thoughts at the end of the year

Only a few days left of 2011. On New Years Eve it’s easy to become philosophical … summing up the year that just passed … leafing through a new calendar … wondering what it may contain.

For me, it obviously started earlier this year.

I was sitting here, thinking all kinds of thoughts about my life — what I’d done with the fifty six years that have passed … what I had accomplished. I couldn’t come up with anything. I don’t have any children — that was never a goal of mine because I never felt the urge to reproduce myself. At least I don’t have to regret that.

There were so many things I wanted to do, but I wanted to be so damned good at everything so I quit when I realized I wasn’t all that good. I’m good at quitting, though [except smoking].

I always wanted to have a nice hand-writing. Thought everybody else wrote so beautiful, but not I. Finally I tried to imitate somebody else’s handwriting which only caused me to lose my own in the long run. Kept finding other ones that I copied and so on.

Took an evening course in calligraphy a number of years ago. It was hard, but I thought I’d be able to create those snazzy, hand-written cards on thick paper that you see sometimes. I’m left-handed and the teacher told me it looked like I was holding some surgical instrument instead of a pen. I held out for two terms, though.

I wanted to learn Hebrew, but that, I never even started!

At least I think I’m a decent human being. I’ve worked hard, I’m not a criminal [I’ve stolen a few ash trays and towels, though! This post is brutally honest … I’m very brave, very courageous!], I’ve never been consciously mean to anybody.

Sometimes I have mixed emotions about this whole blogging business. There are days when I’m very conscientious about what I write … like as though I were afraid of what people might think?! …like if someone I know in real life would read/care about what I type every day on this little blog. Well … the risk of them doing so, increases if I post this to Facebook, so I think I’ll abstain from that with this. Other days — like this evening — I approach it with a «devil-may-care» attitude and that feels good.

All these thoughts were going through my mind when a comment on my previous post popped up in my mail box. I clicked on the commenter’s profile and started to read their blog … posts here and there, a little randomly. One paragraph stood out, like as though it were written in fire:  «You are a victim of your past, or you are future force to be reckoned with. I know which I am. Do you ? » Some caramel to suck on, huh!

Blogging can be quite marvellous sometimes! This morning, I read The Quotidian Hudson, as usual and a quote he had put in there has lingered with me all day [by a fellow country man, Carl Sandburg]: “Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.” Ahhh…the wonders of blogging — sometimes it really can be food for thought.

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18 thoughts on “thoughts at the end of the year”

  1. I love this blog Rebby!! I can relate on many levels…altho’ I wanted children I couldn’t have any…I did alot of drifting in my Life, however it has been a marvellous experience & I have done alot of things along the way!! My niece thinks I am amazing & that kind of fluffs up the old Ego……
    I blog honestly on Multiply; sometimes a bit too honest…yet people respect what I have to say….I took your suggestion about blogging for oneself & not for others…..the old “to thine own self be true” idea & it is so cathartic to ‘get things out’…
    I hope you continue blogging as I always enjoy what you writte (even if I don;t comment all the time).
    HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU & GERRY & sweet McDuff….love from Sherri-Ellen & Nylablue too..

    1. Thank you, Sherri Ellen 🙂
      I’ve always held myself back for some reason. Maybe I should turn the new one into a more cathartic one LOL … I don’t know. Done a lot of drifting myself..

  2. I sometimes feel I have done nothing with my life. Then I remember all the years of being a nurse and helping others. I loved my work but some of my co-workers made life hell.

    Having kids is not always an accomplishment. My daughter is a prime example. I used to take all the blame for her being a total mess but I have come to realise she has some share in her many failings also.

    I used to copy others handwriting. I hated mine. Have a cousin who has gorgeous calligraphy like writing. Could never copy hers. Far too nice.

    I now am careful about what I blog. Too many people I know have access to it. So I write only what I want others to see. My journal gets the brunt of my emotions!!!

    1. Thank you Julie for your thoughts. Now I hardly ever hold a pen so now it’s totally out of whack…the hand-writing, that is.

      I’ll probably go on being careful. This above were just some thoughts … nothing that I couldn’t say to anyone 🙂

  3. Quitting made me think of a time my mom told me I never finished anything. I guess that’s why when I do start something I am compulsive about finishing. Although that doesn’t mean I am not lazy about doing something at all at times. Everyone knowing all your thoughts is why I don’t hook everything together. I do miss blogging though.

    I wouldn’t say you are a quitter at all. Maybe those things didn’t really interest you once you started them. You have been very good at carrying through with the blogging and the photography. It depends sometimes what seems most rewarding in the end I think.

    1. Thanks Suz ..for taking time out to comment. I hook everything together, and there are only times like this post, I don’t hook it up. I like to spread myself all over the web LOL. What I don’t like, is that when people read in FB, they only read the headline and comment there — not here in the blog.

      Good point, about what’s most rewarding! I don’t feel at all like quitting blogging and not taking photos either! 🙂 I quit crocheting … the photoshopping I didn’t really quit, the feeling is still there. Quitting books, that are no good, that was something I had to really LEARN to do … to put them away. I used to finish books out of … spite, or something.

