There is a pond in the Asian Gardens at the Naples Botanical Gardens. This week there was something floating on the surface that allowed me to capture the very subtle and usually unnoticed movement of the water that came under the footbridge from the small water fall to the left. It was so subtle that I didn’t notice the movement, just the pattern created in the current and when the surface moved around the water plants.
As I look at this image, it makes me wonder about the gentle currents in my life, like the tapestry of my life or the neural connections in my brain. There are major events that make a splash, sometimes desired but sometimes not. They require a conscious effort to adjust to and the changes they create are evident. What about all the day-to-day events that are almost unnoticed but still create the pattern of my life. What about my weekly visits to the botanical gardens where I am slowly learning about my southern environment and improving my photography? Did the short visit by Alana, one of our neighbors, affect my life? I felt moved by seeing her for the first time this year. She had put her mother in a care facility because of Alzheimer. I felt Alana’s pain because her mother, a snowbird who lived next door to me in the winter, played Frank Sinatra loud enough so I could also enjoy him. I was very important to mother and now I feel her absence.
How much do we let all that data of life, all those subtle experiences, impact our life? I watch more television in Florida, and we watch more movies. Last night we watched the movie “Iris” again. Judy Dench plays Dame Iris who is a famous fiction writer, someone who loves words and education, who develops Alzeimer. I sobbed with this viewing. I sobbed for Iris as she looses that which is most dear to her. I sobbed harder for her husband who is watching his wife slip away and feels so helpless and angry. I sobbed because I don’t want that to happen to J and I.
I had a work colleague who is a sociologist and loves movies. A criteria he uses to judge films is whether they make a difference in his life. I hope J & I hold onto all that is good in our lives together, because we know that some day, somehow we will loose it. Iris reminded me of that. I’m a Judy Dench fan so we went to see Philomena last week. Good movie and good acting, but did it make a difference in my life? It was entertaining and raised some interesting questions about society and pregnancy and adoption. I think the impact on me was more subtle, maybe undetectable but present.
I have been wondering about those negative influences, life’s un-pleasantries, that we allow in. They must make a difference, impact us in the subtle ways that the movie Philomena impacted me. I know that I am able to “just say no” to some influences, but what about those mild irritants that I don’t acknowledge. Do I need to give more thought to where I want the currents of my life to take me and what I want the pattern of my life to look like? Do the minor irritants sometimes need to be endured for the greater good? I’m not ready to give examples of this but I will be pondering it. Maybe in another post.