Every day in our life's journey holds its own special treasures, if we have eyes to see...

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Dreaming and Doing

Toots Negotiates the Mess
In an earlier entry, I referenced the hopeful chaos of our kitchen remodel. Well, the kitchen is almost finished, but the chaos does not seem to be diminishing. I've almost taken to watching around the corner to see if some of the mess is erupting from the crack where the baseboards meet the floor (something I've long suspected).

I'd like to blame it on such happenings, but the real problem is that I find myself strangely loathe to face facts: #1--Rooms do not clean themselves. #2--Most kids, mine included, do not clean rooms without parental insistence. #3--Whereas the chaos may exist for a reason, it is time to reclaim not only the dining room, but all the other rooms that have suffered from neglect in the past six weeks. Much as I'd like the situation to remedy itself, if I want to live in an orderly, peaceful environment, I am going to have to make an effort.

As I begin sorting and vacuuming, I'm also revisiting what I want my everyday life to look like and what steps I need to take to help that picture happen. Truthfully, I am a bit appalled by some the discrepancies between my dreams and my realities. However, while dusting a bookshelf this morning, I came across a beautiful edition of poetry by Lord Byron.

Most of my adult life, I've aspired to read poetry. It seems like such a gracious, thoughtful thing to do. Indeed, I feel an afinity to the statement by Lady Catherine DeBourgh of Pride and Predjudice fame: "If I had ever learnt [piano (or in my case, poetry)], I should have been a great proficient."  :-) But in the same manner that my housework has never accomplished itself, poetry has not managed to impress itself upon me and transform me into said proficient while it sits unread upon my shelf.

Poetry Nook
People have said that we either happen to life, or life will happen to us. Of course, we all want to be those of the first variety, but I find that in most cases it is not so much a matter of either/or, but both: sometimes I happen, and other times it seems all I can do to keep from drowning as life happens to me.

Ah, well. Whatever may have transpired in all my yesterdays, today I happened to my life. I chose. I took steps toward what I want my life to include. I won't list all of these here, but besides connecting with daughters and reclaiming my living room, I sat in a favorite chair and pondered "A Fragment" from Lord Byron's poetry, while snow feathers sifted down from a February sky. Tomorrow I may visit Byron again, or one of his fellows. And I may play my harp, sip a fragrant cup of tea, and do a little more vacuuming.

For like it or not, while the "what" we do is important, the doing of it is the essense. Every day presents new opportunities for intentional choices. Perhaps yesterday was not so brilliant in that realm, but that's okay. We have today, and, Lord willing, a long line of tomorrows in which to happen to our lives. Strung together one after the other, these moments of intentionality begin to create a reality much more in keeping with the dreams we each carry in our hearts.


  1. Ah, yes, yes, yes! What an excellent, well-worded post! How completely I agree with you and how very provoked I am!