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How do you hold onto joy?
Especially, when your heart is heavy.
I spent the week working in the gardens with the warm sun, blue skies, and that sense of hope that spring inspires. But my heart remained heavy and focused on the lives of families across the globe.
The Red Bud trees made their annual announcement that, ready or not, spring has officially arrived. Then the news of war, the passing of our sister-in-law, and the lingering pall of a pandemic threatened to cast a shadow on the joy I embraced.
How do you hold onto joy? When life turns upside down, I tend to move into action. A sprained ankle had sidelined me for a couple of months, so I was antsy to get up and get outside. I needed the physical to grapple with the events and sound bites swirling in my head. I raked pine needles.
I dug up the Day Lilies to break them apart and replant. As I sat amid day lily clumps and retrieved the friendly worm working hard at the work of worms, I thought of the women who left their gardens behind.
Every one of us will experience losses, some small, others life-changing. In my reading this week, I came across the idea of looking at challenges in three circles.
The inner-circle contains those things over which I have control. The next circle holds what I can influence, and the last circle consists of everything else.
While I can’t change the tragedies at home and worldwide, I can control my emotions and attitude. I can find joy and wonder in squiggly worms and heartfelt hugs. I can use my words and images to spark a joyful thought in others.
The rest? I can contribute to a cause. I can vote. I can hold onto joy because, without it, hope stands on shaky ground.
I wrote a poem about the crazy hate weighing down the world.
Let Three Dog Night bring a little Joy to the World.
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.
Find a little wonder this week.
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