Oct 31, 2009

Emptiness for Fulfillment


I've been readng 'Encounters with Merton' by Henri J M Nouwen and I wanted to share a part that interests me and that is on 'emptying oneself' which was also discussed in M S Peck's book. Thomas Merton was into such deep contemplation of the meaning of life, the search for God, his self and so much more; his thoughts and journey is so complex I am not able to spell it out clearly.
Merton reflects that emptying our selves will  help us do away with fear.  This is done by detachment, to claim nothing and possess nothing not even his life. We will then be able to "stand without fear in a violent world"  Nouwen adds that "detachment does not mean shirking one's responsibilities. Rather it is a supremely active deed that makes it possible to move unprejudiced and unafraid into the center of the evil".
Merton wrote "If I remembered that I have nothing called my own that will not be lost anyway, that only what is not mine but God's will ever live, then I would not fear so many false fears."

Merton reflected that learning the secret of our nothingness will lead us to find our true selves, because what will be left, is us 'made in His image and likeness'.
Paradoxically it appears, emptying our true selves will give us our fill of answers to many questions and we will then know the way to go.

I have come some way(a tiny fraction) of letting go and giving it up to Him and that has truly made me feel less afraid of the unknown.  So I can only imagine what it must feel like (thousand times more liberating ?) IF I COULD go the whole way.

Oct 29, 2009

Grading Mummy


My youngest son and I were talking about how his teacher grades his essays.  I was trying to explain the term 'criteria'.  He went  'mmm I guess vocabulary and grammar',  yes an ideas too I added,  how interesting his composition is, makes a difference. 
Somehow we moved to grading his teacher. At first he said ten out of ten, I prodded him and asked him his 'criteria'.. 'his reasons'.  He thought about it out loud and decided she was not perfect, she did not know everything (cause she didn't know the plural for ox was oxen !! ). His teacher got downgraded to six out of ten (oops!).
Then we moved to 'sister' - she was happy to hear him give her a grade of  eight out of ten. I tried to get her 'marked down' ..with criteria (evil grin !!, she glared at me)  Obviously sister was not that 'bad' to him.  I think it's because she shares her IPod with him eventhough she does yell at him from time to time.
Brother did not fare that well, although I suspect at a different time or day his grading would have improved.

Finally we came to Mummy, here I was thinking perhaps I should have picked a better time, I had been 'nagging' him the whole morning about the ills of procrastination to get him to finish his homework. 
But,  he gave me a ten out of ten.  Of course to be fair,  I prodded him with reminders and a chance to re-think, I tried  (really did!) to get him to lower my grade, but (happily for me)  he remained firm, brushed aside anything else I attempted to bring up.
It's a wonderful feeling to be unconditionally loved inspite of our imperfections.

Meandering thoughts

Strange the planet is so small, there's beauty and quiet to be found in some parts and bloodshed and poverty in others, yet each does not touch the other.
The news lately has been bothering me, there's very little good news these days,
- a doctor drowns while diving, - a man is in a coma because he was struck by lightning while he was golfing,   - a suicide bomb kills 100s in Baghdad, bombings in Pakistan that kill women and children,   - a place called Rayong south-east of Bangkok that has seen so much industrialization that the cancer rates and suicide rates are so much higher than the average in the country, and drinking water is contaminated with metals and chemicals... .
- cyclones and floods, earthquake victims and destruction...
Mothers Always,Keep Cool
Life is so fragile, and unpredictable, this old cliche will never grow old, do we know what happens tomorrow,  whether you be rich or poor death can come unannounced.
Are natural disasters an act of God or the wrath of God. Is it meant to be a renewal or punishment,  we ask  these questions ironically.  Yet here man is also chipping away at that already fragile surface, adding to all that,  the wrath of man and callousness of man,  so eager to hasten death of life and death of the earth. Sometimes I think God is trying to wrestle back control.

