A Lovesome Thing

I try to create “the beloved” in my life and around me. I needed so badly to find direction while thrashing around in pain. My life was getting daily more restricted and I needed to find purpose. Not easy when I couldn't do obvious things like volunteer work. Even writing, my usual outlet, was curtailed because I couldn't sit at the computer. So how to make life count? How to put back creativity?

I did the “loving kindness” meditation every day and ended with “may I dwell in the beloved.” No one ever defined “the beloved.” I am not sure where I got the idea from, but it grew and took shape.

The Beloved is surely a loving frame of mind, a beatitude, I thought hopefully, till I checked my Bible. No, I don't want to be poor in sprit, mourning and persecuted! There must be a more optimistic way to be blessed.

So the idea of the Beloved grew. I have met (a very few) souls who have carried with them an aura of peace and kindness – nuns come to mind, so perhaps the Beatitudes are not so far off the mark. Could I aim at creating a kindness bubble? Not like a protective white light, which I have never been able to maintain anyway. More like a deep peace that I can rest in – and hopefully transmit to others, rather as one prays for another.

Could creating a warm, safe, kind space be as much of an art as painting? Or gardening? Yes, gardening is a good metaphor. My green-fingered friends manifestly gain huge pleasure from their efforts. I can see how satisfying it would be, an organic, ageless task, with texture and beauty. I can't do that, although I would like to, because I can't bend and anyway my past efforts have produces bolting tomatoes with a few shrivelled pompoms as if on stilts, and cabbages like broderie Anglaise.

But could I nurture kindness the same way, sowing a compliment here, a hug there? Could I make a loving space, and prune my excesses (stop enthusing madly), remove my brambles (stop snapping)? I could certainly prune more demanding relationships and weed out negativity.

Gardiners plan ahead – pay it forward – and have patience, which would be needed as I am restless by nature. This is a great metaphor, including watering, feeding (friends over for coffee?). Before I started my kindness garden, my efforts to help, listen and nurture felt disjointed. There was no frame. When you volunteer, you have a label for your disparate activities – they add up to a cohesive whole. Now I am tending my garden and a myriad of small acts coalesce into meanng.

 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING from CANADA

 

 

About UntraveledRoads

Fascinated by life, looking for answers to chronic pain and finding unexpected gifts. Interested in people, ideas, healing and humour. I am very happily married with three children and a kitten. As English born immigrants to Canada, we have family spread overseas, a daughter in South Africa and one in England. We also run a charity in South Africa to educate black, rural South African Women. Our first girl from a rural township has just graduated as an accountant from Johannesburg University and got a good job in a bank.
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