  4. Rebekah ..you are a very talented photographer, you show more with your camera than just a photograph… I still have quite a few of your past photos that I use as screen savers and every time I look at them I am in awe of the beauty that is shown in there..so don’y ever thin k that you are useless and cannot ‘do’ certain things. We all have talents that we can use , some not so obvious as others..,
    you have a very creative spirit that gives joy and pleasure to others.
    Your posts are always interesting, well written and always welcome in my inbox…
    When I write I tell everything, warts and all. I have often been told that I reveal too much of my personal life and this is probably true but I cannot write any other way..it has toi be all or nothing. I do not do half measures.
    I also feel that putting my thoughts and feelings on to ‘paper’ it not only shares with my blogging friends, but I get good advice and I feel that once that publish button is pressed all my problems fly away in to the blogosphere.

    It would be a good idea to stop smoking as I would not like you to be like Neville. That was so frightening. It is now 3 weeks since he smoked and he was never ever going to stop. I asked him this morning if he missed it..No he said I do not.so if he can do it so can you….

    Love to you my friend

    1. Thank you so very much for your kind words about my photo/blogging, Patrecia! Heart-warming. I don’t find yours too revealing at all … it’s really interesting to read about your life in Bulgaria!
      I hear you, loud and clear, about the smoking. It’s a hellish poison. I’m so glad Neville is doing well without it!

  5. Hi,
    A few years ago I found out that something I said to a person I just met nearly 15 years ago, changed her life, and she hasn’t looked back. It was only by chance that I found this out. You just don’t know what has happened in your life, or how many people that you may have helped. I believe everything happens for a reason, and I was just lucky enough to learn about one of them.

    So I don’t believe for one minute that you haven’t accomplished anything, you have most likely accomplished a lot more than you realize. 😀

    1. Mags,
      That is great … also that you found out! I think that’s basically what I meant by saying that I hadn’t ‘accomplished anything’. I was thinking about making a difference … be it in someone’s life or in the world. You never know … I might have made some difference without knowing. The only difference I know I made, was that a friend of mine quit dying her hair! LOL She got white hair early in life, and kept dying it all the time. I asked her WHY, as I thought her white hair was beautiful. She thought that ‘why’ was a really good question and has had white hair ever since ! 🙂

  6. As a woman in her late fifties, I, too, have been going through some of the same thought processes. But by this time in life, we have all made contributions of one type or another. I think the problem comes when we compare ourselves to others, or at least this is how it works with me. When we compare ourselves, we usually compare with someone who has excelled in one area or another (sort of like the fish who cries because it cannot fly, or the bird who mourns its inability to swim). I hope to continue reading your blogs and seeing your photographs. I enjoy them, and getting to know you somewhat.

    I am not a person who shares everything. There is value in that, and I envy folks who don’t hold back anything. On the other hand there is a lot to be said for moderation, too. There are things about my life that are private, or I wish not to share for the sake of the kids. That is ok. But that is not about hiding anything, rather acknowledging that I have a private world that is not part of the blogging world. Either way, what works for you is what is important.

    Thank you for a very thought provoking post!

    1. Thank you, Cecelia! We’re the same age, and yes, I compare myself to others and also to my Mother’s expectations, which I never lived up to.That’s what brings me down at times.

      About sharing everything …. I think ‘everything with moderation’. I won’t just write about the weather any more 🙂

  7. Life is a one shot deal – best enjoy it and hold onto the things that make us smile. There’s no going back unless we choose to wallow in the past and that rarely does any good. Move forward and bask in the joy that surrounds us each and every day. All we have to do is choose to see it. 🙂

  8. A very moving post, Rebekah.

    You know, we’re all people. Just people, doing the best we can. However crappy it might seem to anyone (or ourselves even) — we are doing the best we can!
    As soon as we can do better, we will. And none of us is perfect, or ever will be. (We’d be really boring and horrible company if that were possible. Fortunately it isn’t.)

    As for what we have achieved — we won’t ever know that, except on the rare lucky occasion, such as happened to mags.
    You can count on it, though, we have all achieved things. They’re usually not in newspaper headlines. So what? There’s a Hebrew saying: If you save one person, it is considered as though you had saved the whole world.
    Think about that, sometime. The importance of ONE.

    You make a difference in my life, for one. And in the lives of people commenting here. And in your husband’s life. And Macduff’s. Never nothing, never nothing.

    There are good bits and bad bits, and to make your mosaic, you might as well choose the prettiest bits, and tuck the others in wherever something darker might be needed for contrast. It will end up being beautiful. I’m old enough to know: you can trust me on that.

    (BTW, Facebook communication isn’t like blogging, and caution is definitely called for. Bloggers, I really think, are a different breed, even if most of us probably have a FB account as well. Blogging is a different commitment, and a different enterprise.)

    1. Thank you, thank you, J. for this heart-felt and touching comment. I like the analogy about the mosaic, because that’s how I often look upon my life in hindsight. Little pieces that fall in to place, when I’m looking back.
      I’ve heard that saying and I very often think about it … [I often think of the importance of ONE also with regards to big accidents. It’s just as horrible if only ONE person dies]
      I’ll never make it to, neither the history books, nor the headlines but I’m learning to accept that …. learning to think more positively, according to all the clichés and platitudes I read all over the web.

      Life has its ups and downs, to use another one *grin*, and that’s a good thing, so that we’re able to appreciate it.

      [yes, FB is a whole different story… one almost need to be a specialist in their privacy settings]
      shlm

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