February 20, 2018
To be fair, because I’m on vacation this week, or maybe just because it’s Tuesday, I read a Facebook post I might not have normally read with the aforementioned title. In the spirit of full disclosure the article used Ali McGraw as its expert. No offense to Ms. McGraw, I feel like I (and you) are just as much experts of what life has taught us. May I also say that as my amazing Mr. and I face down 59 in the next months, I have been giving this a little thought, even before Ms. McGraw let me in on her thinking. Here’s her list in case I don’t seem like an expert. Eight Things Life Has Taught Me- Ladies Pass it On I make no similar disclaimer, but as we enter the week before our month long marathon, you might develop your own list.
- NOW OR NEVER It truly is the absolute truth. We most assuredly will not pass this way again. If we do, it won’t be the same. On every trip we ever took with our personal children, we said, “give it a go, there won’t be another chance.” I wish it weren’t true. There are some amazingly wonderful things I wish I had another chance at and also some colossal failures I’d like to have a ‘do-over’ regarding.
- GO BIG OR STAY HOME I believe this might actually be on my birth family crest. Just joking, but it is ingrained in my DNA. Never do anything half way. It won’t be what you want and it won’t turn out the way you want. EVER. It’s about the commitment. Fully, fully, commit to whatever it is. That will feel good no matter the outcome.
- YOU CAN CATCH MORE FLIES WITH HONEY THAN WITH VINEGAR To this and every other colloquialism I have in my bones, I owe my MaMa and by that I mean my grandmother. She was wise and thoughtful and faithful. Back to the flies, I don’t use this philosophy as much as I should, but it sure is true. Biting words don’t get anyone anywhere. Thoughtful listening and understanding will.
- DON’T GO TO BED ANGRY Perhaps the better adage is, don’t wake up angry. Holding on to anger does nothing for the perceived wrong and everything to the person holding on to it. I get angry with some frequency, but I try not to carry it around with me.
- DO WHAT BRINGS YOU JOY or make joy from what you do. I have been very fortunate to find something to do most days that brings me so much overwhelming, overflowing joy. The little time I didn’t have that, I found joy in little successes, minor moments, and snippets of amazing humanity.
- KNOW WHAT BRINGS YOU PEACE For me, that’s often baking, but it could be knitting or dog walking or watching the sunset. We all need a space for peace. That’s what heals us in the broken places.
- WE GET A LOT OF LESSONS IN LIFE AND IF WE DON’T LEARN FROM THEM, WE GET THEM AGAIN. Two decades ago, I read this book. If Life is a Game, These Are The Rules. I haven’t read it in at least a decade, but I often quote one thing I remember from it. If we don’t learn from something the first time, it’s going to come back around harder. Specific things about myself that have taken me nearly 40 years to learn come to mind. I feel like I’ve learned most of them now.
- THE SECRET is true. What we put out there in the universe, comes back to us. If we put out hope, hope comes back. If we put out negativity, negativity comes back. This I still struggle with… sometimes.
There you have it. My aspirations for a Tuesday or a half century plus.
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