Friday, August 15, 2008

True View Friday Open Thread


We did this last week and now we're doing it again. It's your turn to give us a glimpse into your world. Every Friday we will ask you to start the conversation by asking you two questions:

What do you believe?
and
What have you observed or noticed this week as you've walked through your world?

Your thoughts can either reflect inward, stating something you believe strongly or is commentary on your own experience or your thoughts can move outward, retelling something you've noticed or observed (a particular interaction with another person, the way you resolved a conflict, a wonderful connection) as you went through your week. You can also ask a question that is either directed towards all people or something you truly wish to understand about a community.

I like to think of this open thread similar to a two-dimensional Christmas advent calendar (so says the Jewish lady) where you peel back the little windows and you get a glimpse of the house underneath. Each comment is a small window in a world that is uniquely and wonderfully your own. And if you notice something amazing inside a comment, connect with the writer and let them know.

If you are stuck, try beginning your sentence with "I believe..." and then explain your reasons behind the thought.

In addition to providing a view into your world, please respond to a thought that someone else threw into the conversation by adding a (+) before the commentor's sign-off name and then adding your thoughts. In other words, when you open a new comment box, write

+lollipop goldstein--

and then your comment (eg. +lollipop goldstein--in asking us to present what we believed has opened a huge, messy can of worms*).

As I've already stated in the comment manifesto, all thoughts should be respectful. Points-of-view are, by definition, very personal and one person's thoughts are not meant to reflect everyone's thoughts within a community. Comments that attack another person, are hateful in nature, or are seen as simply picking a fight and not starting a conversation will be deleted.

So give us a glimpse into your world and teach us something new about your corner of the blogosphere. What do you believe? What have you observed? What do you want to ask? In other words, how do you view the world?


* This is probably true, but if we're not willing to talk out the hard topics, open our hearts to another person's world, listen, and build that bridge, there is little point to this site.

25 comments:

calliope said...

I believe that almost every emotion we feel is a choice. I was in a situation this week where I instantly wanted to be upset and cry, but I was able to pause and pull myself out of going to an emotional security blanket reaction- which for me is getting upset. I realized that I get upset about a lot of things and that maybe it is something that I *do*. An hour later the very thing that had made me want to cry turned out to be something that will end up being very ok. I would have wasted an entire hour on a useless emotion.

manannieoakley said...

I believe that it is only within the communites we are involved in that true change can ever occur. I realized this week that I have been waiting... Waiting to go to college before exploring new careers, waiting for the right moment to get involved in the political campaign I claim to be so passsionate about, waiting for inspiration to literally strike me over the head before writing my blog. I find myself jumping into new and random things more often lately. Maybe because I turn 32 in a week, maybe because I'm tired of waiting, maybe because the world needs one more voice of reason added to the steadily growing chorus. Whatever the reason I can't wait anymore, life is far too short.

*Calliope said that she is learning that reations are choices... I want to learn this too.

Miryam (mama o' the matrices) said...

I believe... that I should laugh at myself more often. It's so easy to take myself too seriously!

And when I do that, I'm doing it instead of just *being* - usually, just being with the kids, or hanging with my gal Perspective, or something else pretty damned useful.

So, laughter.

Lollipop Goldstein said...

I believe that I need to do what I need to do in order to get through something without thinking about embarrassment or ego. Who cares if I look like a bleeding psycho (okay, an anxious woman) if I am doing something that brings me peace of heart?

SeaStar said...

I believe the concept of tryog to do my best all the time is dangerous. I try instead to do "well enough" most of the time at most things and aim for excellencewhen possibble, especially with things that really matter. I have made myself so anxious and scattered at times in my life, trying to do my best at everything. Brilliance, when it happens, just blows through the roof on it's own accord anyway.

+Calliope, I love what you wrote about noticing your "go to" emotion of getting upset and learning to make different choices. I read (don't remember where) that most of us have a habitual go to emotion of either fear, hurt, or anger, Mine is fear, and I work to break that habit too, with mixed success. It feels good when it works, as it did for you.

+miryam _ thanks for the laughter reminder> i tend to take myself too seriously toO> Laugheter helps>

+lolipop goldstein _ thanks for bridges and especially this feature> i"ve been waiting all week> i love the opportunity for dialog>

SeaStar said...