Is there a balance, it all seems to be weighted in favour of disaster. Can we tip the scales then,  it's upto the rest of us then to plead for and save the earth.

Oct 27, 2009

It Must Be Wonderful


I wrote this post in August but I have decided to resurrect it because I keep reading so many blogs  that have been  talking about the onset of autumn in the US and some more recent .. marvelling at nature's beauty in change.

I live without seasons. It’s either the rainy season or the hot season, which these days are mixed up due to global warming.
I can only imagine how beautiful it is during the other times of the year when it’s not summer.
Four times a year, there’s beautiful change to look forward to.
I can’t imagine what it’s like to be able to anticipate each season as it comes, to be able to see the changes in the sky, the trees, the slow transition of colours, to smell the changes in the air, the start of snow, when it melts, your home in a white landscape and feel the temperature change.

It must be wonderful.

Oct 26, 2009

Looking inwards to solve conflict with a working colleague

Conflict with another human being can eat away at a person and is truly a total waste of energy..if it can't be overcome outwardly , the solution lies with ourselves.
My problem 
I have been facing on-going frustration at work with a colleague.
I have this frequent urge to say to this person “I told you so", it just sticks in my craw, again and again and after more than 20 different projects, she still does not get it – that she’s not doing it correctly.
There’s a certain satisfaction in being right . We are vindicated, we can gloat. After all I did do my part to advise and yet she refused to listen.  And so I am glad it turned out the way I predicted it would  (..evil has been collecting his points).
It's not arrogance or opinion on my part,   it's about professional practices. Regardless the end-result speak for themselves - there have been no project wins.  More frustrating, she does not learn from previous experience.
My response of late (tired of sparring with her):  
I start to resist working with her, and I think there is no point putting my all into a project with her at the helm. But that would of course compound the end result.  I have stopped giving my points of view. What do I do? I’m just an employee.  It is wearing me down.
My conscience:  
You can't ignore conscience when it knocks.  At work it is easy to justify taking the opposite route. I don’t want to gloat or be superior, honestly don't want to 'b...'  about  it either,  it's not about recognition or being idealist.  On a personal level this person is alright, little pushy but bearable.  But because co-projects are frequent, I begin to distance myself from her personally.  How do I get past it ?  I don't see a solution, so I have to learn to accept it.  Something has to give, it's me.  Management does not do their part  (I'm not into back-stabbing).
Me now:  
It's been 2 years already, and I think I am beginning to  - not let it bother me;  do my part still and not expect more from this colleague, in other words tampered my expectations in order to avoid further inner conflict. 
(a lesson to store)

Oct 25, 2009

Sunday Solitude


A relatively peaceful day, today I don't want to ask for more, or think that life could be better or remind God of his to-do list for us, just gratitude and thanksgiving .........

1. Mom of Three described my blog as 'eclectic' and that means I write on diverse topics or experiences. I never really thought about it but it does succinctly describe the content. But on subject matter, it is mostly centred around  life and me. Does this then mean it is filled with variety? I am thankful that I have many interests to occupy me.

2. My parents are still around, and supportive without being judgemental of my current circumstances. They could have said 'I told you so'.  I thank God for them and their love.

3. I did not give up or go insane, I had strength to persevere. Thank you for my endurance.

4. I have a job, if not for that job, I would have been more hesitant and afraid to take the steps we needed. You have helped empower me.

5. I've been reminded by less fortunate parents, that God has blessed me with three beautiful children, I have 'nothing else to complain about but the normal mischief' that they would gladly have.  Thank you Lord for their well-being.

6. I have friends from my early school days, new friends from recent times, close friends who are even closer now and now I have blog friends to keep me company, at any time to stay in touch, to communicate with, thank you that I may never feel loneliness, they are my signposts.

7. I have two siblings with their own kids, who make time to to keep up family ties, I know they will stand by us should I ever need them more; thank you Lord that they do keep in touch, that they are there for me.

