Saturday, August 30, 2014

A World of Possibility

Today begins a 3 day weekend as Monday is a holiday. One whole extra day. Ah.

Life is sweet.

Yesterday Roy and I went out to eat at PF Chang's and then headed over to Barnes and Noble to scope out the latest books. We all three--as Jace was with us--went different directions the moment we entered the store. I took out my moleskin and a pen and headed over to the new books section and immediately began to scour the backs of covers to see which titles I should research the moment I got home.

I love books. Mmm. They transport me to another day and time and they inspire and they make me think and they bring a world of opportunity to my fingertips.

What's not to love?

Yesterday, I stepped into Joy's cubicle as I had a question (When do I not have a question...), and on her desk was a book that had nothing to do with work. So I quickly snatched it up as though I had the right to nose through her stuff, (Sorry, Joy--it comes from knowing you for 20 years...and it has been almost 20 years--19 to be exact--as I did the math a couple of weeks ago), and realized it was a book by Lisa Tyrkheurst. If you've never read her stuff, she's a good one. She's real and she's inspiring and she writes about stuff that we moms can relate to. Anyway, I opened it to a random spot and began to read a story that had me laughing and feeling like I was reading about myself as it was in regards to being stressed, in a hurry and irritated at those she loved the most. I just read about a page but I think I could have happily sat down and read all afternoon.

Last night when I went to bed, I felt a tinge of excitement as my Nook is filled with titles that I have yet to explore. And so I began to slowly peruse my library, trying to decide which story or self-help book is going to capture my attention next.

So much possibility.

A famous author--but I can't think of who it is... John Grisham maybe??....made the comment that everybody is born a reader. The problem is, there are a lot of people reading the wrong books. I believe that. If you like movies? You'd like books. That's what I used to tell my students back in the day when I was a teacher.

We have become a vending machine society. Quick fixes. Don't make me wait. Hurry hurry hurry. Books take time. They make us slow down and breathe for a minute. They don't suit well with stress and frantic living. And they are so personal as what jives with one person, won't necessarily jive with another.

Sometimes I dream of being an author, of writing a book that whisks people away to another land. I've always been a lover of stories and as soon as I learned to write, I began to write them. One of my childhood memories is sitting at the kitchen table and writing stories about the Christmas cards that hung on our wall. One time I was playing with my best friend Cindy and we were trying to think of something to do. Hey! Let's make up stories and write them down and then we'll read them to each other! She looked at me as though I'd lost my mind.

In later years, I carried notebooks with me as stories burned within my chest and I had no peace until I wrote them down--my pen struggling to keep up with my thoughts.

I think my love of books is born from the power of words. We all hold the ability to lift up or destroy. And it's so easy to destroy when the other would be so much better. So much kinder. But  goodness it feels good. They deserve it.

The other day I was having trouble with my Internet. It was totally down this past Saturday and since then, it's been spotty. And so I called Charter and this sweet little girl came on the line, ready to help. She was clearly young and it was obvious that much of what she said was scripted in regards to helping me figure out the problem. Midway through trying to figure out what was going on, Lillian and Drew and Guerin and Savana came in as Lillian is headed to Loma Linda to get her Master's in Speech Pathology--and so she wanted to say goodbye. And so, I began to feel annoyed. They were in a hurry and I was nowhere near getting the problem solved. I wasn't annoyed at Lillian, of course--I was annoyed at this girl. Hurry up already. Good grief. I'm over it. And so, my irritation began to shine through my words and finally, I said, Look. I have people here. I don't have time for this. I have to go. And I abruptly hung up, leaving her, I am sure, bewildered and frustrated and thinking I hope I never talk to you again.

And I don't blame her.

Words can be divisive and mean and create so much pain. On the same token, words can be uplifting and encouraging and bring so much joy. And honestly...why settle for the first when, if you just wait a minute, time will pass and those words will no longer burn within you.

Silence is golden.

Maybe that's why books mean so much to me. The words are written, give one pause for thought. They aren't spewed with the intent of cutting like a knife--at least not the books I choose to read. Books bring acceptance and possibility and friendship. They transport to a place where words bring... and abundance and all things possibility.

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