I believe the concept of tryog to do my best all the time is dangerous. I try instead to do "well enough" most of the time at most things and aim for excellencewhen possibble, especially with things that really matter. I have made myself so anxious and scattered at times in my life, trying to do my best at everything. Brilliance, when it happens, just blows through the roof on it's own accord anyway.

+Calliope, I love what you wrote about noticing your "go to" emotion of getting upset and learning to make different choices. I read (don't remember where) that most of us have a habitual go to emotion of either fear, hurt, or anger, Mine is fear, and I work to break that habit too, with mixed success. It feels good when it works, as it did for you.

+miryam _ thanks for the laughter reminder> i tend to take myself too seriously toO> Laugheter helps>

+lolipop goldstein _ thanks for bridges and especially this feature> i"ve been waiting all week> i love the opportunity for dialog>

Lollipop Goldstein said...

+Sea Star--that is so true. You can't force the brilliance or the best. You can only do well enough. And leave space for more to come. I think when we spend the whole day critiquing ourselves, we go to bed without peace. At least, I know I do :-)

Miryam (mama o' the matrices) said...

+ SeaStar: yes. My best is poisonous. I scrape by daily, and remind myself to be pleased with that. Doesn't really work - perfectionism is a bitch - but hey, it's what I've got.

What we tell the kids - as if, by parrotting the line, we'll live it - is that everybody makes mistakes. The doctors, the parents, and especially the kids. It's our job to learn from the mistakes, and not just say 'sorry,' but try to do better.

I said this to the Eldest, and he told me that ever morning, I say that I'm going to try to do better. When will I actually do that? (grrr)

I told him that it isn't my job to actually DO better, it's my job to try. He liked that. And so do I!

Kate B said...

I believe that every tomorrow has the possibility to be a better day. When I get depressed and down, this is what keeps me going.

Caro said...

I believe that this life is all there is so we should make the most of it.

Tammy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tammy said...

I believe that some days my dogs are the only thing that pull me through. Humans can be overwhelming but the love and "kisses" of a dog can help heal the soul.

anymommy said...

I'm wondering about commenting. Specifically, ack, this is hard, I'm wondering if my comments are always welcome. I know the heart of this site is learning about others and sharing in experiences that I might not otherwise ever understand. I love that. But, I've found myself feeling a little lost in the face of some posts. They are so raw and open. It's amazing. I feel inadequate just saying. "I'm sorry." or "I hear you." But sometimes, that's all I have to contribute.

I especially struggle with posts about the pain of infertility or loss of children. Are supportive (and sensitive) comments always helpful - even if the commenter hasn't been through similar things, or can they be painful. I'd love to hear some thoughts.

calliope said...

+ anymommy- yes. comments, written for support, are always, always, always helpful. Within our community there is a lot I have not been through first hand, but I know pain when I read it. & I so know that sometimes we worry about saying the wrong thing when someone is being so raw. But, speaking from experience, it is more hurtful to write a raw post and hear nothing. Just a simple comment of "I am here" does so much. I think you are amazing for putting this much thoughts into comments. thank you.

SeaStar said...

+anymommy, I haven't lost children either, so I can't give specific answers about that or about infertility, except as my daughter has experienced both. I do know that my favorite word for being present when people are suffering is "abide". We don't have to understand, just abide and hold space and caring for each other.

Stacie said...

Calliope -- I totally agree that the choice is ours in regards to emotions. I've been through some rough times over the last several months and I started to dwell in the negative. I just knew that the bad energy was going to continue and I was "doomed" because everything kept spiraling out of control. Then I made a conscious effort to try to focus on the positive things that are in my life (and there are many). That has helped me tremendously. All it took was that little paradigm shift!

manannieoakley - love the communities can create change idea. An amazing instance of this is right here at Bridges and Stirrup Queens!

Miryam - I fall into that taking things to serious category, too. I am trying to make myself laugh (mostly at the stupid things I do (-:) more often than I cry.

Lollipop - you're right. Who cares? I bet others don't think anything negative about you when you react the way you do. That stigma tends to be something that we project on ourselves and often has little correlation to what others are thinking. (we are always harder on ourselves, aren't we?)

Seastar - I hear you on the perfectionist thing. Always being the best is exhausting for me and sets me up for failure more often than not. I did learn the quote "sometimes it's good enough to just show up" this year at work. And you know what? It was.

Kate - that is a great way to think about life!

