Friday, November 14, 2014

Fill My Stocking Swaps

Over the last couple of months, I participated in several swapbot exchanges meant to fill our stockings for the holidays. What I like about doing these particular ones is that you send to one partner and someone else sends to you. That way, there is no expectation or disappointment. I am keeping all the small wrapped gifties unlooked at. 

What I realized is that I have had the same stocking for a long time now, maybe at least 13-14 holidays, and while I made it too, I am ready for a change. It has stuffing in the heel and toe because of the angles and small spaces, and really is more for decor than for use as a holiday stocking. Picky, I know, but its always bugged me. It will be wrapped and sent off to use in a White Elephant gift swap. Whoever gets it gets to chose what they will do with it. It will be out of my hands.

As I went looking for those things I sent my #2 Grandgrrrl yesterday, the bin used to store soft holiday items held some quilted fabric pieces. I think they came from my friend Virginia's Mother. I cut out a shape that is more utilitarian for gifts, sewed the two pieces together and now just need to find a plain fabric for the cuff. This will work better for me and will hold all the swaps I've received.

Yesterday, the PO delivered the 'undeliverable' box I sent. Thing is, I have no idea what they did or what changed. However, Bob got his quilt, and loved it. Haven't heard if the misdirected package found its way yet. Good thing it wasn't a box of cookies! 

There is a sort of awesome power to chose our attitudes when things go in a different way than we expected. Its about perception. When I feel the most centered, I am able to see any challenge as an opportunity for growth. Nothing in life calls for us to suffer.

There are many layers to what we experience. Yes, a physical wound or dis-ease brings us pain. Yes, emotional and mental wounding can bring even more pain to the point of trauma. Sometimes it depends upon how old we are and who is the one inflicting these challenges. A child has less experience in coping, however, those responses a child has to her wounding could set her up for life to respond in the same way.

I am not sure what it takes for us to see old patterns and decide to make a change. Maybe, one day, we simply have had enough. Maybe one day, someone steps in and says or does something to help us see that there is a different way...that we don't have to keep doing something we don't like doing.

Just like that stocking. Its pretty enough. I made it. Its pretty enough. It doesn't hold what I want it to hold or how I want it to hold. Its pretty enough. I can make a new one. I can make a new one every year if I want and give away the one I used the year before. And it might be pretty enough, or be one that used up fabric from a woman's stash whom I appreciated as the Mother of a very dear friend. 

I don't know what she had planned for the fabric. Its become a stocking for me this year. If something else comes about that changes my thinking, I just hope I remember this process. Its pretty enough. Does the situation, person or object serve my needs and greater good? Is it time to release the person or object and let it pass onto someone else who has needs it will fill? If so, then there is a blessing way we can give it in the form of a note or a card. I am learning through these swaps...learning how to be generous, learning how to take care of myself and learning how to heal.