#cultivatecourageous · #write31days · Books · Family · Goodness · relationships

half empty or half full?

Along my way I saw this rooster.  You know, middle of nowhere stuff.  So I pulled over, like I do.

I don’t see loose chickens everyday, and I wanted to know what this one was up to.  From my car I was snapping pictures when the farmer came out of the barn.  She casually removed her work gloves and peered sideways at me.

“Explain yourself.” she seemed to say, as she checked my plates.

+MERCY, they say.

“I was just admiring your chicken!   He?  He is so beautiful.  Is he just wandering loose?”  I said, fumbling.

“Oh yeah, he stays pretty close.  Hasn’t attacked anyone in a while, so…”.

As she trailed off, my curiosity vaporized.  The caption on my photo transformed in my mind from “Chicken on a back country road” to “Moments before her untimely death”.

Is the glass half empty or half full?

One person sees my back yard full of leaves as a full Saturday’s chore, another sees the same view as a wonderland of color.

A friend told me this week that she always pictures everything going wrong on the way through adventures, and I never would have guessed this from her playful demeanor.

In this episode of Hidden Brain, a favorite podcast of mine, the host explored the concept of whether a terrible event that has a silver lining becomes a blessing.

When things happen to us, we sift and resift information to shape how we see the world….it’s all in the framing. – Shankar Vedantam

Asking our friends about their core optimism or pessimism is always fascinating.  You may think you have a handle on where she falls on the spectrum just from doing life together, but your opinion about her does not make it so.  The right amount of curiosity cracks open a doorway to deeper trust.

img_4af681b6f887-1

In the midst of terror and suffering, goodness is still stubbornly afoot. – Julia Cameron

I was at my father’s appointment today with the doctor who is helping us process his Alzheimer’s.   During the exploratory questions, I found myself reaching to comfort my Dad with a glance, and re-wording his stories to be sure he was understood.  The volley between daughter and shield.  Dementia is a stranger we are learning, the irony of it is slow and sweet.

Driving away, I was shockingly happy.  This diagnosis has given us something very special – the chance to show our value to each other in these small tap taps and urgent eye rescues.  One glassy look that says, “Lynniethepooh, I’m glad you came.” makes all the data drift into a box I can open tomorrow.  In the here and now, I’m not running the odds or outrunning chickens.  I am special to my father and it fills up my glass.

~

Did you miss a question or two in the series? Just head over to the main topic page for #CultivateCourageous.

3 thoughts on “half empty or half full?

Don't be shy...add your thoughts here.