The Importance of Story
I spent the last few days reflecting on which ceremonies form part of my everyday life. The word that struck a chord, as I contemplated all the factors that make up the hours of each day, each week, or month – balance. What would I miss by its absence? I realized I do have routines, ceremonies if you will, that form part of each day and enable me to be who I am, and do the necessary tasks of life, both fun and ordinary.
I strive to find a balance between my need and desire for quiet, reflective times and the energy of interactions with the variety of people in my life. I am fortunate and blessed to have a wonderful husband to cheer me on, encourage me to pursue my writing, speaking, and storytelling. I have friends from a variety of walks of life and backgrounds who have my back.
My youngest daughter, though a young adult, has some special needs and still lives with us. I enjoy getting up earlier than my husband and daughter. Some mornings I sneak out of the house and spend an hour at the pool. Other times I sit quietly, reflecting, reading a short meditation, and pulling out a pretty journal to help me gather my thoughts and emotions. At times this journal writing becomes an opportunity for a brain dump of frustration or gratitude, depending on the circumstances. At other times it is simply a record of events, plans or possibly a few ideas for family stories which beg to be told.
Another ceremony which happens most days when we all are at home, is my morning visit with my daughter and her favourite stuffed animal friends. Even as an adult these are important to her, helping her communicate more freely through the voices we’ve attributed to several of them. It also allows both of us to give our imaginations free reign, and offers me a beautiful way to engage with her in fun, storytelling adventures. Each evening she longs for me to be home to finish our day in a similar way.
The ceremonies of my life must include balance between the sacred quiet times, and the bustle and energy of communicating with others. The quiet within my spirit comes through music, a journal, pens in the colours of the rainbow, beautiful, thoughtful words to meditate on, and the beauty of a sunrise. These elements rejuvenate me. Yet when I have too much alone time I desperately long for the opportunity to be energized and revitalized by connecting with others, and telling stories to encourage and offer a glimmer of hope even in the tough times of life.
Written by: Carol Harrison