Beauty in the Ordinary

This is not about being brilliant, or extraordinary, it's not about wanting to be famous, or making headlines, or trying to impress...this about sharing a 'gift' each day with the world...to lift the spirit of people when they read this blog, to show them the beauty in the ordinary.
"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." Raold Dahl

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

In The End, Only Kindness Matters...



It's funny how things happen.  The chain of events, seemingly random, that bring you to a place where you gain a deeper insight of yourself.

Yesterday was a difficult day, not as hard for me as it was for Rudy, but stressful none the less.  My lovely daughter came and waited with me, providing tea and conversation and distraction.
All the tension of the day bubbled up and out last evening when, after leaving the hospital and putting Lindsay on the train back home, I was invited to dinner at my next door neighbour's home.  We are extremely fortunate to have good people living close to us who understand that we are a community and know just the right thing to do and don't hesitate in doing it.

So off I go and am welcomed to their table where they also have a friend visiting from the city with her two delightful young daughters.
I found myself babbling on, unable to restrain myself in conversation.  Truthfully, my tongue loosened by a touch too much wine, and even though I could hear the little voice in my head saying you are talking too much, you are commandeering these people, it all felt so relieving.  And these brilliant people just smiled and let me carry on.
I don't want to overdramatize here...I didn't cry, there was no confrontation, I was just a lot more ME than I usually am.  And at the end of the night, I went to bed able to sleep because I felt emptied of all the residual tension of the day.

When I came home today from the hospital, there was a book on my front porch The Vinyl Cafe Notebooks by Stuart McLean.  This will probably only mean something to Canadians. Stuart McLean is our Garrison Keillor of NPR's A Prairie Home Companion.  Every Sunday at noon McLean hosts a radio show on CBC that he writes called The Vinyl Cafe.  It's hard to adequately describe this show...I guess radio variety is the simplest definition; but it's more than that.  This show centres around this man, his writing and his singular voice.  Lisa, the visitor to my neighbour and I discovered a shared a love of this programme and this man last night, so she, very kindly, left this book for me, and on the fly-leaf she inscribed: "To Jackie, Because Stuart McLean's voice brings you comfort.  Lisa"

As I sat having my dinner this evening...a marvelous tomato and chicken-stuffed avocado salad with olives, mouth-watering goat cheese and delicious balsamic dressing...yes, you guessed it, supplied yet again by my loving neighbours and delivered to my door...I began reading these notes, these thoughts of Mr. McLean's, and one touched my heart.  One written on 27 September 2009 called The People You Love.  The content of the story, while interesting, isn't apropos to this commentary, but the last paragraph is.  McLean writes:

"...it is time for you to believe, as Max Ehrmann said, that 'you are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;  you have a right to be here.  With all it's sham and drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.'  There are people waiting to love you.  You might not believe that; but that may be the truest thing I have ever written.  If they aren't around you now, believe me, they exist..."  

So this brings me from my random, winding journey at the start of yesterday, sitting in that over-heated, ancient hospital waiting room for nearly six hours not sure what was going on, good daughter by my side, to being included in a lovingly prepared meal with kind, caring people, to the touching generosity of a newly-met friend and to finding this kind and clever man's words; to reach this self-understanding that in our darkest and most vulnerable moments, it's all about the need to feel loved.  Now I KNOW I am loved, but it's the FEEL part that is all-important here and that is an entirely different thing.  Those amazing people yesterday recognized that need in me, consciously or not and through kindness, simple basic, never to be minimized, kindness, made me feel loved.

"In the end, only kindness matters."  Jewel




24 comments:

  1. I have been there Jackie, more times than I would have expected, and it was always the kindness of others that got me through.

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    Replies
    1. Sock'em...it is so very important. I don't think kindness gets the respect it deserves.

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  2. How very insightful. I've never thought about the difference between being loved and feeling loved...
    but it is ~ or can be ~ a very great difference indeed!

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    1. Nancy...what I truly hope for out of this now, is the ability to recognize the need in others. I know what a difference it makes.

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  3. O'h this is so wonderful,God in his everlasting Grace sends people in and out of our lives,some fleetingly but their message stays forever,some a long time,feeling love is the most blissful state to be in.. to love is wonderful but to "feel loved" trulely devine.I am so happy this day happened for you..what a wonderful world.

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    Replies
    1. Without doubt BL...what happened over that two day period was deliberate. I am most humbly grateful.

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  4. Behind your otherwise calm exterior, there is obviously a lot of pain and anxiety. It is not only normal that you should share this with others; it's also essential. If you have close neighbours who are prepared to listen, then you are extremely lucky, and should take advantage. Bottling-up emotion is never good. Best wishes, bisou. Cro.

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    1. It's interesting how much of what we feel takes place on an unconscious level Cro. We think we are in control...ha! But people are good and they respond with such genuine care.

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  5. Kind and friendly neighbors are indeed a blessing, and a reminder of the importance of community.

    Glad to hear you're all on the other side of surgery.

    xo

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    Replies
    1. The other side of surgery...thank goodness, but still some investigation to go. Community is vital.

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  6. Wonderful post. I have finally started the journey of putting M. into a Rest Home full time. What a hard decision. It was the hug I got from the Rest Home Manager that nearly brought me to tears.

    Not sure how long it will take for him to go in - depends on vacancies.

    I wish you both well.

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    Replies
    1. Good luck SH...I know your journey is a very difficult one. That hug was needed, understood and delivered. A precious thing. These are the lessons we must learn from these experiences, so that when called upon, we can step up.

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  7. That was a lovely post J. Wishing Your Hubby a 'Get well soon' and thoughts and prayers for you and your family too xx

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  8. Thanks Molly...onward and upward, right!

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  9. Friendships, wine and sleep are my mainstays to carry on <3

    Glad you had the trio.
    xx
    z

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  10. they fed me again tonight Z...hard to imagine I am so deserving!

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  11. Dear Jacqueline, I'm sorry to hear that you and your husband are having such challenging days just now. Long may kindness carry you through the low times.

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  12. It most certainly does Mise...it's the only thing that does.

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  13. Replies
    1. Could use your skill set right now John - this nursing malarky isn't easy!

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  14. Hi Jacqueline, thank you for visiting my blog and your lovely comments, and now, finding you.Your blog is very beautiful and your posts insightful....I too at this stage of my life am so grateful for everything in it, especially our loved ones...I am happy to see we are really next door neighbours as far as blogging friends go... I love Niagara and have lived her all my life, and look forward to visiting your lovely blog regularly..I hope your husband will be as good as new soon, N.xo

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  15. Nice to have you on board Nella...there will be so many things we will be able to chat about going on in the Niagara region!
    He's on the mend...but it's early days yet - my goal is to get him to the Angel for a Guinness tomorrow!

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  16. What a lovely post. Thanks for being so sweet to me on my blog!

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  17. Amy, my darling girl, read the quote. I have met so many valuable young people who don't/can't believe how valuable/beautiful they are. My world would be so much smaller without the likes of you in it.
    You have to feel you are loved. I hope you can. I love you.

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