Category: Radiance

My Own Celebration

“When you do not love yourself, you become “needy,” and you try to get the love you need through others. When you deny your own needs, you resort to manipulation, control, or pitiful begging to get others to fulfill your needs.

In the early days of our marriage, I was “needy,” wanting love from my husband that I couldn’t give myself. Every spring, I dropped clear hints of my love of daffodils, hoping he would bring me daffodils. While he did many things for me, he never brought me daffodils. One day, some years later, as I was beginning to learn about loving oneself, I thought, “I will buy some daffodils.”

The day I bought myself daffodils was not a sad one. Instead, it was a day of victory in my realization that I could honor my celebration of spring with the beauty of the spring daffodils. In confession, I must say that I have extended this, and now celebrate fall with chrysanthemums, Christmas with pine boughs, and summer with bouquets of daisies. These small gifts nurture my heart. Having lunch alone in a cozy restaurant with a favorite book nurtures my heart. Buying a new book or an inspirational tape recording for listening in my car nurtures my heart. While my beloved nurtures me in ways he things are important, I have great joy in the self-love of my own celebration.”

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

Note: This book, Reflections of the Heart was shared with me by a dear friend and reader. Her mother published this book and I have enjoyed it so much that I’ve found some poems and other golden nuggets to share from it. Thank you, Sherilyn.

Jenna

She is nine
and she asked me,
“Grandma,
are you rich?”
“Am I rich?”
What does the
wisdom of my heart say?

“Yes, Jenna, I am rich, for
I own the golden
sunlight of the morning
and the evening star
of the north.
My emeralds are the oak leaves
and my diamonds their dew drops.
More beautiful than rubies
are the crimson roses
that climb the picket fence.

My home is large and very beautiful
stretching from daybreak
to nightfall.
Decorated with fields of wild flowers
and flocks of flying geese.

For you see, Jenna,
the deep blue ocean
with its dancing waves
and the great pines
that sing in the breeze
belong to me.

But most precious
of all my riches
Are the people
of my life.

Each a rare jewel
an original,
a gift.
Each with a smile
like no other,
a beauty
to melt my heart,
a flower
to fill my bouquet of life.

Yes, Jenna
When you run
to hug me;
when the gentle night
holds me in my sleep;
when the sun
warms the day;
when your grandfather whistles–
I am rich beyond measure,
for I have known
the wonder of Love.”

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

Love’s Surprise

I thought the point was happiness,
but my heart
was seeking Love.

Then the goal became success,
but my heart
was seeking Love.
Finally, I hoped for peace,
but my heart
was seeking Love.

In the end my heart prevailed;
Love became my goal.
How? Where?
“Love others and they will love you,”
I was told,
but often they did not.
“Give love and it will return to you,”
but often it did not.
What then is the secret?

Then Love answered,
“Don't wait on love
from this or that person;
receive love from
where it is given.”

“See how this blooming daisy
offers its love,
how the smile
of a stranger,
the kindness of a friend,
the glory of the sunrise
love you?”

And I began to learn
Love is offered throughout my day;
my heart can be filled by
unexpected bits of love
from here, from there,
if I but have eyes to see
and heart to receive.

— Donna F. Fletcher
Reflections of the Heart

Where Do You See Yourself?

[I wrote this in Jan 2016 and it was published in a magazine.]

Where Do You See Yourself In 10 Years?

I’ve always loved movies. I’ve watched thousands of them in my life beginning as soon as I could change the channel on the old black & white TV, watching all those movies from the 30s and 40s. 

My latest favorite is called, The Intern, with Robert De Niro, Anne Hathaway, and Rene Russo. The reviews weren’t very good, but I love it (tells you what critics mean to me. . .) because it makes me feel good, and I like feeling good. If you haven’t seen it, Robert De Niro’s character applies for a “senior intern” position at a start-up clothing company and is assigned as a personal assistant to the CEO, Anne Hathaway, but she isn’t thrilled to deal with that. He overcomes her resistance with patience and by providing value, which I think almost everyone appreciates.

In the interview before getting the position, he is asked by a 20-something interviewer, “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?” His answer, “What? You mean when I’m 80?” The kid backpedals not really realizing that he is now 70 years old.

It’s one of those silly questions that employers and their representatives often ask. Heck, I asked it many times myself in interviewing potential hires. It must be one of those things that came from some expert seminar or something, but it is truly a silly question. I can remember being 20 and could not even imagine in my head being 30, so how would I answer that question? In the movie, he is 70 and at first, I laughed, and then I calculated that I am 68 this year, and could relate to his surprise at such a silly question.

It’s difficult to consider the future that far out. Heck, it’s difficult to consider it only a year from now, and the older I get in years, the more I focus on now. I can’t do anything in the future, but I certainly can do something now. 

Many want us to worry about the future, but that simply destroys our today. I get the question and its meaning. They want to know what our ambitions are, whether we have much ambition, what our goals are, how we will grow to become more, and so on. Wonderful. Why not ask those questions. But, here are some better ones to consider, I think. See if you agree.

How can I enjoy my life more right now? How can I be more loving right now? In what ways can I be of more value right now? With all my experience in life, who can I share the value of my unique perspective with for their benefit (and mine) right now? How can I love myself more right now? In what ways can I spend more time focusing on joy right now? What excites me? What causes me to want to dance? How can I find more inner peace right now?

How about this: Where do you see yourself right now?

Creating A Mood

Creating a mood is a fascinating thing to me. I'm sitting here writing at night with several taper candles around the room and soft-colored lights outside. It's magnificent. I have a hard time seeing my writing but that doesn't matter. I didn't want to stare at the computer screen as I so often do.

The light is yellow and soft. I love this self-created atmosphere. I love the mood and how this causes me to feel. I am relaxed, peaceful, enamored by the flickering light, and loving the soft multi-color lights in the carport that I just put up yesterday. It even has a remote control.

There's something about this kind of light that is magical. It exudes romance to me. I bought enough candles so that I can enjoy this often. I feel like I'm treating myself. It feels good.

“Dig Here,” The Angel Said

She caught me off guard when my soul said to me,
“Have we met?”

So surprised I was to hear her speak like that
I chuckled.

She began to sing a tale: “There was once a hardworking man
who used to worry so much because he could
not feed and clothe his children and
wife the way he wanted.

There was a beautiful little chapel in the village
where the man lived and one day while
he was praying, an angel
appeared.

The angel said, ‘Follow me.’ And he did out into an ancient forest.
‘Now dig here,’ the angel said. And the man felt strength in
his limbs he had not known since youth and with just
his bare hands he dug deep and found a
lost treasure, and his relationship
with the world changed.”

Finding our soul’s beauty does that–gives us
tremendous freedom
from worry.

“Dig here,” the angel said–
“in your soul
in your
soul.”

— St. John of the Cross

What Kind Of God?

What kind of God would He be
if He did not hear the
bangles ring on
an ant’s
wrist

as they move the earth
in their sweet
dance?

And what kind of God would He be
if a leaf’s prayer was not as precious to creation
as the prayer His own son sang
from the glorious depth
of his soul–
for us.

And what kind of God would He be
if the vote of millions in this world could sway Him
to change the divine
law of
love

that speaks so clearly with compassion’s elegant tongue,
saying, eternally saying:

all are forgiven–moreover, dears,
no one has ever been
guilty.

— Kabir

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Mesa, AZ