Healing is a Great Word

In a short text frenzy and quite unknowingly my friend gave me “heal” as a word for the day.
Then adds, “HEALING is a great word”.
Yeah, she continued, “Healing happens in relationship”.
Well, back in the day when I was a pastor, before I found my inner mouthy-blogger-try-and-make-the-world-a-more-positive-place-self, I used to say this:

Human beings have great power to heal,

however, we also have great power to destroy.

I’ve experienced both to incredible degrees, have you? On the one hand is the pendulum swinging, let’s say, south. Holy Shit can people be nasty! I’ll talk about that first because this is a positive blog & I want to leave you on a good note! What matters is the degree of relationship, I mean really, if someone you don’t know is, let’s call them bitchy to you, their interaction gives you a moment of shock, a story to tell & knowledge of who you want to avoid or be like, eh? However the closer the relationship is when real destruction can occur. When it comes to relationships with people we work or socialize with, or call friend, or dare I say lover, and they choose to hurt rather than hug, even with words, destruction is not a strong enough word. Sometimes it’s temporary, forgiven and we move on. Sometimes we work like Hell to save (heal) the relationship. And then at other times the only thing to do is walk away. All-in-all, I believe we have the choice to live a life that brings health and healing to others and it is worth every effort to exercise the power to bring healing in whatever level of relationship we are experiencing.

view of people in kitchen

 

So let’s look at the other side of the pendulum, it’s a great place to be. In my 22 years of working closely with people in about every situation life has to offer, when it comes to healing, those who had a positive attitude and strong relationships just did better all-around. This doesn’t mean that they didn’t have major life issues either!
Let’s take something as awful as cancer, for instance. The fear, the pain, the unknown can tear a person apart. However those who are positive and hopeful just seemed to do much better. If they were surrounded by loving people, wow! The difference always astounded me. I think it would be interesting to research. I’m sure that type of research been done already, but I’m willing to wager that those who are surrounded by love heal quicker and may suffer less. For those that are terminal, yes, one can see death as a healing. I know that sounds strange, I guess you have to experience this phenomenon to fully understand.

woman riding hanging swing in forest

Life isn’t all about the full swing of the pendulum, is it? For the most part, we spend our lives somewhere in the middle of that swing. So I guess the question begs to be asked, “How can I live in a sense of strength, dignity, happiness, love, etc. First off, if you are in a bad hurtful relationship, get out. If your boss is an incurable, exhausting ass, start looking for another job! If you have issues with your family members, is there a way to avoid the poison? Know that there are some situations that you are better away from. If you are unsafe, you will not change that individual.

I’m sure that the following list can be expanded and I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, possibly these thoughts will help to bring relational healing into our lives for the benefit of our body, mind and spirit:

  • Seek to be around people who are pleasant to be around. People who are real. People that appreciate you for who you are and don’t try to form you into some fantasy that they have conjured up in their minds of who is worthy of their presence.
  • Talk with people who naturally smile.
  • Seek relationships that are encouraging rather than critical.
  • Seek relationships that are give and take. There is nothing better than giving, but it is important to receive with grace too.
  • Seek to be around people who listen and engage.
  • Seek like-mindedness, but understand that everyone is different, we may agree on a lot of things, but chances are there will be times that we differ. That’s ok. How does that person handle your difference of opinion?
  • Seek to laugh.
  • Seek to be around someone that enjoys your company, but understands you need self-time too.

Ultimately, we call can be a catalyst for a healthy and healing relationship. Be who you are and know that your attitude and actions towards others can be the difference between a good or great relationship! Look at the above bullets and ask the question, “Am I anything like this?”

I know this is far from an exhaustive list! Please add to it in the comments below!

Enjoying the Adventure,

Dr. Dink

 

You are welcome to visit my other blogs!

Nail in my Pocket

Dink’s Digs

Brown Bag Letter

Photos by Pexels

Photo by Artem Bali on Pexels.com

Patina!

