R – Reflect

R

“Reflection is the beginning of reform.”    Mark Twain

“Whatever good results I find in my reflections come to me when I am walking.”   Goethe

“To reflect is to look back over what has been done so as to extract the net meanings which are the capital stock for intelligent dealing with further experiences.”   John Dewey

 

When you “reflect” about your life do you only see the one-dimensional person that is displayed in your mirror or do you soul-search and look for a deeper meaning?  What does your life mean to you?  Do you analyze what has happened in your life to make you the person who you are, or do you just charge on without thinking?

Now that I’m considered “old” by some people… my kids and people much younger than I am, I do wonder about my life and what makes me… ME.  What mistakes did I make?  Can I hit a button and have a “second chance,” provided I can use the knowledge that I have now learned?  I think about how my parents raised me with their strict beliefs and how I reacted to their confining way of life.  I also remember the heartache and trauma in my family due to my brother’s rebelliousness against my parents’ mindset.

Then I contemplate about what I could have done differently that I didn’t do.  What skills did I have? What did I know?  I remember thinking as a teenager that I was SO SMART.  Hmmm, I definitely need to hit a “redo” button there!

Also, how has society changed after all of these years… OR HAS society changed?  Because life is no longer simple, is life presumed better because we have the use of technology?  Have we learned to think critically or are we told what to think?

These questions constantly pop into my mind as I look back over my life.

I remember that my parents’ way of thinking was “my way or the highway.”  Since I chose “their” way, would I have been better off running away to never look back?  However, in those days “good kids” did what their parents wanted them to do… right down to a job whether that job was right for you or not.

What would I be like now if I had taken control of my life?  My friends that graduated from college didn’t take a job in the area of their degree.  In fact they became stay-at-home mothers as I did until my divorce.  Suddenly, I was left trying to figure out what I would do for a living and how would I support my two children ?   I bumbled along, but I managed to keep my kids, German Shepherd, and home all intact.  My life’s road was filled with pot-holes.

The education I should have achieved prior to my marriage, I received after my divorce… learning to take hold of my own life instead of letting life run me over.  I reflect on all of these questions and thoughts each time I look in the mirror.

So my words of wisdom to you now are, “take the ball and run!”  Go the direction that works for you.  Make your mistakes as you will learn from them, as I did, but you will learn so much more about yourself.

 

 

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About Gwynn Rogers

After 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the fields of real estate, high tech, and corporate travel, Gwynn has moved on to the career of “Grandma.” When not teaching her granddaughters an extensive vocabulary of “alley-oop-boop, ups-a-daisy, cowabunga or bummer”, Gwynn can be found hunting for mentors for the Kitsap Youth Mentoring Consortium, or chasing her fantasies on her treadmill. Gwynn currently freelances for magazines.
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10 Responses to R – Reflect

  1. Susan Scott says:

    Thank you for this wonderfully reflective post Gwynn, beautifully written in such a heart-felt way. You pose the questions so many of ask – and gently urge us to reflect on it all. Know the ‘rules’, in order that you can break them and navigate the pot holes …. Your words are indeed wisdom.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Being an “elder” is a “Catch 22” as the rules we were taught may not necessarily be right for us or for anyone else. However, it is IMPORTANT to respect others and their beliefs no matter whether one agrees or not… this is often the hard part. My parents thought they were giving me wise words… but they didn’t work for me. Plus, I was afraid of grabbing the ball and running on my own. I simply did not have the support that I needed. Now in being “OLD” I’m learning so much.

      However, I STILL have to learn to pick up that ball and charge… but am I too old? Passivity has a way of worming its way in, doesn’t it?

      Thanks for your kind comments Susan. It seems we both are “reflecting.”

  2. Excellent questions, Gwyn. I choose the way of my family too, and after having spent Easter weekend surrounded by family and traditional customs, after having had my son benefit from having all that loving family around, I am glad I did chose their way. But it wasn’t all good news this Easter. My sister finally found the strength to step away from a bad marriage that she let go on too long. She is now going to have to find herself, learn to take hold of her own life instead of letting life run her over, like you said. We’re all going to be there for her, but she has to learn from her own mistakes first before anyone can do anything for her. Thanks for this post. As you see, it got me going. Love your blog and articles!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      I think the way we choose to take in life depends on the health of our family and the support we receive. When one does not get along with one’s family, the dynamics change enormously. Sadly, there was a lot of trauma in our family and several misunderstandings that never were cleared up. I’m learning this late in life, but it is necessary to heal.

      I do wish your sister luck. Divorce is NO FUN. Hopefully, she has confidence in herself and her abilities. Also, having the support and encouragement of your family will be beneficial. I didn’t have that. Sometimes the “old” mindset is not good.

      Thank you for stopping by to comment. I sure do appreciate you AND your blog. Learning about Romania is very interesting. Did you grow up there? Cultural issues are also quite interesting when growing up as they can create some bumps in the road too. I hope all goes well for your sister.

  3. ‘chose the way.’ Auto correct finds ways to correct the uncorrectable. 🙂

  4. patgarcia says:

    Hi Gwynn,

    I love your posting on Reflection and especially the ending paragraph, “take the ball and run!” Go the direction that works for you. Make your mistakes as you will learn from them, as I did, but you will learn so much more about yourself,” because it is so true. You will never know what you can do until you make yourself vulnerable to your mistakes as you tread the water.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      I’m laughing Pat. After all of my water ballet and body surfing, etc. I tread water GREAT… it’s on dry land that I have the problem! 😉

      Being vulnerable is REALLY scary. So thanks for your comments, your posts, and your support!

  5. This IS a wonderfully reflective and heartfelt post, Gwynn, as Susan says. I am glad you have taken the A-Z challenge, another challenge you have surmounted in your life, traveling towards your self-realization; and as your posts progress through the alphabet, I see maturation in your thought and writing. Excellent. Excellent.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      What I wonder is how people perceive “reflective” writing or MY reflective writing. Do people prefer serious or entertaining?? Reading Susan’s and Pat’s posts have also made me think. Of course figuring out what words to write about definitely was a challenge too. Writing about something that has meaning to me, definitely is important.

      Yes, this challenge definitely has been a good experience, albeit tiring! Again, thank you for being a friend, with your kind and supportive words!

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