Sunday, August 24, 2014

Does Distance Make The Heart Grow Fonder? Part II

“If you want to conquer the anxieties of life, live in the moment; live in the breath.”
-Amit Ray


There are many phases in life. There are phases to the seasons and in nature. And, in every aspect of our lives there are phases. Right now we are in the middle to late phase of summer. The Crepe Myrtle are blooming, and if you haven’t seen crepe myrtle, you are missing something. Take a look at them at your local nursery or look them up on the internet. They are absolutely gorgeous. If we saw them bloom every day, we might begin to take them for granted. Having them take full bloom once a year makes them nearer and dearer to our hearts.

Writing about this even reminds me of a friend, who uses words differently than I. In missing her, I am bringing her closer to me by using the word “gorgeous” instead of beautiful; a word I would have used to describe the crepe myrtle. She loves to use the word gorgeous, and I am feeling good using it also. This is one way which helps us to bring closer those that we are missing. 

Have you noticed that by creating distance from others not only helps us to appreciate them more, but also gives us a good space for us to develop ourselves? I was talking about this in last week’s blog, and so am returning to the idea this week as there is so much to say on this subject. The young man I am writing about is trying to find himself and wanting to learn to appreciate himself instead of worrying whether he is a bad person or is becoming a bad person. His mother loved her husband, his father, and yet felt hurt by him. In being loyal to his mother he too feels the hurt. He sometimes sees his recently deceased father as a bad person in the way he hurt his mother and also wasn’t available much to him personally. Yet he loves his father. How do we reconcile such opposite feelings? One way is by holding both feelings close to us, as both are true. In addition, gaining some space from those we have contradictory feelings for and for those we feel mixed up with also helps. Then we can see them and us more clearly. In his case, he is too close to and with his mother. He needs some distance from her to see him as separate from her and her feelings. As he does so, he has an opportunity to see his father more clearly from his own eyes, and not so influenced by his mother’s eyes. He had been distant from his father literally and figuratively before his father died. He moved away from the family to find himself. This gave some personal growth, but he still was limited by his mother’s vision. As he can have the inner distance from her he can more clearly see his father in him; in the good ways as well as the bad ways. This distance can make his heart grow fonder for his father. 

He had lost himself a little to his mother, and as he can regain his own self, he can then see how much he does appreciate his father as a man, and for what he gave him personally. How he can keep his father closer to his heart is by remembering something he likes a lot about him and being or acting like him in that way. Distance does and can make our heart grow finder and also allows us to really and fully inhabit the present.


Small Lifestyle Changes that Promote Big Results:


All of us have something or someone we would like to have close to us and to remember in a good way. It is too easy to forget who and what is important to us, or to feel like we miss someone so much it is hard for us to carry on.

A simple exercise we can do is to think of something we like about that person; something they said or did or acted like, and we then can hold them close by acting like them, or speaking some words that they might say, or by doing something like them.
This could by using a word they use and thanking them for the use of the word or phrase. It could be liking how they gardened or how they taught or how they treated others, and doing it like them, etc.

Take a moment each day and remember them in one of these ways. Then find a way to remember them each day in by saying, doing, or acting like them……just a little, and thank them!