8. Thank you for technology that makes contact easy, and for enabling me the time, energy and health to participate positively in the life around me.

9. Thank you that there is light in my life.

Oct 24, 2009

A Journey from Fear to Strength.




I have some fears still but I have overcome much fear.  But as much as I would like to let them all out and 'release' them, I can't talk about it because my daughter reads my posts sometimes (yes u dear) maybe my son/s too.  I can't share more yet but you will get a gist of it.  Revealing anything more other than strength is not a good idea just now. They need to be strong for themselves, not for me.  I think I reveal more through my comments at others' sites. There are dark shadows in my life but there is light too.

When feelings overflow, it does come out in bits, now and then through some of my posts, [Volcano,  couragechild's anger, The bully ] when I'm upset, or angry, sad, or when there's a small triumph in  personal life. My role for my kids is to be strong for them, and seek out the best objective solution for them. My life for the last 20 years has been less than imperfect and I am working to getting it to just imperfect. The perfect life never lasts, I don't need it.

Joyce Meyer's Testimonial (Just Be Real) , The Narcissist and Janice's Diary ,  these blogs/ posts tell of realities that centre around  'abuse' and 'narcissists'.  In the last 20 years or so,  my kids and I have personally become acquainted with some of the painful experiences that these individuals mention. I have not slept a full night's rest for so long I don't really remember what it feels like anymore just a constant tired feeling.  The experiences of bloggers who have lived through so much more hardships, who are able to personally share (vent anger, realize peace, survive)  and comments from their supporters is heartening, it helps very much and keeps up my hope. 

I never talked about it, I hid my problem life so well. Why, because it was just unheard of in my circle. As I began to 'leak' a little of what  I faced with friends around me, I came to discover that we all hide something,  we seem to think everyone else has perfect lives and so we dare not reveal our unhappy lives. Everyone has different crosses to bear .  I was so uncertain, so afraid of the unknown outcome, blur of llines that were not quite black and white.  I was not a blogger nor a blog reader before I overcame the first major hurdle either, perhaps it would have moved me sooner.

About a year ago, I felt a 'bursting' feeling and there came a real shift within me, which came in the form of awareness and even a rude awakening through different close friends in my life. Finally being able to talk about it  had helped to push me forward, to be less afraid. 5 months ago I made that first move, for the past 4 months there has been some change for the better for my kids, we have come a long way, but we're not done.  5 months ago I couldn't talk about it without breaking up, but today I can.

What I have learned too about the social system of help, is that they can assure you some of the way but cannot commit all the way, it's only easy if it is definable in black and white, not for the grey.  Abuse is abuse isn't it, is there a question of how much or how little?  This is where naive me learnt a valuable lesson too and I will be more ready to face the next round if it comes to pass. 
It was just after the first milestone that I started this blog (healing). I had started an earlier blog  as a record of episodes in our lives; I believe that putting down the words also helped to precipitate action. But that remains private for now. Apart from the immediate problem, one precious element  that has been suppressed is self-expression and we are learning to let our minds fly free.

Where is my faith in all this, it's there deeper than it has ever been. I used to blame God but have come to realise all things happen as a consequence of our choices.  And so we need to deal with it the same way and not expect God to solve problems of our own making. When I thought (for years) I should be just praying and waiting for God to do something, he was actually pushing me to do something first, only I did not get that. As in Ted Loder's prayer (see sidebar) I desired to 'be bold'. I had to discover courage.   HE is there, and I know that.  At this stage, I still don't know what is God's will, we have come to a fork in the road, waiting either for God's move or man's. 

The bottom line is do what I have to do to improve the lives of the kids and yet make some difficult choices for myself . Mercy seems to be what God wants me to attempt so that I can say I gave (it) a chance for change. When the time is right to cross that line, I will know it,  and then I will know too that it is the right way to go.  As JBR aptly describes the emotions,  I too have not fully surrendered I have not learned how to yet. I am still climbing that mountain, (I forget sometimes) by myself.  His way has made me stronger. I pray that peace comes soon. For those who do not believe in God, call it what you want, but something greater has pulled me out of my hole.
For all those who have only darkness and no light, I pray that hope shines your way and that you will be able to step out of the shadows.

