Fall in love for Thanksgiving

Schwartzberg-Still"We protect what we fall in love with," says Louie Schwartzberg* in his inspiring gratitude TED talk.

What do you love?  Who do you love? Who or what might you love if you opened your eyes and your  heart?  Are you ready to embrace and let your soul reap new joy this Thanksgiving?

Our lives have become more narrow since Covid. We've lost space, freedom and became confined to what we find safe. Frustration, a pinched consciousness has made us chafe, rise to anger, dull down and become depressed. But, surprise is still with us.

Take away our usual and we can fill the time and space with the unusual. Some of us forgot to look at the sky, the trees, the faces of people around us. Maybe we forgot to listen to the stories people can tell of their lives and experiences. And perhaps we forgot the joy and fun of sharing a making project with a friend or loved one.

As costs go up and supplies from overseas are not moving to us, what blessing and joys can we find instead of spending money and buying things.

The challenge is not finding a project. The challenge is recognizing what lightens your heart and soul. And if you can expand that quest to find a person you care about and discover what you can do together that brings joy to both of you unexpected treasures are coming your way.

As long as you are alive the spark of life within you can bring light, awareness, love, health and happiness to your life.  How do you nurture that spark?

We are approaching Thanksgiving. Regardless of what is going on in your life we are all here in a living universe where possibilities abound. Can we allow ourselves to slow down and do some time lapse observing in the world around us? Schwartzberg uses his eyes, his heart and his camera to lead us with his glorious video.

Can you free your heart and eyes to see beyond your limits?  If you can you will discover love, beauty and an ever present gratefulness to warm your soul.

*Louie Schwartzberg is an award-winning cinematographer, director,
and producer whose notable career spans more than three decades
providing breathtaking imagery for feature films, television shows,
documentaries and commercials.

This piece includes his short film on Gratitude and Happiness. Brother David Steindl-Rast's spoken words, Gary Malkin's musical compositions and Louie's cinematography make this a stunningly beautiful piece, reminding us of the precious gift of life, and the beauty all around us.

Joanna Poppink, MFT, is a psychotherapist in private practice. For a free telephone consultation email her: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


0 # thanksgivingmylifex2 2012-11-18 19:49
I enjoy this time of year because more than any other time, it offers the opportunity for my kids to learn how to give to others.  While the season could easily get out of control for us, we take the time to gather food for food banks, and pick out gifts off the angel tree.  I love the moment that I see my kids minds actually connect with the importance and meaning of what they are doing for others.

On a more personal note, I have been talking with my therapist about how worn out I am and how I need "me time".  She has been trying to help me understand that "me time" doesnt' have to be time alone. It can be time spent with the kids that is reframed into being a relaxed and enjoyable time. I guess it is hard to imagine time with them as relaxing at times, because they can be so challenging in their behaviors.  I have begun to notice, however, that if I slow down, they follow suit to some degree. So the "me time" has turned into time with them reading or talking about their day, and actually listening!!!!

It is nice to have realized these things as they help fill my heart that often gets overwhelmed with feelings of defeat. I have had a really, really rough year with my weight.  I have been on a medication regiment that has encouraged much weight gain. I am trying hard to figure out a way to get back on track. I am trying hard not to hate what is happening to my body. I do know that I am grateful that my mood has improved.  I am not sure that I can have it both ways right now.  Sooo, I keep trudging and try to remember what is important in life.

I am so grateful for this site. I have really come to love the girls that I talk to on the forums.  i don't feel so alone in my struggle. It always seems that when I am having my worst day, someone else is having enough strength to get me through. I try to return that favor whenever I can.  Joanna, I think I speak for everyone when I say how amazing your support is for all of us as well.  Thank you for creating a site where we can get advice and support in a safe, secure place.
0 # Here here, Tracy!shh 2012-11-19 16:49

I wholeheartedly agree with the last paragraph you wrote Tracy! Thank you Joanna for providing us with this site, and to the wonderfully supportive people I've met here!

We don't have Thanksgiving on this side of the pond, so Thursday will just be another day here, but I enjoyed the sentiments of your blog Joanna.

As I'm reflecting upon my last 2 years in therapy, ready to terminate next week, I actually had a moment of realisation when I was writing last week, about that tiny spark ...that when I started therapy, that spark was sooo tiny, that it was virtually non-existent, and I couldn't find it... therapist would point things out to me, to try to be helpful, and all I could feel from them was her backing my mother in telling me how inadequate I was...I can see in hindsight that I needed that spark to anchor myself onto, to allow me to use those comments from my therapist constructively, as they were intended to be, and to nurture that spark and grow... but it was elusive, and my therapist tried everything - I couldn't even sit with my eyes closed in her office - it was too dangerous, I could recollect a place I felt safe or even imagine one - because that place didn't exist for me, I couldn't role play, I couldn't talk about my ED cos I was too ashamed, I flinched every time she moved, and that made me feel like I was "damaged", like I was a freak

At one point she even told me that she was "stuck", she'd tried everything with me, and we just couldn't make any progress, and it was my concern for her, that I hoped she didn't feel inadequate, and that provided some kind of connection, because I knew too well how it felt to feel like you could do nothing right and that you were a failure, and I needed to make sure that she didn't have to feel that, I didn't want her to have to feel how I felt...

...and I did fall in love with her, I look back on those journal entries with a certain fondness, because it was a wonderful time that showed me so much. I knew about transference, and I knew it would never be reciprocated in any way, and more than that I knew that my own values meant that I would never want to pursue something that I was certain the other person didn't want... and I learned to love her in a way that was borne out of complete respect, that didn't need anything in return, that as long as I believed she was happy, then I was happy too....and it was just the most serene, amazing feeling, to feel that for someone. It was the first time I'd ever felt that, but I think that's what *love* really is.

And I will never forget the day I spent the whole session explaining to her about this thing I was experiencing that I had never experienced before in my life, that I suspected was love, and how I was scared in case I went my whole life and never felt it again... and I never once said it was about her, but she obviously knew it was, and at the end of the session, she asked me "and who is this directed at? who is the object of this love?" and I had to say "you"

But I knew, that in learning to love her in such a way that needed nothing from her, that I had also started to learn to love myself...I had found my spark, I was real, I was alive, I was a living, breathing, feeling human being... my eyes were being opened to new and more beautiful things every day - things that had always been there, but that I'd never noticed or paid enough attention to, things I'd never viewed in beautiful light before.

0 # warm fire, warm soulmylifex2 2012-11-21 15:57

Every year since I got my house, around the time of the first frost, I light a fire in my fireplace every night I am home.  Tonight as i was lighting it once again, I started wondering how much money I am spending on logs and firestarters. My first instinct was to feel badly about this, and that perhaps I should limit myself to two or three nice fires a week...but then I started thinking...what do I really do for ME? As all of you moms can attest to, most of my money and time goes toward buying my children things they need and spending free time doing things with them. 
This fire that I make every night symbolizes something more for me than just a "fire".  It is something that I love, something that is comforting, something that is beautiful to look at, to hear, to smell.  I don't care if I spend a little extra money every month. Tonight I decided that this is MY thing to enjoy. It doesn't take away from others, it doesn't hurt others. But it certainly does a lot for my spirit.  It is the background to my moments of relaxation - after the kids have gone to bed and I have time to read, reflect, watch tv, or journal. I don't know if this even fits here, but I felt the need to share this. thanks :-)   And Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends!

0 # fab! :-)shh 2012-11-21 16:09

I think it fits wonderfully well Tracy!

I'm envious of your fire, as we don't even have a fireplace, and it's something I've always wanted!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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