The traditional life path in the United States is to get married, have kids, and do the house in suburb/church/hockey games route. But I know a LOT of people, good friends, who never had kids. And they are not complaining about being infertile or not being able to adopt. I don’t know everyone’s story obviously, but it seems many people simply chose not to have kids. Some have ended up with step kids due to relationships with previously married people. But lots of us took another route and never gave birth.
So the dilemma is, now what do we do with ourselves as we age? We don’t see the prom dates, the college education, the marriages and the grand kids. We don’t have the family holidays and the traditions that come from those events.
But really, those of us without kids, are we going to be okay?
Well, yes, I believe we will be fine. I applaud those who went the traditional route. I see people who have two or three kids and thank goodness that someone is repopulating the world. But I think not having kids is a valid choice, and we have plenty of other options. Being maternal and creative does not have to be limited to literally giving birth. One can give birth to many things! Books, artwork, music, programs to help the needy, or animals or children in schools! Roots don’t need to have baby-bodies and cries and need diapering. Plant seeds for another kind of goal that you can nurture and love throughout your life.
I find myself in a situation with no kids, a diminishing family, no day job (but yes, a home business of my own which I can do anywhere), no connection to a church or school or anything else in the world. I have a mortgage, a car and good friends. I am right now determining what it is I will nurture for the next 20 or 30 years of my life. I see nothing but possibilities and will explore how I can best impact the world without driving it or myself crazy. And I am in no hurry to figure this out.
For those women out there with kids, I hope you and your children honor each other for the miracle that your relationship can be. I love and respect you for being mothers.
Today I continue my thoughts on humility, but with a flip. What about “Ego” in the field of spirituality? I am referring to spirituality, metaphysics and the paranormal or any other way you name the weird and the special in the world. These have been interests of mine my whole life.
The prevailing story I hear is that humanity is awakening to its role of being stewards of the planet and people are becoming “lighthouses” to those who are lost. The news of this awakening suggests the pool of practitioners, writers, and teachers is growing. Logically the pool of people interested in these services, books and classes should also be growing.
According to spiritual concepts I know, if something is meant to be, there will be enough abundance to support it. Should these businesses be promoting themselves as “better than” another business with the same service or product? Is competition necessary in this field?
“A rising tide will lift all boats” was first said by John F Kennedy. Would this apply to businesses in the field of spirituality? I suggest that if one is struggling with a failing business, rather than hope a competitor fails, one should review his or her business model, and make it the best it can be. “We all do better when we all do better,” said Paul Wellstone.
If a business advertises itself as a spiritual business, is its owners opening its doors each morning with the goal to live each day with an open heart, in joy and without fear? If not, why not?
I am paraphrasing my dad, here, who did many good things in his life and never wanted credit for them. He barely wanted a funeral. Over his dead body? Done!
My dilemma for the day is whether or not to let it be known when I have done something “good.” I grew up learning to not brag about such things. I was given a triple whammy to prevent this – Minnesota Nice, being Lutheran, and having a humble father. I would give examples of “good things” here, but my embedded humility prevents me from doing so.
The result of this, however, is a life of being underestimated, under-appreciated and unknown. I have done some amazing things that no one knows about. I did not receive praise, money, even acknowledgement of whatever those things were. And I just figured that was the way it was. I would know in my heart that this good thing was done. And in my religious moments I knew that God would see what I did. In my spiritual moments I knew that this was good for my karma.
Furthermore, it probably held back my self-confidence and I may have tried to do more if someone, at some point, said “Good job” and fed me a Scooby snack. And it gets worse. When I was aware of problems that could be fixed, or avoided, and brought them to someone’s attention, I was usually told to mind my own business, I was wrong, such a thing won’t happen and so on. But in a short time, the thing did happen, go wrong, or was discovered by someone else. That person becomes the hero and much grief is felt due to the broken process or whatever. No one remembers I thought of it first. So I learned not to speak up about these things, as there was certainly no Scooby snack awaiting me for that information. Where would I be if someone had known I did X, Y or Z?
Just know that when you wonder what I am up to, it is usually “good” and not up to “no good.” Umkay?
I have been feeling gut-wrenching heartburn for the last three weeks. When it flares up, it distracts me from whatever goals I had set for the day and sends me to bed to curl up under a blanket. That only works if curling up under my blanket was, in fact, my goal for the day. I could list many reasons why this could be happening, tied neatly to a guilt trip for every item. Frankly, never eating again would seem to be the most effective way to cure this. Given the impracticality, though weight loss possibilities of this solution, I chose to take an alternative route, and called my herbalist, Matthew Alfs, this morning. I worked with him last fall and was amazed at his knowledge of the human body. He sees how A affects B which causes C and therefore D. He knows what is missing and what should be added. I have total confidence in his understanding of the body, his knowledge of supplements, his compassion and gentleness.
If I went first to my medical, or allopathic, doctor, only the one issue of my stomach pain would be considered, rather than viewing my situation holistically. I could count on leaving the office with a prescription for something like an extra strength purple pill, which I already take OTC. To cover themselves, they might add a referral for an endoscopy.
So I spoke to Matthew’s assistant this morning, and conveyed my desperation. She said that the herbalist does not do triage, which caused me to smile. MASH units probably don’t include herbalists. Matthew was not in yet but she offered to call him. I received a call back in a few minutes. While he is booked solid today, he told her to tell me that he understood the situation and knew he could help to heal me. He gave me immediate steps to take for relief, and I will see him on Thursday. Calling an herbalist or other healers “alternative” is a misnomer in my mind. There is a place for medical doctors, but so many things can be handled by other types of trained healers. I think seeing a holistic, non-invasive expert should be the first step in health care, unless one is spewing blood or a bone is sticking out. Then call 911, please.
Could it finally be spring? This morning the sun is shining, and while I have not checked the temperature, it certainly looks “spring-y.” I see there are buds on the branches and I have hope that the rain of the last two days will turn the grass from brown to green.
But we are hesitant to be relieved, aren’t we? After all, it is only April. I remember years when it snowed all the way into June. I think what made this winter the hardest was not the snow, we can deal with snow, but the bitter cold. I have lived in Minnesota all of my life and don’t recall it ever being so cold for so long, with wind chills in the 30 and 40 below range. School was never canceled for me due to the cold, but I remember a day now and then when I would need to bundle up with extra layers to wait for the bus.
Humans have quite the amazing ability to be flexible and survive. Other creatures might have curled up and died. Good for us. So bundle up, or strip down, as needed for the day, and enjoy the encroaching spring. It is coming. The garage sale signs are out.