Sunday, November 29, 2015

What the Bag Lady learned this week

I'm a lifelong learner, I tell myself. Usually when I say that I'm thinking about local classes or workshops, or online courses. You know, the kind I choose and plan for. What I think looks interesting or what I think I need.

Most of this week's learnings came from elsewhere.
  • On Sunday nights I go to a 12-step program and I heard something completely new that cracked me up and made me think.  "Figuring It Out is not one of the Steps." Those of you in 12-step programs will probably laugh, and the rest of you will have no idea what I'm talking about. That's okay! I have remembered that quote several times this week, and it is completely true.
  • On Monday, at my water aerobics class, I confirmed that my shoulder strain, which prevented me from working with weights, has been resolved after three months of weekly massage. I am learning, over and over, that I don't heal as quickly as I used to, and that something that doesn't hurt is a good thing!
  • I had a light dinner with Emma, the clinic administrator of our business. I met her in Tucson and arranged a summer meeting between her and my business partner, who hired her.  Emma is bright, articulate, and perceptive. I am continually impressed with the energy of today's younger workers. It seems like just yesterday that I was raising my kids, and now they're part of this impressive workforce. I'm learning to appreciate generations other than my own.
  • I do fine on my own as lead mediator at small claims court in my county. I was trained and coached over a period of several months to take on the leadership position when I'm in town. On Tuesday it was my responsibility. Before this week I'd been working from a script written by someone else for the introductory remarks in the courtroom and the mediation room. I was able to adapt it to my own style and it worked just fine. I have learned to do this!
  • I've made a new friend named Gail. I've been in a church group with her for over a year, but we connected at a workshop called Hope Alive in an activity where we were facing each other and both of us had tears running down our faces. Gail and I have met for coffee several times since then. I am so grateful for special people who appear in my life. I've learned to look for those appearances.
  • I met with my business partner Lillian on Tuesday afternoon. She and I have different strengths and it has taken us a while to learn how to collaborate so we use and appreciate them all. We acknowledged that to each other this week. She said, "You aren't as critical as you used to be." I said, "And you aren't as defensive." Maybe that's so, or maybe we've just gotten wiser. 
  • My husband Art had a phone appointment with a doctor on Thursday. I've never met this doctor because she's at the VA downtown and Art wants to go there alone. I was surprised that he put the call on speaker so I could participate! The three of us worked out an eating and exercise plan for our time in Tucson to lower his cholesterol and both of our body mass indexes. I've learned to stay out of Art's medical business and now he is letting me in to some of it. That's a good thing.
  • On Thanksgiving, all six of us hung out from 2:30 until the football game ended in the evening. Just relaxing. Humor and excellent food and the art of not interrogating grown offspring James and Peter about their lives made our day special. No scenes, no arguments. Part of the reason was that the elderly "scenemakers" are no longer with us, and part was that the rest of us have learned to control ourselves most of the time. We had an agreement that we would not talk about politics, and I noticed that cellphones had been set aside. Nice, huh?
  • Five of my sister's six chickens have begun laying eggs, and I've had fresh eggs three times this week for breakfast. The shells are harder, the eggs' consistency is different, and the taste is fabulous. Who knew that eggs straight from the hen would be so different than the ones in the grocery store box?
Lifelong learner. Lucky me!


DJan said...

I remember learning that the eggs we get in the store are vastly inferior to those grown by happy chickens. And yours sure do look happy. I like all those lessons you list, Linda. :-)

Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma said...

It sounds like a great week, and clearly you learned quite a few valuable things. So yes, lucky you, but in fact your open mind and continued efforts contributed a lot. And wow, you get really fresh eggs from happy free-range chickens.... What a treat!

Deb Shucka said...

Love this post, the happiness of it, the lightness of it. Love you.

Linda Reeder said...

"the art of not interrogating grown offspring" - yes, I'm learning that one too. I heard it on a list of what not to do with your adult children, and even mentioned it at the Thanksgiving dinner table, where my two offspring, and two of my sister's kids really took note. Some wondered about it, and my son confirmed it "Don't ask me any questions!"
One again I have enjoyed your list of learnings.

Sally Wessely said...

I love your skill of making lists. This one was another great one. You are a lifelong learner. I had to chuckle when I read the exchange between you and your business partner. You are the master of one-liners. I am learning from you. I too am staying out of my husband's medical business, and now he asks me to be involved more.

Thanks for sharing.

Oh, and those eggs sound marvelous.

lyndagrace said...

That's quite a list. I never stopped to think about what I learn, surely on a daily basis. I'm going to try to be more aware. I have a feeling it might be quite therapeutic.
I have never been to a 12 step program, but somehow "Figuring It Out is not one of the Steps." resonates with me in many ways.
I too have become aware that I ask my adult children too many questions about their lives and that most times I'm probably not going to like the answers from one in particular. Which is why I am trying to curb that behavior.

Olga said...

This is such a valuable exercise--taking the time to stop and really clarify what you have learned. I try to follow your example. Try! being the operative word.

b+ (Retire In Style Blog) said...

My daughter tells me regularly that "You are not in charge Mother." a loving way. It is very difficult for me because besides my husband, children and grandchildren are all I have left to be in charge of now. But I am learning to keep my own counsel. As with your husband including you in medical decisions, they come to me once in awhile.

What I am taking from the way things are now is that I am at peace a lot more. Not being required to worry over things I have no control of is a very freeing and wonderful thing.

Be well Linda and keep on learning.