About Me

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Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Story of the Sad Sadness

I've been feeling depressed and fearful for a few weeks now. Since the beginning of the year, I've been overwhelmed by family medical problems, the loss of my dog, and unexpected bills. I worry all the time about what's going to happen and can't get past my fear. However, the other day, I was browsing the blogs and came upon a site that I used to visit often. It's Sandy's place at http://imwaitingincanada.blogspot.com/ . She had posted the following story and after reading through it, I realized that God had taken me there for a reason. I hope it's as helpful to others as it was for me.

Once upon a time there was a little woman who walked along the dusty field-path. She was quite old yet her steps were light and springy and her smile had the fresh glow of a carefree girl. She stopped at a cowered figure and looked down. She couldn’t recognize much.
The being that sat in the dirt on the path seemed to be almost bodiless. She reminded her of a grey flannel blanket with human shape.
The little woman bent a little forward and asked: ”Who are you?” Two almost lifeless tired eyes looked up towards her. “Me? I am the Sadness”, whispered the voice haltingly and softly, almost too soft to hear.
“Oh, the Sadness!” said the woman pleased as if she would greet an old friend.
“You know me?” asked the Sadness mistrusting.
“Of course I know you! You accompanied me every once in a while over and over again on parts of my path.”
“Yes, but…” said the Sadness suspiciously, “why don’t you run away from me? Aren’t you afraid?”
“Why should I run from you, my dear? You know very well yourself that you catch on with everybody who tries to get away from you. But, what I wanted to ask you: “Why do you look so discouraged?”
“I am … sad”, replied the grey figure with broken voice.
The little woman sat down at her side. “So, you are sad”, she said and nodded with understanding. “Tell me what bothers you.”
The Sadness sighed deeply. Was there really someone who would like to listen to her this time? How often did she wish for that to happen.
“You know”, she started hesitantly and very astonished, “it’s just that nobody actually likes me. It is my destiny to visit humans for a while but when I show up they are scared of me. They are afraid of me and try to avoid me like the plague.”
The Sadness swallowed some tears. “They invented phrases that they try to ban me with. They say things like: “Nonsense, I can’t be sad. Life is always bright and fun.” And their fake smiles give them stomach cramps and they have a hard time breathing. They say: “Praise is what makes us tough,” and then they end up with heartache. They say, “One just has to put it all together and suck it up!” and then they feel all kinds of aches and pains in their shoulders and their backs. They say: “Only weak people cry!” and the banked up tears almost make their heads burst. Or they try to numb themselves with alcohol or drugs so that they don’t have to feel me.”
“Oh yes”, confirmed the old woman, “I’ve met people like that before.”
The Sadness turned even sadder… “But all I want is to help humans. When I am very close to them they can face themselves. I help them build a nest to cuddle up in to take care of their wounds. Somebody who is sad has very thin skin. Old sorrows surface again like a bad healed wound and that can hurt a lot. But who is able to face their grief and sorrow and cries? All the uncried tears can truly make their wounds heal. People don’t want me to help them though. Instead they put on a flashy smile on top of their scars. Or they put on a heavy shield of bitterness”.
The Sadness was silent now. Her crying at first was weak, then it became stronger and finally it was very desperate.
The little, old woman hugged her, caressed the shaky bundle and thought to herself how soft and gentle Sadness felt. “Cry, Sadness, let your tears flow”, she whispered full of love, “Rest so that you can gather your strength back. From now on you shall not wander all by yourself. I will join you so that discouragement and despair can’t take over anymore.”
The Sadness quit crying. She looked her new companion straight in the eyes: “But, but who are you?”
“Me?” said the old lady with a smile on her face und then she laughed again like a carefree young girl.
“I am HOPE.”

I have to believe there is light at the end of the tunnel, that fear of the unknown will just cripple me. I just have to let go and let God.


Josie said...

Omigod, Leslie! I had no idea you were feeling so sad. You hide it so well. You are just about the bravest(!!!) person I know. How on earth do you carry on with all the "hits" you have taken not only in the recent days, but during your lifetime? How do you go through your life putting on such a brave face? I had no idea of the depth of your sadness, because it doesn't show at all. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help!

Yes, there is Hope. Always Hope. And Bravery!


Sienna said...

Leslie that is a beautiful little story...I appreciate it, lots of things happening in your life and you still share the beautiful things and hope..

I completely share Josie's sentiments and echo her support....we are many and varied, close and far, but the spirit is right along side of you.

Sorry to hear your family are unwell, they will all (as you) be in my prayers too.


NMOTB said...

Beautiful Story! Thinking of you through this tough time and yes - There is light at the end of the tunnel!

Take Care

islandgrovepress said...

Ah well.

I went to a shrink with a love problem and he promptly turned me into a turnip.

I got betta!

Hope you get betta too.


leslie said...

