Patchwork of Life

Yesterday’s post seemed to have struck a cord with many business folks out there.  I believe the reason is that we all need a little encouragement to stay the course and not be afraid to push past the fear of failing.  I felt really happy that people were responding so positively and had a great day, realizing that I am getting stronger every day as a single woman and as a proud and determined Christian.  I had just attended church on Sunday morning and the Life Training workshop on Monday night, so I had that extra little boost of encouragement that always helps me get through the days and long nights alone.  Then my world crumbled to my feet.  I received a batch of beautiful wedding pictures of my niece through my marriage, who I have watched grow up from a beautiful teenager filled with angst, into an even more beautiful woman who had to face a lot of demons along the way.  She never took the easy path in life and fought hard for everything she ever had, including a sweet and lovely little girl, born 15 years ago today.  What broke my heart was only being able to see the pictures, not be there and actually be a part of such a joyous moment in my niece’s life.  When a couple splits up, it affects the other family relationships too.

I started focusing on the pictures of my 15 year old great niece and thinking how lucky I am to be part of her life.  How can one little baby change the world?  How can just one more little gift from God shake the heavens, rattle the earth and leave me feeling so in awe of that one single life?  Do we ever think about how each person we meet along the way helps create who we are at that moment and who we become in the future?  Susan changed my life from her first breath and continues to change me even now, a 60 year old woman going through a mighty and sometimes painful transformation.

I remember telling my older son something one night when he was in high school, about to go off to college and worried about what path to take.  I told him that life is like a patchwork quilt, with us stitching together the small pieces, or experiences into a work of art that is strong and resilient.  Some experiences will be full of sheer joy, like the day my beautiful great niece was born.  Or the day my sweet and serious little grandson, the “thinker” was born almost 5 years ago and of course when my deliriously happy and bold little granddaughter was born almost 3 years ago.  Those days are at the top of my “best things in life” list.  How can life get any better than that?  And yet it does, it really does.

Each experience won’t look the same, some may not be as good as some of the others, maybe some are not even “pretty pieces” of fabric at all, but when you put it all together, life truly becomes the most glorious work of art on earth.  The words I shared with Jason 20 years ago, still hold true for my life.  Don’t be afraid of the choices in life.  Sew them all together to create a life full of joy and pain, and one that is strong and so resilient that it can survive the test of time.

A neighbor shared his views with my mom this week about the Book of Revelations which we are studying about at church.  His view is that the end of the world is drawing close, as Revelations vividly describes amongst a lot of imagery and words that are hard to understand.  A favorite pastor of mine recently told me that every minister, preacher, pastor, evangelist, bishop or even the Pope has a different interpretation on what the scriptures in the Bible are trying to convey.  God has put unique ways of thinking about things in each of our brains, which allows us to look at life differently, such as life being called  “half empty” or “half full.” My mom always told me to view life as half full, and she firmly hit the bull’s eye with that attitude.

My thoughts about life or Revelations for that matter, is not to worry about what might happen….at all….not one little bit…will it really make a difference any way?  Worrying is nothing more than negative energy that drains us of our faith and will to live.  If we allow what is happening in the world to bring us down to our knees, than we surely will be struct down by our fear.  If we keep our faith strong in God at all times, pray for all those in need, and keep positive about life, our resilient quilt of life will keep us warm and safe. Reviewing our list of “best things in life” will give us the hope and encouragement we need to keep our heads high even at times of sadness.

We can’t expect our skies to always be sunny and blue, so instead we should use the days of gray and cloudiness as a time to reflect and work on personal growth.  One of the most beautiful pictures of my niece’s wedding last Friday night was taken on the beach with dark, swirling clouds in the background and with the waves crashing up on the rocks.  Some people might have been devastated that their wedding didn’t come with a guaranteed lovely sunset, but my niece has had a lot of stormy clouds in her life, and she lifted that cute little chin up high and just loved the fact she was marrying the man of her dreams between the rain drops while her loving family looked on.  That moment is now on my list of “best things in life.”

Stay positive and surround yourself with people that make you feel good inside.  Positive energy catches on easily, like a wildfire, so think about what you say and how you act today with your co-workers, spouses, friends and neighbors. Make your life a beautiful patchwork of positive experiences, mixed in with just a few of those raindrops along the way.  Happy Birthday to my dear, sweet and special Susan.

Rejoice Today!

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