January 24, 2010

Ten Things I Love

This was a simultaneously difficult and easy exercise. My first reaction was to list true “things” like dark chocolate, Springsteen, roses and other assorted brown paper packages tied up in string. However, I realized that those things are as close as my next thought. The joy elicited by each of the aforementioned items is equal whether it is a tangible moment or not.

Instead I decided to list moments in life that can be repeated and evoke multiple layers of memories, joy and love. There is no particular order to these items; I prefer to think that at any given moment I can love all of these opportunities equally.

One of the things I most love is a full night’s sleep. It is a simple pleasure, but an unusual one for me so I truly appreciate it. Since becoming a mother, I have been plagued with insomnia. Even when the children were old enough to sleep all night, I have not yet mastered it. Therefore, I appreciate going to bed and waking up a full 6-7 hours later. Incidentally, I just had a full night’s sleep and I am basking in joy.

Even if I cannot sleep well, I at least take pleasure in my children sleeping well. Another love of mine is tucking them in at night and waking them up in the morning. I cherish those moments even more as they get older, ever cognizant that their time at home is dwindling. However, for now, their cocoon is home and I am the matriarch.

I like sleeping outdoors. I love the symphony of nature. I love the stars over my head; I love the fresh morning air. While I do not love the act of packing a tent and setting up camp, or even roughing it too much, the love of sleeping outside is worth all the effort. This leads to my next item, watching a sunrise over the ocean. As a college kid, I slept on the beach and woke up in time to watch the sunrise. My days of sleeping on the beach are long past, but I never miss an ocean sunrise when I am near the water. Lest I come off as obsessed with sleep, I am more fanatical about rejuvenation. One of the most important gifts we can give ourselves is the true time to pause. Like the story of creation, time to rest is crucial.

This comes to my next love. I love believing in God. I love the absolute faith that what we know is not as good as the universe gets, but that something more wonderful than we can even imagine waits for us. I love that I can trust in something I cannot prove. I love the simple knowledge that I am unique, loved, and a work in progress. I love knowing that eternity waits for me and that life on earth is merely the beginning of the wonders of creation. I take extreme comfort in my faith.

My faith teaches me about my next love, my love of listening and learning. I put these together because you cannot learn without listening and you cannot listen, truly listen, without learning. Flip sides of the same coin. I love knowing that I do not have all the answers and that the possibilities are endless to acquire new information. People fascinate me; everyone I meet has something new to teach me, bringing gifts of wisdom from the path of their own lives.

The next three things I love are skills I have learned over the years. When I was a child, my grandmother taught me to bake bread from scratch. Kneading the dough, watching it rise, punching it down, smelling it bake, all this brings me love on many levels. It also explains the title of my blog, from a personal level. (Ironically, the blog originally was titled Pillow Talk, referencing my love of sleep!)

Another childhood skill was learning to play piano. While I never was an excellent pianist, the joy of sitting at the piano and playing Fir Elise by heart thrills me. I played it for a competition and just hearing the first few notes of that song brings back the challenge of preparing for that recital. Because I took lessons, I have an appreciation of music on a level I may not have otherwise. I know what work it is to make music, true music.

The third love in this category is a recent love. I ran my first 5K this past fall. I plan to run several more this year. I love the challenge of pushing my body past where I thought it could go and competing with myself to improve.

My last love is the love of making a difference. Whether that difference is for others or for me, the only permanence in life is change. Change is not scary if I am actively seeking it and hoping to better the world. I have always been in love with a good cause and love finding creative ways to improve the corner of the world I inhabit. I have a gift of expressing myself with words and I am grateful that I am able to use them make a difference.

If you have read this, please share with me something you love. Alternatively, consider yourself tagged and create your own list of 10 things you love.

Thanks for tagging me, blog friends. This was a beautiful way to start my day…

With love,


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