This quote holds a truth in the first part, we hope soon for the fullfillment of the second part.
If you will call your troubles experiences, and remember that every experience develops some latent force within you, you will grow vigorous and happy, however adverse your circumstances may seem to be. -John Heywood

Oct 23, 2009

Reverie

A time for reverie
why do we not spend it.
For our minds too, need a spree
of moments to refresh, fatigue to defeat.

Each day it strives to bring fruit.
So little time is given to re-boot.
There is power in service,
we are carried away, bankrupt of emotion.
The landscape is flat, we never see that crevice,
then we die to that dedication.

Through the cracks, do you see,
there’s more, why limit experience
to just a tiny me
in the whole of existence.
Create more moments in time,
splash colours across all memory.
Feel the heartbeat surge to song and rhyme,
the landscape undulate, art takes on poetry.
Can you feel the leaves rippling,
living is more than a fruit you see,
the horizon beckons, extending,
branches sway, stand tall, we are the tree.


(HA - Sep 2009)

Oct 22, 2009

A Purposeful Title




For the little lives we bring forth, our emotions ebb and flow, yet they are for us the most beautiful distraction.  Here I am,  a mom of three  and will be always a mom.  For  the children, be they  near or apart,  our souls are forever linked,  for we are and will be their mothers always.
But then there's more to it,  please read between the lines, you should not judge a blog by its' title.
There are hidden layers pulled from the shadows, poured out in these pages,  and soon from anonymity I become a known stranger.
I look forward to these moments when I arise to write, it has taken too long but am learning to let all go, and  just be real; discovering about being me.
As I stumble along into the right path,  I believe I am here in this moment,  because of the recent chapters of my life.  I am not alone, mostly finding my way like you. And when all the pages are arranged together, you will see, it is like the journey of a single mum.


It's sort of amusing how I ended writing this, the blog link idea came to me after I started to write,  should I call it a  'blogloquy'  ..
... feeling strangely moody today..God Bless  ....

Oct 21, 2009

Moments & Snapshots

If you caught me at the wrong moment yesterday..(Gaia did).. I was fiddling with my blog look but as you can see,  I have not succeeded sob! (phew ! at least I didn't loose the posts)..For a moment I thought I'd succeeded but the buttons didn't work. I shall try again soon. 


Dear Diary ..today  I' m sort of tired , I'm thinking I'll keep it light.  ..I looked at photographs....
(No photo critiques please,  2 of these pix were taken with a camera phone. )






One of my proud moments with all 3 of my kids (so that would be 3 moments) , is when they each learned to ride a 2-wheeler on their own and within minutes. It was amazing really, I didn't have to hold on to the back of the seats. Amazing too because I recall it took me a few trials, some scrapes and a few days to master the balance bit. And yet they just sort of wobbled a bit and took off like it was the most natural thing to do. 
How fast they grow.....



The Zoo is one of the few favourite places which we never tire of visiting.  We love the white tigers in the Zoo and these poor guys had their moments too, through no fault of their own in Nov 08 . A worker in the Zoo had climbed into the enclosed area on purpose and gotten mauled by the animals.  I am sorry to say he did die which had appeared to be his intention according to reports.  There was talk about putting the animals down after that (because ignorant people were calling for it), but thank goodness, it was decided that it was not the fault of the animals; they were acting according to nature. I'm glad they're still there for us today and hope they will be there tomorrow for the third generation. They are an endangered species with less than 130 left in the world (when was that last count).