Caro - I try to make the best of things, too. I have a harder time enjoying myself while I do it, though.

anymommy - I have thought the same. sometimes I keep myself from commenting (although I am getting better at that) because I am not quite sure if what I say would help, even if it is an "I hear you". I also worry about commenting and having the person in pain maybe linking back to my blog and being hurt by my cercumstances.

Annie said...

I believe that feelings of jealous and "it's just not fair" only make my life more painful. I am trying to learn to say, "It is what it is," accept my pain and grief and allow myself to feel all of those emotions, but not let them define me or control me. But I'm not there yet.

+anymommy, I truly believe that it is okay if "I'm sorry" or "I'm listening" is the only thing you have to offer. Like Calliope said, it is worse to only get silence in return, both in face to face conversations and online. It helps just to know that someone cares enough to say so, to know that someone recognizes my loss or pain or suffering, even if they can't understand it, even if they can't offer any words to help me through it. Being there is more than enough.

In fact, sometimes a few choice words are better. Sometimes, in an effort to be helpful or encouraging, people can blurt out some pretty awful things. It's better to say little when you are not sure what to say. It's even okay to just say that you don't know what to say.

anymommy said...

Your thoughts are so helpful. I've been worried. Some of the woman here have endured losses that I just haven't encountered ever before. It's humbling.

+Stacie I have had exactly the same thought. How can I comment and leave a link when my current post is pictures of my kids. But that in and of itself is selfish, I think, because it's not about me. I just wouldn't want to cause any more pain.

+Annie. Thank you. Wise words that I will use as my guide.

Lollipop Goldstein said...

+Anymommy and +Stacie...and...well...everyone who has jumped into this :-)

I have thought the same thing about my cheery orange icon--the discordance between this happy face and the sad news. Or writing about my twins knowing dead twin baby mamas are reading (and are good friends). Or commenting on the multitude of situations that have nothing to do with my life.

With all of my friends, there are so few overlaps in our lives. I have never been divorced and they have never been through prematurity with their children. And yet, we do meet in the middle. And I know that I've drawn a lot of comfort from friends who haven't experienced infertility. So I go with that when leaving a comment. That it's better to sit and listen and say something back then it is to talk to a wall.

ProfCJ said...

+calliope--on choosing emotions...lord, if that ain't a hard concept for some women to accept. I believe in tolerance and letting people do their own thing as long as said thing doesn't draw unwilling blood, and today, when faced with the word "fag" written in pink chalk on our sidewalk, I tried very hard to not care. To not take it personally, since my partner and I are very careful how we present ourselves in the neighborhood. To not be afraid as I remembered how a few weeks ago, someone threw a full 2-liter bottle of soda, hard, against one of the only lit windows in the house. Right now, I'm choosing to be uneasy (and admitting that even as the thunder rumbled overhead, I got a glass of water and rinsed away the offending chalk myself).

+kate b--I like to think that tomorrow can be better, too :)

Paz said...

I believe in holding close to one's heart that we are blessed. It is easy to see what is not right, hard or not what we want, but it is ironic that it is hard to see our own gifts. Bob Dylan says it the best, see the light surrounding you. (beautiful song, May you stay forever young)

+anymommy I think some of us are more eloquent than others, but really there is only one thing to say sometimes and that is I am sorry. That is the backbone of this community, the support, not goin' it alone. And there simply is nothing more eloquent than a person taking the time to hear your pain and commenting you a heartfelt I'm sorry. I am glad you raised this issue, I think about the power of "comments" often.

Jen said...

I believe in serendipity. I found this place when I really needed to find it. I can't believe there is this place and I just randomly stumbled on it. Of course there is no random but I am so thrilled I found this place when I did.

luna said...

+ anymommy and stacie, and others:
everyone has already said it so beautifully but I want to echo the same. as someone who has suffered infertility and the loss of my only child I can say that for me at least, a thoughtful comment and kind word are always welcome, from anyone.

sometimes it may seem trite to simply say I'm sorry, but it's a way to support someone who's been down a different path, and that is EXACTLY what this site is about. I'm here and I'm listening are very powerful sentiments to share. (mel, maybe you ought to re-post that one here too?) nothing anyone can say can erase the sorrow of what I've been through, but it helps to know I am not alone, that somewhere someone abides with me.

Antigone said...

I believe in leaving a negative net balance of suffering in the world.

Lollipop Goldstein said...

+Jen, I believe in Serendipity too and I'm so glad you found this place.