Morning Trip (363)

“It finally did. I did not have some beautiful Hallmark moment when I threw back my shoulders with a big smile, dusted off my hands, and got back to work… It helps to resign as the controller of your fate. All that energy we expend to keep things running right is not what’s keeping things running right. We’re bugs struggling in the river, brightly visible to the trout below. With that fact in mind, people like me make up all these rules to give us the illusion that we are in charge. I need to say to myself, they’re not needed hon. Just take in the buggy pleasures. Be kind to the others, grace the fleck of river weed, notice how beautifully your legs scull….”
—-Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird p. 180-181

All Out of Still — Orphan Wisdom

A few months ago a certain degree of unspectacular life adversity leaned over to me and whispered: “What if you stop for a while? You were obliged off the road anyhow by the plague. Why not go the rest of the way there, and choose stillness?” Clever fellow. Years ago I remember coming across some stout…

All Out of Still — Orphan Wisdom

GOSH! I am SO grateful for the above post from Stephen Jenkinson. It put words to all the things, and in them, I became still. The still, for me can then leave room for creation. Of what!? My built in forgetter thinks it gets to control that outcome. Sometimes I believe my actions are proof that I can. The part feeling so proud and SEE yes I did! and Control is GOOD! Is all perked in the I Have Arrived pose. And then, the muscles start to quake and to shiver. The pose doesn’t hold up for long. It collapses in exhaustion long before my thinking, my mind even begins to notice. While I write it, I’m smiling like an indulgent parent watching a toddle learn… But IN it, oh I believe it’s Hell! I’m prone to grab, and to shove, and to rant. Thank you, Sir, for the Spring in my step. For now.

Morning Trip (261)

“So I buck up and admit it. ‘OK, I think you’re probably right. Maybe I do have a problem with control. It’s just weird that you noticed. Because I don’t think it’s that obvious on the surface. I mean–I bet most people can’t see my control issues when they first look at me.'”
–Elizabeth Gilbert

Gratitude for When God Says NO!!

When I began to sprout this blog, I was making chicken salad for lunch and was greatly pleased with my ability to cook with what I’ve got at times when money is uhm tight. I’ll call it tight. How I got a bowl of salad and a few plates of food with the ingredients that I had, I really cannot say. It’s also delicious and a menu item from a place where I helped to do catering cooking.

An image I took when I was visiting the Tree Place just prior to the main flooding when I was confused as to why the road was closed to the bridge in Montoursville.

Montoursville Bridge Prior to Flooding Crest--elisabeth connelley

I’ve been debating putting up images of raging flood waters from the recent flooding in my area, especially since the Tree Place was involved. I do not like GIANT focus on disaster and devastation. While being very glad not to have been primarily affected in my home, those all around me within a mile or two were being evacuated. I have been greatly puzzled as, well I haven’t been in this area during such a flood event in the past. The one year was bad, I recall, but I didn’t have a car so, I could not see and comprehend the losses. It can even be physically impossible to see outside of one’s box, go figure! All of the roads around here, to my knowledge are not yet opened. Many bridges and entire highway surfaces simply torn away. It is difficult to imagine such power!

The first lesson that encouraged me to post today came from a thought that a friend passed to me and asked me to consider as I learned to understand, utilize, and modulate my own energies and anger. To keep the lesson short, I used to LOVE to throw things, the heavier the better. I worked backwards from furniture to rocks, glass to eggs and so on and so forth. On my insides I’d still throw things. He said, “Rocks are hard, water is patient.”

It took me a very long time to see and to witness what this meant. It’s a work in progress. The slow and steady working away of stone, by the smallest of drips. I used this teaching to learn to bend and not to break. I used this feeling to let things wash over and through me. Inside, I must admit I would have loved the ability to grind things and people with it, to wash them away, to make all in my own perception–clean. I do not think that with my hand feeling water current rushing by in cool clear water that I really ever did understand the power in water.

Here is the cute little house, that I could not really understand why no one resided in it, and hoped to be able to offer the farmer what would be a lower rent, knowing the small stream nearby might flood up onto the porch from time to time. I am glad I was not granted my fervent wish.

Caption and Source: MARK NANCE/Sun-Gazette
A farm between Williamsport and Montoursville is inudated with floodwaters Thursday morning.

It is the red house with the white-edged roof, next to the white building with red roof, up near the portion of road still able to be seen. I am not a flood victim today, because God said NO.

Here is an image that shows a potential outcome of such power, though I somehow imagine, not it’s upper limit of ability.

Caption and Source: MARK NANCE/Sun-Gazette
Route 973 now ends abruptly at the Slabtown Bridge, where a raging Loyalsock Creek has washed away the roadway and part of the bridge.

I think somehow inside that I equated patient with softness, lack of damage, lack of reaction. This is NOT true. Now, to know what I need to do with this. Who knows if I even yet comprehend the entire lesson.

A Story, for Kathy

Here is a story:

Once upon a time, there was a man, oh and a woman
[this should tell you something immediately, unless it tells you the wrong thing]
the man was himself, the woman was herself–happily and gloriously so.
In fact, it took several years for the woman to even believe that the man truly did enjoy, experience, and accept even her worst fanged fits.

True, the man had his own fits. The woman watched these, sometimes with comments, sometimes with the woman managing them silently, and many many other times the woman simply observed learning about him.

The man asked about the woman’s dreams and desires and allowed her plenty of space to express them with smiles and promises to meet as many of them as he was able. I might add, as with all communications, that there were certainly correct and incorrect assumptions made about the level of importance of each item. But for the most part for a very long time the man and the woman talked about everything and thus, knowledge about what was really going in passed between them evenly. This process allowed for the man’s need for control, which the woman noted cautiously but consented as long as needs were being met…it seemed such a small concession for the exchange.

Then one day, it seemed one day though it had been happening a little chip at a time, the man asked about the woman’s desires and laughed a wicked laugh inside his heart. He thrilled at the power to withhold from himself that which he needed most from the woman, and inflicted that upon her. As his power was in his anger, he became more angry at not gaining what he needed and imposed further restrictions upon the woman’s ability to provide them.

The woman was confused and became uncertain and stopped expressing herself. She sat and she filtered through all of her observations, her wisdom, and her knowing. She went deep down inside herself, past her inner flame, into the deep inner pool of cool clear water to wash herself clean and to gather again.

The end, or another most excellent beginning!