Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Dancing With Rainbows

My friend Karen (@TimeCrafted) is one amazing chick. She's a great Mama to her 2 sweet kidlets. She digs her husband. She's a fabulous writer. She's got a beautiful heart. I'm lucky to call her my friend. Her stories and tweets literally brighten my day. In a world that seems to overflow with snark and sarcasm, Karen brings authentic joy to the blogosphere and Twitterverse.
Karen LOVES being a Mom. She LOVES her family. And she LOVES to tell you about it. I love that! Karen doesn't deny that some days are hard... REALLY HARD. But she finds joy daily in the small stuff.... and life... really, is about the small day-to-day stuff. Karen's ability to seek out joy is contagious. Her outlook is the epitome of the quote I have hanging on my kitchen wall.
"A person will be just about as happy as they make up their mind to be." 
-Abraham Lincoln
I was stoked when she agreed to guest post for me about her sunny perspective. Here's Karen's take on what it takes to seek and find joy on any given day.
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Dancing with Rainbows

I don’t ride rainbows, but I do like to dance with them.

Do you?

To get your dancing partner you need a little sun to come out and play with the rain.

But, sometimes when it’s raining, it isn’t always so easy to find the sun, is it?

Or, maybe it is.

But, we’ll get back to that. Sometimes it’s easy to feel like you’re being swallowed whole by some of the not so nice things in life. Sometimes they come on, one after another, after another. Sometimes, they come out of the blue, so big that you feel as if you are hit by a brick wall.

I’m not oblivious to those less than rosy, sometimes blacker than black moments that we all encounter in life. And yes, sometimes I get knocked down by them. As I said, I don’t ride rainbows. I’m not a permanent keeper of the sun. But, I try to coax that golden glow out, so I can dance, in, out, around, and about that spectrum of light.

How?

That sunshine isn’t too hard to find, if you actively look for it. If you actively look for the silver lining in those clouds that are raining down, the sun tends to peep out.

Sometimes, starting with the most simple, even ridiculous silver lining can start a new habit.

Sometimes I trip over my own toes. Yes, it’s been known to happen (I wear a size 10 shoe and I’m only 5’5”,what can I say?!). And while I’m down, I may just find my shiny lining…like a head-side up penny, or a pretty li’l rock, or a toy my kidlet’s been looking for, stuck under the couch.

Before you roll your eyes, I know all of that can sound silly. But, if you’ll trust me for a minute here, keep reading.

When you see the silver lining in the silly and sometimes even ridiculous, over and over, finding that shiny side, that light, that positive bit to hold on to becomes easier. And once it becomes second nature, it’s in your pack of tools to deal with life’s bigger rain clouds.

Years ago, early in our relationship, my husband and I lost our maternal grandmothers on the same day. That weekend we jammed in two viewings, one memorial, one funeral, one graveside, and good-byes in two separate towns, neither one local. We were exhausted, both physically and emotionally.

But, guess what? While there’s no silver lining to losing a loved one, there was a surprising moment that we might not have come across had my husband and I not been so focused on both of our families.

While driving to my grandmother’s viewing, my husband pointed out that his paternal grandparents lived nearby when they were still with us. When we brought that up with my family, we learned that his father and my mother’s sister went to the same high school at the same time. My husband didn’t grow up in that area, nor did I. What are the odds of that?! I have to admit, that memory is a positive one on that less than positive day.

We found another shiny side that weekend…we learned to lean on each other.

I’m far from perfect, I slip and fall and forget to seek out my silver linings at times. But, I’ve discovered that actively looking for the positive to take away or to relish in keeps me so much stronger for those rainy days.

I don’t ride rainbows, but I dance with them and it’s a mighty colorful way to get your groove on.

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Thanks so much for the reminder to keep on the sunny side of life Karen! I know that I've often been surprised to find joy in some of my darkest seasons. Seeking it out has always made my life richer and more manageable when life gets hard. It was so fun to have you here today!

To read more of Karen's awesomeness... Follow Karen on Twitter!
Go check out her blog Time Crafted! Want some ideas on where to start reading? 
JR Martinez is a Shining Star ... Be warned... you'll cry. Have tissues on stand-by before you start this one!
Sushi Making Makes Family Fun... Karen actually rolled sushi at home with her family! Gluten & casein free at that!
GFCF Pizza & Movie Night- Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop... How she learned to make practically perfect GFCF pizza with some pre-made crusts from some help from fellow Twitter buddies!
And the two part story of going from a Landslide of Lego Love to having that Lego Landslide Organized! I especially appreciate her organizational/ sorting ideas since we have a plethora of Legos at our house too!

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