Our visitors have gone and all that’s left are the wonderful memories. I am filled with love for our families who came to celebrate with us, my husband’s and my milestones, but also my nephew’s Wedding a week later.
The memories will live with me and in my heart forever; three of us four siblings being together; it does not happen very often; sad that our youngest brother could not be there.
Saying Good-Bye was the toughest ever; does it always get more difficult the older we get? Tears flowed freely, and I felt as if part of me was being ripped away. It’s not that they are unreachable; an eight-hour plane ride gets me over to Europe quickly. But, when I think about the “old” days when such Good-Bye was “never again” … I don’t know how people did it.
It’s been over two weeks since my sister left, and I am readjusting. Papers have been piling up and I am busy reducing the ToDo list. Emotionally, I am not there yet, too many events and a lot of visitors in such a short time need digesting.
I feel blessed to have had these weeks, to have created such strong memories, and to have been able to deepen the connection with my family members. I wonder, where would I be without them?
How do you deal with emotional times, such as this? What do you do to get yourself “back on track” after such happy times; how do you deal with the missing and yearning?
I am sitting on our boat in the 1000 Islands, just where Lake Ontario ends and the St. Lawrence River starts. The sky is a wonderful blue, incredibly, after this rainy morning. Boats are speeding by creating deep circle-like ridges in the water that come toward us and connect with the boat, angry, pounding, hitting; wham! Every once in awhile, there are gentle waves, soft, enveloping, caressing the fiberglass.
Nearby, a tour boat is leaving its dock, loaded with people, small, big, old, young, dark skinned, blond; we hear a mixture of languages. I wonder, who are they, where are they from, what are their dreams? A little girl excitedly points towards two little islands connected by a small bridge. One of them, the larger one, lies in Canada, the other one in the US. A short bridge connects both: it’s the shortest international bridge in the world, just a few feet long!
I inhale the beauty of the blueish water that is speckled with small islands; sailboats are gliding by gracefully, their sails billowing in the wind, and powerboats are racing each other. Everywhere, people sitting on their patios or beaches feasting their eyes on the spectacular view. Once again, I feel grateful to be here, and my heart opens. The boat feels like a cradle, secure and sturdy.
Memories surface, unbidden yet welcome, of trips here with Dad, years before he died; and of me and my Godmother being on this same tour boat a few years ago when she visited Canada for the first time at the proud age of 82!
This is what my husband and I look forward to every year, a few weeks’ cruising on our beloved “Surf Dancer,” inhaling nature, living nature, embracing the lake’s softness, experiencing and fighting its harshness, its unpredictability; exploring little harbors and villages, connecting with people, and making new friends.
Each time we return home not only rejuvenated; we have spent quality time together, walked, laughed, and filled up our mental and emotional tanks.
What are you passionate about for your vacation, and where and how do you love to spend it? Somewhere in a cottage, with a set of friends? A road trip, perhaps, or visiting loved-ones, close or far away? I’d love to hear from you.
Would the world be different if we took the time to practice more gratitude and appreciation? If we sent a little “Thank You” note to the neighbor who helped us out, or to the friend who was there for us in an hour of need; if we sent a “thinking of you” note to someone we have not connected with in a while.
Do you smell the roses? Do you take time, a minute here and a minute there, to inhale the beauty around us, and to digest our beautiful world in which every single creature has its own, important place?
I read about a film called “365 Grateful” that is being produced. It has a website; in the introductory video, Hailey, a young woman, is smiling, laughing, and full of happiness and gratitude. The first thing to notice about it is a big, huge smile, and the sounds of a good belly laugh!
In 2008, Hailey was fighting depression. She was wondering how she could help herself, and decided to look at life positively, one day at a time. For 365 days, on each day, she took a photograph of something she felt grateful for, a beautiful bird, a book she was given, a picture, a flower, the beach. Can you imagine how difficult this must have been for her to do while she was suffering from depression?
Over the following months, Hailey slowly became better; not only did she improve physically, her entire life changed!
When I was sitting on the pub’s patio, enjoying an evening of talk, good food and a nice, cold beer one evening, a bit further on, a couple, both of them ignorant of their surroundings, was typing on their Blackberry’s. It looked as if they were texting each other. I was inclined to think that they had lost the ability to speak. Even after their dinner arrived, one of them continued texting.
Many of us have made phone calls while sitting in a restaurant, or sent text messages; I admit it, I am guilty too. We race through life in a constant bubble of noise: cars tooting their horns, music everywhere … boom, boom, boom; people shouting. We hammer on our phones’ keyboards as if our life depended on it; so many obligations, and we are conditioned to respond to all demands – immediately please!
Our world is not going to fall apart if we take time for ourselves, just a wee bit every day. Let’s sit in the garden, deeply inhaling the smell of a beautiful flower; listen to a bird chirping a song for us, or give a big smile to someone we don’t know. Let’s open our hearts to our beautiful world in gratefulness.
We are the designers of our own life; let’s live it consciously, with appreciation of the beauty that is around us, and compassion.
I would love to hear how you escape the hectic of your life. Do you take time to smell the roses?
Have you ever done anything that scared you out of your wits? Do you ever get out of your comfort zone and step deeply into the fear factor?
A few weeks ago I was one of nine women who rented a chalet for some well-deserved R&R.
We had a full and enticing program: hot-tubbing, zip-lining, Le Scandinave Spa experience, dinner in town, massages, and lots of R&R. The weather was perfect.
Highlight on the agenda was zip lining! Wow. We arrived at our starting point and were thoroughly instructed in how to wear our gear, and what to expect. After we were all dressed and ready to go, we went for a little walk, then arrived at what is called the “tree walk.”
Imagine something like a hammock, only it doesn’t have a nice and soft cushion-like bottom that you lie on. There is a narrow board, just wide enough to stand on, about 20-30 feet above the ground. Every step you take makes the board swing, up and down, side to side.
Tree-walking is a thrilling exercise. Safely clipped to two big overhead wires, you need to concentrate on maneuvering the narrow board, and on circumventing 15 trees!
Arriving at tree #16 there were steps leading down to …. nothing! My heart was fluttering and I was scared. One more step and I would be in the air.
Then I made a decision. I was here, I had signed up, there was no way back. I let go!
I flew through the air, shouting in joy: I was flying! What an experience! I was f-r-e-e!
What did I learn from this experience?
- Challenge yourself, and take actions that I would not easily want to do.
- Angst could keep you from moving on.
- Once you overcome the fear factor, you might consequently have an exhilarating experience .
Apply my experience to your business, and push yourself to go into the unknown. Widen the horizon, and deepen your knowledge; you will have fun doing it.
Whatever the action is that you fear, take your heart in your hands and dare to dare! You might find totally unexpected, absolute joy, and thrill.
What are your fears, dear reader?