“Every day I visualize God picking me up by the heels, holding me upside down until all of the bad, negative things fall out into that circle of light. Then he stands me up, and I picture streams of light coming through the top of my head, filling my whole body until I too am a being of light. Then we stomp all of the negative things into a fine white powder and blow it away with the wind of our dancing feet.” – Dolly Parton
The quote above came from Dolly’s autobiography written in the mid 1990’s – a funny, spiritual, uplifting read. This morning I tried her meditation technique but I kept seeing myself as the little blonde Dolly in the movie “Coat of Many Colors.” Still, I think I’ll try it again.
Since Christmas I’ve done nothing but read. One wonderful book after another. Most of them were Christmas gifts – the best kind of gift this girl can get. Reading does something to my soul, something hard to put into words. It’s cleansing and healing, cathartic and soothing. I can always find something to relate to in the books I read. A character’s innermost thoughts or their pain…their forgiveness, their laughter. And man…I’ve fallen back in love with an actual book…a hand-held, paper-whiffing book. (Not that I ever fell completely out of love with them to begin with.)
If you’re looking for a good, uplifting, non-tragic, relationship story, all of these are good reads. (I don’t read scary, gory or anything more depressing than life can already be. Yes, The Girl on the Train was suspenseful but it didn’t give me nightmares. Always a plus.)
Lately I have been missing the women in my life. Reading helps. But still, I miss the women who took care of me, who even as I aged, were a step above me; gentle, kind, understanding of what it’s like to be a wife and a mother. They knowingly nodded when I was tired or dealing with a sick child. They remembered the feeling of raising teenagers and the pain only a parent can feel when a child hurts. I miss their love and support. I miss their presence. I miss my mother’s hugs, my grandmother’s wisdom, and my mother-in-law’s laughter. I miss not having them in my life every single day. Momma and I talked about books a lot…so did Dot and I. It’s strange not having them to talk to anymore, but often when I’m lost in a book, I find them there. They are the strong women fighting for better lives, matriarchs showing others how to live. They are the warm people showing and giving love to everyone.
That is the glory of reading…slipping away, losing yourself in the words and then magically finding others.