The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Pity Party

Photo: I'm all for positivity & the power of gratitude. Just sayin that sometimes you may need one of these:

I had to giggle when I saw this meme, created by Theresa Byrne, another contributor to The Good Men Project,  since it was sucked right out of my spinning mind. Many’s the time I have petulantly pouted about the way life events were unfolding. I have stomped and stormed, raved and raged (internally) and kicked up an ‘it’s not fair’ fuss. Got me nowhere. Didn’t change the events. What it did do was expel energy, that could propel me to inspired action. There have been times when I have attempted to enlist others in my rants. It is part of my test of the emergency sanity system, asking “Am I totally off my rocker and have my lost marbles rolled under the sofa?” It’s then that they help me back up onto the chair and assist me in retrieving the elusive orbs.

These days, I give myself permission to throw occasional pity parties. I don’t stay very long when I realize I am the only guest there. Mine include some of the above; definitely chocolate which is my drug of choice, (being a teetotaler, my ‘wine’ translates instead to ‘whine’), huddling under the covers with a good book, writing my way clear through the morass and muck. In gratidudinosity mode when I consider that writing is a huge healing balm at times that I’m not sure where else to put the feelings of failure that occasionally arise and the gremlins of not enough-ness that come to call.

Bad Day by Daniel Powter

Making The Ordinary Come Alive

Photo: wise words from William Martin -<br /><br /><br />
(from "The Parents Tao Te Ching")

 

I became an adoptive parent in 1992, when diminutive blond haired, green eyed Adam became my son. I like to say that my stretch marks are on my heart, not my hips. A high energy kiddo with his own ideas of how life should be, there were times when I questioned my ability to keep up with him. Those who have children known as Indigos who landed here tuned into other frequencies know what I’m talking about.

From the article: The Indigo Child and How To Recognize One

“Nancy Ann Tappe, a teacher and counselor, studied the human auric field,  otherwise known as their electromagnetic field. The field surrounds  every living thing. She even wrote a book about it called “Understanding Your Life Through Color.”

Through colors in the aura, she instituted a shockingly accurate and revealing  way to psychologically profile a person using her new auric color  method. The signs of an indigo child actually began even as early as in  the 1950s with a few people. What she noticed was that 80 percent of the children born after 1980 had a new deep blue colored auric  field. She called this new color “indigo”.

What are the behavioral patterns of Indigos?

  1. They are born feeling and knowing they are special and should be revered.
  2. An indigo knows they belong here as they are and expect you to realize it as well.
  3. These children are more confident and have a higher sense of self-worth.
  4. Absolute authority, the kind with no choices, negotiation, or input from them  does not sit well. The educational system is a good example.
  5. Some of the rules we so carefully followed as children seem silly to them and they fight them.
  6. Rigid ritualistic systems are considered archaic to an indigo child. They feel everything should be given creative thought.
  7. They are insightful and often have a better idea of method then what has  been in place for years. This makes them seem like “system busters.”
  8. Adults often view an indigo as anti-social unless they are with other  indigos. Often they feel lost and misunderstood, which causes them to go within.
  9. The old control methods like, “Wait till your father gets home,” have no affect on these children.
  10. The fulfillment of their personal needs is important to them, and they will let you know.”

 

Like most moms, I had my ideas of  who he ‘should’ become, since I experienced such loving parenting and wanted to offer the same style with him. Sometimes it worked, sometimes…..not so well. Tree hugging pacifist hippie meets warrior who struggled to understand each other’s language and culture. Both with good hearts and intentions, sometimes we danced around each other, sometimes warily tiptoed and sometimes stomped and stormed. For 6 of his 11 years (we adopted him at 5) there were three of us. Tumult and calm existed in our home, blending unpredictably. Then there were two of us weathering the storms of life together, when before Adam turned 12, in 1998, my husband Michael died of Hepatitis C.

In the interceding years, we survived his adolescence and early adulthood with the full range of human emotions and experiences. There were times when we resisted each other’s counsel mightily and still do. When he turned 14, he told me “Mom, I’m and undercover angel, sent to teach you patience.” I believed him. He’s still teaching and I’m still learning.

When I read the passage from William Martin- The Parents’ Tao Te Ching. I nodded knowingly since it reflected my own intentions. Most parents want their children to live extraordinarily, to succeed beyond everyone’s wildest expectations. Add to it that the parent is a Type A workaholic with personal aspirations that keep growing and there are sometimes blatant and sometimes unspoken desires for her son to discover the jet fuel that will rocket him skyward.