(An excerpt from “Moving Forward Through Life’s Shit Without Stinking! A Book About Learning to Smile Again” –Urbanski)

I have always loved antiques and even had a little store for a few years. There’s terminology in the antique world called “patina”. What patina means is that there are chips, cracks, bumps, bruises —- character marks that may give a greater beauty and value to a piece of art, collectible or furniture.

An antique piece can be refinished, or painted but the ones with patina, although marked, have incredible appeal. The piece with patina has withstood the test of time and may be ugly to some, unique to others, and have that “the perfect look” for someone’s decorating. Antiques with patina that have value are still functional. Sometimes people will invest quite a lot of money, knowing that a particular piece is one of quality; or, one of strength that will still be around for a long time to come. Patina is considered beautiful, valuable and appealing. Patina varies on furniture or a collectible, so each piece is one of a kind, although there may have been many like it in the past. Each piece is rare and has its own unique character and value. Patina is often loved and admired.

two gray kettles on table
Photo by Melanie Oliver on Pexels.com

I like to think of people who have stood the test of time, no matter how young or old, to have the beauty of patina.  Those extra character lines around your eyes, the silvering hair and wisdom from your experience can be thought of as life-patina. You are unique! You may have bumps, bruises and stories. You are a person of terrific value and you are stronger than you think. However, you might not yet know your strength and value. Possibly you have forgotten how wonderful you are!

There are many different characters that come into an antique store. Some customers want their purchases to be absolutely perfect. They examine each piece they are considering and even bring a loop with them (small magnifying glass). They have high expectations for their purchase and regard anything with the slightest mark as worthless.

Then there are people who understand that a small scratch can be easily hidden, turned or simply dealt with. They know they are getting a great quality piece at a reasonable discount. They understand and work with the piece.

The crafters and re-purposers are fun. They look at items and see something different for their future, with hammers, paint and a bit of vision they can re-create something incredibly beautiful for their home or to sell again at a profit.

The Patina folk just love stuff for what it is.

The antique store is a great analogy for relationships. There are people who will never understand what you’ve been through, how many years you’ve suffered. They don’t get why you’re still mourning or have PTSD. All they want is their definition of how your life, your emotions, your decisions should be. They want you to be perfect by their definition alone. They aren’t bad people, but they can be pretty hoity-toity about you. They don’t take into account that you were dropped, bumped into or broken. They don’t mean to be an ass, but they can’t help themselves. Take this into account. They simply can’t understand. It is impossible for them. When you are forced to deal with them, try to let them walk around the store, let them pass over the stuff they just can’t handle and then walk away. At the same time, know you will never change them, they are who they are, don’t be offended by their (unreasonable) expectations.

At the same time, when they express their dislike for something, be brave! Politely let them know that all things are not perfect, some people have scratches, marks and bruises that others can appreciate. Be proud of who you are. Each thing that has caused some imperfection in their eyes has not defeated you. You are still standing, breathing, surviving. You are of great value . . . too bad they can’t see that, but don’t you dare allow them to let you think you’re something less-than! Let them walk away . . .

Then there are people like the customers who understand that there are pieces in the store that will have great appreciation for the artistry and craftsmanship that antiques offer. They simply accept the fact that there might be some “flaws” but know you are very strong, they will love you for the fact that you’re still able to function. They might not be able to handle the deep wounds, but they can still be great to be around. When they receive life-wounds, you are the one they will come and sit with and find comfort.

The Crafters and Re-purposers can see a beautiful future for you! Their visionary abilities are so refreshing, and they can help you to realize that you need to stop dressing like shit because you feel that way. They will encourage you to get out, and to re-adjust to the new life-situation. They will show you something you are unable to see yourself. It doesn’t change what happened in the past, good and bad. They help you to take that broken part and use it in a different way. They help you to freshen up, or maybe even try something you never have tried before. They are fun, they push you to your limit.

