Saturday, September 12, 2009

This Life




Times are hard. I don't know a living soul that hasn't been impacted in one way or another by this economic mess, (I'm not about to refer to it as a downturn, or a recession, because it's a mess, plain and simple.) I decided to focus on what I do have, to turn my attention to the little things: an economical spaghetti dinner that I prepare and share with my sweet husband, viewing a spectacular sunset from my backyard free of charge, and enjoying a favorite spot in the living room where I relax, read, or contemplate this life.

I imagine life as a room. I am a designer and this exercise works for me. I realize, after examining my experiences, that I have been the youngest in the room and I have been the oldest. I have been the poorest and I have been the richest. I have been the quietest and I have been the loudest. I have been the ugliest and I have been the prettiest. I have been the healthiest and I have been the sickest. I have been the dumbest and I have been the smartest. I have been the narrowest and I have been the deepest.

This is one of the benefits of aging--perspective. And that perspective comes in handy, if you intend to write. I will do my best to use the insight I have gained after experiencing one polar opposite position to another. One such example would be going from being a childless daughter to being a child mother. It occurs to me, as we age the polarization increases in size and scope. Surely that is where wisdom comes from. And every single time some wonderful someone (you) visits this blog to read my words, I am blessed. For that, and sunsets, and spaghetti dinners with my wonderful husband, and quiet time for introspection, I am thankful.

All Rights Reserved. © 2009 by Elizabeth Bradley.

19 comments:

Dan Holloway said...

Hey, Lizzy. Beautiful post. The key to the perspective that comes with age is never to let it turn into cynicism.

The more we go through, the more we look at new things and say to ourselves, "I know just where that's going to end up". Sometims we lose the wondrous ability to allow ourselves to be surprised..

Perspective is a marvellous thing. Sometimes it's nice to close our eyes, open them again, and see everything as if for the first time.

Charly said...

Beautiful, Elizabeth! God Bless!

TechnoBabe said...

I spotted that pot of spaghetti sauce simmering first thing. So I am going to the store tomorrow for the ingredients and make some sauce here! See what you started?
I can relate to the perspective of someone who has lived a few years. Surviving all sorts of changes and challenges. I don't need or want much these days and have experienced so much already. Bring it on!

ellen abbott said...

We think we need all this 'stuff' to be happy and as long as we can afford it, we indulge ourselves, distracting ourselves. When things get tight though, and maybe even scary, we find that the things we need to be happy, we really can't buy. There's a kind of serenity that comes with just getting by.

Marguerite said...

Very thoughtful post! I also have so much to be thankful for.
I'm cooking today, too. Your spaghetti sauce looks delicious, your living room is gorgeous, and that sunset is amazing. Cheers!

The Victorian Parlor said...

Beautifully written! If nothing else, this economic mess (I agree with you that 'mess' is the best description) has taught many of us to be thankful for what we have instead of dwelling on what we don't have. To take this a step further-with the thankfulness I
feel for the many blessings in my life, blogging has taught me to see the beauty in the small things in life-things I may not have noticed before. Everything in life is a potential blog post! Flowers blooming, rain falling, a morning of yard saling, recovering a pillow...the little things in life that have been taken for granted in the past are now more important. It's exciting to share the everyday things with our friends in blogland. Sorry this is so long but your post really spoke to me. I really enjoyed it:).

Blessings,

Kim

Jody Hedlund said...

This is a wonderful way of expressing the experience and wisdom we gain with age! I agree that it's added depth to my writing!

Elspeth Antonelli said...

I'd left a message, but it seems to have disappeared...

Just wanted to say I admired this post, Elizabeth and to thank you for reminding me to cherish what's around me instead of hungering for what's not.

Elspeth

Comedy Goddess said...

Reminds me of the saying: We don't regret the things we did so much, we regret not doing the things we wish we had done.
I know what you mean about perspective. Thanks for putting it out there to remind us.

lakeviewer said...

Perspective changes everything. This was sobering/

Nancy said...

Loved this post!
Yes, during times like these focusing your attention on what you do have is a life-saver.

We attended a 50th wedding anniversary today for my god-parents. I had been the flower girl at their wedding! Anyway, I realized all the polar opposites in that room with me today - once being their 6-year-old flower girl to a woman who has a wrinkly neck. Once a roomful of people in the prime of their lives - now waiting for the end. Weird. One of my dad's cousins asked me how old I was - I think he was thinking the same thing!

Perspective is the engine that runs my writing. I am so thankful for it - and economical spaghetti dinners with my sweet husband.

God of Another World said...

Well said and great perspective...increasingly polarizing or not.

Diane said...

Good perspective. Things are a mess right now, but our attitude and actions have to keep pointing in the right direction. :O)

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

Thanks for that Elizabeth. Most of the lovely things ARE Free and that is not just a trite saying. Enjoy that spaghetti, your hubby and that sunset.

Patry Francis said...

A great reminder. Thank you.

K. said...

Wow, this is a wonderful post!!! I love your comparison of life to a room...

As for trouble with getting to my blog, I changed the blog address and you may need to re-follow me to be able to get to it easily...thank you for visiting me, too!

Kim said...

I really enjoyed these wise words. It's harder to judge when you've been there.

Shirley Wells said...

A terrific post! 'Mess' is a perfect description and I'm with you on the age thing. Being able to appreciate what we have is one of the advantages of getting older. Hmmm, I'll try and think of another... ;o)

Jenn said...

This is just beautiful Elizabeth. I nodded and smiled through the entire second paragraph. Lovely!