Leftovers in their less visible form are called memories. Stored in the refrigerator of the mind and the cupboard of the heart.- Thomas Fuller

Oct 20, 2009

A Poem for Bloggers

This poem 'A nameless relation' was written by A Known Stranger.  He has created many other poems on his website and I have enjoyed going through them, the poems express many different emotions and life situations (I have not finished going through them all)
I thought that this particular piece as I read it, was too good not to share because I think most of us bloggers will be able to appreciate the words, it's about you and me.   To quote Aphrodite Orania  'this is a wonderful medium for most of us, who sail on the same boat to unveil, vent, confide, find solace and feel wanted and heard'... feels like  a celebration of blogging.........


Though you are friend of mine
Known in virtual world, living
Far away and miles away,
We do talk hours together
with interest,over phones and mails ,
on subjects strange to discuss.
We know not how we sparked
nurtured and grew our bond
To a nameless relation
That seems bizarre

You hold a special place in my life
So unique, that we share
Our joy and worries , with out meeting,
We understand each other
Crossing the barriers of age and culture,
Soothing each other with respect.
I picture your smiles and moods
How you think and behave
A game which is interesting
To play and enjoy.


I wish we hold this fragile
Sphere of glassware with
tenderness and hugs galore
It will seem unusall to any
Yet our relation is unique with
fantasy to live
and cheerish for life time
It will be seem strange to many
But this special relation I have
With you , I owe is true and
…………………….
And I wish I never shatter
This fantasy with any
eerie events …..


Thank you to A Known Stranger 

Oct 17, 2009

Thinking out loud - Reflections


Something to chew on.....
M Scott Peck in his book had commented that he did not think that God is omnipotent because HE endowed us with free will ('developable').
God created the soul. Why would he (or did he) create an evil soul ? "This is not meant to take away the mystery of it all. Indeed, if soul creation, is in fact, an experiment of God's in each and every instance, it then becomes mysterious why there are so very few such obviously failed experiments". Therein lies an even greater mystery, that of human goodness.

So if we are God's experiments, he grows with us. God changes with his people,  moves with the times according to our evolution?  God of the old testament is different from the one in the new.   The Israelites, thousands of years ago, needed a heavy hand as opposed to people of today who respond better to reason because we have evolved, we are more thinking beings than our ancestors

Somehow it makes sense, we are not created perfect and our lives are not perfect either. We each have flaws. We each have free will.

Oct 15, 2009

Living and Dying Well - M Scott Peck


Part 2-3 of Denial of the Soul

Dr Peck's theological and religious leaning comes through quite strongly in his advise on how we should approach death. It is as if he too was searching for a way to the ultimate stage of acceptance.
The second half of the book draws a parallel between living and dying and Dr Peck discusses what it means to do both well and in communion with God or one's deepest self (soul) for secularists. There are stages that we go through in any situation of trouble or crisis and it applies to dying too.  (Kubler-Ross stages of learning)
Denial
Anger
Bargaining
Depression
Acceptance

Dr Peck puts forth that human beings are meant to continue learning and developing, most often we stop learning because we do not get pass the denial stage. The soul he believes, is not created to stagnate 'why would God not only create us but continue to nurture us unless we were developable. Unless God desired our development, our learning?' This he feels is the meaning of life.

Dying gives us the opportunity for learning and soul development. By opting for Euthanasia however we are denying the meaning of human existence and attempting to 'escape the reason for our being', 'it shortchanges ourselves.'  In his experience with dying individuals, the final stage of Acceptance appears to lead one to an ethereal awareness of self,  they seem to emanate 'light that embraces their company', no sadness is experienced.
When we are depressed, the healing of depression requires that there be (existential)l suffering. When we seek out answers to our troubled feelings, we come out on the other side with learning and wisdom on a higher plane. Interestingly he says sometimes the solution could mean there is no solution, we accept that and move on.  Dr Peck describes that to arrive at enlightenment we need to recognise our shortcomings and give up 'things of the ego' - arrogance, excessive competitiveness, need for self-esteem, righteousness etc. We need to identify it and realise we 'can give it up' and do it.  It is about making a choice to continue learning, to develop the inner being and thus we should continue to live until we cannot.