When I re-purpose a piece of furniture, for instance, I sound like a freak when I say, “It has to speak to me.” I carefully observe the lines, the current structure and possibilities of what it can become. I enhance the beauty and burn what becomes totally unusable. Sometimes a piano becomes a shelf, a press-back chair becomes a necklace. I know, but it’s what she told me she wanted to be! —I just helped her realize that! I’ll be the first to admit, sometimes re-purposers can get out of hand. Be open to their suggestions, but don’t let them push you into something that you don’t want. Let them help you enhance who you are. Let them give you suggestions that allow you to enjoy life again, to think about the future in a new way so you can enhance the wonderful things about you and have the bravery to throw the broken, hurtful bruised up nasty parts into the fire! Did you know that the Ancient Greek word, katharsis, means purification or cleansing came from fire?  Maybe it’s time to light a candle, and ceremonially throw some things in the fire. Then allow your repurposing crazy life crafters help you rebuild yourself without all that crap holding you back.

Lovers of patina. They simply take it as it is, and so can you! Wear those scratches, cracks and bruises proudly. They give you character. They were difficult to receive but have helped to make you the strong survivor of life that you are! Put yourself in a prominent room of the house and allow people to marvel at your strength, tenacity and ability to still be so beautiful!!!! How can I say that . . .? Because you are!

Enjoying the Adventure!

Dr. Dink

 

 

 

Change

Today’s blog is in response to a request. “Karen, can you write about change?” Oh my, change, no matter what the change is can bring different responses. Change can bring great joy, ambiguity or great stress. Even change that we ask for can cause us to be unsure, afraid, and excited all at the same time. Change is usually coupled with new responsibilities and differences which can be hard to identify at first.

When we experience changes in our lives, some are greeted with a sense of relief. Only you know those times in your life when things were tough and you made a decision to do something about it. Possibly you threw your hands in the air and said, “Enough is enough!” I have made the decision that this will not happen anymore and you became the catalyst for change. As much as you know this was necessary, there were more questions than answers, more mystery than common stability.

Oftentimes change surprises us. The event may be celebratory or filled with grief. But, no matter what, we are different afterwards. How can I write about the essence of change? Because, like every other human being, I’ve experienced it too. Over and over, some change was welcome, some vilified. I think the ability to handle life-change may have a lot to do with our personality type or possibly how we were raised and our life experiences. However, I do know we all handle it differently. I’ve taken many classes to learn about life change. I’ve had my own life experience, and have also helped others to either welcome or learn to live through change. I don’t much appreciate it when there is an expectation that everyone will respond to the same thing similarly. None of us truly knows all the dynamics that bring us to today and today’s response, or for that matter the thought of tomorrow.

For me, most change is welcome. I have always signed letters and now this blog, “Enjoying the Adventure!” Rather than think of change as imposing it’s way upon me, I look ahead wondering, “What’s next?” Therefore, when change occurs, I’m more likely to embrace it. Although, there are some very serious instances where I just wanted to tuck my proverbial tail between my legs, shiver, hide under the carpet and hope that I would wake up only to find that I was having a nightmare. I’d be a fool to pretend that all change has been welcomed and it would be deceiving to write in such a way.

Let me give an illustration through a gift I recently received. While away last weekend, we had the opportunity to watch a demonstration of a tree being sliced into slats of wood. It was a poplar tree. The event was amazing to me as I have been a woodworker most of my adult life. The tree itself had a very light colored wood, not a whole lot of character, other than a knot in the wood every now and then. It is pretty, and it could certainly make a nice piece of furniture but not extraordinary.

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Then the next slice was made. The stunning piece of wood hidden deep inside this tree was so fantastic that they stopped the demonstration so that the folks gathered could walk up and see it’s beauty. I am an observer of people and what I noticed is that after about a half hour of gazing at what had been hidden by the mundane, the people were in true community. They were talking about the beauty of this wood, then conversations evolved. The people were talking and laughing together, some knew each other well, others were total strangers, but this revelation of beauty brought peace in the woods that day. There was beauty within that we all enjoyed and were touched by.  May I remind you that this beauty was revealed by a huge band saw cutting 2 inch slices into this tree? Is it even remotely possible that our life band saws cutting into our ordinary stable lives may feel quite painful, but also have the opportunity to bring about something incredibly beautiful?

