Archive | January 2011

Things my kids say!

Natasha, could you please clean your room
It’’s been messy for a while
“But mom, I don’’t need to
I like my room messy right now!”

“Tidiness is over rated
I can still find all the things I want
My clothes may be on the floor
But I can still find them and put them on”

“Mommy, please don’’t talk to me
I’m thinking
Not, I don’’t want to tell you what I’’m thinking about
I need to be left alone to day dream
Let’’s talk another time”

How was school today, Natasha?
“I didn’’t see any hippos in the hall”
What was your favorite class today?
“Gym, then recess and then lunch!”

What a rough morning it is
Nicki, you need to do your homework at night
Now, you are asking me to help you
But I have other things on my mind

“Mommy, you can’’t complain
For this, you yourself signed up
No one made you have kids
Don’’t ask for sympathy, right now”

Natasha, dear, when you’re older
And have a child
I’’ll remind you for what you signed up!

“Mommy, can you make me lunch
And make me a good sandwich this time
I’’m tired of bagel and cheese and ham
Could you find something else this time?

My friends bring these amazing things for lunch
And I get the same thing all the time
Could I please have some variety”?

Why don’’t you make your own lunch!?

And so it goes
Each day something new
Children will always surprise you!
But I’m happy I signed up for it
Because in the end, it’’s all worthwhile

Lida Beghuis
January 28th, 2011

Joy is wisdom

Joy is wisdom!
How wonderful!

Who doesn’’t want wisdom?
Who doesn’’t want joy?

Joy in the sense of
Appreciating the wonders of life
The ecstasy of creativity
The balm of friendship
The elixir of love

Joy of having experienced suffering
And overcoming the odds
Joy of bringing joy to others
Joy of exploring and growing
Joy of knowing what’’s important in life

Joy is wisdom
What a blessed thought
Who doesn’t want joy?
Who doesn’t want wisdom?
And to discover that
They are one and the same
Or that one leads to the other
The cherry on top!

Joy sometimes comes
After much sorrow
Sorrow that plows our soul
Preparing it for the season of planting
And growth

Joy is wisdom*
What a heavenly thought!

Lida Berghuis

January 25th, 2011

*”Joy is wisdom” is a quote from Charlotte Davis Kasl
in her delightful book, Finding Joy.

Let yourself be seen!

“In order for connection to happen
You have to let yourself be seen
Be really seen”

With your strengths and weaknesses
With your beauty and ugliness
With your courage and your fear
With your smiles and your tears
With your joy and your sorrow
With your highs and your lows
With what you know and do not know
With what you feel and what you don’t

If this connection is to last
All these things will come to fore
Why hide them
Why pretend?

For an enduring connection
You need to be loved
Warts and all
You need to love yourself
Before all

Love yourself
Have compassion for yourself
Be content with where you are
While you forge ahead in life

Lida Berghuis
January 20th, 2011

*Brene Brown in the ‘Power of vulnerability’

They come and they go…

Laughter like water
Puts out the fire of pain
Laughter like a flower
That has bloomed today

Tears like rain
Wash off the dross
Tears like a balm
Soothe a sad heart

A smile, like a rainbow
Brings a smile
A smile, like a light
Brightens the night

Frowns, like clouds
Hiding the sun
Frowns, they come
They are a part of life

Laughter, tears
Smiles and frowns
They come, they go
As we live our lives

Lida Berghuis
December 29th, 2010

Not philosophical!


I can be philosophical
A lot of the time
Maybe I need to lighten up!
Write a poem about something fun
Something to cheer someone up!

“Tu veux ‘messer’ avec moi?”
Said Nick this morning
To my Ipad as he played a game

That cracked me up!
“Don’’t even think of it
Tu vas ‘dier’”
He went on

I asked him if he felt lighter
Because he lost a tooth last night?
He said, “No, not really
Another tooth is growing in its spot!

Natalie was nervous for her
First day back
Ready to walk out in -14 degree weather
Without mittens on her hands

Natasha had her new green hat on
With a jacket and a scarf
And as she was leaving the house
She was going over her schedule
Thinking out loud

One by one, they left the house
Into the cold winter day they stepped out
Are these my kids, I thought
I promissed  I wouldn’t get philosophical
So, I guess I’ll stop now!

Lida Berghuis
January 17th, 2011

A work in progress

I understand concepts slowly in life
First, I think I know how to do it right!

Then, it comes to my attention
That surprisingly, I was mistaken!
So begrudgingly I admit to my mistake
And start making some changes

Change is hard as you know
It’s a process, drawn out, and slow

After this first round
I feel happy and sure
I think I know now
What I didn’t know before

Does that mean things will go smoothly?
No, not really, unfortunately!
Understanding comes in degrees
Change is an incremental thing

So, round two begins!
The challenge is on!
I need to keep learning
Keep growing up

Round two’s finished
Am I with this issue done?
Have I finally got it?
Or there is more to be done?

