Monthly Archives: September 2014

Tokens – Hummingbird

IMG_5528 bird

Hummingbird

This summer I had to say goodbye to my little seal gray dog, Gina, who had stuck to my side like Velcro for over eleven years. I was sad, but content in doing my part to give her a great life and peaceful death.

Shortly after saying goodbye, I visited a friend in Rhode Island. While wandering through some little shops in the Providence area, Kathy introduced me to a line of jewelry stores. Established on the east coast, they sell American made jewelry in small main street settings. Their jewelry each has some type of symbolism or meaning, with many pieces contributing directly to charities.

We wandered around the store and looked at various charms. It occurred to me that I could get a charm on a bangle bracelet to remember Gina by. I looked in the cases and saw many options. There was a dog paw print, but it didn’t quite look right for delicate Gina. Another had an elephant face and trunk. Cute, it could be a good “remember forever” kind of token. Silver or gold medallions were adorned by initials, ladybugs with design and depth, as well as coin designs. Nothing seemed to fit.

And then I saw what would be my Gina token. It was a delicate hummingbird with black detail etched into contrasting silver. Of course, as part of a successful marketing plan, the store had little cards to explain the meaning of each token.  I read the little card that talked about wings that flutter in a pattern of an infinity symbol. Really?  I didn’t know that about hummingbirds. It further explained that hummingbirds are associated with continuity, healing, and persistence. Gina was persistent in her bond with me and gave me incredible emotional support through my brain surgery recovery.

Further, “Delicate yet strong” said the little square card in black and white. Wow. That was Gina. She was an Italian Greyhound. “Italian” refers to the toy version of a greyhound. Just like the big racers only tiny. Even though she was eleven when she died, she was still only fifteen pounds. She was built of delicate bones and tiny features. Yet she was strong. She never got tired regardless of the length of our walks. Her spirit was strong as she looked me with penetrating eyes that showed depth and understanding.

The final statement about the little hummingbird (that had more words to describe than substance to the charm) was a recommendation to wear the hummingbird charm to be “tenacious in the pursuit of dreams.”  Yep, that was the one. I am still pursuing dreams and will treasure Gina’s companionship throughout.

I have realized, that contrary to my preconceived belief that I’m not into symbolism, that I love reminders of significance in my life.

Goodbye my little friend.

Gina

Gina

(fyi reference – http://www.alexandani.com/ )

 

 

Life’s Balance: Actually is a Balance

Life (Simplified)

Life (Simplified)

Yes, I really do spend time drawing these silly pictures.  I am obviously NOT talented in this particular area, but it hasn’t stopped me from expressing myself.

Think of the many interviews of someone who lost a dream of being an athlete, actor, entrepreneur, or whatever? Disappointed, some struggle but find new passion. Disappointment still remains in hindsight, but a new perspective is gained over time for the importance of one lost dream. Countless other stories tell of people who lose their dream and become entangled in pain and fail to move forward, sometimes for years.

Acceptance of unwanted change is sticky and gooey. Anyone who has found success at something then lost it, churns for period of time. Risking full disclosure, I’ve found felt quite sorry for myself at times. I wake in the morning and find myself laying still, making an analysis of my options. Will I wallow over where I am, or move forward to seek an achievable goal for that specific day? Breaking down obstacles allows me to find joy in each step toward a new dream.

When making the decision to spiral down or up:

On my down pajama days, laying horizontal, staring out the window:

– I allow the loss of a dream to loom over all other dreams and accomplishments.
– I exaggerate to myself how lost and alone I am in the big, bad world.
– I chaff at not being able to control everything in my life.
– I compare myself/my life/my circumstance to others and minimize my own accomplishments.
– I dislike being on a need to know basis with God.

On other, better days, I’m more balanced (admittedly maybe still a pajama day):

– I allow myself time to regenerate if needed. I sleep a little more, read a book, or spend time in thought without allowing thought of misusing time.
– I let my disappointment go, even if for a moment. Life is a series of days we must live.
– Some will, frankly, be better than others. Each day takes us somewhere. No day takes us nowhere, even if we are still.
– I think about God. Not how short I find myself in actions, but, quite simply, how big He is even while guiding my little life in the huge scheme of things.
– I focus on others. How can I reach out to someone? What can I write to brighten someone else’s day?
– I recognize the value in nature of a safe cocoon. How it provides protection to delicacy. I recognize how God puts us in a cocoon, kept from knowledge at times. A hedge of protection until we are stronger than we thought possible.

I’ve found it to be an interesting journey to transition from the corporate world with strategic plans, performance evaluations, and service level agreements to embracing the world of art. Touching someone’s day by writing a paragraph is as rewarding as achieving a corporate objective used to be. If I hadn’t had downward spirals mixed with some incredible upward ones, throughout my entire life, I wouldn’t be who I am. I wouldn’t appreciate what I dream today. I wonder who I’m yet to be.