Bits and Pieces

Every so often, I become conscious of a new “theme” in my life, growing out of recurring nuances that come out of my meanderings through prayer and meditation, social media memes and conversations, nature and various issues/concerns that need processing and enlightenment. These new themes tend to stick around for awhile until I’ve figured out the golden nuggets of learning that grow out of the mulling and pondering.

This latest new theme began several months ago as part of my morning Grace-prayer. I usually make myself a veggie omelette for breakfast and these omelettes often end up being quite a work of art by the time they’re finished. They make my mouth drool just looking at them, and it’s always exciting to sit down and dig into them because each one is its own unique masterpiece. So my Grace-prayer is one of deep gratitude, beginning with profound thanks specifically for all of the wonderful “bits and pieces” that have gone into making these omelettes…usually a combination of sauteed onions, red peppers, mushrooms, baby spinach, ham, tomatoes, cheese and various different herbs and spices. I’m grateful for the bounty of “bits and pieces” that were available in the fridge and pantry…and I’m also profoundly grateful for having had the energy to make the omelette, the pleasure I get from cutting and cooking the various “bits and pieces”, and the growing renewal of this creative side of myself.  After sleep-walking through many years of grief, depression, chronic fatigue and simply not knowing what to do – or what I could do – with my life anymore, this new energy, these bursts of creativity and even the simple pleasure in making these morning omelettes, are not only producing a scrumptious healthy breakfast, but are opening the door to other healthier habits, and awakening in me the desire to find new ways to be creative in other aspects of my life as well.

So the phrase “bits and pieces” began in those morning Grace-prayers…and gradually has blossomed into a whole new way of enjoying my day-to-day life. I can feel myself becoming more aware of, and expressing more gratitude for the other “bits and pieces” that I’m now actively looking for and finding in the various nooks and crannies of each day. I’m no longer looking for the big chunks of “perfection”; they’re often just simple, small, barely visible-if-you’re-not-looking-for-them, perhaps even seemingly disconnected “bits and pieces” reaching out of the cooking, cleaning, housework, outings, exercising and other daily activities. Then as the day continues its unfolding, all of these various “bits and pieces” weave themselves together in my consciousness to create quite a masterpiece image of – JOY!

And that got me to thinking. About how once upon a time, I used to believe that happiness was a once-and-for-all-time thing, that once my life was in order and everything in its right place, I would finally be happy. There was always this belief that once I found the perfect place to live, once I got married, once I had children, once I had the perfect job, once I had all the beautiful house, clothes and shoes and trinkets I always yearned for, once this, once that…once it was all in place and everything was aligned perfectly, voila. Happiness. The problem was that this plan kept falling apart, once, twice, many times over. I was told in my mid-twenties that I could never have children. I was in my mid-thirties and still not married. I suffered from chronic low-grade depression (dysthemia) so I would never even be eligible to adopt children, and chronic fatigue made it difficult for me to hold any job or even do volunteer work for very long. Nothing ever seemed to go the way I thought it would, and so happiness became more and more elusive, if not downright impossible.

But a few years ago, I took it upon myself to redefine what happiness is. I began to choose to believe that we didn’t have to – that we COULD NOT – wait until the perfect day, or the perfect job, or the perfect weather, or the perfect person, or the perfect whatever finally came along. I figured that happiness HAD to be somehow find-able right here and right now. It  had to be! How could it be something so elusive and impossible if it’s meant to be so vital and necessary to our health and well-being?!

So I’ve been on a path, which has meandered me through many books and conversations and into deep questioning prayer and ultimately led me to nurturing my gratitude attitude. This led me in turn to zeroing in on finding the beauty and blessings in the here-and-now, digging underneath all of the crap and chaos the world throws at us, like the tiny tenacious crocus that insists on blooming despite and through the lingering snow. That meandering has led me on a wondrous journey into a deeper inner peace and contentment that I’ve never experienced before. A contentment based on finding joy and pleasure in the myriad of the “bits and pieces” that make up each day. The “bits and pieces” of scrumptious veggies that make their way from the garden into my omelettes, the “bits and pieces” of new buds on the lilac tree, the “bits and pieces” of flowers making their way through the dirt in the front garden, the “bits and pieces” of sunrises and sunsets and ever-changing clouds against a brilliant blue sky, the “bits and pieces” of connections and conversations with family and friends from all over the world, the “bits and pieces” of so many different birds singing all around me, the “bits and pieces” of life and living everywhere I look.

Yes, there are also “bits and pieces” of chaos and mayhem, never-ending rivers of violence and hatred spewing from the news, there are large chunks of raw grief and ragged pieces of people and pain, of poverty and hunger, of fear and despair. Sometimes, perhaps often, those “bits and pieces” weigh us down and cripple us into a sense of futility, and blind us to what else is out there, the other “bits and pieces” of beauty and kindness, of comforting compassion and uplifting nurturing, of Grace and Light that are well within our reach and field of vision, if we allow our eyes and hearts to be open to seeing and allowing them to take root in us and grow us forward, even through the crap and chaos.

My definition of happiness is much more attainable and sustainable now, because now it’s built on seeing, enjoying, nurturing, gathering, sharing and choosing to focus more of my time and energy on these good “bits and pieces” that are in my here-and-now. In fact, even though I now know and, with some sadness, accept that life and people and the world will never be perfect, my life IS jam-packed with wondrous “bits and pieces”, more than I can even take in most days. And it all leaves me breathlessly intoxicated with profound joy and gratitude for being so much healthier, contented, peaceful and, yes, happier, than ever before in my life.

 

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Copyright © Sharon C. Matthies, Meanderings (blog), 2017. All rights reserved.
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About Sharon

I love to write. I love to write myself into being right here right now. Writing releases something in me that needs wings, writing opens doors and windows that I often don't even realize are possible, writing helps me breathe out the dusty old, and to breathe in the new and possible. My hope is that maybe writing here in this blog will bring new light into these dusty old hallways and help me to clear out the thinking processes and mindsets that just don't work for me anymore. I seek to breathe new light and life into the nooks and crannies of a soul that has been feeling somewhat lost and frayed because of the last few patches of road I've had to travel.
This entry was posted in anxiety, authenticity, coping, empowerment, faith, gratitude, happiness, hope, inspiration, journey, joy, life, Light, Love, meaning, mental health, perseverance, positive, positive thinking, purpose, spiritual, wisdom and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Bits and Pieces

  1. Angelika Schwarz says:

    The past is history, future is a mystery but our present is the ‘present’ that we can embrace now. Those who are masters at ’embracing’ are those who can filter out the bad and open their hearts and minds to the good.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sharon says:

      Honestly, Angelika, I never thought I would be capable of rising above the despair and anguish that had shadowed me my entire life…it astounds me that I have been able to fumble my way to this point of being able to filter out the bad stuff, rise above the chaos – not only the world’s never-ending chaos, but more-so the never-ending chaos inside my own mind – and find this new peace and contentment and, wonders of wonders, joy. To me, it’s a miracle…a place I never thought I could reach.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Angelika Schwarz says:

        I know Sharon, and accompanying you and watching your healing process was and is a miracle within itself. The joy and your positive outlooks, which you now spread, is maybe only possible through the journey you had to struggle through, in order to get to this point in your life.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Sharon says:

    It’s a journey that I could only have made with the love and support and mentoring of you and so many of our Boomer Women sisters. Meeting all of you wise, wonderful women was perhaps the greatest miracle of all.

    Like

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