Looking for answers to life's questions

The Rush

I drove myself to the grocery store at a time where there would be fewer people in there. I wanted to go without my daughter who has a tendency to edit my cart. You know what I mean. You don’t need those chips or cookies mom. They aren’t good for either of us. I do know and that’s why I like to go alone. I can stroll through leisurely and look at everything. For me, every trip out of the house is a social event. Especially these days when we rarely go anywhere or see anyone.

Pineapple Lily larger than an older Lemon Cypress tree next to it.

I’m always masked and gloved. There were only two check stands open and my favorite checker was at one of them. She’s fast and smart so I always try to go to hers. There was no one in line behind me but I realized she was still rushing. I mentioned that it was a shame that we could no longer take a moment to chat with one another as in days gone by. You knew your clerks and they got to know you. She calls me ma’am since she doesn’t remember me from one visit to the next.

Asters in full bloom Aug 2019

Asters Sept 1, 2021

Her response to my comment was that she should know better than to rush through life as she had died once as had her husband due to a car accident. They had obviously lived after lifesaving medical care but still never stop to enjoy life. This woman has a Master’s degree but health insurance and getting kids through college are her impetus.  I’ve gleaned bits and pieces from many small moments. I like that she is on task but I’d also like to see her take a moment to catch a deep breath and have everyone in line take a moment too. Maybe speak to the person in front or behind you. When did we stop connecting with the people that serve us? Why are we all in a rush all the time? Granted, I don’t have a job or a young family but I want to actually see and know the people that pass through my life even for brief moments. They are all fascinating.

I made certain not slow down the process for her in our brief encounter. She noticed my mask reads “Just a girl who loves her books”,  saying she loved to get grounded as a child and sent to her room. It gave her time to read. She also mentioned that she hoped there were books in heaven so maybe she’d have time to read there. I told her if there were none, I wasn’t going there.

I remember my dad saying one day when I was feeling sad he was so ill, he didn’t mind because now he could read guilt free. Mom was a bit of a taskmaster and we were shamed for not being busy working on something. Poor dad. Even in retirement, he had a long list of honey-dos. I’m hoping he found that library in heaven.

I decided to come home, sit on my front porch enjoying the beautiful day and write while thinking about what the rush is all about. I’ve been rushing too much as well. I’m trying to get it all done before my timer runs out.

What’s the rush about in your life or are you taking time to breathe deep and read some good books. Right now, I’m reading a book on synchronicity.

Print is too small so it’s taking a while.

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

Comments on: "The Rush" (56)

  1. Dear Marlene, thanks for sharing your thoughts – as always they’re thought-provoking.
    Maybe we rush to run from things that we don’t want to focus on, such as, for instance, that we’re in this world just for a brief moment and then gone, that youth is brief and health can easily fail, likewise our wealth, should we have been lucky to have some.
    Or perhaps we are rushing to achieve one of the points on the never-ending wishlist. Like pay a mortgage, get kids through education, get married, make a career, whatever. We’re anxious for things and wealth. We’re induced to be anxious by our system, because we’re more profitable when we’re unsatisfied and restless.
    I long for a retreat to a quiet, peaceful place, to detox from the constant media stream and people’s chatter. I feel unease with lots of people. I think I might just be growing old, perhaps 😉
    All my love and good vibes

