Says who?

Dear Friends,

Source: Best Made, available here

A couple of nights ago Mr. Mom and I were watching the local news.

This was, in itself, newsworthy. We never watch the local news for reasons that could fill another post but will become clear in just a moment.

For the weather lead-in, the female anchor said “It’s a rainy and miserable night out there, folks.”

To which Mr. Mom shouted “Says who?”

I looked at the man talking to my television, but he was clearly not done yet. “Really!” he continued. “By whose definition is it miserable?”

I wasn’t sure what surprised me most — a broadcaster declaring my evening “miserable” or Mr. Mom arguing with the broadcaster. (He’s really not the quarrelsome type, not to mention he generally avoids televised knotheads.)

Mr. Mom left the room, then, but I contemplated the point for a good 24 hours, reflecting on what makes people think they’re miserable.

Surely not a little mid-winter rain, do you think?

I could go on and on about the power of words, about the self-fulfilling prophecy of negative thinking, about the necessity of gratitude to positively shape one’s life, but instead of launching into what would probably be a very dry lecture, I think I’ll share this little gem instead, from Tricycle, a Buddhist magazine:

Whatever your difficulties . . . you can always remember that you are free in every moment to set the compass of your heart to your highest intentions. In fact, the two things that you are always free to do—despite your circumstances—are to be present and to be willing to love.

Oh, how those words sent joy pulsing through me. Just think, your heart has a compass and you are free — in every moment — to set it to your highest intention.

Have you ever heard anything so revolutionary? So empowering? So potentially potent?

And if it’s true, if we may chart our course by the nobility of our hearts, then there is really only one relevant question in our lives:

Why don’t we do it . . .




With gratitude {for the power of words to awaken and enlighten us},

Joan, who has always thought cock-eyed optimism is peculiarly underrated


  1. I realize this post is not really about weather at all, but just to bolster MrM’s point a bit – here in Central Texas we just went through a powerful front bringing us torrential rains overnight, no power in the AM and yet we were THRILLED because we’ve had so little rain over the past year. Despite wild winds, the beating of the rain and the persistent thunder, if you were attentive, you could practically hear the trees sighing with relief…

    Being the cock-eyed optimist in my particular bunch, I am tickled to a pleasing pink with the idea of everybody being free to choose loving presence at any given moment. A deep lesson and one I can use today. Thank you!

  2. Deb — I can’t help but comment on your phrase “if you were attentive.” I started this blog because I wondered how many blessings I miss in my life by not following your advice. Attentiveness, mindfulness . . . whatever you call it . . . it’s the magic key to unlocking life’s great potential.

  3. Just found this as I was perusing. A gem I’m passing along to a friend.

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