"We Three"

"We Three"

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Age old battle...

Every so often, I listen to Leonard Bernstein's Candide, an opera he wrote back in the 50's. It is cunning in its wordiness and pseudo-classical music. Mostly, it is about the difference between form and substance. Candide is the ultimate optimist, looking for good everywhere, happy to lead a simple life. Cunegonde, his love, wants the trappings, jewels and yachts and champagne. They sing, oh, happy we, how we agree. Both wind up disillusioned (that's stripping away of the illusion, when you think about it), and land squarely in the reality of it all. The world is what you make of it. They plant their own garden. Not a bad idea. If I sat around here waiting for someone to show up with flowers, I'd be bitter and disappointed. Hell, I was bitter and disappointed for a lot of years, even in the midst of all the right things: four bedroom house, swimming pool and hot tub, German cars in the garage, five kids, middle management job, three piece suit husband, etc., etc., etc. The problem was looking everywhere for my happiness except where it lives, in me. Just because things look good doesn't mean they are good. Simple works for me. Not that I would reject the mega-millions if they landed in my lap. Just wouldn't expect that to change much for me. I can be just as miserable rich as I can poor. It's a choice. And today, happy, happy, joy, joy. Lawn mowing, watering, sweeping, cleaning up. Loving every minute of it.

1 comment:

Karen Martin Sampson said...

Such a healthy outlook! And I agree completely. It took me a LONG time to find what I really needed in life - a feeling of authenticity which comes from being more self sufficient, not striving to keep up with the Jones's, not being weighed down by my possessions (not that I ever had many but I used to think I wanted them). I used to reflect on my happiest times, when I was a child at my grandparents' unpretentious cottage up on the Bruce Penisula and sleeping in a tiny room with a window right by the bed and waking up to the cedar trees and their perfume and the chirping wild canaries and the smell of the bay across the road - I decided to reach for that again and I have pretty much gotten there, now living in a remote area of Vancouver Island surrounded by nature - it was a struggle to get here, a long one, but so worth it! I love your blog!