Death of the ego or letting go can be painful. Dr Peck likens these episodes of working at depression to 'little deaths'. One of these characteristics is the 'need to be in control'. Certain forms of Euthanasia or assisted suicides is motivated by this need to control our exit from life.  But Dr Peck maintains that it is not up to us to decide when. In such cases that need (ego), means forgoing cooperation with the Creator and forgoing the ultimate enlightenment of 'emptying ourselves'.  The relief of suffering at the expense of hastening death is acceptable as opposed to shortening life to avoid facing death. Extreme pain and suffering without viable relief is the influencing factor and timing is not of our choosing.
In the final part of the book part 3, Dr Peck discusses different ways to handle terminal illness, their aftercare and suggests methods and counseling for individual medical contexts and also proposes pastoral advisors for meeting the needs of the soul.

"The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers.”
I believe there is a close parallel in religious writings that many of us can identify with - 'to die in order to live'.

I am finished with the book but not really done with it (if you know what I mean).

Oct 14, 2009

Little Confessions


I've been reading the old testament of late, a remark made by a non-Christian prompted me to do this and I haven't stopped.  I am a 'cradle' catholic, I don't recall much of the cathechism that flew past me in the early years and honestly only came to truly appreciate the faith, and God in my later years. I never paid much attention to the other books in the Bible particularly in the old testament. I am embarrassed to admit this but I'm going to, I never knew that Moses never entered the promised land until recently.

Contrary to all the Sunday readings, I encountered a God who is fierce and super-strict; not as I've come to know him but one who is intolerant, demanding, almost unforgiving, reactive - this comes through quite scarily in the books of Exodus, Numbers and Deutoronomy.

Suddenly I think,  I want God of the old testament to rain down fire on the bully in my life but yet I prefer God of the New Testament to be there for me.

Sometimes I wish I could direct my life the way I want it and direct God in this drama too... [no lightning!.]. did I say that I fantasize a fair bit!
That's the drama of my life.. taking 2 steps forward and 1 step back.

Oct 12, 2009

Stereotyping


Not too long ago, Jeff  discussed an incident on racism in his blog. Another subject not too far from this yet often overlooked and glossed over is stereotyping. I need to rant a bit, we're approaching festivals - we just passed one for the Muslims and are approaching another for the Hindus and sweeping remarks made by the ignorant and careless, just get on my nerves now and again .

I live in a society that is made up of many different races, each one quite diverse yet we're quite integrated - Indians, Malays, Chinese, sub-divide that with religion. While this nation's 'civilization' has come a long, long way, and in this age of internet and TV,  there are still pre-conceived notions running in the heads of the so called 'better' educated locals of their long-residing counterparts.

Here are some typical remarks:
- she is very fair for an Indian
- she looks like Chinese but she's actually Malay
- he's Indian but he's Catholic
- she's Chinese but she married an Indian
- he's Indian but his wife is Chinese
- her hair is so straight for an Indian
- she's quite dark for a Chinese
- she's Indian but she knows how to eat Chinese food.
- he's quite good looking for an Indian
- he's Muslim but he is not fasting
- she has an English name but she is Indian
- she's Chinese but she's got nice eye lashes...
.. it goes on..
Mild but it grates. Can you hear it,  the condescension, ignorance, underlying prejudice, presumption and imposition...the word 'but' is like that chalk piece screeching against the blackboard.
Why can't people make observations without suppositions?

The ignorance is amazing, the incapacity to learn anything (or absorbing anything) about your neighbour for 30 years of living next to them, the ease of assuming is baffling.
More often than not my sarcastic response is wasted on these persons, and when you point out the error in their thinking, they justify themselves based on   'most of the time', 'usually like ', 'they always' ...  when really they don't know.
These are not about norms of yesteryears, it's about being aware, being more exposed and asking questions.  Is it shocking that narrow mindedness still exists ?

