A work of art is the unique result of a unique temperament. ~Oscar Wilde

Posts tagged ‘happiness’

The Golden Girl

I can see her through the kitchen window. She is flying higher and higher on her swing, chubby face split by an endless grin, flying hair bathed in a golden glow. The wind kisses her as she swings daringly higher each time, but her gurgling giggles fail to reach my ears. She has come to visit me, again, as she often does, soundless, and swathed in a golden light. I don’t really know her very well. I think I do, as she is me, at the age of three and a half, give or take. But she is really a phantom of those days, not the whole person that was me. Golden girl 1

I remember those halcyon days, and even later ones as I grew up. Every memory of those days has a warm golden glow to it. That little girl, growing up in that home, is always laughing, always running, with the shiny golden light setting her aglow. I know that my childhood, and youth, as every one else’s had moments of such bliss and moments not quite so blissful. But when I look out of windows, in my moments of peace, that is the girl I see.

This is the reason why, I am guessing, many wish to go back to those days. They wish to hold on to those moments of innocence, laughter and fear free joy. They say, in a voice languishing with memories and myths, “I wish I was a child again, I wish I was that free and innocent child, again, with no worries in the world, living that life, revisiting those events.” Yearning for that fleeting, probably (perish the thought) non existent, moment of perfection.

I look back at this girl with the golden smile, and I feel her freedom, and her carefree existence. I feel the sun again on my skin, and the certainty the world was just the way it should be, with a delicious dinner and a cosy bed at the end of the dreamy day. But does that mean that I wish to go back to those days? I don’t think so.

I think that what I miss is that girl’s outlook on life. Each moment of her existence is swathed in the present. She is playing, and laughing, in the moment. She does not have a care, not only because she is innocent, but because this moment is perfect, as it is. She may have fallen, or been chided for being “naughty”, or been made to drink warm smelly milk, but that is not in this moment. That is past, and the time for learning silly times tables or spellings is not yet, so this moment is free, golden and alight with laughter, and a bouncy sense of peace.

Perhaps that is what I yearn for. This strength to let the past be, and not worry about the future. My tendency to live in the moment survived for years, much later than some others around me. Then one day I realised that this characteristic in me was looked upon by people I respected, as being superficial. A child’s unconcern about the future or the past is loveable innocence, but to take this un-awareness into adulthood shows a lack of self analysis and self-awareness. I must have agreed with this view of life, so I trained myself to worry , and fret, and analyse my mistakes, and generally hold myself in low esteem because I was not perfect. I could never be perfect, so the constancy of my fretfulness was ensured. I trained myself to fret about things I could not change, and remember real and imagined downfalls for years, years and years. I learnt to fret about the future even if it was only 30 minutes away, and to worry that I had been wrong in the past, even if that past was five minutes ago. I learnt never to let go of the past, and never to be in the present. I learnt to try and change things, everything to fit a standard that now seems arbitrary. Since most things are not meant to be changed, I was caught in a constant vortex of mindful frustration.

Years later, even when I learned that those whom I had respected may have had their own imperfections to deal with, and demons to battle, I still continued on my harried and worried way. As a new age of awareness and acceptance slowly emerged and made itself felt worldwide, I began to see the sense of being in the present, though I still beat myself up about the not present at every opportunity. Even as I wised up to the fact that the little girl had probably been wiser than the big girl I now was, I still clung to my over analytic, hyper critical self. I had trained myself only too well.

But that little girl still lingers. She still pops in once in a while, and teaches me, that each moment is an adventure awash in golden light. That is all.

 

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Chill. The centenarians are coming

As usual, scientists are excited and baffled, together and separately by the challenges of living longer, healthier.Social scientists, politicians, financial experts seem to be scratching their heads as well. In the interests of happiness, health and having your grandma around for longer, or great grandma around at all, the scientists are searching for the fountain of youth. Others are debating whether that fountain has the answers society needs. Or wants. Like all real life phenomena, the answer is not displayable in any one sequence of thoughts and experiments.

People age at different rates, this is observable evrywhere. We are envious of the person of fifty with the trim taut and terrific body, and the person of seventy with a spring in their step. Yet, at the moment, the perfectly healthy nonagenarian or centenarian is still an oddity. But mythology, as well as scientific understanding of the human body tells us that a bod can continue to be hot till much longer than is the current norm. So the scientists are searching, the naturopaths are extolling and the pressure on society to give up smoking and start running is enormous. Even though these last two pieces of advice do not seem to be backed by non controversial scientific data.

