Canvas of Life

woman juggling fruit“I just need to make it to Thanksgiving.” I say to my friend Joyce this morning as I lay my head on the surface in front of me. I want to bang my head repeatedly, but don’t and feel I am showing remarkable restraint. I think I should get a prize.

“It’s just 3 more weeks,” I continue, “and I’ve known since Labor Day that I needed to just get to Thanksgiving, so I am almost there.”

Yes, for the last 9 weeks (I just counted), I have been running a marathon at a sprinter pace and it’s all winding up to a photo finish. It’s been like juggling too many balls in the air while riding a unicycle. It’s been fun.

It’s been fun to have school start with all of the bells and whistles that accompany that event.

It’s been fun to have my husband start a new job (still in another state) for a bank, so our banking changes, our healthcare, his apartment moves and his short term attention adjusts to be all encompassing for his new venture.

It’s been fun to launch the secondary school search with the open houses, tours, interviews, tests and applications.

It’s been fun to now have two middle schoolers in the house – that has been dramatic and ESPECIALLY fun.

It’s been super fun to have every appliance we own go on hiatus. I love going to the laundry mat, having frozen food on the top shelf of the refrigerator, seeing dishes filled with gunk after the dishwasher finishes its cycle, but most of all I loved the oven fire we had on Sunday. (Yes, I kid you not.)

I have also been lucky to have lots of movement for this new business. I have speaking engagements, a new book coming out, a TV show to tape and more people requesting help and information. So that has actually been truly fun.

So, it’s been fun and through all of this, I have been calm. Really. I am breathing like a maniac, but still breathing.

However, it’s a lot. Seriously, it’s too much and as I drive home today, I realize that all of the breathing in the world is not going to help me through the next three weeks. I need to pull out the big guns.

So, I meditate. Yes really. I do practice what I preach. I knew a moment of pause or a bit of settling was not cutting it any longer, so I needed to hit the reset button – in a major way. So instead of my quick daily meditation, I burrowed in for a long one. It was restorative and rejuvenating and most importantly, it was also enlightening.

I got a glimpse of life from 30,000 feet and I have to say it is beautiful. It is truly spectacular. Life is amazing.

oil paint textures on canvas


I glimpsed life as a canvas with all of the colors swirling around to make incredible pictures. Our health and wellness are the blues and the greens. Our work, administrative duties and obligations are the tans and grays. Our family and loved ones are the reds and our friends are the oranges. Change is reflected in yellows and golds and creativity in purples and pinks. The blacks, whites and brilliant reflective colors are our feelings ranging from grief to joy.

In noticing the beauty, I am able to put all of the ‘to-do’s’ into stunning color categories and I think this will help me get through the next 3 weeks. I can appreciate all of the purples and pinks for the creativity these colors represent. I can stuff all of the administrative to-do’s into the tans and grays and see myself wiping them away as I complete them. In knowing that change is one color, I can combine the middle school start for my daughter, secondary school for my son, job change for my husband and appliance fixing/replacing and know that these are finite and therefore doable. It’s now just one color – I can handle that.

I can get to Thanksgiving. It’s just 3 weeks and I can now easily breathe my way through all of it. I will no longer think of it as juggling balls in the air, but as painting beautiful colors across a canvas. It’s calming and soothing to think of spreading paint over a vast surface. There is no diving for a ball while juggling and hoping to avoid a face plant. There is just paint and color.

I am going to make pictures out of these amazing colors. I am going to think of Thanksgiving and our trip to palm trees, sandy white beaches and fruity umbrella drinks. Now that’s a picture.

Two cocktail drinks by a tropical pool

I am off to a good start. My oven has been cleaning for ½ hour and so far, no kitchen fire, so when the appliance guy comes for the dishwasher and refrigerator, perhaps he can skip the oven.

Oh, I have to go. Our oil burner guy is here (that is a completely different story).

As always wishing you joy and CALM,