Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Through the fine lens of Love and Care
Have you ever gotten a gift and when you looked inside it was sortof disappointing, not really something you'd expected? We all probably have at one time or another. A friend likes to tell a funny story about when he was a kid. Each year a birthday card would arrive with a check from an aunt. One year, however, he opened the card and there was only the card. And, much to his own chagrin now, he announced loudly- hey! where's my check!!??? He tossed the card aside, without reading, and walks away sulking. In his comical retelling he feigns opening the card, looking inside. In a state of shock he shakes the card and blows in the envelope, hoping against hope a check will magically appear. We have laughed over this story more than once, the humor so evident in the ridiculousness of his response. And, yet, there is a built-in expectation response at play here.
I thought of this story yesterday and it made me think about how each day opens up. I think about my life's choices and turns made that have brought me here. I think about my own living in a state of frequent disappointment and how that brought about low grade depression for too long as result. The things we are conditioned to expect as children shade our expectations so effectively and too often barely allows us to see what's actually in front of us.
So, yesterday, when I finally found my gardening apron with my clippers there were some old gloves in there as well. And, all I could think of was, "Oh great. These vinyl gloves are crumbling and disintegrating. What a mess! & I don't want to deal with this around all this wet paint...all I want to do it clip back the flowers so I can continue painting this side of the house." But, it wasn't crumbling gloves. Inside the apron were old flower deadheads that had broken into tiny bits of flyaway.
In fact, those gloves were just what I needed at that moment but I'd been so fixated on my need for finding the clippers and staying on course with painting that the old gloves were automatically seen as the annoyance. So, what did I need the clippers for? Trimming back a small rosebush . . .