Yesterday, I wrote a Monday post about a walk I had recently taken. You can read about it here. The key point was that I had found joy in the little things. Namely, trees I saw all the time, and weeds. Yes, weeds!
I thought again that this was one of the main things that helped me get through the dark days of loss. But not only the dark days. Noticing beautiful things helps make good days into great. It accentuates joy that I might already be feeling. It deepens gratitude that I am already feeling. It is a lesson that I have brought with me into my No Kidding life. Yes, I know I talk about this frequently. But I think about it a lot too. I never knew at the time what an impact it might have on my life.
When I was young, I used to take joy in little things too, in the form of childish excitement. But as I grew into a teenager and young adult, I think I felt it less. Excitement wasn't acceptable as we grew up. I remember at one time being told to calm down. I never let myself feel or show my excitement in that way again. Not really.
But when I was grieving, I realised that I could take a quiet joy in things that took my mind off my grief. It helped. And it helped to be able to name what I was doing. A friend told me early on in second ectopic to roll with the feelings.
That they'd come and go, and that was okay. That was, it turned out, good advice. Because in doing that, I was
better able to understand those feelings, recognise them for what they were, and let them flow through me. .
The grief of loss, the pain, the fear, the jealousy, were each acknowledged. But at the same time, it helped to feel joy, and know it was joy or pleasure in the moment, without denying all those other emotions that were swamping me. It helped to feel gratitude, and recognise it as gratitude, knowing that things weren't so bad, that in some ways I was lucky, that there were things in my life that were still good. It helped with perspective. There wasn't just loss in my life. There was more than that.
Gradually, I became better able to understand, recognise, and actually own my feelings. My feelings weren't me - they were a part of me, but I could see they weren't permanent. Sometimes they helped, sometimes they didn't. But if I could recognise them, I could deal with them too.
Owning my feelings. Even the ugly ones. That has been part of the growth of coming to terms with, and living, a No Kidding life. Maybe it would have come to me anyway. Perhaps. But I'm pleased it has. It makes my life better. Easier. Filled with joy and gratitude. And I think (I hope) kinder too. Better able to understand myself and others. Perhaps that's the best gift of all.
There is beauty everywhere. Even in the unwanted weeds. And it is there to help us.