Friday, January 11, 2013

~About Me~A Permanent Page

Have you ever noticed that you can create permanent pages that are always accessible from the home page of your blog?  If you just look under the header photo above you can see some links.  One of them says, "About Me."  Blogger gave us this option a few years ago as a way of replacing that little "about me" section on the side bar.  I really like it as it gives you more options of telling about who you really are beyond your favorite movies, books, and hobbies.

This morning as I was changing my header photo I noticed them and decided it was time for me to write a little something in the About Me section since it has been two years ago that I had started it. I had every intention of adding to it but I never did. But today I have.  I am including it here in hopes that you might also want to do this sometime on your own blog and also that what I have learned might be beneficial to someone else.  If you click on About Me in the link above you can read part one of this section.

I also want to update my permanent 1000 Gifts page on that link bar under the photo of the street where we live in the header.  I'll put that on my "to do list with no deadline." 

Moi~Autumn 2012~Napa, CA

One of the things I have noticed is how much more you can grow into the person you were meant to be at this stage in our lives.  There is time to develop and nurture one's special interests in ways that never existed during the years of working constantly, raising a family, building a nest and a nest egg and caring for aging parents.

It is now January 11, 2013 and we continue to love being retired but have found that lots of new things have been filling our time, mostly volunteer work.  And yet on some very basic level we have guarded and maintained time for self, each other, friends and family and pursuing our own personal development.

The novelty of this kind of freedom does not wear off.  Each morning we awaken with an awareness of what a blessing it is and an excitement to be alive.  Each morning we also awaken to the more sure knowledge of God's love for us, his personal knowledge of who we are, our needs, and that he hears and answers our prayers.  Life gets more precious and more thrilling on this side of the hill.  When you stop to smell the roses you also worship and honor The Gardener in a different way than during earlier decades.  You take notice of the wonders of the earth and life itself in a more intense way.  I love this stage in life.  Depending upon your perspective and your attitude these really can be the golden years.

 I have pretty much learned through countless experiences that life is exactly what you make of it and as Lincoln said, you will be as happy and contented as you make up your mind to be.  Cliches are cliches for a reason...they are the compilation of many people's unique experiences that resonate with a common idea.  "As a man thinketh in his heart so is he." Many have put that biblical verse to the test and found it to be absolute truth.

One of the things that I am adamant about is having some fun and free time in these autumn years.  It seems that was out of balance in our spring and summer seasons of life as we tried to always keeps things running a little too intensely.  We lived by the notion that, "First we work and then we play."  Hmmm, that was not exactly right I am afraid.  It took us on a slightly unbalanced way of doing business.  Progression is one thing, perfectionism quite another.  Working too many long, hard days with not nearly enough breathers and recreational activities and rarely any relaxation time is not healthy.  I have learned that relaxing is not just sleeping.

For me true relaxation is a conscious awareness that at that particular moment nothing is pressing on me and that I have choices about how to spend my time.  It may very well be that I choose to work during that free time but with the notion that I am not forced to do it.  It is not that some self or other imposed giant clock is ticking and I am rushing to yet another deadline that will only be replaced by another when I am done.  That kind of day to day madness is like stringing beads onto a thread with no knot at the end.  We all know work is never done.  We spent too much time being human doings instead of human beings. But that has changed and has made all the difference in the world as to how I feel, my blood pressure and general well-being and my cheerfulness.

I like to take time to enjoy my solitude.  This is essential to a person who is an introvert.  {If you wonder if you too might be an introvert read this article.}  This is where I gain my energy to go back out into the world and do more service, be more social, accomplish more learning, have more energy each day.  This notion of recharging my batteries that is now like a fountain of living water for me was non-existent in my earlier life.  It is where I can discover, savor and appreciate my blessings and my joy.

If I could pin my occasional feelings of being frustrated, exhausted, and confused as a very busy younger person, it would be on the fact that I didn't take enough time to know myself well enough to know what I actually needed.  I know this is very common for both women and men in the earlier years and it is one of the most important lessons I would like to pass on to our children as I watch them frantically 'doing it all.'  Be busy, be productive, keep learning and growing and serving but find the balance in it.  Know thyself and to thine own self be true.  An empty cup cannot fill another.

For me one of the most important things I have been able to do is write.  I need to write as often as I possibly can.  It helps me sort things out, and know myself in ways that the fragmented, brain chatter inside my head does not accomplish.  I need to get things out in full sentences and analyze them through the things that just flow out of me when I put my hands on the keyboard.  I want our children and grandchildren to find their own "keyboard" whatever that may be, earlier in life than I did.  It would be something that creates joy on its own merit and self-awareness and balance and true happiness.  To find their treasure they will have to first find their time to reflect and pursue it.  God grant them this blessing is my prayer for them today.


Sister Susie said...

There is so much one can do with these blogs that it can be confusing! I guess I should get more into checking out what all I can do!

There are so many great things to do once you retire! I have slowly gotten myself involved with new things to the point that I don't "overload" myself! It is so wonderful to have these kind of choices that you couldn't have when you worked! It is indeed a blessing.
(And I am now getting into reading more outside of my Bible studies and devotionals!)

I do love my solitude as well, outside of the mayhelm of the world.

I know what you mean about the writing. I find myself talking out loud about some things and when I go to write them down, it's like, "Now how did I say that!" I almost meed to have a little tape recorder when my brain gets to going faster than my hand! LOL! I guess I should get on my computer. However, when the insite to write hits me, I identify with your flow of the words and the quickest thing to do is pick up my pen before I lose the train of thought! Ha!

I just love reading your blog, Bonnie! Susan