What it really means

Images about people come at us all day that lead us down the path of least resistance. This slippery slope of easy travel turns our observations into judgments and our judgments into thinking we know what’s best for people and how they live their lives.   Observations make us wonder how in the world people conduct their lives in such a messy manner. It’s normal for us to wonder, and probably also normal for us to think we’re more sophisticated than others. That we’re somehow more rational and prepared for life’s demands than the people we see who look like they’re struggling or living in a manner that we think we never would.

The truth is we’re not better prepared. We are all just doing our best every day. And we hope that no matter what the oversight, the missed opportunity, or the thing we promise to do better next time, that we turn our awareness inward and avoid worrying about what others think. If we reach this higher position, it’ll likely mean that we’ve finally evolved and are able to look beyond the pressures of our peers. It’ll also hopefully enable us to finally translate this personal milestone into something that will keep us from judging others.

So when people see…..

…my unswept floor, it may seem like I could care less about having a shiny platform with which to walk on. But what it really means is that I’m sitting with a friend, doing other chores, or resting and dreaming.

…my graying hair, it may seem like a cruel sign of the aging process that I’ve overlooked. But what it really means is that I made it this far, I’ve survived a multitude of challenges, and I’m in the good company of millions.

…that there are missing flowers in my garden in the summer, it may seem like a blatant neglect to cultivate beauty. But what it really means is that I’ve spent my time and money on other creative projects and settled on the beauty that pops up every year with the ease and nudge of nature.

…my glazed-over and sunken eyes, it may seem like I don’t know my boundaries. But what it really means is that I realize that my time here is finite, I commit to fitting many things in, and I’m still searching for that balance that brings brightness and contentment, and minimizes fatigue.

…that little limp that shows up in my step every now and then, it may seem like I’m hoping that it’ll just disappear.  But what it really means is that I continue on despite the pain, trying to heal myself, and realize that sometimes I need a little help from an outsider.

…that I missed an appointment, it may seem like I devalue the time and service of others.  But what it really means is that with the best of intentions, I’ve over-booked myself and understand the inconvenience that I’ve caused others. My awareness and admittance to this is the important piece.

…my snow covered driveway, it may seem like I’m just hoping for a warm day for the snow to melt and disappear naturally. But what it really means is that the demands that the snow brings are outweighed by the demands of more pressing issues. The sun will shine again and the snow will eventually melt.

So today, instead of worrying about my imperfect life, I decided to paint a picture.

Snowman 1

I do this knowing that my life will never be perfect, never please everyone, and look like a huge mess to some.

But to me, my life is a little utopian.

It’s my organized, systematic, muddied life.

It’s mine.


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11 Responses to What it really means

  1. mafarckle says:

    You are perfect just the way you are, we all are.  Thank you for the reminder, I also need help to remember.  Love, Patti

  2. Great post, Diane. Thank you. And as to the snow, I figure there’s always more to come anyway!

  3. Care says:

    I like the comment about not judging others, I have to be reminded of that once in a while. 🙂
    As far as limping, you have Zoey to keep you company there. She started limping a few days ago after Dan walked her. Poor Zoey. I’m sure she will be fine in a few days.

  4. Jill says:

    What a great piece! I love your perspective and you’re a wonderful writer!

  5. Raining Iguanas says:

    Stopping by here is like getting your face licked by a tail wagging lab; you can’t help but smile and walk away feeling better about the day ahead.

  6. Ann mckinley says:

    I love you Diane. This is just what I needed to hear. Wish you were my next door neighbor.

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