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks for stopping by, Gabriella. I hear what you are saying and fully agree. We are programmed to rush but when you come to the end of the journey, you see how futile it is to rush through. Yes, you are probably growing older which is a good alternative to not. I have also found I like more quiet and have a serious social anxiety. People can be very draining. I tend to turn off the volume on the television and read the closed captioning when the chatter becomes too much. Seems we are all becoming more sensitive these days. Sounds like a break may be in order. Hang in there and lets slow down together. Hugs and love with some peace thrown in for good measure.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m rushing to get myself organized so that I can have more time to write without feeling so frenetic. The rushing is actually making slow progress, but I’m getting there.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You have a great focus Marlene, just slow down and take time because if not now when? I think we’re taught to do the opposite, encouraged to do the opposite and it often takes major life upheaval or simply the wisdom of aging to set us straight! Since I’ve been telling people about my retirement I’ve had some ask “what are you going to do?” My answer, at least initially is: nothing. I may sit on my butt all day or find something that interests me or take a road trip or… I do know reading is going to happen though. I’m already hunting down used books for my shelves. Take care Marlene.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m getting so good at doing nothing, it’s just astounding. I’ve sad in my bed for 3 hours now, drinking coffee, reading blogs and getting the post out. My daughter is still asleep. I have given away 6 more boxes of books last weekend. I’m ordering for the kindle these days. You are wise to take lots of time to feel your way through retirement. The what’s next will happen organically. Enjoy every second of it. Thanks for the visit, Deb.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Very good question! There is no more rush in my life but it’s taken a long time to reach this stage. I used to rush around at work and at home like a chicken without a head. Now I go slower and probably achieve more, because I think more carefully about what needs to be done and plan it better instead of just launching myself at it like a heat-seeking missile in search of the hot water bottle.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh Jill, you do give me a good giggle here. A heat seeking missile in search of a hot water bottle. I’m cracking up. Looks like you have figured out the secret too. The tortoise and the hare. Take time with people and think through what needs to be done first. Great strategies for life. The slower we go, the more we see and are aware of being around us to enjoy. Thanks for the visit, Jill.

      Like

  5. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m always in rush, except when I’m behind the wheel of my car…I rush, so I can leave extra early. 🙂 I hope one day, I’ll train myself to slow down, but I think it’s in my nature and changing it will take time. That said, I do make a point of slowing down to ask people I encounter throughout my day how they are doing. Derek is always asking me “What’s the rush?” After 23 years, I still haven’t found the answer. 🙂 I hope you and your family are doing well, Marlene! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Driving is a good time to NOT be in a rush, Jill. Do you talk to other drivers like I do? I can promise you I’m a worse passenger. I’m giving my chauffeur and the drivers out there a bad time. Some of us are just wired for high speed and relaxing does not come natural. I can rush as much as the next person but hate to be rushed. As I’m coming closer to the finish line, I rush less and less. I’ll never get it all done anyway. You do seem to know when to slow down though. When you engage with others and let them be seen and acknowledged is always an important time to take a moment and breathe. Thanks for the visit, Jill.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Marlene, I’m engrossed in reading your reflections on life and how we often rush through it instead of taking those moments to stop! It seems you know your cashier very well and like her, I would appreciate your mask! There should always be time for books! Your book looks interesting but I too struggle with small print and find there is only one place under a specific light I can read those kinds of books. Hence so many on Kindle. Here’s to stopping, savouring life and connecting with others. Take care, Annika x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the visit, Annika. I tend to always be in a rush too so seeing the cashier not even catching her breath reminded me how important it was. The book I’m reading has been in my personal library for awhile and reached out to me as I packed and purged my books. I’ll finish it eventually and pass it on. Like you, I have most of my books now on Kindle or audible. I think I just want more time for reading these days. My cashier doesn’t know who I am but I know her. She has worked there for several years and I pick up bits and pieces each time. They feel invisible. I want them to know they are not. Have a great weekend, Annika.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Good Morning
    Good Morning
    It’s great to stay up late
    Good Morning
    Good Morning to you
    LOL!

    You and I go about grocery shopping much differently. I go with a list, target those lanes and get back home as efficiently as possible. I try to avoid contact or conversation with others as many aren’t wearing masks. The conservative, Provincial Gov’t hasn’t mandated them. The Covid 4th wave is raging here and our provincial gov’t is so lame, we are in big trouble. Our poor Dr’s, tired and frustrated, have created their *own* website to report stats as the gov’t has abandoned all responsible actions. Without any provincial leadership on the pandemic, my city council has evoked a mask wearing bylaw on their own, as have many businesses. As in, ‘not vaccinated, no service’.