Please take a look at the board pictured above.

Now, let me reveal what the next slice (The other side of the above board) revealed.

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How can something with such nice, but not extraordinary character have such beauty so close, so hidden. This basically white board had deep mahogany, purple, gold and gray colors. Somehow that basic pattern of wood became one of the most unique and beautiful specimens I have ever encountered. I feel so privileged that it was given to me as a gift. When I make something with it, (I’m not quite sure what yet) I think that it will have to be displayed in such a way to see both sides to remind me that there may be incredible beauty hidden in the most surprising places.

So, what about change? It happens. If we think that all will remain “as is” we kid ourselves. Sometimes change brings great pain and grief. Even that pain can be something we look back on and say, “Wow! If I only knew that it would lead me to where I am now!”  If we walk in the reality that  we know change, good and bad, will come so that we are not surprised by it

, we may be more able to accept and possibly even walk through even the most difficult change knowing that we can do it! We can adjust! We can find our lives rich and full once again.

I hope that as you experience change that you can look forward, find peace and yes, know it will visit us again.

Enjoying the Adventure,

Dr. Dink

 

Tree Photo by Pixabay, Pexel

Green Bananas

We went to the grocery store the other day and all they had were green bananas. I bought them knowing that (I’d suffer for a day or two before) they would turn yellow in a couple of days But I like them pretty ripe . . . so (The suffering would last) I’d have to wait even longer.

shallow focus photography of unripe bananas
Photo by Phani Chandra on Pexels.com

Each morning since, I’ve woke up, checked the bananas and (wondered if I put them in the microwave, would they ripen faster?) said to myself, “Another day, Karen, another day!”  There is great anticipation in my life for these bananas. I think they will taste better just because I’m waiting for them.

Yesterday, just for fun on Down to Earth Positive Facebook Group page I put a post: Fill in the Blanks, “Today will be __________________.”  It was fun as the day went on hearing notifications that someone responded. Here are the results:

Amazing

Fun

Hot

Awesome

Only filled with good news!

Terrific

Sun Filled Day again

Glorious

Busy

A Fun Adventure

Fabulous

Fantastic

The best day of the rest of my life

I think these words are like my green bananas (and a little less frustrating!). They are loaded with fun, positivity and looking-forward-to-it-tive-ness!  So while I’m waiting for my bananas to ripen I’m going to take these words and work them into my plans, my vocabulary, my thoughts. Want to join me?

A response came later in the day to “Only filled with Good News”

The response you ask? And it was!

May your day be filled with, “And it was!”

Enjoying the Adventure,

Dr. Dink

You are welcome to visit my new blog: Nail in My Pocket

Feature Photo by: Pexels

That Simple

My daughter was cutting up small pieces of paper, of course, I had to ask. She motioned to the fireplace mantle and said it’s a gratitude jar. That simple.

I remember cuss jars at work. If you let a 4-letter fly, you were to put a quarter in the jar. But that was in the day of having change in your pocket! (Obviously, if you read my blog, I don’t mind so much having no quarters in my pocket!)

I like this idea of a special place set aside for gratitude. A reminder. I believe gratitude is the basis for all sorts of positive reactions to life.

Begs the question . . . what are you grateful for?

Enjoying the Adventure! (And grateful to be on it)

Dr. Dink

I’d love to hear your comments and questions & promise to get back to you quickly!

You are welcome visit my other blogs:

Nail in My Pocket            —-Adventures in Frugal House-Flipping

Down to Earth Positive   — Looking at positivity in everyday life

Brown Bag Letter            —-Antique Photos and family folklore preserving personal history.

