Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Attitude and Bucket Lists



Facebook is the source of some wild and crazy things---amazing, funny, sad and heart-tugging posts as well as downright stupid stuff. Where else can you go 24/7 to see elephants taking mud baths, photos of your minutes old great-great nephew, clever words written on paper, recipes for ‘smore pie, 27 dogs in a swimming pool, a photo of Ryan and Romney hugging, and get an update on your niece-in-law’s surgery? On Facebook you can also get videos from around the world like the one below called Unsung Hero and sub-titled Not Every Gift is Tangible proving that while we might not understand the language and their streets and homes might look different other cultures value the same intrinsic things we do.

If you haven’t guessed by now, the photo at the top (as well has the video below and all the things mentioned above) appeared on my Facebook feed today. Wouldn’t you love to know who thinks up this kind of stuff? Where do they live? We could be walking by these clever people every day and not know it. What do they do for a living, do they walk-the-talk? Or did they “borrow” the words photographed and posted from a book or Sunday sermon? Does it really matter so long as the words makes us stop and say something like, “Knowledge and hard work ARE important but attitude, yes, Attitude, really does trump them both.” Yeah, my attitude could use a tune-up from time-to-time. Thank you, anonymous creator of clever things and my friends for sharing them.

According to my Franklin Language Master attitude is: 1) a posture or relative position and, 2) a feeling, opinion or mood. Okay, got it. We see attitude everywhere there are people. In some of the music videos out today, for example, they project an attitude of I‘m-in-your-face-sexy-and-I-know it. You can turn the volume off on the news but still pick up on the attitude of protestors who are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. If we watch a movie about Mother Theresa or the Dalia Lama we'll see their attitude of love with a capital L. I can watch a hellfire-and-brimstone preacher and see him judging us all and us not measuring up to his piousness. He scares his flock by finding the devil everywhere, that’s his attitude. Well, look there! I just revealing my attitude of disdain for hellfire-and-brimstone preachers and on Sunday no less when I should have an attitude of love thy neighbor. Why do some people make it so hard for us to love them? Why can’t we all be like the guy in the Unsung Hero video where we’d constantly be reacting to the world around us in positive ways? Like him, if we open our hearts to seeing the opportunities to be kind and loving, we'd find them. Wouldn’t we? When we take ourselves out of the coasting through life mode we can change our little corner of the earth.

I admit it, I coast through life sometimes. I don’t always appreciate the hard work it’s taken me to get where I’m at as widow and a woman or appreciate the knowledge I’ve tried to equip myself with to rebuild my life and build it the first time. Sometimes it feels like I should be “over it.” I should be ready for bold adventures and new relationships. I should be polishing the silver and having dinner parties. Whoa, back up here! Dinner parties? When I start doing that, my nieces are welcome to put me in a nursing home. I don’t cook. I don’t entertain and neither of those things are on my Bucket List. Nor should they be unless I want to commit suicide using stress as my weapon of choice.

Recently I’ve been reminded of my Bucket List by Bella Rum over at the Cul-de-sac Chronicles blog. I wrote it three months after Don died and when I reread it this week I realized that I had a good attitude for a widow back when I wrote it. It was honest and filled with do-able things. And I need to edit it, rewrite and expand it. One thing that will go on my new Bucket List is a mission statement about the kind of attitude I should strive to hold dear to my heart and strive to achieve on a daily basis. How about you? What is your core attitude or approach toward living your life? Have you written your Bucket List. ©


10 comments:

  1. You're are putting too much stress on me, LOL. Now I have to have a Mission Statement? A Bucket List? I'm just trying to get through the rest of the week with $20 to my name! I know--my Mission Statement is the title of my blog. Onward & Upward. Ever Forward!

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  2. What stress? LOL You've already got your mission statement written and have been living it right along---Onward and Upward...Ever Forward. That's a great attitude, by the way.

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  3. personally i love attitude and try to have it most of the time. i must have done it right one day because someone told me i lit up the room when i walked in. i walked on a cloud the rest of the day...

    hugs, bee
    xoxooxoxox

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    1. Anyone who reads your blog knows you have a great attitude. You light up the there as well.

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  4. Yes, we can change our corner of the earth, starting with ourselves. Isn't it amazing to see how far we've come? My mission statement is two part. One, to knock any nagging feeling that I'm damaged goods off its pedestal. Two, to savor my own life and yours, too, now, today. To paraphrase Empress Bee, 1) Stop peeing in my own milkshake, and 2) Share my milkshake with people who aren't peeing in it, either.

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    1. That's a great mission statement for you! Part two is based on one of my favorite phrases picked up from another blogger.

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  5. Jean :

    I strongly believe your attitude towards life create your happiness & destiny. I am not planner, I just go with flow instead of resisting the life the way it is unfolding. I am still working on do your best & then let the chips fall the way it will be so staying detached to results after work has been put in is my challenge & I m still working on that part of my karma theory.

    Asha

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    1. Going with the flow and doing your best is great philosophy to life by. As long as we're breathing I don't think our karma work is ever finished.

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    2. Jean,
      Thanks for mentioning me and the link to Cul-de-sac. Attitude is so important and mine has improved dramatically recently, although I had a nasty disposition this morning. But that's rare these days. I posted a photo of a Carolina wren on my blog a few years ago, a tiny bird with a big attitude. Carolina wrens alway remind me to try to believe I can take on the world even when it seems impossible.

      "using stress as my weapon of choice" That cracked me up.

      I haven't made my bucket list yet, but you've got me thinking about it. I always thought of a bucket list as a list of BIG goals, but when you pointed out that it could be anything, even something as small as a book I want to read, it seemed more approachable. I do believe if you write it, it helps you achieve it.

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    3. I hope people check out your blog. You are my kind of blogger.... thoughtful, interesting, a skilled writer and so much more.

      I'll have to find a video of a Caroline wren to see its attitude. I don't know if we get those here. House wrens, yes.

      From what I've read, putting books you'd like to read on a Bucket List really isn't uncommon.

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