    The lame conservative gov’t in Alberta panders to the alt-right rednecks who are screaming about their rights because that’s who votes for them. Many who refuse to wear masks or get vaccinated, send their kids to a public school and shop where others will certainly be in contact with them. BUT, when they get sick and can’t work or end up hospitalized, it’s public funds that pay for it.

    Soap box bow, Boomdee over and out !
    PS, Stay safe lovely Miss M 💛xK

    Liked by 2 people

    • Alberta sounds like Texas these days. My heart aches for all of it. xo

      Liked by 2 people

    • You do make me laugh, dear heart. I hear you. We have full mask mandates now and the conservatives do scream but I wear mind and have my vaccine. I don’t connect with everyone. I know who is safe to be around. Our markets mandate their own protection protocol. I have a list too that included cookies and chips. 🙂 If someone is in my aisle that isn’t behaving well, I go the other way till they go theirs. Our numbers are up here too. I think we can do this safely with some common sense but that’s so rare, it’s a superpower. So I guess moving to Canada to hide from the redneck far right isn’t in the cards? I do a lot of head shaking and they do it too. I think a fog of stupid has blanketed the earth. Don’t take a deep breath out there. 🙂 Hugs and love. M

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Good morning Marlene! I want you to know that your words bring thought and joy to me. In fact, this morning I mentioned you in something I put on Instagram. It was about seeing wonder and how I see you always doing that, no matter what you face in life. Thanks for being that type of person and sharing with those you meet. Have a fabulous day, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good morning, Missy! Thank you so much for your sweet, kind words. They do wonders for my heart. I did have a full and fabulous day with lots of birthday activities. Now I get to catch up here. Thank you for the wonderful visit. Have a great weekend.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Great to hear from you Marlene. the mask and gloves are smart. We certainly are not out of the pandemic yet!
    I do love to take an hour a day just to vegetate with a book or magazine. I feel that I owe that to myself for pushing hard the rest of the day.
    With regard to social contact it’s true people tend to confuse being busy with actually achieving anything. While I don’t appreciate getting stuck behind a ten minute conversation on a check out line it’s nice to at least exchange social pleasantries; especially with people who you see all the time.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m with you, Lou. I don’t like when someone just chats it up when there is a huge line and I think that’s because the company is getting cheaper and cheaper about paying enough employees to do the job. That poor woman is going all out the whole time she’s at that register. When her heart stops when she’s standing there, her bosses are going to pass the buck on that too. Balance is necessary. I helped bag my own groceries to save her time. I need a LOT of down time anymore. I think we’ve earned it. Thanks for stopping by.

      Like

  10. Love your message.
    The pictures are cute. But those Aster’s got hit hard by the heat wave.
    Happy birthday Sis.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hello! Love your pineapple lily, one of my favourites. Mine has pink and green flowers.
    I have consciously decided to stop rushing if at all possible. Obviously the Husband’s work imposes some deadlines and structure, but I’m no longer beating myself up for not achieving things by a certain time. I do them when and as I can, and that’s good enough for me. So my creative work has slowed, but is just as satisfying. It’s not a race, after all, and there are no prizes for coming first. Rather like life itself, in fact. Stay well, my friend.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Not rushing is better for our health too. Being punctual isn’t the same as rushing. I get deadlines and structure as we all need a bit of that. But rushing takes the joy out of life and joy is what it’s about. You are right, there are no prizes for it. I’m happy to hear this for you. The pineapple lily was a gift from a friend. I had no idea it would be so large! Thanks for the visit, Kate.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Finding a new rhythm for new times is powerful. Allow the adjustments, notice resistance and keep tuning in with gratitude for what is most important. I love how you embrace and accept this evolution Marlene 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

  13. That looks like an interesting book. Take your time to read it.
    Great reminder about taking those small moments to bring the awareness back to the present moment and out of our heads. Our heads are always racing to the possible future while missing the here and now. Taking the time to notice a deep breath is a good way to get back in touch. That Pause.
    Insignificant little conversations are especially good for elderly folk, who might not get to speak to anyone else in a lockdown covid situation! Keep chatting to them Marlene! Well done. Another inpspirational reminder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Amanda. I will keep chatting with people. I’ve done it my whole life. My first husband was embarrassed by that and kept telling me to behave. So I left him home from then on. 🙂 He wasn’t comfortable with my casual friendliness with strangers. We all need to be reminded to pause and take a deep breath once in a while. I think it’s important that we keep reminding each other. Have a peaceful weekend.

