A simple Solitary Seed Of doubt Sewing stitches Choking roots Once confident Threatening Downward Spiral Second-guessing Simplest decisions Sense of dread Starting In the brain Slowly shifts Stomach Tied in knots Realization Anxiety has Once again Crept in Recognizing Is step one Clipping stitches Step two Freeing roots To stretch And grow Crushing The doubt Regaining Confidence
Whether the tiniest reason or no reason at all, anxiety just shows up some days. Sharing helps. You never know who may be able to relate. Be encouraged. ❤️
Everything a chore Getting dressed Dishes, laundry Talking, smiling Each takes an Effort beyond The necessary Every day is Not this way But today… It is my reality Trusting that Giving voice To the internal Though difficult Will bring relief And if not for me Possibly another Not yet able to Express their struggle- Finding strength In good company
This poem was an attempt to give words to a recent low period. And though I am feeling better, I accept that it will not be my last. Such is this life. I share because it is so important to know we are not alone-even at our lowest. ❤
Last week a piano technician came and tuned my new piano. Even though it is a beautiful new instrument, there are several reasons it needed tuning. Being moved to a new location. Sitting in a different space, with different temperatures, on a different type of floor. All factors that affect the way it sounds.
I listened as the technician worked. She listened to such tiny details. The way she would tune one note to its octave counterpart. When I played those notes together in a chord, I didn’t notice that they were out of tune. But hearing her pick them all apart, it was obvious.
The mechanics of a piano are fascinating. My explanation to students is usually simplified. Your finger presses down the key, which causes a hammer inside the piano to strike a string producing the sound.
Watching my piano being taken apart, actually viewing the insides, gave me a new perspective. Each piece has its place and must be perfectly aligned to produce a high-quality sound. Even a new piano needs time to adjust and sometimes requires a little assistance.
One thing stood out above the rest, voicing. I asked the technician about adjusting the voicing, making it a little less bright. Basically, taking the edge off of the sound. She explained that part of that process involves the felt material on the hammers.
A needle is used to soften the felt. When done correctly, it does not damage the material. It just slightly changes the way the hammers strike the strings.
Once the piano was put back together, I sat down to play. Wow! What a difference. Not only was it in tune, but it also had a much warmer tone. The sharp edge had been softened.
This experience made me think about my life. What if I’m in a new place, with new surroundings, expectations, and people? What if my reaction is one of fear or frustration? My words may sound edgy, sharp, or out of tune.
Like the felt on those hammers, something inside me needs to be softened. An adjustment might come in the form of an honest word from a trusted friend. Yes, stings for a moment. But the sting will not last if accepted with grace. The knowledge that someone loves me that much, however, is lasting.
Hopefully, as I continue playing my piano, I will be reminded to check my own tone. And will gracefully accept any needed adjustments to keep me in-tune with my husband and children, family and friends, the world around me.
“As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.” Proverbs 27:17
Now that school is out for summer, I look forward to many conversations over coffee with friends. I love the connections which begin and grow from this practice. They bring renewal in ways which often surprise me.
Sometimes they also bring friendly reminders. Here are a few much-needed ones I recently received.
Perfection should never be my goal.
Honesty in friendship is a necessity.
Daily prayer provides daily renewal.
The first reminder concerned perfection, an ideal we are bombarded with on all fronts. You can be the perfect wife, mom, friend, teacher. Fill in the blank. That goal always leads to disappointment. Why? We are not flawless creatures. We do not live in a picture-perfect world.
Admitting our imperfections and hearing someone else say, “Me, too” is powerful. That one simple phrase takes away a small piece of the loneliness which often accompanies my inward thoughts. It provides a beginning, a binding with another heart.
The second friendly reminder was honesty. Truth, even spoken by a friend, is not always easy to receive. Just this week, a friend said to me, “I have to talk to you about something.” She went on to share observations about certain attitudes and my need for an adjustment. 😉
Although her words were difficult to hear, they brought a sense of relief. They took me back to the beginning realization-I am not perfect. And that is ok! I can, however, seek to be better.
Another friend reminded me of the importance of daily prayer. It holds the power to renew my mind, even when I don’t know what to pray. It also reminds me that God loves me in spite of my faults. And affirms my purpose at this moment, on this day.
As summer begins, my heart wants to soak in these beautiful reminders. I’m quite certain more reminders will be needed in the coming days. But for today, I am thankful for honest words from caring friends. And I will end this day with a prayer for rest and renewal.
“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.” Psalm 139:23
Tomorrow is a new day! Grab a friend and a cup of coffee! ❤ ☕️