Hey, FaceTime has a new "Face!" Quarantine has offered even "old people," like me, the opportunity to open up to the world of video chatting. Somehow, seeing someone's face adds a bit more charm and personality to the simple voice calls, which, in my book is better than just texting. With a phone call you can connect to a person's energy; the tone of their voice. While I very much enjoy the promptness of texting, (which helps me write something down when I think about it) it also opens up words to the receiver's interpretation of what we are saying. Of course, most of us realize communication is all about how each person the other's interprets words, however, with audible conversation we hear the tone in which the message is delivered. Texting opens up words to whatever frame of mind the receiver is in at the time in which they read it. In reality the message may have been intended completely different than it was interpreted, and that may create unnecessary stress on both sides.
Well, now we have the gift of video chatting. What a treat it has been to see my grandchildren and great grandchildren face to face. My great grandchildren are 18 months and 10 months, I certainly want to keep my face in front of them so they remember what Granny looks like! I have a friend that lives alone and he had not seen another human for 10 days since he is honoring the quarantine. No one! Now, that can play with one's psyche! So, I walked him through how to do video chatting via he's Android. Since I have an Android it works. FaceTime is for those that have iPhones. Of course, I'm probably showing my lack of understanding such matters, and that's OK. I know many technology savvy people who can walk me through what I need to know. Truth be told, a 6 year old could probably help!
My FB account was hacked some time ago and since I rarely used it, I simply closed it. Well, because of this quarantine, I signed up again in order to use Messenger to video chat with my friends and family that own iPhones. With that said, I'm certain many new faces are appearing on FaceTime that, like me, have the markings of wisdom. It's a joy to share in the 21st century technology that enables all of us to stay connected. It is a gift, I am certain few of us will ever take for granted again. Perhaps this means of connecting human to human will help us also feed our relationships heart to heart. That's the best medicine for any virus, disease, pandemic, addiction .... the list goes on. Perhaps someone will come to your mind that lives alone, or you haven't spoken to in some time that would love to hear from you. You just might find it adds a sweetness to you life as well. Even if they just got out of bed or put a mud mask on their face. Such experiences can lighten our day and offer us the opportunity to shift the focus of fear and concern to one of humor. It just may help all of us to know that we are never completely alone, that is, unless we choose to be! And that is precisely what this pandemic offers us, the opportunity to examine how we move through our lives. What's your Face look like? Hopeful or Fearful? It's your choice.
This morning I am reminded that every event that brings a "disaster," also offers a gift. With the panic and fear we are also offered the opportunity to deepen our understanding of Life. Consider, if you will, much like this toxic virus, those toxic stories we tell ourselves about relationship conflicts; whether they are with family, friends, coworkers, bosses, or people we meet in a grocery store who are taking more than they need for 14 days or even 30 days during this time of social isolation due to the coronavirus. How quickly we begin a story in our head about what might happen, how someone over reacts, misinterprets, misjudges our motives, or whatever communication word we use when a conflict occurs.
Most likely the story does not begin with, "Once upon a time," nor does it have an happy ending. Instead, not so pleasant descriptive words of the person generally begin our story, and end with some sort of judgment word that is less than favorable about the person's actions and character.
As we confront what is in front of us with this current unfolding of a new and unfamiliar virus, now might be a good time to consider looking in the mirror at your personal reactions. Is your story adding a positive, hopeful spin on the situation or is your view one of despair, fear, and pointing the finger at who is to blame for the situation? Or, how we're ever going to recover from the financial devastation, and who's going to pay back all the federal money being offered to support those in need? Such questions are important to consider since having our head in the sand and our rear exposed does little to find realistic and solvable solutions; however, the issue to examine is our reaction, our story we create in our head.
Perhaps if we choose to focus on all the tremendous love being shared by our neighbors, churches, employers, employees, government and charitable organizations will help us pause to consider the often overlooked kindness that underlies the actions of the masses. IF we will "begin within" to examine our contribution to the environmental energy being emitted while confronting and witnessing this mysterious virus, we might find the gift this virus offers. We have the personal isolation time to reflect on our priorities, examine the stories we create in our heads and discover the underlying energy we carry towards our family, friends, communities and government. We all need each other. All of us love someone and want their lives to be rich and full; including our own. We all want our world to be safe.
When I learned to type in middle school, the practice sentence was: "Now is the time to come to the aid of our party." I offer this practice sentence to carry through the next few weeks and/or months (or perhaps your life), "Now is the time to come to the aid of our world!" May our hearts open to the opportunity put before us to re-examine the stories we create in our head and ask ourselves if it carries a message of hope, faith and a knowing that we are more alike than we are different! It is then we will see and feel the gift such "disasters" offer for us to re-member our heart's purpose. With that remembering we will know precisely what we have to contribute to the world we wish to see.
What an absolute delight to see Grandfather Sun's face visible in the sky! It seems to me those of us in Indiana have had an abundance of gray days this Winter. The gray days can offer us an opportunity to notice and really feel the gray areas of our hearts and lives, if we take the time. I used to think gray was so "blah" and being a person who absolutely loves color, consecutive gray days meant . . . well, "blahness!" (If there is such a word!) Black and white offer a contrast; and gray, well it's just so neutral. It took a really gray winter this year to help me understand and appreciate the gift this color can add to our lives, IF, we are open to taking a closer look at the emotions and feelings this neutral color offers.
The Sun shine of my heart literally shed light on all the emotions I felt this winter. And, with the brightness of the Sun, I see more clearly that through the "neutral" days this Winter, many hidden hurts and really old wounds were brought through the light of my heart. That is to say, all my "pick me up" tools came out of the tool box, were cleaned, oiled, sharpened, polished and used during this long gray, neutral Winter.
What a gift sadness can be if we choose to use it to uncover its presence and give it the quality and quantity of time to remember what happened that placed it in our hearts. Most importantly, during those carefully examined sad times, hold respect for the strength it took to summons the courage to bring light to what we learned from that old wound. All too often we squirrel away such painful memories only to have them linger in our subconscious mind, waiting to be of used. Unfortunately, we often ignore such memories, even though the rear their head from time to time to remind us they are still there. From this hidden place, they serve to remind us to, "Trust no one," "Be cautious and suspicious of everyone," and this list goes on.
Whatever words and phrases that are uniquely ours that we use to keep our hearts safe from further being hurt, identify them; why they are there and what they serve in your life. Unfortunately, these words and phrases keep us from the very thing we all want and need to fully experience life . . . to live with Love, self-worth, pursuing dreams and an unyielding appreciation for the beauty all types of relationships have to offer.
There is much we can learn from the squirrel family. They instinctively gather and stock pile morsels of leftovers left on the grounds and safely store them away in hidden places until such time they need the nourishment. They bring forth these treasures of goodies to share with their families, and those in need, to assist them through the often unpredictable Winters.
As Grandfather Sun promises his face will be in full view very soon, now might be a good time to accept the next gray day as an opportunity to look more closely at what "neutral" experience may be "squirreled" away in your heart. Perhaps the wisdom of the squirrel will remind you that someone close by may be willing to share what they have gathered during such times as you are experiencing. Just remember, other people's experiences may be different from yours, so if their words don't seem to fit what your heart needs, simply thank them for sharing their heart's experience with you and appreciate the courage it took for them to share such a personal heart felt experience.
Be like the squirrel and store their words of support into your tool box. It just might be their morsel of wisdom will prove to be the precise tool you need when another situation comes up in your life. "Let the Sun shine in" from the words that were shared with you, that you might bring them forth on the next gray, neutral, day that you courageous step toward a squirreled away experience!
Vicky Kelm Williams
I find people absolutely fascinating!