I always say that I get around to most things eventually...and here I am (finally) launching the blog I have been keeping notes and saving ideas for, for the past 10 years or so. I had a lot of titles: "How My Children Raised Me", "Advice Free 24/Six", "So, Here's the Thing", to name a few. Why these did not come to fruition until now is too long to go into here, plus its boring, and it doesn't really matter.
In the end—or the beginning— depending how you want to look at it, I am finally launching my blog, this very day, on my brand-spanking new gallery, Kiyor Functional Art & Decor. I am calling it, "It's A Beautiful Thing", and here is why.
This morning as I finished saying my morning blessings, and sat down with my daily green tea-tumeric-ginger-garlic-cayenne-and-black-pepper-parsley-lemon juice-date honey-coconut oil tonic*, I was thinking about the different things I have going on in my life right now.
On the one hand, I am filled with genuine gratitude for the many abundant and amazing things God has blessed me with:
I live and love and create in Jerusalem. I have a beautiful home, with a husband that truly loves me. I am grateful every single day of my life for the gift of being a wife and a mother. We have food in the fridge, a cleaning lady once a week and wonderful friends. We are part of a dynamic and authentic Torah community. I could go on, but suffice it to say that I have consciously developed a practice of being of aware of the many things, large and small, for which I have to be deeply grateful.
At the same time, like most people, there have been—and are— things in my life that are really painful, unbearable, even traumatic.
These days it seems that there's a growing wave in the collective consciousness— a zeitgeist if you will—of mindfulness, gratitude, and positive thinking, and the impact that these practices have on mental, physical and spiritual health.
That's all well and good, but I don't want to be naive or Pollyanne-ish at the expense of keeping it real. I struggle with the dichotomy of maintaining a positive outlook and what is really going on, or as my mother (till 120) says, "Don't spit in my eye and tell me it's raining." I can't just say it's raining, if indeed life has spit me in the eye.
But there is something that I can do, and it's why—in spite of the fact that this life, this world, is indeed beautiful, truly, breathtakingly stunning, there is also crushing ugliness, hatred and cruelty— it still feels really genuine to call this blog, "It's a Beautiful Thing".
As a graphic designer, I take the words and images for a particular project and figure out how to put them together to convey the desired message. I do that by emphasizing some elements, and minimizing others. The end product has to include all the copy and visual content, to be sure. But the overall impact of it is determined by which words and images dominate. By virtue of their size and placement, the featured elements create the context for those things that must be included, but aren't as interesting or appealing.
The same is true in life— we can choose which parts of our life to emphasize and make large, thereby putting the more difficult or painful things in the smaller space that is left.
It's a beautiful thing.