Come on in... relax, kick off your shoes, and get cozy for a few minutes. I intend this space to be a happy and encouraging spot in your day where perhaps you'll sign off feeling better than you did when you signed on.

I have so much in life that I want to create, experience, and wrap my head around, and I bet you do too. I dedicate this space as a safe place to "grow" our seeds... Seeds of movement to increase our joy, inspiration, and insight - Seeds of change and evolution of our souls - Seeds of of celebration and creativity - a place where we thrive to live lives we're proud of.

How cool is it that we are given the opportunity to create a future that doesn't exist yet. That we have the choice in creating our lives and planting seeds that will grow into our dreams. I want to learn more everyday about how to do this in my life, and I would love for you to join me.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Law of Proportion and Good Old Mark Twain

"Nothing that grieves us can be called little:  by the eternal laws of proportion a child's loss of a doll and a king's loss of a crown are events of the same size."  - Mark Twain

I happened upon this quote while looking for something entirely different, but obviously this was the intended message for me because this baby jumped right off the page and into my lap and has layed there ever since.  It resonates with me on several levels.  First, it really touches me as a mother because there are many times when I am not aware of how great a "thing," an event, or a thought actually is to my children.  Perfect example... my son just came running up so excited... I mean like jumping up and down, crazy flipping stunt-on-the-floor excited that....(drum roll please....) on his Roblox computer game, he just got a new shirt with an orange fire-breathing dragon on it.  To me, well, to me it's something I am happy for him about but in a way that is like... "great, now can I finish writing this blog" kind of happy.  But to him, oh MAN it is really a fantastic thing... almost like me ordering that new pair of winter boots and jeans I've been wanting.  Probably even bigger.

Or when my daughter is writing a story on the computer, and I hurriedly ask her to log off  because it's dinner time.  Then she protests, and I get angry that she's not listening to me and it escalates into something that is uglier than need be.  But what I often fail to see is that all that typing... all that effort that she is pouring onto the keyboard has been incubating in her heart for weeks.  This is her baby.  She is as proud of her story as someone would be of creating a new law supporting unemployment.  She is as proud of her story as someone advancing Peace Talks between nations. 

Add caption
Sometimes as I'm vacuuming or cleaning up the house, I'll come across a vignette of pure creation... a little area in the corner of the living room where there are little characters all set up, and little blocks that have been built into some type of building, and little animals, robots, and barbies all posed up ready for something fun.  Sometimes I'll take a moment to think about the time and pure joy of creation that went into building that little world on the floor.  The hours the kids took choosing the characters and naming them and dressing them and building them homes, and the hours of pure and unbridled imagination that flowed in that space.  In one fell swoop my hand comes crashing down and swoops it up.... and what's left where there once was play, is now just a clean void waiting for the kids to come back.    

Good Old Mark Twain got the idea, didn't he?   And how spectacular it is that the things, events, and thoughts we adults might deem "silly" or " minuscule" in our kids' lives are truly magnificent to them, and should be to us as well.  Children know how to see miracles in everything, don't they?  And we really shouldn't stop with our children, should we?  We should extend the idea of proportion not only to being more aware of our childrens' things, events, and thoughts but to each individual we come in contact with whether it be the grocery store cashier, our friends, or our spouses. But let's take baby steps here.  It's going to be a challenge just to do it with my own kids let alone the cashier, But I'll get there!  

And one more thought on this quote... when I am going through tough times, I tend to say, "well, I know that I shouldn't be so down because other people go through many worse fates," or "I should feel lucky because it could be worse... we could have terrible health issues, or we could be living in poverty, or dead."  And my sweetheart mom has always said, "Yes, it could be worse, BUT you still feel pain over your problem, and it's still real and true for YOU.  Your problems are valid and apply to  you.  You can't compare your problems to others' problems.  Mr. Twain and my mom are pretty smart cookies!  

Which leads to my last quick thought about Mr. Twain's quote.... Proportion means "the relationship of one thing to another in size, degree, and amount."  Knowing that each of us are living from our own vantage point, our own perspective... that no other person in the world is standing in our shoes and experiencing exactly what we're experiencing, and that the "eternal laws of proportion" are in play, how can we possibly judge another?  Kind of silly even trying, isn't it?   

So, today I intend to be more present and more aware of what is really important in my children's (and the store clerk's) lives, not what I think SHOULD be important in their lives, but whatever THEY deem important... and value it. 

And I intend to leave judgement to the Universe. 

I'd love your thoughts on this quote!  I appreciate your visit.



  1. Love it! Great find! Gotta write that quote down :) I really love the pics in the post, too!

  2. you are making some good points today... I needed to hear this stuff, thanks for sharing...

  3. very nice & thought provoking

  4. It's true that we need to make space for other people's feelings and not overlay our expectations over theirs, particularly our children. And it's always a great revelation to be able to see things from another person's perspective. That's a very important ability.

    However, I think that the law of proportion breaks down at a certain point.
    A person can't go overboard because there is something to be said for helping one's children have the right attitude about life.

    I have found that how we react to things that happen to us makes the most profound difference in every way. While we don't minimize the joy or pain our children might feel over something, and we should empathize with them (because empathy is really what Twain is pitching) we shouldn't encourage them to feel self-pity or to turn something which in the scope of the "big picture" (people starving to death in Africa versus something really not that important - like the Wii breaks down) into a major incident.

    Every child feels that he or she is the center of the universe. One of our jobs as parents is to help them see that they aren't. I think that a really important thing to do in a child's life is to take them to serve somewhere where there is someone in worse circumstances. This helps them get perspective without trying to imprint it on them.

    What we need to develop is a positive attitude towards things that happen to us. A simple example, not too serious is this: Let's look at two different people who are on an full airplane stuck on the runway for an unknown reason and it's hot. The person who has a negative attitude towards things that happen to him begins to get frustrated and as it gets hot and the time drags on, he complains and makes everyone around him agitated and upset--constantly bothering the flight attendants and everyone else. The person who has a positive attitude looks at this as an opportunity to get to know the people around him and thinks of their well being rather than his discomfort. The people around him are engaged and entertained and the time goes by quicker. The question is: which person would you rather be sitting next to? And the next question is: which person would you rather act like?

    The only difference between their circumstances was their attitude in how they reacted to them. If we can instill this positive outlook into our children - they can get through the really, truly awful things that life brings less crippled emotionally and spiritually, than the drama queen/king who makes herself/himself miserable and consequently everyone in her/his sphere of influence.

    So, while we elect to empathize with other people and our children, we also need to help them have a proper perspective on their problem.

    But one thing regarding your child in the midst of writing a story has to do with creativity. We should never interrupt anyone in the midst of a creative activity if at all possible - especially writing because they can lose the whole content of something wonderful that they were working on. Ideas are so fleeting and creativity is a sprite which lights for a moment and then flees. It's not so much empathizing with their concern but placing value on their efforts.

  5. Thank you so much for your insights. I absolutely agree that a positive attitude is the key to dealing with life... and the difference between a life of yuck or a life of joy. I also liked your idea of guiding our children to serve others... what a wonderful way to gently nudge them to understand their place in the world. Thanks, Stacey

  6. Stacey, found you through Laura's blog and I'm thrilled that I did. I found myself shaking my head yes and mentally saying yes over and over while reading this... you really brought it home. And I see myself in alot of what you said especially "the big picture", weighing on the side of your Mom's thoughts...

    Thanks for sharing! Love your creations and thoughts!