I understand that some of you won’t open this post because you are tired of the Hallmark Holidays. I get it! However, I’m not one of those people. I love celebrating. It is part of my Ikigai. The banner photo is a handmade card made by my friend Patricia a number of years ago. It is one of my favourite cards and I never grow tired of it
Last night my daughter decorated the table for the occasion and we had a delicious Valentine’s dinner and an exceptionally engaging conversation. I wonder if it was the festive table with all the red candles. Perhaps it was basking in the glow of the candlelight and the warmth of each other’s company.
Coast to coast valentines including snowdrops, planted by a stranger, handmade chocolates by Daniels; valentine by Ali; and a red and white table set by Meghan
I don’t think of Valentine’s as a romantic day, but rather a day to have fun and to reflect on all those wonderful and flawed humans whom we love and cherish. And the sheer good luck that they love us back. I didn’t get to tell this to most of my beloved humans but I don’t need a special day to do that. I try not to save my words for only particular days. Rather, I like to scatter my word gifts all over the calendar.
Rick Hanson, neuropsychologist, tells us: “The world needs your love. Those you live with and work with need it, plus your family and friends, people near and far, and this whole battered planet.
Never underestimate the ripples spreading out from just one loving word, thought, or deed!” Love takes courage. You can be rejected; you can lose the ones you love; you may feel foolish. But why not go all in, while you have the chance and proclaim your love? We have one short life and we may as well make it our own.
On Valentines Day my friend read me this poem
It is a wonderful poem written by Ada Limon, the Poet Laureate of the US. She speaks for any of us, in pain, attempting to put on a brave face, and needing a wonder woman myth.
Wonder Woman Written by Ada Limón If you click on her name you can go to the Onbeing Project and hear the poem read aloud.
“Standing at the swell of the muddy Mississippi
after the urgent care doctor had just said, Well,
sometimes shit happens, I fell fast and hard
for New Orleans all over again. Pain pills swirling
in the purse along with a spell for later. It’s taken
a while for me to admit, I am in a raging battle
with my body, a spinal column thirty-five degrees
bent, vertigo that comes and goes like a DC Comics
villain nobody can kill. Invisible pain is both
a blessing and a curse. You always look so happy,
said a stranger once as I shifted to my good side
grinning. But that day, alone on the riverbank,
brass blaring from the Steamboat Natchez,
out of the corner of my eye, I saw a girl, maybe half my age,
dressed, for no apparent reason, as Wonder Woman.
She strutted by in all her strength and glory, invincible,
eternal, and when I stood to clap (because who wouldn’t have),
she bowed and posed like she knew I needed a myth—
a woman, by a river, indestructible.”
From The Carrying by Ada Limón (Minneapolis: Milkweed Editions, 2018). Copyright © 2018 by Ada Limón. Reprinted with permission from Milkweed Editions. milkweed.org
This poem was originally read in the Poetry Unbound episode.
And a few days before I stumbled on this ten-minute video of an older gentleman, speaking of Joy in Life and our shared humanity.
1:) One last piece of inspiration, from The Atlantic. Please, do yourself a favour and click on the link if only to see the first owl. It is stunning. Exquisite photos of owls in the wild.
2:) This is a most unusual winter. Today and yesterday it felt like spring. For the first time, the famous Rideau Canal didn’t open for Winterlude, and it looks like that will continue.
3:) “Grateful living is the stance we take when confronting adversity. It is the deep knowledge that what is before us may not be desired, but we can take control of ourselves despite the chaos around us.” – Joe Primo
4:) Thank you for showing up here. It is an honour to have you join me. May you have a lovely weekend and see you next Wednesday. Warmest wishes, Trudy
Valentines Day has always been a family day to me. My family is my Valentine. I love you so much mom ❤️💕
You were the first person to send a note and the last one to receive a thank you. I am sorry about that. I love all the dear notes I receive, in spite of my lateness this past week.
I love this Trudy … so many messages I will savour. Thank you! xo
Thank you dear Patti. So sorry it took me a week to tell you so.
So glad you are sharing this poem Trudy and I love Meghan’s table setting as well as the owls, such magnificent creatures and the Joy in Life video – so many things of beauty that bring joy. thank you xoxo
Belated thanks for your note dear Janice. I was awestruck by those owls. As always.
Thank you Trudy.
thank you dear Kathryn for taking the time to send these kind words. My reply is late and I apologize. Trudy