      Like

  14. I was lucky to have a good example in my Mum. She got everything done, but was never in a rush (at least, not that I could see). She held her babies, wrote poetry and read and sometimes left the dusting for another day. It’s her T-shirt that I have now and use for my profile photo. You may print it and give it to your checkout friend if you like. It won’t let me post it here, but if you go to my page and click on the photo, you’ll be able to see the whole thing. I love it!

    It’s hard to be in the moment, esp when we feel our moments are running out. When I was young, I felt I had all the time in the world; now I want to do and be and experience as much as possible . . .

    The book looks like a good one. I’ll check for it in my library.

    Sending warm hugs and loving thoughts your way . . .

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Linne. I will check this out later this afternoon. We are moving more bookcases and boxes into storage this morning. The print on that book is so tiny, I have a hard time reading it but it is interesting. I still feel like I”m rushing to some degree because I know my time is limited but when it comes to people, I always make time for them. Everything else waits. We will be working hard this morning but the rest of the weekend into and through Tues will be more relaxed. The heat will be on outside and I will be a puddle inside doing as little movement as possible. Till later, Hugs and love, M

      Liked by 1 person

      • I found a couple of things you might like . . .

        This from the film “Buck” (based on a true story and I loved it)

        “Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not get bent out of shape”

        Not sure if this is from the same film or not ( I think it is), but worth sharing:

        “Be gentle in what you do; be firm in how you do it.”

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Hello Marlene, and happy belated birthday. You are a wise woman, always thinking and noticing the world. That’s part of what makes you a good writer, too: noticing. I serve unhoused women from behind a glass window. They come to my station where they can select two outfits, a sweater or jacket, perhaps a hat or scarf if we have them. What they mostly want is connection. They want to tell me what’s happening, even briefly, in their troubled world. They have my full attention during those brief moments. They’re seen and heard. We all need that in our world.

    I’m glad you’re taking time for yourself. I’m also happy to read that you are taking outings. We all need that time alone. Sending love your way. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s why I adore you, Alys. You understand that even those with very little need to be seen and heard if only for a few moments. When did we stop caring? We may not be able to fix what’s happening but we can witness someone’s challenge in life with them. You have a great heart.
      I do need time for myself just to wander in the world. Doing more self care lately. Thank you for the birthday wishes. How lucky am I? 73 of them. Sending love and hugs back to you as well. One foot in front of the other, mindfully. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Enjoyed this post and the beautiful garden photos. Is that your garden? So lovely.

    I love taking /making time to connect with people to share a smile, a comment, a story. It’s one of the reasons I love traveling actually. Somehow one takes more time to connect with people. I also find that sometimes in the US people are suspicious when you start talking to them, given they are “strangers”.

    Peta

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for stopping by. Yes, that is my garden. I’ve worked very hard on it until this year. I will talk to anyone, anywhere hoping to connect in some way. There are parts of the US that are friendlier than others. Maybe because I’ve traveled so much has given me the impetus to try and connect. I started talking to a woman on a bus in Germany and it turned out she lived at one time very close to our small town in Arizona. You just never know.

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  17. Those asters! You know, it’s my birth month flower, so I they have a special place in my heart. Why do you think they are so delayed this year?

    Liked by 1 person

    • They are my birth month flower as well. My birthday was yesterday and I expected them to be in full bloom. We’ve had some very strange weather this last year and maybe more coming. Autumn may be late this year. I’m keeping an eye out. Thanks for the visit.

