Expectations

Sometimes it takes a while to recognize the most beautiful gifts another person has given you. Often times we take those things for granted because life happens. We have good days and bad days.

Last night, in the middle of tossing and turning, returning our four year old back to her bed (several times) I had a moment of full gratitude. I had a moment of retrospect.

Kali Rose is technically my granddaughter. She is the child of one of my adopted daughters from Romania. Tunde arrived into my life when she was nine. She suffers from bipolar, schizoaffective d/o and other mental disabilities. When social services called me to let me know that Kali (5 months old) was being removed from her care I was given a choice: I had two hours to go get her at their office or she would be placed in foster care.

I turned to my then boyfriend and before I could finish the sentence he said, “Babe, where do we pick her up?” He had no questions or doubts. He had never been a father. He didn’t even flinch. There was zero doubt of what needed to be done. And as time passed we made her ours and it took two and a half years to finalize her adoption. Matt did not care that she could have had HIV (since her biological dad did) or that she could suffer from mental illness from her gene pool. There was absolutely no question of what “we” had to do.

Back this April we got a call from Florida that Tunde’s second child was taken into foster care. Within a few hours we had a plan. Matt explained that this little boy needed to be with us. He was Kali’s biological brother. “We can do this!” And we did. It took months and fighting with the system but last month we brought him home.

I thought about this after all these years. I don’t know why but I laid in bed massaging my heart in gratitude. He never once questioned his decisions. This wasn’t my first rodeo. But it has been his.

What ruins us in relationships and other commitments in our journey is the abundance of irrational expectations we place for ourselves. We expect much from our loved ones and when it doesn’t appear as the perfect package we get angry and disconnect. We end the relationship. We stop growing together.

I share this today because sometimes in the middle of adulting we tend to forget the small significant details of what others do to impact our lives. It’s a habit. It’s old programming. It’s just life. Because, let’s face it, living in this human form is challenging. We take one step in front of the other unconsciously. We forget what we were here to remember.

Look back at those small increments of time. Acknowledge the love from another. Today I’ve thought about that particular day on May 28th, 2014. His kindness and determination allowed me to move forward knowing he had my back. No relationship is perfect or happy all the time. But, it’s in the brutal challenges and obstacles that you get to witness the integrity and support of another.

I love that. And I am beyond grateful. ~m.a.p.

The Principle of Charity

homelessness

 

 

 

 

 

When I was studying for my degree in psychology I remember learning about the principle of charity.  This principle in philosophy is the basis of being charitable in the opinions and arguments of others.  Just like “charity” and giving in our daily lives, the principle of charity is about not biting someone’s head off because you don’t agree with what they are arguing or discussing.  It is also about providing a generous consideration to other ideas that might not be in the same belief as your own. The principle of charity does not stop others in the attack of opposing views, but it allows an open mind to sit, listen and perhaps digest another opinion without immediately disagreeing with it.

The reality is that the principle of charity allows my beliefs and position to be heard without being judged immediately…that is if the other person understands this principle as well.  As I watch, read and hear the political craziness going on lately I take into account this principle.  It always takes a shift in consciousness and what’s important in life to join together in humanitarian compassion.  This week is the passing storm in Mexico…the continuous fighting in the Middle East…the remnants of world issues.  All you have to do is turn on the news and you are bombarded by something extravagant that is OUT THERE.  But, weathering the storm and the aftermath is much more relevant right now as opposed to who will be running our country in just a few months. Why is it that we, as the human race, forget the simplicity of connecting to one another?  Why is it that we have to have mass destruction (or the possibility of disasters) to stop and remember about what’s important…our interconnections and survival?  We are living in giant bubbles of chaos running around in separated ant colonies getting from point A to point B…and what for?

I don’t agree or disagree with politics.  I don’t care who is gay or straight.  I don’t give a thought to the hatred that religions create all in the name of God against each other.  What I do care about is unity, love and peace.  I care that our neighbors in other states might not have warmth, electricity, homes or safety in days to come.  I care about the animals outside in the cold, crops and farmers who will lose substantially.  I care about those things that make us human not monsters of intolerance and disassociating behaviors.   I care about the homeless man sitting on the side of the road with a sign that breaks me for having food in my house. I care about the disabled souls trying to find comfort in a world not created to support them and their needs. I care that tonight while the wind is blowing up here in the mountains I am thankful for heat and a roof over our heads.  I care that I might not make a difference anywhere else but in the lives of my children and husband.  I am not here to win any prizes.  I am here surviving, existing and moving through the ant colony but with the awareness that I need to keep my heart wide opened to the principles of love and charity.  I am consciously evolving in the understanding that there is work to be done and one person can’t change the earth but many hands working together can sure create miracles.

The principle of charity should also include “charity” in the literal way.  Being generous, caring, compassionate, and having brotherly love is why we are here.   May you remember this simple principle in philosophy that is not only for agreeing (or disagreeing) in discussions, but in extending your heart and touching another who is in need of support!  God bless…love and light.