He will be turning 27 next week and my gift to him is his freedom from my expectations that he be anyone other than who he chooses to be and live, guided by his own inner compass, no longer mine. By doing so, I free myself as well.

 

 

Changing the Dishes

 

Fellow Good Men Project author Thomas Fiffer shared his insights about the holiday of Passover. I saw his blog entry this morning as I was contemplating what to write for today’s Bliss Blog. Having been raised in a Jewish home, Passover was eagerly anticipated all year long. The pre-holiday tradition of changing the dishes was the equivalent of Spring cleaning, according to my mother. We would haul the boxes down from the attic; my father standing on the ladder that extended down from the hatch, as he handed them to us. Carrying them into the kitchen, peeling off their newspaper wrapping, piling them in the sink to wash them and then drying and placing them carefully in the empty cabinets that had been cleaned of ‘chametz’ ( foods that contain leavening) and replaced with Kosher for Passover items. Cooking commenced a few days prior to the first seder. All these years later, I can breathe in  and re-create the delectable aromas. My mother and Uncle Jim would playfully banter about whether the matzah balls in the soup should be light and fluffy (my mom’s preference) or heavy, stick to your ribs (his ideal). She would lovingly change the consistency for a few of them for her big brother. I loved setting the table with the ‘good china’ which I have now as part of my inheritance since my parents have passed. Delicate floral plates, cups and bowls embellished the long table around which family and friends gathered. Some were part of  ‘the tribe’, while others were family of choice of other faith traditions and eagerly listened to the story of the Exodus and enjoy the kitchen creations.

One of the highlights of the seder (which translates to ‘order’ in Hebrew)  are what are referred to as The Four Questions. They are asked by the youngest child present.

Why is it that on all other nights during the year we eat either bread or matzah, but on this night we eat matzah?

Why is it that on all other nights we eat all kinds of vegetables, but on this night we eat bitter herbs?

Why is it on all other nights we do not dip even once, but on this night we dip twice?

Why is it that on all other nights we eat either sitting or reclining, but on this night we eat in a reclining position?

Following are Thomas’ corollary queries:

“Today, I would like to propose four alternate questions, for Jews and non-Jews alike to ask on the holiday.

Why is it that people around the world still live under oppressive regimes that limit their intellectual, religious, and economic freedoms?

Why is it that people in our own wealthy nation go hungry, with no bread, or matzah, or vegetables, or bitter herbs to eat?

Why is it that so many people still fight against our right to choose whom to love and whom to marry?

What can each of us do, in our own ways, to fight the scourge of oppression, the slavery of poverty, the limits imposed by prejudice and intolerance, and to empower more people to be free?”

As I sit with these questions, I have no answers, except to say that if we choose to carry the message of Passover into the world; that of freedom, redemption from slavery (some self imposed), miracles, trust in the God of our understanding, taking a stand in the face of oppression, feeding everyone, knowing that there is enough, inviting the world to our table, enjoying each other’s company, then they will become no brainers.

As I stand with Thomas and all those who choose to take on these questions as ‘marching orders’ with which we cross the desert and  Red Sea, I know that we are not alone in embodying them even after we re-wrap the dishes and lift them back up into the attic where they will await their appearance at the seder table next year.

There is a song that is sung on Passover called Dayenu which translates to ‘it would have been enough’ and is a prayer of gratitude. This is a spoof using that title:  http://youtu.be/E_RmVJLfRoM that focuses on the hope and promise of freedom.

http://tomaplomb.blogspot.com Thank you, Tom for your insights.

Photo credit:  www.everystockphoto.com AlphaTangoBravo/Adam Baker

 

 

 

 

Self Imposed Slavery

Tonight marks the first night of Passover which commemorates the journey from slavery to freedom of the Jews in Egypt who were compelled to work at the peril of their own lives.  Jews around the world (and others who are invited guests as they were in my childhood home) will gather to celebrate and engage in a ritual dinner called a seder (which translates to ‘order’ in Hebrew.) For those not familiar (if you watched the Hollywood blockbuster The Ten Commandments, you will have some idea) with the history of the holiday, it originated as a result of the Pharoah being afraid that the Jews of the time would become so numerous that they would overthrow his rule. He issued an edict that the first born males of the Jewish families were to be murdered. Moses; the hero of the Passover story was placed in a basket and sent down the river Nile to protect him from this fate, by his mother and sister and was subsequently found by the daughter of the Pharoah and raised as her own son. These, I consider the ‘sheros’ of the tale.

