Saturday, March 28, 2009

On Finding Contentment:

I have a collection of bottles and jars in my house. I put them here and there around the rooms. Some are old, others are just pretty. I put dried flowers or potpourri in some, others hold collections of things.

I place odd name tags on them. Banshee Screams, Bat Blood, Mummy Tongues, Snake Snot, Grave Yard Dirt. I know what is in the jars and bottles but I also like to keep others guessing.

Some of this stuff I use and others are just for show. Like the seeds I used to collect for the kids to make art project from, gluing them to paper or other objects and painting over them for texture. The kids have long since grown but I found myself still collecting seeds.

One day long ago I was upset. I wanted something that I couldn’t afford and was in a foul mood about it. I was told I could have it but then when the cost was finally discovered the long promised gift was taken back. I was in despair from disappointment.

I was making the whole family miserable because I was discontented. I knew I deserved this object but the family didn’t deserve to suffer because I couldn’t have it.

I wanted to be a good example to my children so I tried to suck it up. I was letting a stupid want taint an otherwise beautiful day. But I was truly upset and needed to vent. I grabbed the dried seeds from the kitchen window sill and proceeded to straighten the house. I was headed to the box in my closet where I kept crafting supplies I didn’t want the kids to get into when I wasn’t supervising, to put them away.

I was interrupted by this and that, and my fist got tighter and tighter around the seeds. I pushed all my frustration into those little brown apple seeds in my hand as I helped one kid dress and the other find their homework that morning. Next thing I knew I was back in the kitchen getting the kids off to school and the seeds where still in my hand.

I was feeling better and the kids went happily off on their day. Later that day I burned the seeds in an act of dispensing the bad feeling forever.

While I was watching them burn I realized I was also getting rid of the seeds of my discontent in the form of the real seeds in front of me.

From then on I always had a seed ready for a bad day. I’d tuck it in a pocket and let it drain the bad feeling away as I fingered it there.

Now, all I have to do is think about the jar marked ‘Seeds of Discontent’ on my dresser before I let my ill moods infect the family again.



Oh, I like the names on your bottles!

And the seed burning seems quite useful. I've been at white sage cleansings, but your idea, while along the same line, goes after the "bad" in a different way.

Mouse said...

Heh.. I love the bottle names! I used to have a few antique-looking bottles in the medicine cabinet of one of our houses that had fake vintage poison labels on them... and jars with alien babies (thanks Halloween section at Target) in them. You could always tell whether some unfortunate guest 'peeked' in the cabinet while in the bathroom... lol.