Thursday, March 29, 2012

Pick up the phone...

In this day and age of accelerated pace and crunching timelines, it’s sometimes too easy to put off until tomorrow what should be done today – or worse still, what should have been done long before this.

Businesspeople make valiant efforts to combine their careers with home, sometimes children or other family members, and recreation. Young up-and-comers and established career people pride themselves in appearance, being admired, being “with it” and being committed to activities which often command too much time, large expense, and sometimes not much return on the investment. Two steps forward and one step back often leaves us wondering if we’re doing everything alright. 

Baby boomers have experienced more changes in their lifetime thus far than other generations; and acquiring technological skills to be in the swim is exciting and intense. Our parents and grandparents though just don’t get it – “what’s all the rush and fuss about? Never time for anything, hurry-hurry-hurry. And no time for me.”  Sometimes after-school and weekend  sports activities gobble up moments that aren’t so precious after all. It’s all a matter of priorities.

If, like many of us, you know deep down inside that you’ve made a judgment error in not keeping in touch with a relative you care about, please pick up the phone now and then. Now would be better. That person may be feeling sad and sadder as the days pass and not a word from you – it’s hard to imagine though when you’re young and vital.

If  “out of sight, out of mind is your bag, so be it”… but call today, it may well be that you’ve not been absent from their mind. Keep the connection alive, try to see the situation from someone else’s point of view….you’ll be glad you made the effort even if you do get a well-deserved earful.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

When words fail...

I’ve read about people who are so severely troubled or have experienced grave psychological trauma that renders then unable to speak.  Adults, teens, tweens and young children can be affected.

Sometimes we think of a disability such as this as a “mental block”; and possibly this is a basic “truism”. Writers of prose or poetry, composers of music, painters and visual artists, renowned performers and even those who sing only in the shower sometimes find themselves totally stuck!  And I am one – never a singer extraordinaire by any means to be sure – but one day my throat closed and I can barely hum a tune now let alone sing, though I love all kinds of music.

Professional therapists now know that the benefits of music in many forms and variety can be truly beneficial to many patients. Speech pathologists with their many skills can aid and assist in the development of vocalizing words – yet sometimes still, even  an everyday person can find themselves unable to “get it out” or find the words they’re seeking to express what they want to say.

Recently, when I attended a concert band performance which included a wide array of musical selections and styles, my eyes filled with tears several times so that I had to blink quickly to not open the floodgates!  No humming allowed, and certainly a bleat would have been unseemly – but I almost felt like that ever-restricting knot in my throat may not always be so tight.

When you feel like you’re strangling for lack of “something” – take a break and wrap some music around you – it’s a relief when words fail.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Being a Calendar Girl...

Both ladies and gentlemen with long memories may recall the pin-up posters of yesteryear which featured luscious starlets with smokey eyes, robust looking kitten sweaters, never-ending legs or hair to get lost in.

More recently, the Chippendale poster boys, attractive everyday women posing discreetly in support of cancer fundraising, and Grannies just for the heck of it!
Calendars are posted everywhere from in the barn to bathroom doors to telephone tables and even magnetized for the fridge – where everyone’s schedule is printed in wipe-off marker and regularly updated.

Pre-schoolers are on a schedule too – seems like the never-ending  hamster-on-a-wheel that propels us throughout each age and stage of our lives. Sometimes I want that carousel to stop, for even a moment, so I can catch my breath!

When we print or write an appointment onto our calendar, or perhaps post it to our phone, desktop or notebook, it’s a reminder of commitments we agreed to.
Sometimes, out of necessity, appointments are rescheduled – but there remains still the intention to participate and fulfill the pledge. Sticky-notes may even be found on bathroom mirrors or the backside of an exterior doorway just so we don’t forget to do what we’ve said we will!

One of the easiest ways to find ourselves in a corner is when we over-commit.
While our intentions may be immaculate, hours of work are not always adequate to meet the deadlines we’ve set.

Whether a calendar Girl or Boy, expectations that are not met without explanation only serve as a disappointment to whomever had your “Due” date on their calendar. Better to keep people abreast with a progress report when you know you can’t complete on time - rather than leave a participant dangling, or worse, stranded.  Your consideration will serve you well , after all, everyone’s calendar is crammed with intention!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Buying a bed...

I recently had one too many narrow escapes by scarcely avoiding a very pointed elbow in my eye….and being as the temple is situated close by….time for more space!
The television commercials make it look so easy – couples lolling about without apparent self-consciousness, atop store displays of sleepsets. It hardly seems seeming behavior to “try out” a boxspring and mattress, even fully clothed it somehow feels very personal, especially under the eager eye of a salesperson who may well be imagining too much!

The last time a new bed came into our home it was very nearly a favour to a client who was moving out of her house and had no room at the new digs With scarcely a dent in the pillow top and tags still attached, a delivery man and I wrestled it into the back of his pickup the very morning the transaction was to be completed.
And our own sleepset went into the basement bedroom – perfect!

Even five years ago I remember that new-to-us boxspring and mattress being considerably higher off the floor than earlier years’ models. The dog had to try at least twice to make the leap, to say nothing of myself who very nearly needed a stepstool!   The set that was purchased just last week was delivered tonight –  the anticipation of more individual sleepspace was tangible, and so was the thud when our small dog had to take a couple of practice runs at this new addition.

Suffice it to say that, not unlike shopping for a REALTOR® who represents a satisfying and pleasant “fit”, that the ultimate client satisfaction is when one relaxes enough to sigh with contentment. Everyone has a different level of comfort  -  and both prospective Buyer clients and the selected REALTOR® should try it out for a day and see if the selection is mutually pleasing.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

What's Your Rank...

Times of advent are not just at Christmas – every year is a fascinating one of of blended families, new acquisitions of spouses replacing others for whatever reasons, or simply life changes.

Interestingly, in my husband’s family, there were “little ones” born who are now “big ones” in university studies - or close to that time of metamorphoses into adulthood. Of eight grandchildren born of immediate family, plus two special acquired additions through marriage,  the cherished offspring now represent a baseball team plus one.

Of this wonderful group, most of whom have grown up with  “Poppa”/”Grumpa” as their own patriarch, there has been no Grandma/Nana identifiable on that side of the family, to six of the children born.
The parents of two most recent additions to the family, and their step-sisters, did bestow on “Poppa/Grumpa’s” wife  the identifier of “Nana”.

Birthday cards, Christmas gifts, and other remembrances are always duly signed by the Patriarch and “so-and-so”.  Which leaves me to wondering….On such school occasions as Grandparents’ Day in September,  is the non-existence of a Matriarch an intangible? 

As these young people mature into adulthood and grow to wondrous accomplishments, will the absence of an identifiable Grandma/Nana be at all pertinent?

In a military career, one’s significance is measured by one’s rank – having  made the grade and been promoted on up the ladder is a measure of the person’s merit.  And while it is so true that not everyone can be a leader, those persons of lower rank should not be dismissed with a wave of the hand, or on a whim, as being inferior or insignificant.

Clearly recognizing the schism and gifting to me the distinguished  rank of “Nana”.   was and is a true privilege and Honourable Mention!