Oct 10, 2009

Trekking through a New Frontier


It is now officially 3 months old, this blog of mine.

When I started blogging it was more as my personal journal. I always have more questions than answers. Since I joined the blogging community I have been amazed and continue to be amazed as I go blog trekking. I am discovering a world of interesting people all over the globe on all kinds of interesting subjects. Mostly, that I am not alone on some of the issues I face, and your words help in many ways. We do make connections.
I blog and I follow,  I comment where I need to say something or I don't (so much to read). I have varied interests and am pulled into most subjects especially on the self (journals), on human nature, mothers and kids however it is expressed, be it in pictures, words, music or poetry. The work of so many minds is truly amazing. When I get to new sites, I explore not just the blog but the followers too (such a busybody!).

I've come across different blogger writer types
1) the ones who write for pure revenue interest
2) the ones who write very personal stories
3) the ones who write for the love Of God
4) the ones who write because life is full of interesting questions and experiences to share(good and bad)
Wow and some of you have multiple blogs too, I envy that energy.
5) the ones who write on business subjects
and then you have different follower types(not necessarily signed up)
6) write and read other blogs
7) don't write but read blogs
8) Loyal
9) Hoppers

The lone ranger:
10) write but don't read any other blogs

The blog world makes for wonderful human interest exploration and we certainly can learn from each other and learn new things along the way. Thank you for the kind awards that some of you have shared. Many of the blogs are beautifully designed and decorated, but more importantly is what they have to say. (I'll have to fiddle with mine soon).

This award is for all you wonderful people who have joined me along the way at some point or other,  with your thoughts and comments and to all who follow:  awardGaia, Arise to Write, Farila,
Mom of Three, Always a Mom,
Charmaine, Janice, Julieanne, Echoes , Political Blog,  Kathleen, Blushing Rose, Creative Liquid, TheConformalBlog, Blest Atheist, Magdalena,  Moon Loh, AphroditeOrania, Tammy, SheGurl, Spiller, Aperdue7..
(if I 've  left anyone out my sincere apologies).
And thank you.

Oct 8, 2009

A Day in the Life... Words


There's a rhyme that goes "sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me"..  who came up with this, it's absolutely not true.

Last night I got so mad with my older son, that I almost said something terribly harsh. I don’t think he realized his words hurt me and I don’t think he even remembered it after. I was fuming mad with him and that made me literally bark at the other two kids who did nothing wrong. I stopped myself; I refused to talk to him further and asked the other two kids not to talk to me because I was upset with their brother.

He is doing the PSLE this year and that has put him under pressure for the past few months now. It is something that has been building for both him and me too. Inspite of advice, much of the stress is self-inflicted, he is a worrier by nature. He is quite unstable in his emotions where his abilities and confidence are concerned and they fluctuate so wildly, it tires me out.

An hour after the episode, I went into his room to see him and he looked at me like nothing happened, like he didn’t have that self-righteous episode.
I let him be, I decided I was not going to pursue the matter then or today and try to make him recognize the wrong. Why, because it might dig a deeper hole in me and I don’t think he will come to the realization? It will bother me some but I’ll just blame immaturity(he's 12) or stress and give him space. Motherhood can be painful in more ways than one.

This morning I am back to my calm self, and I am glad that I bit my tongue and held back the words. Taking back words does not quite relieve you and somehow once you let go of those words, it’s not like you can take it back completely and wipe it from memory. I know the words would have hurt him (even if he does not seem to be listening) and me too.
This is not the first such incident, I’ve also decided when this happens again, I’ll handle it differently with reverse psychology rather than reason, that is try another doorway into his stubborn mind.

Oct 7, 2009

Chain Mail

Chain letters, have you ever received them ?  
Before the PC became a common household item, I had received a few of these through the snail mail. In those,  my  younger days,  I used to fret over them, and there were a couple or three that I actually did follow through, literally repeat writing 7 copies (7 seemed to be the favourite number and still is).  But nothing noteworthy happened, neither for the chains I continued ( I didn't get my windfall) nor the ones I 'broke'  (my room did not burn down).

