The lovely ladies' choir meets in the sanctuary of a church. As I waited for rehearsal to finish one evening, I picked up this questionnaire, titled "Growing with Grace," that had been left on the pew. I don't know if it was intended for the congregation as a whole, a Bible study group, a youth group, another group meeting in that space? But the questions are interesting, so I'm throwing them out here.
Eight Questions About Our Lives Because Eight Questions Are Plenty
1. What is the best part of your life right now?
I am blessed. I can count my blessings and really feel them. I wake up in the morning and know that I have been blessed beyond measure. I am healthy. I have a husband who loves me enough to build a chicken coop even though he could not care less about chickens. I have children who teach me and challenge me to be a better person. I have dear friends who care about me, who make me laugh and who make me think. I live in a beautiful home and have healthy food to eat and clean water to drink.
2. What do you think the best part of the near future will be?
Learning with my children and watching them all grow. They are all on the threshold of new adventures. Planting the garden and watching it grow. Swinging in the hammock in the sunshine. Living my life.
3. What are you most afraid of?
Losing a child. Losing my memories. Getting old. Dying young.
4. What are you a little worried about?
Steering, parenting, guiding my girls through their teen years. What if I say the wrong things? What if I don't say the right things? What if they make serious mistakes? What if I do?
I'm not consumed with worry over the lovely ladies, but it's in the back of my mind, always. They're such shining lights. I love them so much. I want them to be happy and successful.
5. What do you dream of?
Literally? The most bizarre things you can imagine.
Figuratively, as in my hopes and aspirations? I dream of living a simple life, a mindful life, a thoughtful life. I want to live in the country and raise chickens and bees and blueberries. I want to choose my life, not drift through it.
6. Who do you trust the most to share these things with?
My husband. My dear friends. My sisters. My mom.
Look how many people I've got in my life with whom I can share my hopes and dreams. I am blessed.
7. What questions do you have?
You know, I expect that this question was intended to trigger specific questions related to the group for whom the questionnaire was originally intended, but isn't this a good general question? We all have questions, big ones and little ones. What do we really want to know?
Why is there evil in the world?
How many stars are in the sky?
Do people like me?
Are the colors that you see the same as the colors I see?
What is the purpose of all of this? What is my purpose?
Who in heaven's name thought up the Chia pet and said to themselves, "Hey, that's a great idea?"
8. What gifts and skills can you share?
Gifts: Passion and enthusiasm. Flexibility. Delight. The ability to cut to the heart of a problem. And to solve it. A connection to the natural world. A genuine desire to see the best in other people.
Skills: Stuff I can do? I can multi-task like nobody's business. I can clip a chicken's wings. I can overthink just about anything. I can walk and chew gum at the same time. I can climb a tree. I can teach. I can learn.
I'm going to turn this into a meme. I'm even going to "tag" people, even though I'm always a little afraid to leave someone out. What if someone gets hurt feelings at being left out? Then you'll secretly hate me.
Or what if a person I've tagged thinks it's dumb? Or what if they think I'm dumb? What if I tag you and you already secretly hate me, and you roll your eyes and say, "She's so dumb."
What if I just get over myself already and invite a few people to play along and (now I'm really stretching here, so bear with me) realize that since your lives are not about me (go figure) then if you don't want to play, it's probably got nothing to do with me at all, even if you do think I'm dumb????
So here's who I'll tag:
My Irie sis, because she's smart and I like to read and hear what she has to say. And because even if she thinks I'm dumb, she's too polite to tell me. I think.
Melly, because she's thoughtful, as in full-of-thought, and her thoughts make me think new thoughts of my own.
Laura, because she likes to do a Tuesday Ten every now and then. Plus she's smart too.
Karisma, because she's funny and I like reading about her life.
Lanna, because both her picture and her "voice" remind me of a dear friend.
And...I know I have to stop sometime, but I want to add Sara because even though I don't know her in real life, I know I like her.
And anyone else who wants to play, even if you secretly hate me because I left you out or if you think I'm dumb.
Growing with grace. What a lovely sentiment, one worth working toward. Life is good.