Why do we hold back?
I've said it before and I'll say it again, "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." Well, okay...so I didn't originate that line, I may have "borrowed" it from the movie Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Probably one of the most quotable and continuing quotable movies of the 80s. But what does this phrase actually mean? Yes, our lives move really fast....well, lately not as fast as they once did . I think this past year has proven that stopping and looking around is not only vital...its pretty much all we got. I have spent more concentrated time with my husband and kids over the past eleven months than I have spent with any other human other than myself in my lifetime. What have I discovered? Well, for one thing...we really need to renovate the basement! Seriously, one thing I have discovered is that there is no time left for bull$h*t.
I used to spend a lot of time going over conversations in my head. Did I say the right thing? Was I too overbearing in that conversation? Was I too loud at that party (oddly enough people tell me that I have a tendency to be REALLY LOUD). Oh I would ruminate...sometimes for days after a party worrying that I was too loud or said something off putting. I have to say one of the benefits of this journey that I have been on for the past eight years is that I don't really spend time going over what I have said anymore. Mostly because when I'm in the moment I really am thoughtful of being in the moment. I usually don't let my emotion or my Irish sarcasm (what? who? me?) get the best of the situation. I say "usually" because I am not Buddha or Jesus, I am human and I have my weak moments. For the most part, I say what I mean and I mean what I say (sorry if that's trite). No, I don't really spend time thinking about what I have said so much as I spend time thinking about what I'd like to say. Wow! That sounds open ended and a bit saucy. I don't mean it to be.
There are so many times that I want to say something or do something, such as, write something on Facebook and I think...oh that is too much...you are being too esoteric or gushy. Truth be told...I think we need gushy right now. If this year has proved anything it is that we need to hold and embrace the time we have with the people we love or even the people we like. If we happen to feel a little gushy and want to blurt out..."I think you're amazing!" well...don't hold back. I don't think anyone at this point would think you are a weirdo (well, maybe they may think think its a bit weird but that's their problem). Still, it's hard. We have become so conditioned as a society to hold back compliments and words of affirmation yet let criticism, sarcasm and judgement fly. Is this really who we are at our core? I don't think so.
Recent events in my life have made it all too clear that time is fleeting. As someone said to me this week, "Your next breath was never promised to you." Wow! So true! My dad was recently put on hospice care after a whirlwind two months of recovering from the virus that has traumatized and plagued us all in one way or another for the past year. I don't know how much time he has left but I want to make each day as comfortable, happy and special for him as it can be. When the clock starts ticking, family squabbles, egos and ancient history no longer seem to matter very much. In the end, that all falls away and what you are left with is the cream, the good stuff which always rises to the top...the beautiful memories and the love. There is no more time to hold back especially on the love. I have written about my dad before in past blogs and I think you can gather that my dad isn't the gushy type. So for him, rather than caressing his hand and telling him I love him, I show him. His love language is gift giving and acts of service...so I honor that and speak the love language he understands. I do this by visiting him every day and bringing him little presents like a new pair of comfy slippers, some lovely body cream for his dry skin, a razor so his aid can give him a close shave, a new ottoman so he can put his feet up so his legs aren't so swollen. It's the little things that endure.
Knowing your loved ones love language is a really beneficial way of showing your love through speaking to them in their love language. For instance, my love language is acts of service and words of affirmation. I believe telling people how awesome and amazing they are is really important, however, sometimes people get really uncomfortable with being so direct and honest even with positive words. I know my dad would be uncomfortable with me gushing all over him, so showing him through my time and gift giving is a way he is comfortable with and understands. To learn more about Love Languages, I recommend the book The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman.
In closing, the reason I am sharing all of this with you is because I want you all to know how much you all mean to me (here comes the gush) not only as customers but as friends. As friends, I want you to know what is going on in my person life that may be slowing down your orders and special requests. In December I put Little Flower on hiatus because there was so much going on in my family that needed my time and attention. By January I really missed creating my products and connecting with you all, so I decided to find a way to balance my time. Now as my dad needs more of my attention, I will have a little less time to devote to Little Flower. However, I love and need to continue creating so please do not think you can't reach out to to me for that specialty product. I am happy to be of service (as its one of my love languages), It may just take a little longer. So, I thank you in advance for your patience and support as I balance my work load and cherish the time that is left with my dad.
My last bit of advice (which may be unsolicited) is don't hold back in your relationships with the people you love. Figure out their love language and speak it so they can hear and feel your love loud and clear.
With much love,