Monday, April 28, 2008

Fading Flowers

My maternal grandmother loved to garden. Despite having nine children together, after chores were done on the farm, my grandfather could be seen helping my grandmother with the flowers. It was their special time together. My grandmother died sixteen years before I was born, yet I often feel her presence when I am in my own garden.

Lately, I have been overwrought with sadness. I mourn friends and relatives who have passed away. I see the bodies of living loved ones grow twisted. I see them in physical and emotional pain. I witness their memories failing. Some of them are shells of the people I once knew and loved.

After my mother passed away, my oldest cousin’s family gave me a Peace Plant. In the past few weeks, I have watched a white flower sprout, blossom, and fade. It is now a cylinder of drying seeds. This morning the plant gave me a great sense of peace. Like the flowers, we all have a life cycle. Some of us are just beginning to open. Some are fading. Yet others are almost nothing but drying seeds. My grandmother lovingly dried the seeds in her garden and then stuck them in envelopes to use for next year. While acknowledging my sadness, I am also given the option to harvest the seeds that my loved ones have created through their lives: a love of crystals, an appreciation of nature, the ability to make someone feel special, etc. Now I need to prepare the soil, as my grandparents did, so that I can plant the “seeds” for the next generation to enjoy.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Information Hangover

I woke up disoriented this morning. I managed to get in the Sunday newspaper and then I just let the world dance around in my head, like the final number of a large production where everyone comes on stage. My brain was foggy. My throat and sinuses felt like I had been frolicking all night with dust bunnies. Usually, I can trace mornings like this back to eating half a bag of chocolate or too many pieces of some really wonderful coffeecake. Nope, not this time. Can a person have an information hangover?

In all honesty, I started yesterday slightly dehydrated. I was out of fruit juice and didn’t listen to my intuition when it told me to grab a bottle of water as I ran out of the house to go to Tai Chi. I am a bit wary of plastic bottles since the scare in the news lately. But I think the real cause of my discomfort is all the information I have been trying to absorb. Tai Chi in itself is usually challenging. This semester Bob has been discussing the “Ten Essential Principles” during chalk talk and then yelling them out for us to apply as we practice the form, a nice mental workout. But as I go about my days, I have also been trying to apply the spiritual and psychological principles that I have been reading about lately. Friday and Saturday I read Secrets of the Lost Mode of Prayer by Gregg Braden and finished up reading The Power of Now by Eckhard Tolle. I am also cycling through reading The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay, The Master Key System by Charles Haanel, Around the Year with Emmet Fox, and How to Let God Help You by Myrtle Fillmore. While I was waiting in line for my car’s emission test, I read from Living Your Purpose: Truth in Practice, a Unity publication. All of these books encourage their readers to change their habitual thinking. This is just as intense as trying to apply the ten principles in Tai Chi.

So today, I am barely functional. I am drinking plenty of water. When I tried to do the daily jigsaw puzzle, I finished two minutes over the average; usually I am slightly under average. I gave up on actually trying to go to church. Ironically, I plan on reading People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks this afternoon, at least it is fiction.