Tell me about epiphany in your life!

Everyone needs an epiphany for the new year and mine showed up this morning when I was making the bed.  While I was looking out over the snowy rooftops of the town we love, a thought exploded in my brain.  I’m in the process of checking for collateral damage from the explosion, but the idea itself came on like a freight train:  “Why are you still holding a grudge against the people who got you to this wonderful place?”

Why indeed.  Toward the end of December, WordPress put out a Daily Prompt that said “Share a story where it was very difficult for you to forgive the perpetrator for wronging you, but you did it — you forgave them.”  Someone instantly came to mind and I kept thinking about her off and on until this morning’s little gift.  I knew she’d wronged me, and I knew I hadn’t forgiven her.

Wikipedia says:  “An epiphany is an experience of sudden and striking realization.  Generally the term is used to describe scientific breakthrough, religious or philosophical discoveries, but it can apply in any situation in which an enlightening realization allows a problem or situation to be understood from a new and deeper perspective.”

Exactly.  It was suddenly clear to me that if it hadn’t been for the wild whims and incomprehensible decisions on the part of Kim’s boss, we’d still be caught in our old life.  Instead, we’ve been able in the last four months to exchange:

  • seriously reclusive habits … for a busy, fun, crazy social life;
  • a smattering of fast-food places and Mexican restaurants … for nearly every possible food category, in abundance;
  • a once-in-a-while opportunity to go to a concert … for a nightly offering of live music from around the world;
  • limited opportunity to be part of a vital, welcoming theatre community … for nearly unlimited ways to do so;
  • a situation where we were two blue marbles in an enormous sea of red … for being part of a big blue sea;
  • feeling like a couple of sore thumbs … for feeling accepted; or to channel Sally Fields, for knowing that “these people like us.”

And there’s so very much more.  We love it here.

But we’d still be immersed in our same old situation if not for Kim’s boss giving him an ultimatum:  NO days off during the run of a show.  That would have meant twenty-three straight working days every other month, many of them 12 to 14 hours on his feet, with no break, seven months out from a serious heart attack and bypass surgery.  I was livid — this woman was trying to kill my husband!  She’d already stacked his schedule to the max — this was the last straw.  I put my foot down.  The job ended abruptly, and then a really amazing thing happened — circumstances fell into place, one by one, to get us the hell outta Dodge.

This morning I finally got it that I owe that crazy lady a debt of thanks.  For one thing, she didn’t truly wrong ME.  And for another, she didn’t deliberately try to kill my husband.  And all the theatre friends who “abandoned” us were simply living their own lives.   Finally, I can stop taking poison and expecting someone else to die.  After months of angst, I can unload the whole thing and celebrate the fact that what may have been meant for ill has resulted in boatloads of happiness.

And then I saw on Facebook that today really is the Epiphany.  Perfect.

move on

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Daily Prompt: Feed Your Senses

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/18/daily-prompt-senses/

Write down the first sight, sound, smell, and sensation you experienced on waking up today.

The sounds were the first to register on my barely conscious brain this cool, overcast SaturYAY morning — a raucous bird chorus on the other side of the sliding doors.  The first wonderful sensation arrived when my baby-doll rolled over and pulled me into a delicious spooned-up embrace.  I slid back under the heavy veil of sleep and he trekked to the kitchen to grind coffee beans; therefore, the only truly acceptable morning smell — freshly-brewed coffee — reached my olfactory receptors soon after.  Sight was the last sense to join the party, since it requires the eyes to be open.  Through the patio doors I glimpsed the grape ivy that four or five short days ago looked positively dead and gone.  It’s just getting started and will eventually cover the entire wall with thick leaves, but it’s already a thrilling affirmation that life happens!

IMG_0173

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Daily Prompt: Key Takeaway

Give your newer sisters and brothers-in-WordPress one piece of advice based on your experiences blogging.

My advice can be distilled into one sentence:  Make your blog a priority.

Write something every day, whether or not you decide to publish it.  Hang around the Community Pool (http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/05/community-pool-12/) in order to pick up new ideas and benefit from the experience of others.  Exercise your curiosity.  Ask questions.  Stretch your wings creatively and always be willing to learn something new, add a new element to your blog site, change it up, keep it fresh.  Make friends in the WordPress community — there are thousands of people here and you will surely connect with at least a percentage of them.  If your early attempts at blogging do not meet with success, either in your own estimation or as reflected by a lack of following, don’t give up easily.  Try changing your focus, seek input from friends and fellow bloggers, gain knowledge and understanding through reading the selections on Freshly Pressed and elsewhere around the site.  Blogging is a highly satisfying endeavor and it’s worth staying with until things start to click!

