Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..
I must admit I was extremely disappointed and even a bit angry yesterday when my daughter Andei mentioned during one of our instant messaging sessions that her visit would be delayed possibly into September. I haven’t seen her in seven months and was really looking forward to spending some of my time off between semesters with her.
Yes…I miss my daughter and there is nothing wrong with that in my opinion. I’m not going to go into details concerning the WHY behind her not coming back from Sicily next month – that’s not the main point of this blog post. It is the catalyst for it. It has to do with the Navy dragging there feet with her Step-Dad’s retirement and orders to be discharged and come back to the states with his family. I can understand this and its a viable excuse. Plane fare is extremely expensive right now from Europe and putting Andei on a plane to see me would be costly especially when the military will fly her back for free hopefully later in August or September.
Andei’s self portrait underwater
With that said…Everyone is faced with disappointments on this journey through life. That’s a fact. What’s taken me so long to figure out is – its the way we handle the set-backs and disappointments that come our way – our attitude about them and how we react to them. Two years ago I would have been really upset about my daughter’s visit being delayed and probably would have made a big stink about it with her Mom. I no longer want to live my life like that – filled with angst, anger and anxiety.
Lately (see previous blog posts) I’ve yearned to travel, possibly get back to Ireland or retire and move to Wilmington – get out of this little coastal town that I’ve lived in for 22 + years. The news I got about Andei yesterday made me sit down and realize just how lucky (blessed) I am in so many ways. Sure I miss Andei and she knows that. I can still talk with her on the phone, chat with her on IM and communicate through e-mail as well. At 55 years old it’s finally starting to sink in to me that I must appreciate what I do have. Instead of yearning to go back to Ireland I can be enjoying my beautiful home overlooking the water here in Morehead City. Appreciate that I have my health and great friends and a wonderful and supportive family. I think its just a matter of realigning ones attitude. What good does it do for me to be bent our of shape about my daughter’s visit being postponed a month? I still have a few more years of work before I can retire. Why look forward to retirement? I can be enjoying the challenges of my teaching and administrative job up the road at the college. Yes…it is about ATTITUDE. We can chose HOW we react to the set-backs (crosses) that come our way.
I came across these thoughts on attitude –
it says it as good or better than I can!
It’s difficult to truly live in the moment. To be “present” and not constantly be looking to the past or thinking about what the future may hold. All we really have is the present. I’m sitting outside in my yard typing away with the breeze from the water keeping the mosquitoes at bay. Even though I’ve carried my fair share of crosses since leaving New York for the Army 35+ years ago. I must admit though, that things always seemed to work out in the end. Its just a matter of trusting in God. We really don’t have that much control over our lives and destiny – sure we can work at making good choices and decisions for ourselves, but in the long run we really don’t know what that next challenge is going to be.
There is apparently a reason Andei isn’t coming in August. Sure…I am disappointed but it is not the end of the world and I will continue communicating with her until she does come to see me. I look around me – so many people I know must struggle with all kinds of problems and issues that are stressful and difficult for them. My little problems are nothing compared to some people and when I look at the bigger picture – people in other parts of the world – my God, I have it made living in the great FREE country of ours.
Bark and Vines 7/08
I guess it goes back to the little saying….”take time to smell the roses” – as an artist and image maker I do savor the little things around me like the way light activates a flower or the texture and colors in a vine growing up a tree. My last blog post was about learning to SEE and I suppose this one is about developing a better ATTITUDE. Put them both together…get your heart and mind aligned and life can be more pleasant for everyone.
Weathered Tree in the Marsh, 7/08