Arztdame: Redux

1. Love isnt’t always a feeling. Sometimes it is a choice.

2. Love cannot exist without respect.

3. Often times, the most powerful thing for healing a relationship is the ability to say “I’m sorry”.

Oct 2
What I Have Learned

When I see and hear the multitude of posts and comments saying to “pray for Colorado” and lamenting the massive destruction wreaked by the wildfires, I can’t help but shake my head. Despite what we human beings believe, wildfire is a very natural, healing mechanism; we cannot expect it to stop simply because humans have moved into an area. Old, dead growth must be cleared. Certain varieties of pine need fire to melt the resin holding their cones shut, while others (such as the Bishop Pine) need fire in order to regenerate; fire suppression can actually kill off these species of tree. Killing off trees leads to ecological domino effects that may be irreparable, and all for what? Our McMansions? We are a far too self-centered, materialistic society. Instead of mourning what has been lost, we should look at what can be gained: a greater respect and understanding of the awesome power of the Earth we live on, the people around us, and the value of the relationships that sustain us in such times. Homes can be rebuilt. Material belongings can be replaced (and those that can’t? Well, they’re just inanimate objects). Our focus ultimately needs to shift to what is really important in life, and it isn’t stuff.

I remember growing up in Colorado and hearing of fires every summer; the joke is that it isn’t summer unless something is burning. Colorado has been a tinderbox for a long, long time. The fires are the mountains’ way of healing themselves from all the dead vegetation as a result of years of drought and beetle kill. New growth cannot root where the dead chokes it out. The wildlife that inhabits these areas needs these fires because they cannot thrive on dead plants. With time, the Rockies will heal, and will be more beautiful than ever with all the new life and growth. Homes can be rebuilt, and we can use this as an opportunity to grow and improve as a society because when we take a good look at the world at large, these “natural disasters” will never end. We need to learn how to live with Mother Nature because ultimately, humans are the only species that the Earth can live without.

(Note: the one woman who died as a result of these fires died because she refused to leave despite the many attempts at coaxing her out of her house.)

Jun 30
A Realistic Optimist’s View
Jun 9

Para mi novio. Él me inspira más que él sabe.

Through being the child of two divorces and suffering my own failed marriage and other dating relationships, I have come to this conclusion: While love is the obvious ingredient, respect is the ultimate prerequisite for a successful relationship because without respect, love cannot exist.

Jun 8
Love is a by-product

Nothing like getting stuck on a rock in the middle of a wide river between two beefy rapids with your boat stuck up in a tree (true story)- with a mildly risky rescue being the only way off- to make you realize just how little control we have over our own lives. Now, I’m not a proponent for predestination, but life is something that is bigger than ourselves. When I’m in my kayak, I’m the only one who can choose where I go and what I do. But, the river into which I am venturing is a force much larger and greater than myself, and it doesn’t care what I do. I can use its force to my advantage, but I can also get myself into a bad spot if I miscalculate or misjudge. And you know what? The river doesn’t care! It just keeps on like it always has and always will, not giving any thought to who it might take down along the way. As a result of this, my experience on the river is solely dependent on how I react to it. My enjoyment or misery is purely self-inflicted. Panic never does any good, and if anything, just makes things worse. Another lesson I learned yesterday is that no matter how badly I wanted off of that damn river, I was the only one who could get me off. I was the only one who could haul myself and my gear up a 30 foot embankment to walk a half mile along an active railroad track because I didn’t want to run a series of rapids (panic and fear can also skew judgement in a strange way). I was the only one who could get back on the river to get to the take out. It was only myself who could get me to the end of the run. I also realized the true value of having trustworthy folks with you, and of trusting their judgement when every fear-stricken fiber in your body is saying “No! Are you crazy?” At the end of the day, bruised, bled, and frustrated beyond belief, I realized that not only is the river good for keeping my ego in check, it is good for my fortitude and perseverance because I didn’t just sit down and cry, hoping someone would come along and bail me out. I put my big girl panties on, got back in my boat, and put back on the river who doesn’t care.

Mar 10