The first step in blogging is not writing them but reading them.     ~Jeff Jarvis

A quick P.S. … Your phone is an excellent resource for note-taking on the run.  Jot down every idea that pops into your head because I can pretty much guarantee it won’t be there later when you try to recall what it was.  I use the Voice Memo feature on my iPhone when I’m walking — works really well.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/07/daily-prompt-key-takeaway/

Daily Prompt: Evasive Action

What’s the most significant secret you’ve ever kept?  Did the truth ever come out?

A fabulous secret has been mine to keep for the past several years, and the truth will finally be known to all concerned very soon.  If you’re ever just bursting to share something, but don’t want it to be public knowledge yet — or ever — feel free to tell me — I can most definitely keep a secret.  I like good news secrets best, but I’ve also been the holder of sad secrets, scary secrets, slightly dangerous secrets, and run-of-the-mill secrets.  The real secret to a secret is that whatever it entails it’s the sole property of its owner and, therefore, sacred.  And one special perk of being a secret-holder is that when its owner says “Go,” you have the privilege of spilling the beans to everyone … or to a hand-picked few.  Watch this space …

 

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/daily-prompt-secrets/

Daily Prompt: The Glass

Is the glass half full or half empty?

My glass is nearly always half full, at the very least.  And if it’s half empty, that can only mean that I at some point gleefully helped myself to the top half.  Life is very clearly there to be lived!  Why else would it go on and on for most of us?  I talk with cautious people every day who are afraid to risk anything, and their lives make me feel sad and frustrated.  There are things I’m physically unable to take on, but the world inside my head is full of excitement and challenge and change!  Balls to the wall, boys and girls — make a difference!

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/05/daily-prompt-the-glass/

It’s the little things …

Daily Prompt: Describe a little thing — one of the things you love that defines your world but is often overlooked.

 

The freshly-ground coffee my husband makes every morning before my eyes are open.

That oversize steaming mug, delivered with a kiss.

Hot showers, satisfying work, the quiet rhythm of my house.

Music, music, music, under over around all of life.

Joy because this:  My husband.  My son.

The little things are the big things and there could never be just one.

 

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/03/daily-prompt-little-things/

 

It’s not you, it’s me …

To what extent is your blog a place for your own self-expression and creativity vs. a site designed to attract readers? How do you balance that? If sticking to certain topics and types of posts meant your readership would triple, would you do it?

Well, to be honest … which is a good approach under most circumstances … my blog is for me.  Whatever load of creativity the DNA genie bestowed on me goes into my blog, my Facebook page, my house, and my erratically churning thought processes.

I love it when people come to my blog and comment on what they see there.  It’s lovely, it’s gratifying, it gives me warm gooshy feelings all over.  I even get off on seeing how many people have been here, whether they say anything or not.

But would I write for a select audience in opposition to, or to the exclusion of, what I really believe and feel?  I’d like to think I wouldn’t.  Attention is a jealous mistress who gets her hooks into us when we see ourselves as immune … but I’d hate to think I’d throw away the hodge-podge of experience I’ve accumulated and become a sell-out.

Or maybe that isn’t what it’s about at all.  Maybe it’s about finding and connecting with varied personality types and saying things they enjoy hearing.

If my readership tripled, I’m sure I’d be looking at what made that happen.  Meanwhile, I’m just trying to keep all the plates spinning … wife, mom, Facebook maven, blogger.  I swear to myself every week (don’t listen, please) to be better about keeping up with the other bloggers I follow, get right in there and rub elbows, talk about what is and what isn’t, leave thoughtful comments on their posts, build community …

But look at me.  I’m over a day late with this “daily” prompt.  I started it yesterday morning right after getting the message … and then the blog posts stacked up and the emails poured in and my Facebook peeps were having fun without me and my husband needed to talk, and an industry blog wanted a commitment, and the coffee was running out and I was running behind anditallgotkindacrazy and  …

No, clearly my blog is for me.  I need it.  My immediate world needs it.  There couldn’t be any cheaper therapy.  I’ll stick with what I love, and people are welcome – invited – to stop by and love it or leave it.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/daily-prompt-personal-space/

Striking matadors could result in a lot of bull for Spain

Striking matadors could result in a lot of bull for Spain.