A few weeks ago, I received one at work and it stated a list of sins committed by the common man. I was to add 2 more common sins to that list that was already there (it was a very long list), and pass it along to 12 friends and add the email listed below as the 13th address. If I did not follow through, 3 evil events would 'befall me' within the next 3 days and I would only recover from it by not eating meat for 7 days. (the magic number again, and some comic relief !!). 

Yes, they seem to have multiplied via the email these days. While it is easier to act on them, I  don't follow through on them. They are mostly less ominous sounding too ( no curses or 'bad luck will befall you'  nonsense).  There are a few that I do pass on and that's usually if they involve Blessings and wishes. I do it for the sake of passing on those well-wishes or prayers but I don't follow the number that is specified. Why do people do that, attach number of times or specify number of emails to send out. 
If it's a good message to pass on or a special blessing why not, by all means, send it out without conditions or ultimatums, just good old fashion goodwill.
I'm not knocking anyones' superstitions here, it's just my take.

(PS : A techie friend tells me that in some cases it's purely for data mining..so beware..!)

Oct 4, 2009

When I Become Me



We are tiny specks in this vast universe
from somewhere in that space we began.
How did we come to be unique and diverse,
is it the essence or matter that makes us man.
We are human and humane we are to be.
Each of us made from one special mold,
yet when we come to be there is nothing but cells to see,
is it the soul that finds a life or the life that finds a soul.

I am much more than the physical.
To fulfill a destiny that seems inconsequential.
But why me, for what purpose, did he create.
The path we walk is never smooth or straight,
distractedly we plod through detours, the heart engages
the essence of me; more is my lot.
But One who is greater enlightens our searches
with a flame for man who cannot.
To journey with wisdom
from earth to that kingdom,
what special gifts in our depths we hold,
it is worth much more than gold.
Open the eyes and see, it's not too late, 
look again the road is straight.

(HA 2009)

Oct 3, 2009

Crosses in Different Sizes



All of us have different problems and troubles and until we come across others who seem to have a lot to deal with, we then re-look at ourselves in retrospect.   Janice is one such blogger and there are many more such individuals. I'm not writing this out of pity, but empathy.
My troubles can consume me for a whole day but yet I still have room to bounce back on the good present in my life.
Janices' story is really heartbreaking, there are elements in her life I can identify with, but they count as a fraction;  for me they are relatively recent (16 yrs) but her story begins way back from her childhood.
The fact that Janice blogs in spite of her hardship, despair and is able to carry on is really amazing. There's courage and a strong spirit to survive all ills.
Please add Janice to your prayers for a less weary life and a happier Now.

(click on Janice or the Rose for the link T Y)

Oct 2, 2009

Life's like That


Over the past weeks, I have been attempting to watch (observe) things as they unfold as opposed to letting things whiz by. I do see that the world is not actually roaring past us, I see it unrolling. You see more, hear more of life around you . And interestingly ‘time’ itself feels like it moves differently, somehow slower, although in actual when I look at my watch it has moved faster. I have been ‘observing’ the interaction of the kids and I keep learning new things (eventhough they have me climbing the walls sometimes).

Just when I think I’m getting the hang of it, ‘madness’ unfortunately (that all-consuming necessity that most of us are occupied with from 9-6 everyday) intervenes, puts me back on that fast track. In the industry I’m in, it’s impossible to have a controlled consistent workflow. When clients jump, we jump too and when they’re totally disorganized we have to clear the path , fight through the chaos to meet deadlines.
It’s easy to think I should or can control that but some motions are just easier to be carried away with, so that the job can be expedited, it’s a necessity.

And then I return to the life outside of that, that matters and try to catch the old rhythm again. I guess I have to wait for work to return to normal again.
That’s just the way life is.

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