’ve come close to the heat of anger many times during my life. I’ve touched the burner too. It never burned hot enough in me to hurt another person except in searing their hearts to medium well. Maybe well done, but I hope not. Anger always roasts my insides, making my head ache, my stomach twist into knots, my hands turn into fists, and my muscles turn from flexible to tense. Where does anger come from? It’s not because I don’t like something, but something I hate – stupid mistakes, inconsiderate words and actions, and with frustration in excess. It appears when I can’t do anything about what caused it – can’t take back the mistake, can’t remove inconsiderate from someone else, can’t seem to keep frustration from becoming overwhelming. I’m aware alcohol adds to the fire and know apologies help put it out, but what else? It makes me “angry” to admit I don’t know how to allow anger no leeway!
The unoccupied end of the couch, stirred up anger once again. “You left me here by myself!” Even though he didn’t leave on purpose, he left just the same, so he’s not here to make it up to me, or say he’s sorry, or ask for my forgiveness for crushing my world. He’s not here for me to yell at, to ask him why, to let him know it wasn’t acceptable, to express how unforgivable his leaving is. All this anger directed towards him is pointless, just like his leaving. It’s unreasonable because it has nowhere to go. But this anger is also directed towards me and the life I’m left with, which has everywhere to go. It’s directed at what I don’t want to do, but have to, because there’s no one else to do it, like moving snow and kayaking alone. It’s directed at alone, on my own, single, by myself, all me, and my responsibility. It’s directed at who cares, who notices, why bother, and unlovable. Basically directed towards feeling sorry for myself, which squashes everything wonderful about my life. I may not ever get past the anger, so anger may still come, but it can’t stay.
I heard someone use the word capable and thought isn’t that the same as able? My guess was similar but not the same, so Google it is! Able is having the power to do something, while capable is having the power necessary to do something. Many people are able to walk for 15 minutes but only some are capable of walking a mile in 15 minutes. What makes a person that’s able, capable? Talent, desire, determination, a mentor, need, no choice? Any or all. We’re all able to sing, but beautifully? Only some. I had desire and determination, and used a teacher to be capable of safely and creatively using my woodworking equipment. I’m able to deliver a baby, but only become capable when there’s a need. Recovering from my husband’s death was a process, starting with unable, to able, to capable because there was no choice. It’s, could verses can. It’s, don’t have to verses have to. It’s, getting by verses adequate. I don’t want just could or to wait for the arrival of have to. I want to discover all I’m capable of, to be all I can be. Not just get by but get up and try!
I am invincible; not a statement of fact. I can be defeated. I’m not Wonder Woman! My bones can break. I’m not beyond the reach of contagious diseases or medical conditions that strike whenever they like. Death can call on every single one of us, at any time. So it’s not fact, but who cares, it’s a state of mind, an extremely important state of mind. The power of my whole being resides in my head. Send that power in the direction of something positive and voila, it changes my entire being towards the positive. Broken bone? Mend it and choose a state of mind that will propel my body to make it function as close to before as possible. Shingles, cancer, Alzheimer’s? The mantra, I can beat it, while running through treatment, won’t guarantee the cure, but what’s the alternative? According to a Google search, negative thoughts “upset the body’s hormone balance, . . . , and damage the immune system” which means negativity makes matters worse. And death? Planning can help with decisions, but all the rest takes choosing a state of mind that will turn my heart towards ahead, not behind. Yes, invincible is a chosen state of mind.