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  18. As I read the comments both the readers and yours, I remembered that I’ve not gone off site for so long and even though I’m happy to be restricted by our new lockdown and my fragile health – I MISS my random chats with all kinds of people when I’m using public transport.

    Rarely I know the person, and that makes it even more intriguing. And then there are the other kind of “listening” into someone else chatting to someone about all kinds of things…usually you come in the middle of that chat, and leave before the end.

    Today I was talking to the dude in the next flat – and I idly said “I wonder how far I could travel on buses during this lockdown, without someone in authority asking me if this was my ‘hood” and me knowing full well, it’s was miles away…we are supposed to stay within our ‘hood unless we are on essential business – and essential doesn’t mean quite a lot of things…

    Liked by 1 person

    • You really do have a stringent lockdown. I’m not a fan of our local bus system and could only get around the greater city area. It would take all day or days to get very far. But if we have our own transportation, we can go anywhere in the country. We just need to do it conscientiously. The rules are different from state to state so I keep my own rules that err on the side of caution. No matter where I go, I keep my distance and keep my mask on. I think interaction with others is vital to mental health. I see many that just don’t care and keep my distance from them. I really hope this ends sooner than later. I’ve had enough insanity.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Good afternoon, dear Marlene, oh dear, we feel quite privileged when reading your text as we don’t need to hurry. We live in a little village next to the big sea and life is slow. But when we were working we lived in NYC and many years in Montreal and this was a totally different life.
    We live here more or less like normal as everyone (incl. children) has had their second jab and our district is Covid-free for nearly two months now.
    Interesting those different worlds we have right now.
    Wishing you a great weekend
    The Fab Four of Cley
    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Hi Marlene! Your posts are such a bright spot for me. Thank you for that. Our flowers struggled this summer because the weather was a constant swing from record heat to record cold and rain. Still, they survived…there’s message there somewhere.

    Yes, the rush-rush. A kind word or a smile can mean the world to someone else. I wish people took those few seconds to make a difference. I love what you said about books in heaven.

    Keep grocery shopping alone! Life’s too short to not enjoy it. Best to you, Marlene.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Jennie. The record heat fried so many plants and then even with watering, they just didn’t thrive although they didn’t die off. Gave it my best. I would guess you are the type to stop and pass on a kind word and a smile as well. I get to sneak out Tues alone. :)))

      Liked by 1 person

      • Same here, Marlene. And yes, I’m the type who gives a smile and says a kind word. You never know what is happening with someone else, and that can make a difference. Enjoy your solo Tuesday excursion. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  21. Wow, I needed this, Marlene! I learned to slow down and prioritize rest and self-care, even while I have a very stressful, fast-paced career. However, as you know, I haven’t been resting enough, and now my health is forcing me to slow down a little. That’s what happens for me, when it needs to!

    BTW, I love chatting with familiar people at stores, etc. The connections we make are what make every day something special.

    Oh, and I ordered that book–the actual paper book, not the Kindle version! I will make sure I have my reading glasses all shined up before I read it! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hope the book resonates for you. The body will force you to a stop if you don’t do it willingly. Lots of experience with that. Thanks for stopping by, Bethany.

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  22. Thank you so much for this wonderful and inspiring post. Yes, we all need to slow down–and remember each other, too! I’ve been slowing down by spending time with my old girl, Pear. I pick her up and put her on the couch next to me as lying next to her on the floor makes it hard for me to get back up haha. Then we lay there next to each other so I can really appreciate her sweet little life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Appreciating each other is the greatest gift you can give. I’m past the floor stage myself so I understand. An animal will bring you back to the present moment faster than anything else. I’ve been a rusher all my life except when it comes to people and creatures. There I will always find time. It expands as we need it. Thanks for stopping by, Luanne. I’ll keep good thoughts for you and Pear.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Speaking of the floor. I went to that immersive Van Gogh show traveling the country. You have to sit on the floor or jump through hoops to ask for a chair. Very awkward.

        Liked by 1 person

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