A new week, a new month…
No, I don’t want a ‘do over’ from the weekend or even an instant replay of the amazing month that was May. In the quiet of the new morning, I enjoy the beauty outside my window, pouring out my heart with words on a page and praying for the ones who have left a broken and splintered laceration on my heart. As I sit in the quiet of this June morning, I listen to the songs of the birds and take in the gentle breezes that create a beautiful dance in the trees. I will, with a grateful heart, be thankful for the beat of my heart, however splintered and flawed.
While I have no control of the atmosphere outside my home, I have the power to set the air within my home, our home. I have no control of the views that other people may have of me. And quite honestly, their views are none of my business. My response to their views IS my business. My grumblings, tears and unrest changes the air in our home, for everyone who passes through our doors, and especially to MyLove who dwells here.
MyLove and I have had to walk through some difficult circumstances in our 1/2 decade together. We have had to make some painful decisions of what we will allow in OUR home. I am humbled by the resilience of my life partner, and I try to remember to tell him so, often. The discussion, together, is imperative to the resolution. But ultimately, the choice is a solo conviction to create happiness, to choose joy.
I must remember the need for affirming self-speak; to remind myself that I am not the totality of other people’s voice. I am a casserole of MY experiences and MY choices. It may not suit the palette of other people, and I may be missing a few ingredients and sometimes too salty. I may not follow the recipe to the T, but I’m seasoned for the enjoyment of my life. I may occasionally, be heavy handed with the flour and become starchy and stiff. I rarely add a heap of sugar to be overly sweet and some days I’m a heaping spoonful of cayenne pepper and overly spicy.
I don’t think anyone can dictate the recipe for a perfect life, it would likely be bland and pale anyway. I don’t want the perfect life, as decided by the world. I choose the life that is perfect for me. I choose to allow what I accept in my house. I choose to believe or question what other people speak into my life. My perfection is not required and absolutely will not be demanded or dictated by others. I can no longer allow the bitterness to saturate my life. I choose to find the ingredient that cancels out that harsh taste; peace.
My peace, our peace, may not look like your peace. However, we are not making your recipe for joy. Our home is not like your home. We set the temperature at what we are best braised. I must choose to not turn up the heat so that others are burned. I will learn to be patient and become a slow simmer and not a pressure-cooker. Even on the days I feel like I am the result of my feeble attempts at baking a great pie; soggy on the bottom and crispy around the edges.
The ingredients needed for your joy are YOURS to choose. To me, cilantro tastes like soap, but it may be the perfect garnish for your life. I may add an extra clove or four of garlic, perfect for us, but far to pungent for anyone else. Taste the good life, discover the spices that bring you joy, clean out the cupboards of the spoils. Decide what the ingredients will be for the joy in your home, and keep your pantry stocked.
Our pantry is full of I love you’s, I appreciate you’s and gratitude for the little victories. I sometimes struggle with the I’m sorry’s and I need to throw away the I’m hurt’s. We choose to stock it together, united in seeking peace. We have to clean it out occasionally, and sometimes items mysteriously remove themselves. But I need to learn the discipline of not adding those items back on the shopping list. Far too frequently, it feels like a turf war against those standing outside; wanting to throw eggs at our home, our peace.
You choose the people that you allow into your home. You decide who you allow to stand at the door like a salesman pounding at the door for your attention or a welcomed guest. To the visitors standing on the outside, knocking on the door to your home, your peace; do they find a welcome mat, colorful & joyful or a DOORMAT? An invitation to enter the home with vibrant joy or to wipe their feet and tread on your peace. You decide what meal you serve, the flavors and ingredients that are welcomed. You set the atmosphere IN your home! Stand firm, defend it! Even if it’s only with a wooden spoon!
As for me, for us, there WILL be peace in our house! Sweet peace.
One of my favorites, but I have no ownership or rights to this video