As a child, I sat at the table while my father (who conducted what I came to call ‘speed seder’, since most traditional Passover meals which include the service can last for hours and we completed the formal part in less than 30 minutes) began reading from the Haggadah. Ours were the dog-eared over the years Maxwell House version which I can still see in my mind’s eye. One by one, we took turns reading our own portions of the ceremony. The food, the wine (grape juice for those who didn’t otherwise indulge), the songs, time with family and friends,  the message of miracles and redemption all combined to make it a memorable experience

The Ten Plagues are an integral part of the seder and some question whether they occurred as is portrayed in the book of Exodus or if they were symbolic.

1. Blood – The waters of Egypt are turned to blood. All the fish die and water becomes unusable.
2. Frogs – Hordes of frogs swarm the land of Egypt.
3. Gnats or Lice – Masses of gnats or lice invade Egyptian homes and plague the Egyptian people.
4. Wild Animals – Wild animals invade Egyptian homes and lands, causing destruction and wrecking havoc.
5. Pestilence – Egyptian livestock is struck down with disease.
6. Boils – The Egyptian people are plagued by painful boils that cover their bodies.
7. Hail – Severe weather destroys Egyptian crops and beats down upon them.
8. Locusts – Locusts swarm Egypt and eat any remaining crops and food.
9. Darkness – Darkness covers the land of Egypt for three days.

10. Death of the Firstborn – The firstborn of every Egyptian family is killed. Even the firstborn of Egyptian animals die.

I love the idea of symbolism and detect it in my own life on a daily basis. Lately, I have noticed that I have become a near merciless task master when it comes to my own expectations for my productivity and standards. There was a time in my life when I was nowhere near as fastidious as I am now and in some ways, feel as if I am overcompensating for those choices I made out of fear, not being sure how to move past it. I carry an invisible whip (some of my friends can see it) with which I flagellate myself as a means of spurring myself on to greater feats. One friend told me lovingly yesterday that since we are all connected, all One, when I beat myself, it is like I am beating her. That made it easier to cast down the weapon I have used to my own detriment, since I would never do to another what I have done to myself.

I also see Passover as a journey from darkness to light, from fear to safety, from doubt to ultimate trust that I will cross the Red Sea safely and be fed manna from Heaven. I am my own Moses as I free myself.

http://youtu.be/JCy4-_DaacI   The Best Seder in the USA

Photo Credit:  www.everystockphoto.com Robert Couse-Baker

Previous Posts

Pity Party
I had to giggle when I saw this meme, created by Theresa Byrne, another contributor to The Good Men Project,  since it was sucked right out of my spinning mind. Many's the time I have petulantly pouted about the way life events were unfolding. I have stomped and stormed, raved and raged (interna

posted 11:02:45am Apr. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Making The Ordinary Come Alive
  I became an adoptive parent in 1992, when diminutive blond haired, green eyed Adam became my son. I like to say that my stretch marks are on my heart, not my hips. A high energy kiddo with his own ideas of how life should be, there were times when I questioned my ability to keep up with hi

posted 7:25:34am Apr. 17, 2014 | read full post »

Changing the Dishes
  Fellow Good Men Project author Thomas Fiffer shared his insights about the holiday of Passover. I saw his blog entry this morning as I was contemplating what to write for today's Bliss Blog. Having been raised in a Jewish home, Passover was eagerly anticipated all year long. The pre-holi

posted 9:22:24am Apr. 15, 2014 | read full post »

Self Imposed Slavery
Tonight marks the first night of Passover which commemorates the journey from slavery to freedom of the Jews in Egypt who were compelled to work at the peril of their own lives.  Jews around the world (and others who are invited guests as they were in my childhood home) will gather to celebrate a

posted 10:40:54am Apr. 14, 2014 | read full post »

That's What Makes You Strong
  Another soul passed into the Light yesterday to join the celestial choir. I first heard Jesse Winchester's music in the 80's. As a consummate singer songwriter, he had  a gift for vivid imagery that took the listener along for the ride. Songs such as Mississippi, You're On My Mind,

posted 10:43:14am Apr. 12, 2014 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.