Thanks, guys. I appreciate your thoughts, sentiments, and prayers. Things are really rough right now and I'm going to need lots of support to get through the next few weeks or maybe even months. Without going into detail, I will keep you all posted. Thanks again. :)

EAMonroe said...

Leslie, I will say a special prayer for you and your loved ones. You will emerge stronger than before. Remain positive and hopeful. Bless you!

patterns of ink said...

May God give you the strength to "hold on" the willingness to "let go" and the wisdom to know which is best in each of the trials before you. When in doubt, hold on. Next time you're in a Christian Book Store listen to the song by Selah called "Hold On."

leslie said...

Patterns of Ink: I've heard that song and it's a good one to "hold on to." Thanks for suggesting it.

Ingrid said...

hey there!!! i came over here from josie's blog! like josie's, you have a very interesting blog, something that should make me drop by here again more frequently, i hope you don't mind if i'll link your page to mine.

sorry to hear about the tough days you're going through right now. it happens to the best of us. you are so right, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, we just have to let go and let god!! this has been my dad's favorite phrase, as well. whatever it is that's weighing you down, i hope they'll all ebb away gradually. a day at a time is all we need. i hope tomorrow will be a better day for you. take it easy! i wish i could be of more help but for what it's worth, once again i'll say to you - "this too shall pass"! we all have our share of rain but we can always run for shelter, right?? like ANNIE, she always sings, the sun comes out tomorrow . . . .hope it does for you, as well! i will be praying for you! ciao!

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Josie said to come over and cheer you up but I think you have already made an important discovery for yourself. There is such peace when we rest in God. "Come on to me allye who are weary and heavily burdened and I will give you rest."

Thanks for cheering us all up.

Susan said...

Hi Leslie,
Here via Josie. I am sorry that you have been feeling sad lately. I scanned back over your recent posts and it would be hard to tell you were brewing the blues! I think you are alot like myself. I keep my blog upbeat no matter how I am feeling, I try to post happy. For me, it works. I can make myself push troubles down and concentrate on what is positive. Most of the time. So I am pretty sure for you to come out with this confession of gloom, things must be pretty grim. My thoughts are with you. All the way from Maple Ridge. Bloggy Hugs.

TomCat said...

{{{hug}}} deliver by way of Josie's place.

david santos said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
beachgirl said...

Hi Leslie,
I loved the story. Very true. For me laughter, smiling and music helps. A walk on the beach.
Right now I try to ride my bike every day. That keeps my spirits up. And you guessed it, I ride to the beach often.
Try to do something for you that makes you feel better every day. I've been thru what your going thru. It's tough. There is light out there.
I am on the other side of hell now.
Have an awesome day.

kimber the wolfgrrrl said...

I came by way of Josie's blog, and I want to send you a hug and wish you well... the story of Hope and Sadness was beautiful!

leslie said...

Hi Kimber and Carol, thanks for dropping by with your cheers. I'd love to go bike riding and am hoping to get one of those beach cruisers soon. There are flat roads I can ride to see all the fields near my place. I think it'd be so much more fun than walking 'cuz you can go further, even take a picnic and stop at some tranquil location. Hopefully, things will be resolved soon and I can move on with more peace in my life. Thanks for caring.

Canadian Bloggette said...

Leslie one would never ever have known that you of all people were struggling so!!
I soooo wish I lived right next door and we could do coffee or wine or whine or whatever to lift your spirits.
However as I am thousands of miles away I do send warm hugs and courage.....know you are in my thoughts. I can only speak for myself but I am sure that most of us many have walked in similar shoes and we share your pain as life is not an easy journey. Sometimes I believe we are confronted with these life challenges to better appreciate all the good in our lives, perhaps that is just my quirky way of dealing, I dunno, it works. But rest assured the dark clouds will part and the sun will come out tomorrow.

“When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves.”
Viktor Frankl

You don't have to be big to be brave

Keep the faith Leslie..we are with you every step of the way!
Warm hugs always
Cheryl xox

leslie said...

Thanks to everyone for their warm wishes and continued thoughts and prayers. Yesterday I had a meeting with hospital personnel regarding my daughter's condition and future and I feel better that I got some support and understanding. It's time now for me to try to move forward, again setting an example for my daughter that life is worth living - just take one day at a time.

Sandy's Space said...

Leslie, thank you for your kind words about my blog. It is not always easy. There are good days and bad days but always our spirit's strength goes beyond the sadness and the pain and gets us through the day. We may have a million friends to help us through but the emptiness we feel consumes us at times. We must find inspiration in each and every day. I try to here the calling of a robin in the distance or hear the sound of children's laughter to connect me to that part of my self that knows joy. I know it sounds so mushy but sometimes that is my lifeline. Bit by bit you will find your way and always remember your angels will help you.

Thanks again for your kind words and notes.

Keep in touch. xxoo

TomCat said...

Hi Leslie. Thank you for your visit to and comment at Politics Plus. I admire your courage and have your blog in my RSS reader now to keep track. :-)

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