Ned’s humor suits me just fine and I laugh at nearly everything he writes.  Funny guy.

Surgical Fun With Hobos

Surgical Fun With Hobos.

Fathead Follies rarely disappoints in the humor department.  Any parent will relate (and cringe) upon reading this story.

You’re On Your Own, Pal

You’re On Your Own, Pal.

I love Transman and his story … and this one touched my heart in a unique way.  It deserves to be Pressed.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Color

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/04/05/weekly-photo-challenge-color/

Color is such an intrinsic part of daily life we almost … almost … take it for granted.  These are colorful objects from my desk that add to my happiness every day.

color challenge

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Let’s talk about happiness …

Daily Prompt

“And they lived happily ever after.” Think about this line for a few minutes. Are you living happily ever after? If not, what will it take for you to get there?

Am I living happily ever after?  The short answer is yes.  The long-form answer can be found in my January 30 post entitled “Behind Every Good Woman is a Good Man!”   The TMI answer is tucked safely away in my heart.

A happy life seems, in the end, to be part luck, part result of cumulative choices, part magic … and to stem in large measure from a willingness to work hard and to know when you have it good.

Living happily ever after doesn’t necessarily hinge on having a fairytale “other” to share your life with … but in my world it has certainly helped!

Wedding

Shoulda, woulda, coulda …

WordPress Daily Prompt: Shoulda, woulda, coulda.Tell us about something you know you should do … but don’t.

These are words I try to avoid at all costs — they fall into the category of “useless thoughts and emotions.”  My heart and brain, however, recognize that, like other things we skirt around in life, they do have their place, if only as a cautionary tale.

There are things I know I should do every day — things I could do — things I would do — if only.  If only I weren’t so busy … so preoccupied … so shockingly lazy.

Every day I should spend at least an hour playing my incredible piano.  I should write constructively — or randomly — for yet another hour, minimum.  I should make the phone calls and send the emails and hand-written notes that languish in the Vault of Good Intentions.  I should keep my house spotless and the laundry forever caught up and all the bills paid immediately upon receipt.  I should walk at least two miles every single day.

The list of shoulds is virtually endless.  And the incontrovertible truth is that I could do those things.  And I would!  If only …

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/02/13/daily-prompt-shoulda/

Word Press Daily Prompt: All About Me

“Explain why you chose your blog’s title and what it means to you.”

When I decided to move my blog to WordPress from another host, I wanted a new name befitting the change.  Before I had time to give any thought to the matter, the words “Playing for Time” popped into my mind.  I googled “quotes about time,” came up with Dr. Seuss’s words, “How did it get so late so soon?” and knew I had my hook.

I’m well aware that “Playing for Time” was a 1980 television film based on Fania Fenelon’s autobiography, The Musicians of Auschwitz.  Although my blog carries no such heavy significance, it does “play” into my interest in music and also the consciousness that time is passing very quickly for me now.  It just seemed right, and still feels perfect to me.

Finding myself now at retirement age, I want to fill my time with play, music, and life in general.  Having the time to write seems like play to me … and when my mind and heart temporarily run out of words I visit the beautiful little grand piano in my living room and play myself into creativity again.

I have fallen into a happy love affair with my blog — it brings me joy every day, as do the people I meet on WordPress.  Playing for time suits me just fine.

Conservatory Grand

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/02/12/daily-prompt-all-about-me/

The Elusive Flangiprop

So my husband and I are flying down the highway when the WordPress Daily Prompt pops up on my iPad with a curious command — “Invent a definition for the word ‘flangiprop,’ then use the word in a post.”  Invent!  Invent?  Why would anyone have to invent a definition for flangiprops?  Even if they aren’t native to your part of the world, surely most people remember them!

Incredibly, just as the imperative hit my inbox, we saw a large herd of partially-domesticated flangiprops in a pasture next to the road.  They’re rarely spotted in such numbers anymore, their population having been heavily reduced during the Great Flangiprop Slaughter of 1957.  They’ve been struggling valiantly to recover ever since, and they generally stay out on the open prairie where they won’t be seen by their only natural predator — man.

Flangiprop Herd

These looked well cared for, however, and didn’t seem to be suffering any ill effects from being held in captivity.  We were able to snap a couple of quick photos without spooking them, and I’m thrilled to be able to share those with you here, especially this shot of what appeared to be the alpha flangiprop.  Perhaps they’re not bound for extinction after all!

Alpha Flangiprop

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/?s=flangiprop

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