Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Jar of Bitterness


Monday, June 15, 2009

Monday Morning Light

This is my favorite corner in the living room. I love the books and the black and white poster of Venice, and they way the light comes through the window at a certain time of day. It reminds me of an Emily Dickson poem, "A Certain Slant of Light". It has always been a favorite of mine.

Yesterday, I visited my youngest brother's house. He invited us out to swim in his new pool. It's a beautiful pool, indigo blue, odd in shape and just the right size. He's so proud of it. I enjoyed the time we spent there but last night, as I tossed and turned, I found myself caught up in thoughts about all the things I need to do around my house. I was comparing again, which is dangerous for me. It always puts me in a place of discontent. Why do we do this? What makes us think that our value lies in our materialistic possessions? Our stature in life?

For me, it's pretty transparent. My brother is younger than me, and financially, he's so far ahead of where I'd like to be. When I spend time at his beautiful home, mine seems so shabby in appearance. If you haven't guessed by now, this is a constant struggle of mine, the comparison game.

But the key with this game that I play with myself, is realizing exactly what I'm doing at that moment. This time I did. This morning, I woke to the sound of the dull alarm and for a moment, hated the day that stretched out ahead of me. I looked around my house with such a critical eye and hated everything I saw.

But I stopped myself and decided to look at the things that I love. The things, visually, that reflect my personality and my my little book corner. And then the immaterial things that count as my blessings. I lost the comparison game, but I won! I decided not to play anymore. It's boring and involves no one, absolutely no one, but myself.

I love this blog. As I look back to the first post, I realize that I've been in quite a long process of change. And so much of it has unfolded here, in writing out my thoughts.

Because that's where all change begins, in the mind, right? But the mind is a complex place, full of dark corners and hidden nooks and crannies. Only in writing can I find them and flood those places with light.

Not bad for a Monday morning...:)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Misplaced Italian

This is my hairstylist, Luciano. He's one of the people in my life that make me happy! He makes me blonde, gives me awesome haircuts and fixes the best cappuccino in the world. He makes them with the foam so thick that you can, and I quote, "shave your legs with it." I'm not even kidding. But I wouldn't. Shave my legs with the foam, that is.

He's from Italy. He paints. He's into photography. He's one of those people who's a little restless, always looking for ways to express and challenge himself. He's not a hairstylist, he says. He's a hair artist. I like that. He doesn't color hair, he paints hair. He's just a little arrogant, too, but in a good way. Very confident. How he wound up here, in the Shreveport/Bossier City metropolis in the great state of Louisiana, I'm not really sure. I'm just glad he did because everytime I go see him, I leave feeling beautiful and interesting. He always lifts my spirits.

He's also giving. The picture of him above was taken with a little Olympus digital camera that he gave to me today when I went to get beautified. He'd cringe at the word, beautified. I just made it up. I walked in the door and he came over and cupped the sides of my face and gave me a kiss on the forehead like he always does and asked, "Do you have a digital camera?" I do not. I borrow my daughters and had planned to purchase one this summer. He picked up a camera from his desk, complete with charger and USB cable, and said, "Here, this is for you. I want you to have it. I have way too many cameras, okay? What can I say, you caught me in a good mood!" (complete with Italian accent, which I don't know how to get across in writing unless I put an "a" sound on the end of every word, like "mood-a" and that's-a too cartoony-a and silly-a)

I love the people in my life. I'm reminded of that daily. Such a warm, eclectic, diverse group of loving friends and family. Makes me ashamed that I ever complain of things that, in the grand scheme of things, are so insignificant.

Next time you're over this way, stop by and see him to experience a little of the joy and beauty of Italy...right here in mudbug country.

Ciao, bella.