Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Empathy vs Sympathy

Never realized there was a significant difference between the two.  I'm sure they each have their place (...hmm... is there ever a time for sympathy?) but this animated video/talk makes it very clear that empathy is the approach of choice when you want to be with someone.  Christmas is a good time for that.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Magic in the Mundane

The past three and a half years have involved a serious learning curve - motherhood.  I am beginning to realize that I have resisted the major changes that have been going on in and around me and it is a slow process of coming to accept what my life looks like now.  I always planned to be a mother, always said that my worst fear was not being able to have children.  I have always loved kids and never thought twice about my plans to have "at least five".  Oh the bliss of ignorance!  It's not that I was particularly wrong - I do love children, I love my children and I do hope to have more of them.  It's just that I thought I would be able to just continue living my life.  Or that somehow my life would flow seamlessly into their life.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that after a significant breakdown this week, this is what came to me:

You are the gift, and calling
given to me
the day I became a mother.

I cried and cried, why can't I accept that being a mother is a legitimate and worthwhile way to spend a life?  And so that became my goal for the next year.  To put my whole self into mothering.  To use my brilliant mind (now that's confidence), my creativity, my problem solving skills, my love for reading and research...all of my gifts, into being a mother.  Is it possible?  Don't know.  Am I going to fail?  Probably.  Does that mean I shouldn't do it?  Definitely not.  Who has tried to change the world without knowing that their attempts are almost certainly doomed to failure?  I would say very few.

Well, how's that for a blog post?  A little out of the ordinary I guess.  What I really wanted to share was a most incredible video that expresses all of this in a beautiful and inspiring and, for me, heart-wrenching two-and-a-half minutes.  It makes beautiful the mundane work of mothering.

Thank you, friend, for sharing that with me.  Someone remind me to watch this video on a regular basis this year to remind me of the magic of this time of my life.  I don't see it now, but I know it's there.