Mary Beth Writes

Like many of you, I am emerging from my den of “Wow, that was Sure a Full Couple of Months!” I have been either chased by or chasing my calendar since the middle of October. We’ve had a plethora of family get-togethers (we all have birthdays at the end of the year), plus somehow all my dental/medical checkups/appointments ended up around now. Most things we did or attended over the holidays were rich and good, but it still filled days and kept me feeling a little spinny. (Or was that the cough syrup?)

This morning, while reading a book review that has nothing to do with what I want to say (I’ll put the proper URL at the bottom of this to give credit to the woman who wrote it), I read this phrase. “Mistrust your sense of urgency.”

“Mistrust your sense of urgency.”

It made me consider how fast my mind goes, how I make a daily to-do list on paper … but don’t doubt that I also have a backup list burning in my soul. The one on paper reminds me to tutor at the elementary school today plus bring up the laundry from the basement. The internal one reminds me to not miss All the Deeply Meaningful Things Before I Die. (I blame WAY TOO MANY altar calls in my youth. How many times can you ask a third grader where she will go if she dies tonight – without messing with her head forever?)

Resisting urgency does not mean we won’t attempt hard and important things.  It does mean we can tamp down our panic at the greediness, destruction, and self-serving politics around us. We can try to figure out our ways to respond without living in knots. We don’t have to fix everything. We just have to do what we can do. While living our lives and taking out the trash and reading books and keeping the kids safe.

Right now I am going to resist my sense of urgency to write more. This phrase will either make sense to you or it won’t.

For me? These are things I am going to do this week to resist false urgency

1. Not going to wear my pedometer for a week. 

2. Not add any anything to this week’s calendar unless it involves kids or hiking.

3. Not put anything else on a numbered to-do list.

 

.....

The quote was from this unrelated but interesting review of why a writer wrote a crime novel. https://crimereads.com/the-true-crime-story-that-changed-my-life/

Comments

Leonard's picture

This is from Alice "Through the Looking Glass" "Well, in our country," said Alice, still panting a little, "you'd generally get to somewhere else—if you run very fast for a long time, as we've been doing." "A slow sort of country!" said the Queen. "Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!"

Ahhhh. Thank you for this! Just what I needed today. After launching a new program yesterday, I'm excited and breathless. Wanting to do all the things and reach all the people. But my core self is constantly thinking, "What's the rush?" and I need to stay connected to her if I'm to remain happy & fulfilled in this process. My personal wake-up phrase is, "I'm not doing brain surgery, here." ha ha. Things take time. Good things take time. And I have time!
Mary Beth's picture

Thanks! And thanks for plugging this piece in The Perpetual You Society ... https://www.facebook.com/groups/theperpetualyousociety/

This was good and yeh, the phrase made sense. No surprise there. Sigh.

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Advent Light Post 12-4-2020

Like likes like.

I received this (above) lovely photo from Susan W of an old-fashioned city lamp seen through trees at night.

It made me recall the pix Karen P sent of her son and daughter-in-law at their wedding a few years ago. They lit and sailed paper lanterns propelled by small candles which (hopefully) flickered out when they flew high enough.

Which of course, reminded me of the paper lanterns at my kids’ wedding.

I don’t walk around noticing spheres and globes, but the image is just unusual enough to bring similar images to mind.

Advent Light Post 12/3/2020

The photo is Karen P's mom, Joan, who has been in quarantine in an assisted living residence since March. Her birthday party was a few months before all this began. Light for hope. Hope for light.

...

Yesterday I wrote “I liked figuring out the best way to position my stance in order to frame whatever it was I wanted to focus on.”

Point of View. 

Advent Light Post 12/2/2020

Len has been taking photos since he was a college newspaper reporter/photographer; (University of Chicago and University of Calgary). He has photos that he took from Willis (it was Sears then) Tower while it was under construction. Len had a journalist pass so he called to see if he could “do a story” and they didn’t ask if he was 20 yet, so he got the gig. When (if) he finds those photos, I will put some here.

As long as I have known him, Len has owned a camera. I think we are now on #3. He brought to our marriage the tripod that he still uses.

Advent Light Post 12/1/2020

(The photo is of headlights making a dotted line on the cemetery fence.) 

...

Oh that morning! Len drove us like crazy across Chicago to the hospital where we would birth our first child.  It was a very clear, very cold December morning, kind of like what’s outside my window right now. 

That same evening I was wheelchaired back out of that hospital. When the lobby doors slid open, the world had become night and the driveway vapor lights lit a blizzard of whirling snow.

It was a completely different world. Yes it was.

Advent Light Post 11/30/2020

Today is Len’s birthday and to celebrate being born on the last day of November in the upper Midwest, he is out on his bike right now. It’s spitting snow, there are 20-30mph winds, and the real-feel temp is 20. He has on both pairs of his bicycling pants. He also has a slice of pumpkin raisin Bundt cake (hmmm, I wonder who baked that) in his bike’s little trunk. 

Happy Birthday to the kind of guy who, when a girl invites him to attend the Sunday school class she teaches - comes to that Sunday school class. A rare man, indeed. 

Advent Light 11/28/2020

Tomorrow, Sunday, is the first Sunday of Advent. 

So first of all, like I said before, I’m preaching. I think you can listen to the whole service starting at 9:30AM, if you go to https://www.uniteduuc.org/ .  There is usually a link there that you have to click, when you click it, it says something about YouTube, so click that link, too. Otherwise, by Monday (maybe earlier, I don’t know who does this or when) it will show up on YouTube at United Unitarian Universalist, Waukesha, and my name.

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