“Each day comes bearing it’s own gift. Untie the ribbons.” (BAH)

imagesThat was the writing prompt today in the journal class.  I don’t like to be reminded I should be happy, grateful . . .  I blame it on college – being surrounded by barefoot “flower children”, wearing tie-dye,  flowers stuck in flowing hair, singing about love (not to mention “practicing” it) while I was working 30 hours a week to pay for my education.  Did I mention I went to The University of California at Berkeley . . . ?

Berkeley was a foreign country across the world from the Arizona high school I had attended: Girls were allowed to wear pants to school one day a year – rodeo day; The only drug I knew about was aspirin; Acid was hydrochloric; If you went barefoot the bottom of your feet would be seared from the 124 degree summer heat and; “Love” was “necking” at the drive-in theatre. (It was aptly called “necking” as all the action took place from the neck up). 

I was out of my element in college.  I watched, listened, standing on the outside looking in and had no clue I was observing a cultural phenomena.  All my time and energy went to financial and academic survival.

Decades later hearing positive sayings, aphorisms, slogans my brain reels itself emotionally back to college when I was in survival mode – working, studying, envious of those who untied their ribbons and freely, spontaneously savored the gifts of each day of their lives.

Today I drive a VW Beetle with a peace sign on the side . . . go figure


9 comments on ““Each day comes bearing it’s own gift. Untie the ribbons.” (BAH)

  1. Berkeley in the 60’s. Ah yes, I recall being a high schooler walking down Haight, not having a clue as to what it all meant. Now, as a mid-level “Boomer”, I appreciate the small collection of badges and one Fillmore poster (now worth a LOT) that represent an era full of love and potential. Funny how it all collapsed into .the “me” generation of the 90’s and early 2000’s where greed became good.

    I think your work and study ethic service you well and provided many ribbons for the future (now).


  2. Oh, I’m right with you, Judy-Judith. And I didn’t even go to Berkeley (although I did go to a very nice Middle Eastern restaurant there once…) I’m a big fan of Barbara Erhrenreich’s writing on this subject (e.g. her fabulous book Bright-Sided, described as “a sharp-witted knockdown of America’s love affair with positive thinking.”) Her description of her breast cancer experience is priceless, surrounded as she was by eternally positive people who kept telling her that cancer was a gift, and that if she just believed and thought good thoughts, she could “beat” this diagnosis. There was little tolerance for feeling afraid or angry or overwhelmed. And if she dared to express those negative emotions, it would simply endanger her successful treatment outcome because of such a bad attitude!

    I’m generally a naturally cheerful and optimistic person, but even I cringe at the cheery slogans out there.

    Hugs and rainbows…


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