Embrace Change

I hadn’t done a craft project in months, thanks to my companion, chronic pain. But a project was SO calling me, it was worth the inevitable flare.

For Mother’s Day, Greg and Jesse gave me a mobile that you attach photos to. When I saw it, I immediately had an idea in my mind of what I wanted to do. (For some reason I didn’t want to simply attach photos to it.)  I ended up cutting an old Kelly Rae Roberts calendar into bird shapes. I had to do one bird, then stretch, take a break, and maybe an hour later do another bird. It was kind of frustrating because I don’t like having to break the flow. But I’m getting better at pacing myself – well most of the time. I don’t have to give up the things I love, but I do have to change the way I go about them. So this project took me several days, but I love how it turned out.

Another thing I hadn’t done lately is do a photo shoot with Greg. We took the mobile outside in our backyard and I gave him instructions that I wanted “lots of green twinkly things” in the background. The only issue is that we have new neighbors and they’re frequently outside. I feel kind of self-conscious doing all the weird photo things we do out there. The weekend they moved in I was throwing colored tissue paper in the air.

I also had him take a picture of me in my new glasses. I’m still trying to get used to the 51-year-old me. I think I look much better without glasses, but that’s not an option anymore. So here’s to embracing change, and trying to do it gracefully.

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Embrace Change

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Begin. Leap. Take Flight.

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and then she learned to hold joy in her heart

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feel your fears and act anyway

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Shine

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Gratitude

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Some Favorite Blog Pictures from 2012

A big part of the fun of this blog has been working with Greg on the images. He’s such a great photographer. I keep thinking I’ll learn to take my own pictures, but then I wonder why?  I can be the director and tell him what I want and voila, I get it! So here are some of my favorite photos he’s taken for my blog this year.

Larry loves to dream, big or small, it doesn't matter

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Hearts Set Free

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Exposure and Adaptation

Enjoying the patio first thing in the morning

Glasses:  I have always thought I wanted glasses—it would be another fun fashion accessory. My friend, Amy, has always had the cutest glasses and looked so stylish. One of my previous secretaries bought frames on sale so that she was able to have several pairs of glasses to match various outfits (my fave–red frames with red shoes!) So when I went to my eye appointment this year and he said I actually needed glasses, I had a moment of euphoria. Yeah! What trendy frames would I select?

Yet the whole process has been weeks of frustration for me. Now that I needed glasses, I didn’t want them. I ended up not getting super trendy frames because at nearly $500, I needed a pair that would go with everything.  My vanity kicked in big time and I thought they made me look old. I also worried that my mostly silver jewelry didn’t go with the frames, and I couldn’t afford to go out and buy all new jewelry (although that would have been fun.)

Most of all, I have had problems adjusting to the progressive lens which were prescribed. I’ve been back to the eyeglass shop three times, and each time they’ve encouraged me to give it a while longer. I’ve talked obsessively to Greg about it. Where do I look? Why can’t I make this part come in focus? They make my nose hurt. I’m getting a headache. I can see the edges of the frames. The world simply looked weird, and I felt groundless.

I finally realized that I’m fighting too hard and I’m definitely not being self-compassionate. I wish it hadn’t taken me three weeks to figure this out 🙂 I’m expecting this to be easy and feeling like there’s something wrong with me for not adapting more quickly. The eye doctor told me it would take three weeks of wearing them nonstop (DO NOT TAKE THEM OFF, he said). I beat myself up and called myself “noncompliant” because I did not do as he said. I’d make it for several days wearing them all the time, get frustrated and take them off, only to start over the next day. The eyeglass shop people were very kind and told me I was not unusual. They’d heard all these complaints about progressive lenses many a time. Yet I still felt like there was something wrong with me.

I think I’ve forgotten just how complex the brain is, and how this is a really tricky thing I’m asking my brain and eyes to do. From now on, I will gently remind myself that change is hard for most people, not just me.  I’ll also remember that people adapt at different rates, and I will give myself the time I need.

Oh, and I don’t think I’ve every posted a picture of myself sans make-up. Talk about exposure! I’m working on the vanity thing.

Weather: You can’t be a Missourian and not talk about the weather. This is a screen shot of the temps we’ve had lately, and there’s no rain or relief in site. It’s strange, once it’s over 100 degrees,  you don’t really notice the difference. I’ve desperately been trying to keep my flowers alive. A few have bit the dust. I should’ve taken a picture of the dead ones to remind me that everything changes; everything dies; it’s just a matter of time. I’ve been giving the birds fresh water several times a day. We’ve created quite the oasis for our feathered friends. I’ve mostly been doing my bird watching through a window these days. I rearranged some furniture downstairs just so I’d have a special place to enjoy their antics. Sometimes there are four birds splashing in the birdbath at once. It makes me smile!

Hydrangeas from our yard and
my grandmother’s antique mirror

Photography: Now that I have glasses where I can see close up and far away, I’m going to try to learn photography. I actually had some decent photography and darkroom skills as a journalism major in college, but I have forgotten everything I used to know. Up until now, I’ve just bossed Greg around telling him what pictures I need for the blog—actually, the system has worked out pretty well! But I think it will be good for my brain to focus on learning something new. This picture took me about an hour, with Greg’s help.

The heart and mind are the true lens of the camera.

         –Yousuf Karsh