This post has been drafted for over a year, but I never found the right time, so I am expanding it for A to Z posting it under Iconic L: Leisure, Luck, and Lilith. Leisure because this is an iconic element that every person, women included, should incorporate into their life and personal ideology. We should all be so lucky as to be able to do this. It is Friday the 13th, so luck is a timely topic, and as most of us know, Dame Fortuna is female. And the final L for today is Lilith, the oldest female in the Judeo-Christian origin tale.
So here I go creating a segue. I was often called Lil in my High School days due to the Beatles song lyrics in Rocky Raccoon. “Her name was McGill. She called herself Lil, but everyone knew her as Nancy.” This made me want to research Lilith. She was an ancient Goddess. Then the Judaic world spoke of her. The Bible I grew up with did not mention her. But apparently she was Adam’s first wife. She was all the things that patriarchy does not like. So Adam and the male God cast her out and created Eve, a subservient female. Eve did get the short end of the stick with the whole apple thing, but that is another story. Lilith was turned into a demon and child killer in most tales. I did not buy it then, and I do not buy it now. I’m not alone.
Just look at events like Lilith Fair, the all female concert tour in the late 1990s. Many women have reclaimed Lilith as a positive and powerful icon. For women to accept their own power and be comfortable with themselves, we have to learn to listen to ourselves. I am so very glad I write all the time. I have lots of entries, be they journal or otherwise, which I can go back to in order to see how I felt when. The following bit of writing was initially entitled, A Leisurely Week.
Upon rereading this, I decided that this leisure was actually a self-celebration of the luck I had made for myself. My primary goal in life after having my daughter in 1990 was to make sure she knew she was unconditionally loved and that she should never doubt she could do great things in life. I tried to keep the Eve/Lilith dichotomy away from aware from her awareness until she was near maturity. I think I succeeded. And in reflecting on life a short time after my daughter’s marriage to a wonderful man, I realized that I had given her the best of my worldview, for the most part.
I could have focused less on the negatives in life, but when it really counted, I was positive and that positivity created luck. We create our own mindsets, and positive mindsets are able to notice when Dame Fortuna presents herself. I am glad I took the time to appreciate this.
We have to give ourselves leisure, so we can relax enough to allow understanding of ourselves and our lives surface. Then we have to realize that luck is at least partially, if not mostly, made from our worldview and whether we see ourselves as lucky or not. At least I have to.
My found post follows.
Last week I did not accomplish much, or if I did, there is no record of it, as I did not keep a task list. No check marks, circles, squares or triangles noted next to items on a list.
I was basking in the glow of a change of status for my daughter, myself, and our whole family. One of our guests reminded us that the marriage of the last child prompts special wedding celebration recognizing the parents in traditional Jewish culture.
My daughter married the day after Christmas. And while my step-daughter’s wedding in a loft near Gramercy Park was amazing, this one, at the Tanque Verde Ranch, was near perfect. I am writing about many aspects of the wedding process from my perspective as a mother-of-the-bride, as an anthropologist, and as a frugal person.
I needed last week. My mind and heart were full. I wanted to just personally and privately enjoy the feelings of love, success, and growth after visitors returned to their homes and families all across the country from Brooklyn to San Francisco.
I have learned over the course of the the last 15 years to enjoy moments and cherish good experiences. I have given myself permission to appreciate the good things in life by drinking in calm, glowing joy as well as the occasional exuberance of vivid experience.
I endorse giving oneself time and space, if possible, to process intense periods of activity or change. Even if it is only 15 minutes before bedtime for a week, allow yourself to review, to write, to imagine about what is transpiring. In many ways, this slows time and allows you to live in a moment of appreciation.
It is heartening to know that this time of life I am entering is to be one of gratitude and appreciation rather than bitterness and regret. We can and do have control over how we live, think, and act. So much has changed for me in the last few years. It has taken tremendous dedicated effort to address physical, mental, and emotional roadblocks, but it is worth it as new structures allow new life paths.
We have ability to act and perceive that is partially informed by accumulated experience. Let us appreciate where we are in life and work together in respect. This is the best way to build the world we want.