So what do we do? What do the rest of us do, those who do not live our lives out in a lab, those of us who run from fad to latest fad… as touted by Huffington Post, twenty something beauty YouTubers and YogaTubers? We live life as we can. as always.

The life of a yogi is not lived out solely on the mat, and the life of a beauty guru is not lived out solely in front of a vlog camera. There may be a lot we can apply on our skins to achieve the complexion of a twenty year old. There may also be many pretzel shapes that massage our inner organs to health and youth. We can embrace all of these. But perhaps, what works most, is to embrace these, and other ideas, with the chill of a toddler. With the joie de vivre that is so visible in those who have been recorded laughing and giggling at a hundred and twenty, or so.

Perhaps we take a regular moment to read, and watch, and then do what our common sense tells us. After due consideration. Perhaps, we should just keep laughing. Keep loving the best in ourselves. Do what seems right to us, inside of us. That part in there, untouched by others, is perhaps the perfect guide. In doing so, if we do reach to be a hundred and fifty, and be able to enjoy that life, let us share a huge belly laugh. If we are cut short before that magic date (set arbitrarily by me) we can still share a huge belly laugh as we leave.

Let the sands slip through……… Slipping sands

These thoughts inspired by: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2014/10/what-happens-when-we-all-live-to-100/379338/. A pretty un chill article. But seems to be able to provoke some chill thought.

Glass half empty

 You have just walked into the kitchen, and on the table, you spot a glass with some water, that has been left there carelessly by someone else once their thirst was satiated. As you reach out an irritated hand, picking up again after whoever it was, does the glass seem half-empty to you? Have you just labelled yourself pessimist? Or is it half full, which makes you an optimist? Which one of the two kinds of people in the world are you?

What if there is a third possibility? What if the sight of the empty space above the water in the glass reminds you that you could fill it up to the top, and drink it all yourself. What if the remaining water in the glass reminds you that the lemon thyme on the windowsill needs some watering, and you pour it there? What if the carelessness of  that other person just opens up possibilities for you to view it as a blessing?

When we write our journals of gratitude, we take so much care to remember each “good” thing that happened. We write them down and feel blessed, and rightly so. What if we also write down the “bad” things that happened, in recognition of the possibility of their being blessings as well? What makes an experience good, or bad? Is it the colours we paint it with?

Dear Journal, I am deeply grateful that I cracked forty push ups today. My core feels so much stronger, and I will soon be able to progress to preparing for hand stands. Thank you.

Oh, by the way, dear Journal, I am so deeply thankful that I fell down the stairs today. I now know, for sure, that hopping down the stairs with my eyes closed, and hands held above my head, is a bad, bad idea. Thank you.

This short post was inspired by the “theme of the week” of one of my yoga teachers, Tania Burgess. Please visit and like her Facebook page.

Love

Swimmingly Precisely Serendipitously

Have you ever had one of those days when everything goes along just right? I am sure you have ! You know, when the sun is just bright enough, the wind not too cool, or warm, the temperature just right. The right birds singing in the trees. But that is not all. Everything you need to do gets done, and things you did not even think to put on the list, get ticked off, leaving nothing but a shining pure, bedazzling smile!

That’s the kind of day I am having.

None of that, “I will just watch this oh-so-important clip on Youtube it’s only 4:01 minutes long”… and three hours later…

None of that “Oh no, I have only done two things on my list, and now I have remembered five other things that I should have put on there and totally forgot about!!!!”

Nope. I awoke to the buzz of “It’s a wonderful day…” Lyrics and tune mine.  Rolled around till I felt like getting up. Checked WordPress. Fed Hungry Boy. Did mundane chores including cooking and washing. The smile and the song still shining all around me. I have even completed this post! WHOOPPPEEE!

The chipped nail polish is only a reminder to take it off, and I am sure there will be time  to put on a fresh coat before we go out to dinner…. And I will get there on time. Unusually and perfectly.

Time is following my needs today. It is neither slow, nor fast, nor on its own agenda.  Who was it who said that time is a human construct? They were so right.

I offer up my thanks for today, and the love and happiness I feel right now.

Do you have happy days? Do you feel unstoppable, and more importantly, just a lightness of being? What makes you feel so? When?cooking moments

Love

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