Often, there is more to be learned
My understanding
I have to fine-tune it

I’m now ready to admit
That understanding
Is a work in progress
One that I will never complete

But in the meantime
I’ll do the best I can
With the knowledge and understanding
That I have!

Lida Berghuis
January 13th, 2011

A lesson in compassion

Have compassion for yourself
When you are feeling down
Easy to love yourself
When you’re flying high
Have compassion for yourself
After a fall!

I still loves others
When they go through hard times
Why am I so hard on myself
When I feel down?

It’s perhaps the perfectionist in me
Not happy with less than perfect
Most of the time

It’s the impatient in me
Wanting results
Right now!!

As I travel the road of life
There are many times I will fall
I’ll have bumps and bruises
Maybe even a broken arm
Why do I expect things
To go smoothly
All the time?

And when traveling through
The valley of hardship
I have a choice
To have compassion for myself
Or not!

What I’ve noticed is that this compassion
Is a healing balm
So is accepting the situation
And not putting up a fight

Working on solutions
Seeking answers
But having compassion for myself
At the same time

My friends will be there
They will make me smile
They will hold my hand
Until on my own I can walk

One day it will be my turn
To help them
And they will know
They can trust me with
Their sorrow and pain

Having been through the valley
Of darkness
I know you can find your way back
If you have compassion for yourself
If you are patient
If you learn your lesson
If you accept help!

We are asked to love others
And part of that
Is to love ourselves
When things don’t go as planned

Lida Berghuis
January 11th, 2011

Figuring out my limits

Now dear,
I know this won’t make you happy
In the short term
But I have to say no to some things

I know you really want to go skating
And tomorrow is the best day for you
But from my perspective, that won’t work!

I am the one who has to say no
Because I’m the one who knows my limits best
And it’s time I respected them

I can always push myself a bit more
Sleep less
Agree to something reluctantly
To make someone else happy

But the one who will pay the price
Will be me

It’s easier for me to please others
To say yes
But that’s something I can no longer afford
My body and spirit will let me know

So when I think I should say yes
I should think about what my motive is

No one else knows my limits
They will ask
And the one who decides needs to be me!

So often I’ve pushed myself too much
So often I have burned out
So often I have not said no
So often I have suffered so

I don’t learn the lessons of life easily
But life has a way of teaching me
We review the same lesson, repeatedly…

So, my dear
This time, it’s no to skating
But I’d be happy to do something else with you
And schedule skating for a different time
A time that will be good for me and you!

Lida Berghuis
January 11th, 2011

I don’t remember….

I start everyday fresh and new
Memories of days past are history

Ask me what I ate a few days ago
Or details of a book I read last week

Ask me to make meatloaf without a recipe
Ask me when my next dentist appointment is

To me, it’s all a mystery
My memory is like a sieve

No, it’s not old age or menopause
My poor memory goes to back to when I was young

Memorizing dates in history class, a torture
Remembering my students’’ name, an adventure

Once I had two students
Whose names I mixed up
And after that no matter how hard I tried
I could not reprogram my brain
The wrong names stayed in my head

My husband and kids are with a
Good memory blessed
Which makes me look worse
As you’ can guess

My poor memory has other downsides too
Forgetting how to get somewhere
Getting lost on the way back …
Misplacing an important document
Now, where did I actually file that?

But poor memory has an upside too
I get to start each day anew
Forget the sorrows of the past
Leave behind me what has passed

Yes, my poor memory gets me in trouble sometimes
But each day is brand new, a fresh start!

Lida Berghuis
January 8th, 2011

Hand writing

Does anyone hand write anymore?
In the age of e-mail and
Electronic agendas
Do we take the time to write things out?

Even my doctor’s prescription
Comes typed in now
That may not be a bad thing though
Considering how some doctors write

So personal
So revealing in many ways
When I write in large strokes
You can see the energy and enthusiasm

When the letters are smaller
I may be feeling blue
When I write on a slant
I like that…
When I doodle and draw on the page
Another dimension I add

Sometimes I write so fast
That some letters are skipped
I’s are not dotted
And some letters merge

There is no spell check
And I may have to cross things out
But every page tells a tale
Unique, each line

Paper can get older and more fragile
Handwriting can fade
But isn’t that a mirror of our lives?
They also can become more valuable
Over time

And if my hard drive is wiped out
By accident or the back-up fails
My notebooks will still be there
I started keeping journals when I was twelve

First written in Persian
Then in a mix of English and Persian
Then in English mostly
First written in prose
And now in poetry

Paper and pen will always
Be my friends
Our friendship goes back to way back when!

Lida Berghuis
January 2nd, 2011