Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

To Be Still March 29, 2015

The sky cried today. It was dreary and cold and windy outside. But none of that mattered, because there were no tears inside. There was only warmth and laughter and relaxation. Sleeeeeeep

The bad news is that had a lot to do with the fact that this illness that my dear forever mom has is spreading. Between dad’s sneezing and dear baby Carter’s coughing, all I can say is I’m pretty relieved things like this usually don’t pass to man’s four-legged friends.

The good news is it was a day to remember. I honestly can’t recall the last time I watched as all of my dearest people spent the day together in their pajamas. It didn’t matter that the sky was crying and it was cold and dreary outside.

Inside there was playing and resting and playing some more. There was snuggling and cuddling. There was joy, from the ground up.

Yes, there was also sneezing and coughing. And yes, no one is feeling 100 percent. But today, as I snuggled into a spot much too small for me next to mom and dad and Carter on the couch, I realized how important these days are to have every now and then.

It doesn’t necessarily need to happen in pajamas, but there was something nice (and cozy) about the fact that it did. As a (somewhat professional) observer of people, I can say with some authority that today was necessary regardless of the coughs and sneezes.

The reasons are different for everyone. Around here, it’s been all things baby No. 2 lately, with endless errands to stockpile things like diapers and make sure the nursery is just as it should be. Weekend respite from the daily grind doesn’t always happen like it should between nap times, at least not with groceries to buy and cleaning and laundry to be done. Rat race takes on a whole new meaning when there’s a new little person on the way.

So what happened today was special. Sometimes you really do just need to be still. To be together.

Days like today are not only good for their health. Days like today are good for their hearts.

 

 

Like A Rocking Chair December 30, 2014

No news is good news. That’s what I heard them say to my forever mom yesterday when we stopped at my doggie doctor’s office. The wait was over to have a second test done to confirm (or deny) whether I was sick. Yet that’s when the real waiting game began.

It was 11:03 a.m. when we left the Family Pet Clinic. I know because I saw mom note the time. Before we left, they told her we would have an answer in 24 to 36 hours if the news wasn’t good. I thought for sure when they said that it would be the longest 24 to 36 hours of my life. In reality, I think it was at least in the higher ranks for my dear forever mom, who did nothing but worry the entire time. Counting Blessings

Not only that, but she disregarded what the ladies told her about no news. As soon as the clock struck 11:03 a.m. this morning, you’d better believe she called the office to find out if there was any news. And there was.

I am not sick. Everything is fine. Yes, I have a slightly elevated white blood cell count (whatever that is), but I’m going to be okay. Now don’t we all feel a bit silly for worrying so much?

It reminds me a bit of something I heard my mom’s dear friend Mel say about a completely unrelated topic yesterday afternoon. She quoted the words of New Zealand athlete Glenn Turner, who once suggested that “worrying is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do but gets you nowhere.”

So maybe mom and I and whoever else she worried with her concern (as I’ve found it to be contagious) didn’t get anywhere the last few days. But that’s okay.

Because this afternoon as the warmth of the sun bore down on me in my favorite spot in Carter’s room as I watched mom and Carter rock quietly, I let it in. All of it. The warmth. The love. The life of it all. I can’t help but feel a bit like I’ve gotten yet another lease on life, and it’s not one I intend to waste one ounce of worry over.

 

Punch In The Stomach March 23, 2014

At first I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. It was a stroke. My feline neighbor friend Penny finally reported the news to me this afternoon. The other day when I saw the flashing lights and heard the sirens, it was for her person Rose. Her person Rose had a stroke.

I don’t know much about these things. Except that when I don’t know much about things I am more likely to fear them. Not this time. I decided this time would be different. Just because I don’t understand what this stroke business is about will not keep me from finding the silver lining. Which, in this case, is pretty obvious.

All SmilesRelief. From the ground up, it swiftly overcame my fear. Rose is sick. She is in the hospital, and will be for some time. But she is there to get better. She is there to recover. And while she does, I find myself contemplating life’s most basic questions.

Because we never know. We never know when our last day might be. It certainly puts things into perspective when you think that way. If you knew it was your last day, what would you do differently? How would you spend the time? Who would you be with? To some it might seem morbid to contemplate these things. To me it seems sensible. Motivational even.

“Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today,” suggested American actor James Dean. I don’t think its a coincidence this insight came from an actor fans agree died too young.

Unlike him, Rose has lived a long and full life. She has children and grandchildren and joy from all kinds of sources. Today she shared her joy with me.

Sure, at first I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. It was devastating news that dear Rose had suffered from something serious enough to keep her away from Penny for so long. But she lived. And she will go on living. Sometimes we need a good punch in the stomach to remember just how precious a gift life really is.