Note: I read all comments and respond to most. --- New posts every 10 to 15 days...except when life decides to get in my way by dropping a log into my pond.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I'm Not Heavy... It's My Heart

Heaviness comes in different sized packages with a vast array of trimmings. But no matter what the shape or content, it will make an individual feel small, and at times, insignificant. It is really nice to know there is a way to remedy it.

                       Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: 
                                 but a good word maketh it glad.

Quite some time ago, I was given the challenge of learning how to lay fresh sod. I had to travel on the back of a flatbed truck to the sod site, load the rolls onto the truck, ride back to the landscape site, unload and roll out the sod, then carefully tuck in all the seams. There was one tiny detail I hadn't given any thought to - the area had just endured one of its worst torrential downpours in years! 

I had to draw on a lot of my core principles that day - like mental stamina and how to pace myself. The sod was very heavy. It took 2 to 3 people just to load and unload each and every roll! By the end of the day, my mud-caked boots and throbbing legs were telling me that plodding through mud was far more than just a cliche.

That was the same year (my early 40's) when I had the opportunity to snowshoe for the first time - with a 15-20 pound day pack at nearly 10,000 feet in the Colorado Rockies. "What a blast!" I thought...until I discovered how much snow accumulates on top of each snowshoe after every 3 or 4 steps. No biggy. You just shake your foot to flip it off and keep moving.
Unless, of course, the snow happens to be ultra-sticky.

That little day pack began to feel terribly heavy after navigating a couple thousand feet of steep uphill terrain, causing my entire body to bend forward, stooping under the "load." Finally, my shortness of breath convinced me. I wasn't just carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders, but like the mythical Atlas, it was the entire celestial sphere!

I recovered from both of those adventures in pretty much the same way - by indulging myself with a lingering steam bath and cool-down shower, followed by a scrumptious meal, and a night of leisure with a good movie and my closest friends. There were lots of good words being shared about what I had accomplished, making my heart quite glad and proud of myself.

Yet the plodding in mud is felt by everyone at different times. The toil, and at times the drudge in life - as if painfully tramping through mire and wet. Or perhaps it's the weight of the world that's felt - being burdened with too much responsibility for a single person to bare. We may not always have the opening to make a heart glad with a good word, but I believe I have found the next best thing...
                                          The Value of a Smile
                                                       ~ Anonymous

My Daughter & her Friend
It costs nothing, but creates much.
It happens in a flash,
And the memory sometimes lasts forever.
It cannot be bought, begged, borrowed or stolen,
And it is of no earthly good to anyone,
Until it is given away.
So, if in your hurry and rush,
                                          You meet someone who is too weary
                                          To give you a smile -- leave one of yours.
                                          For there is no one on earth who needs a smile
                                          Quite as much as he who has none left to give.


Samantha Sotto-Yambao said...

Lovely post and your daughter's smile is even lovelier :)

M Kathy Brown said...

Thanks you so much, Sam. I really appreciate you stopping by :~)

Meg Waite Clayton said...

>a lingering steam bath and cool-down shower, followed by a scrumptious meal, and a night of leisure with a good movie and my closest friends.

this sounds like just what I need at the moment!

Lovely post, Kathy.

M Kathy Brown said...

Meg ~
Yep...gotta love those recovery moments for sure!

Thank you, kindly.

Dawn said...

I can so totally relate, Sam. I'm on medical leave from work because I felt like the weight of the world was about to crush me! Writing about it, and other challenges and blessings in my life, is leading me back to wellness. I think.

I had actually already visited and commented on your site a few days ago...but happy to do so again as part of the "ball."

M Kathy Brown said...

Hi Dawn ~
Don't see any comments from you during the past 3 or 4 days or weeks (!?) I'm wondering if you're thinking of Sam's site, since you wrote your comment to her... no matter, really. I'm glad you came by! And, I'm glad you could relate to what I wrote...

I wrote more on your site tonite :~)

Christa said...

Like the post, Mom. Great writing and great visual because of your word usages and so forth. I can "feel" the similarities of having a heavy heart and the stories you provided to get the point across... and totally love the smile ending... so so true... not only does a smile brighten someone else's day, it also causes your own heart to be merry when you yourself smile at others. I'm a full-hearted believer in that. But you expressed it best in your post.

Love that photo of my friend Jill and I. We were there for each other while in France, each other's rock. She's a forever friend.

M Kathy Brown said...

Christa ~
Thank you, dear :~)

I trust others will like the pic as well, because it communicated the poem so well!

Janel said...

I have recently taken on some of that weight, helping my parents with medical issues. Laughing and smiling, even if it's at my dog, makes me feel so much better.

M Kathy Brown said...

Janel ~
You've just added a whole new avenue of release I hadn't thought of...I have a dog, too...named Ginger :~)

Nancy said...

Hi Kathy, nice blog! Yes, I remember those snowshoe and hiking days. And I also remember that you had pneumonia and never complained. What a trooper you are! Nice pic of your daughter. She's beautiful! We'll have to talk editing sometime...that's my business now. xoxo

Nancy said...

Me again...I thought my pic would come up and you'd see me, but it didn't. Nancy (Englund) Brooks

M Kathy Brown said...

Nancy ~
You must not have a set pic for Google Blogger to use. I'll see what other pics you have on fb :~)