The Definition of Beauty

June 17, 2020

I’m just starting to explore storytelling as a mechanism for wellbeing and I myself I’m transitioning into more of my senior years, and having worked and raised four children have done a lot of work around figuring all of that out. And I know a lot of you have mentioned your joy with relationships, which is really key in my life and I’m showing this picture, which is beauty. I’m a Canadian, I’m in Kelowna, British Columbia. So I am still running and I’m very grateful that I’m able to do that and know that one day I’m not going to be able to run and it’ll be walking and then maybe not. So the beauty in nature is very calming to my soul and I’ve lived a very, very busy life and COVID has put the brakes on that and has kind of forced me to be a little bit more pensive, I guess, and thinking about things a lot more.

And I think one of the big aspects of joy in people’s lives happens to be nature and being able to really feel the beauty and to take the time to really reflect on that. And often in life, we don’t. We’re racing through life. We’re all busy and it’s almost like the busier you are, the more important you are as a person, unfortunately, in this life. And you get to the older years and it is about elderhood and how do we tell our stories. So this was of interest to me, this workshop to just kind of say, “Well, how do we do this?” So it’s been interesting to hear all of your stories. And I guess for me, personally, beauty in nature has always been a big part of calming a very, very hectic life.

And then when I look at joy, I would have to say, I was looking for a picture of being out for lunch with my daughter and her partner and my husband, when she shared the news that she got accepted into med school and it took her three tries to get into med school. So the persistence that my daughter showed was super exciting for me to be part of. I have four children, four grandchildren, and they are by far the biggest, most important joy in my life, and I know you know. One of you was talking about regrets, and there’s a palliative care nurse in Australia who wrote a book, Bronnie Ware, about the five top regrets of the dying and working too hard was one of those. And also not being able to be who you are in life. And I think we become much more comfortable as we get older to be who we are and to understand the importance of that.

So I think the joy of what I find in life is the joy of my family and the joy I’m trying to explore and discover is the joy of slowing down and kind of appreciating the life I’ve lived and how am I going to tell that story. So that’s what made me curious about coming into this workshop. So thank you for putting it on. I appreciate it.

It’s interesting because my father was very much a fisherman and out on the ocean and I have my oldest son who I call my ocean man, because he lives on the Island, Vancouver Island. And then I have my other son who’s the mountain climber, which is a dangerous kind of. Anyway, so you let your children be who they are. And he lives in Squamish, which has a very famous climbing mountain. So I think that nature and bodies of water have been part of my life growing up, doing a lot of camping and being in nature. But yeah, it’s a good point. Water is pretty amazing in terms of reflecting on our own personal wellbeing.