_____________________________________

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Pencliff

 

 

They Clapped!

dawn dusk forest grass
Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on Pexels.com

It was toward the end of the 10 mile race and a young woman came in toward the finish line.  Everyone clapped! Even the elderly couple sitting on a bench stood up and clapped. She wasn’t first, as a matter of fact, she was probably close to last. She was a runner. They clapped for them all. I’m not a runner and have never been to the end of a race before, it touched me to the core that everyone, just for finishing was acknowledged.

It got me quite emotional. It makes me want to clap my hands for others!

Have a wonderful day!

Enjoying the Adventure,

Dr. Dink

Memory & Hopes & Dreams

I am amazed by the power of memory, its effect on us, and how it can lead us to our hopes and dreams.  After a text conversation with a friend last night about Arizona, I received a message from my daughter this morning. She said when they drive on dirt roads when on an Arizona discovery adventure, that my grandson starts talking about wanting to see a cow! I find this, not only exciting, but AMAZING!

My grandson is so young so I wonder how can he remember a ride or two over the past year? How does the mind work that he associates dirt roads with cows?

One of the best parts of our property and future home in Arizona is the 12 mile dirt-road-adventure to get there! Along the way, it is commonplace to see free range cattle. Truthfully, it is difficult not to stop and tell them how beautiful they are! Mooooooo a time or two, and if Grandbaby is along, to say, “Look at that cow”, “Cow says, MOO!”  This particular bull was eating a Prickly Pear Cactus for breakfast —I know, right?

As if free range cattle isn’t enough, for me, the wild donkey take first prize. They are the cutest animals . . . EVER!

Donkey and baby

Now Gbaby has my memory going wild!

This reminds me of my first visit to Rickett’s Glenn State Park. It was easier when I lived closer, but I try and make a yearly pilgrimage there. It is a place of peace for me. When we first moved to that area we took a ride to see the park and I had this weird, “I’ve been here before familiarity feeling of, WHAT?”  Only to find out that when I was nine months old, my family went camping and did the 19 Waterfall Trail. My Mom’s a tough one, she carried me most of the way for 3 1/2 miles!

Image result for waterfall trail ricketts glen

With this experience in mind, and Gbaby relating to cows and dirt roads, I am reminded of just how amazingly powerful memory is. Memory can lead us to good, bad, or neutral feelings. But it can lead us into our day or even the future. It can affect our life-choices and relationships. I think the most important thing to keep in mind is that the memories we concentrate on, as well as, those we are creating for ourselves and others really can make a difference. Even if it is something as simple as riding on a dirt road!

 

These memories, particularly of Arizona and hugging my Gbaby, give me a sense of expectancy and urgency for today. It makes me want to climb up on the roof of the house we are flippig and nail in those shingles! Even though I know it will not be easy, it brings us one step closer to our dream. It gives me gumption to want to finish the model of the house we will build out in the desert highlands. Memory is a powerful tool for the future!

future house model

I write this blog as my protest against the negative era we find ourselves living in. I believe that we are all effected by it in various ways and different levels. I do what I can to “fight it” because I believe it is much healthier to embrace a more positive attitude, thus changing the world for the better.

I generally try and ask a question, or give a challenge in my blog. Today begs two questions:

  1. What memories just make you feel great?
  2. What will you do TODAY to create a good memory for yourself or someone else? (How about tomorrow?)

I hope that today you find yourself enjoying your memories and challenged to create new ones! You are welcome to share your thoughts, memories and hopes for new ones in the comments!

(Truly) Enjoying the Adventure,

Dr. Dink

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Please visit my other blog: The Brown Bag Letter

An earlier Cow blog —- one of my favorites!   Slight Glance to the Left

The Beautiful waterfall image was found at: https://www.google.com/search?q=waterfall+trail+ricketts+glen&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjU5Ym28dXcAhXnpVkKHZU0BGIQ_AUICygC&biw=1242&bih=557#imgrc=-8iGBceeF_usqM: