Week 9, Being Sensitive With ME
It is time for a new topic!
Week 9, and the weeks leading up to Christmas, are going to be focused on how to be Sensitive.
I am so excited to enter into this topic, not because I was getting bored with Being Positive, but because it is a thrill to complete each week and month, realizing there is so much more to discover!
It is with great hope and gentleness that I begin exploring the idea of Being Sensitive. I was eager to dive right in, wrap my head around how I could increase my sensitivity to the people around me, who seem to NEED a lot of consideration right now, whom, for my own protection, shall remain nameless….
I found myself running to catch up to the thoughts and ideas that were racing inside my head, excited to capture them all within my writing and prematurely basking in anticipated accomplishment, when it hit me. This is not the pattern. My first week of a any topic needs to be internally focused. I must first look at what needs applying in my own sticky areas, in order to have a moderately effective approach toward any others.
POP! Wind out of my sails, thoughts gone from my head, heavy sigh of “well, this is gonna be no fun” coming from my exhaling lungs (maybe I am not finished with Being Positive yet…..). A little pep talk with myself got things back on track and looking forward to what this week will hold.
So where to begin? Maybe with an apology….this is a later than usual blog, most weeks I have been able to churn out 2 posts by Monday and Thursday, attempting to establish a pattern to incorporate into an already jammed life. Writing is a fantastic addition to the ‘busy’ of my world, and I find myself craving the time I will sit and scribe out thoughts and impressions of how this practice is impacting me.
And then December rolls into town! Ho, HO, WOAH!
Help me, people! Am I alone in experiencing a marked amplification of busi-ness occurring each year at holiday time? My guess is I am not alone, especially for people who have kids. I am a huge lover of the season, so tend to dive into all activities and traditions with abandon; Mostly due to some of my most beautiful memories of mum being linked to things she thoughtfully wrapped for us under the tree.
Not only did she choose gifts carefully, picking up clues of our wishes and wants throughout the year, but she also looked with foresight into our future needs of things that would become essential. Mum’s gifts were always my favorite to open, not only because she choose them so well, but because she would wrap them in unique designs, with luxurious papers and bows, not seen by us while searching for materials to wrap presents for each other. I learned later that if one is an avid shopper, enough to have mall employees personally greet you, there is a chance you have a great relationship with the folks that professionally wrap your purchases at customer service.
Gift giving was her ‘language of love’.
I did not hear affirming words. Quite the opposite actually, if you saw how she really felt about the pursuit of my greatest passion, singing, the sound of it making her cringe. Only after she was diagnosed with cancer did she become my biggest fan….more on that story in weeks to come….
I did not receive quality time. Rarely did she attend or participate in things that were important to me. It was hard for her to watch performances….see above….she did not stick around to see any sporting events she drove me to, always a purchase or errand pulling her away. I thought it was because we lived in a small town and when you have a chance in the city to get what is not available where you live, you do it! I mean, it might be a whole week’s time before you are back in the city an hour away and why waste time or gas? If I seem a bit sarcastic, I am…. or I was….when I tried understanding her priorities.
I did not receive affectionate hugs or touches. I did not hear her say “I love you”. Now, as a mother of 5, grabbing, cuddling, holding, hugging and pronouncing my unwavering love for them daily….it is alien-like for me to fathom a mother not using these kind of techniques to increase her bond to her children, yet she was not gifted in this. The closest thing to affection she could muster, was the occasionally bum pinch I got to my rear-end when being particularly cheeky, yet funny, much to her feigned chagrin. Somehow I knew through this sharp, nabbing with her thumb against my buttocks, it was the best way she could show her true feelings. And I did not hold it against her.
Her secondary language of love was performing acts of service; sewing Halloween costumes, driving us to activities, preparing special Sunday morning breakfast and supper, working crazy, unpaid overtime hours to finish projects for our little town to increase healthier and positive opportunities for community engagement, and hosting all our friends and neighbors with food, games, and more food. We put a plaque of all the contributions she made possible for the advancement of our town, on her gravestone, but recently, Dad took it down, thinking she would not appreciate this kind of ‘bragging’ attention to her work. So now it sits at my front door….a real conversation starter for people as they come up our sidewalk to ring our doorbell.
So, this is my icon this week! But since I cannot carry it around with me, it weighs over 50 lbs, I have selected a smaller icon that I can easily hold or wear. It is a broach that shares the same color of the plaque, which she wore often while getting down to the business of ‘stuff’ on her plaque.
The plaque. Her work. Her gifts.
Who she WAS….not, who she wasn’t.
I hope there is more to be learned about who I am, even if I need to see who I am not, this week.
Sensitive. It begins now.