Friday, December 08, 2006

Punishment and Reward

I believe punishment offers the reciever no chance to change the act that promted a punishment. The deed is done, the punishment administered, in my opinion nothing is learned except when you screw up, it is painful.
Another layer of bitternes added to the skin of the receiver.

Ever notice how our mistakes seem to count more than our triumphs.
As children most of us are punished for the things we do wrong, and receive little reward for the things we do right.
I wonder what this world would might be like if right from the start of a persons life they were never punished, corrected yes, taught dicipline by example, yes.

What if our lives were based on the reward system rather than punishment.
Sure, there would always be the individuals who would deviate but, would the majority of us feel better about ourselves, find more joy in our lives.

I remember in college hearing a story about Thomas Edison.

Out of the many attempts Mr.Edison made to create the light bulb there was a situation when one of his young assistants, upon completion of a light bulb, had accidently broken it.
Rather than punish the assistant, when the next light bulb was completed Mr Edison handed it to the young assistant to carry over to the table...
The assistant was problaby amazed that he was given a chance to try again without any punishment.
Of course, this time, the assisstant was extremely careful.

Giving others an chance to make mistakes and learn from them without condemnation might be the biggest reward we could ever have to offer.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

In the last hour

In the last hour

I will forgive
I will heal
I will laugh at my mistakes
I will love completley without fear
I will fully understand compassion

My breathing will rise and fall with memories
My children will find joy, strength, love
They will view me as a person with hope and dreams, failures and triumphs.
I will find piece

I pray that at the end of each day, that I am so blessed to have,
I will relish in the last hour.

Saturday, November 25, 2006


My grandfather Joe was my hero.

The year was 1963 in Liverpool England, my mother 20 years old and un-wed living way from home. When she got up the nerve to call my grandfather to break the news, he simply said "come home".

Then with the authority in his voice I sometimes remember hearing him use, he issued a warning to the rest of the family, " they were not to ask any qestions" they heeded his warning.

I called him "Sada" the jewish name for grandfather.
He was the one man in my life as a young girl who loved me completely, unconditionaly.
If any of you read my bed time story I took bits and pieces of my life some truth, some wishful thinking ..anyway, it was my grandfather not my father, who ran to the hospital the day I was born without any shoes.

When I heard what he had done I was moved beyond words that his excitement was so great and he loved me so much.
When I was about 8 years old I would dance for him, he clapped and cheered as if I were a huge star, he called me his little Sherila.

My grandfather loved to as he would say, " bet on the horsies". Every Saturday morning he would sit me on his knee, instruct me to close my eyes, circle my finger over the news paper, and pick the winning horse.
Each time when he arrived home coincidently my horse had always won. He would give me the pocket change and tell me how smart I was for picking the winner.

It was many years after his death while re-telling the story it occured to me, maybe my horses were not always the winner, I felt a lump for in my throast and a wave of love wash over me.

My childhood was difficult, when I felt sad I would climb up on my grandfathers knee, he would hold me close and whisper " you wont always be a little girl Sherila, one day you will be a woman and have a wonderful life".
I believed him.

I was twelve years old when he died, he suffered a major heart attack.
My family had moved far away I did not get to say good bye.
I remember thinking he must have missed me so much that he died of a broken heart.
My grandfather shoes were very big, I spent the next 30 years of my life trying to find another man to fill them, I could not find a one.

So here is you you my my Sada, my grandfather, my hero.
For your love for me will continue to flow through my veins until my last breath.

Thursday, November 02, 2006


What morning means to me is a chance to catch my breath. It is the only part of my day that is quiet and my mind is sharp. No distractions, no stressful events that have squelched my creativity.

I love to lay awake at the wee hours of the morning and think about my life. My triumphs and mistakes and how I may learn from the day before.

I think of the books I would love to write how I need to improve my grammar. I think of the places I would love to visit, of the people I would love to see.

I think of my sons now grown, and wish I had the knowledge I have now when they were young. I find solice in the fact that today is another opportunity.

I think of my beautiful daughters and quietly, even when they do not know I am awake, I think of the things that they love and I dream with them.
I think of my husband and how patient he is with me and my friends who are always there when I need them. I think that in spite of all the things I will find in this day to whine about , how truly blessed I am.

Just as I begin to engage the fantasy of the wonderful things I would like to do for myself , read, write, take a walk, I hear the sqeak of my 4 year olds bedroom door and the shuffle of her feet making her way down the hall toward my room. Then the sound of her breath, silently begging at the edge of my bed, waiting for me to reply "get in" the morning is behind me, my day has begun.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Bed time stories

Once upon a time a beautiful baby girl entered the world. The year was 1963, back then fathers were not allowed to be part of the delivery. This father upon hearing the news 0f his daughters birth ran all the way to the hospital bare foot. It seemed he was so excited to see his new daughter he forgot his shoes. When he arrived at the hospital and the nurse brought her in , he was amazed at how tiny she was. Weighing all of 4lbs and 12 inches long she already commanded the room.

Every person who gazed upon her became mesmerized by her beauty and grace. Each time the father would notice how others were drawn to her he stood a few inches taller, smiled like the cat who ate the canary, he was proud!
Her father took her home, as the days past she began to take shape. When her father entered the room she would see no one else but him.
Loud giggles and squeaks echoed as he picked her up , throwing her way, way up to the sky so she could touch the clouds and catch the rain drops. Catching her he wrapped her in his big strong arms, she felt safe with him, he taught her to trust.

Years past, she gained speed, her life was full of sugar and spice and everything nice. Like a loyal puppy her father was by her side for everything , her biggest fan!
Her father was not only by her side for the good things, for the challenges as well.
Like the night she had the flu and didn't make it to the toilet, her father carried her to the bathroom and held her long hair back, gently wiping her forehead with a cool wet cloth, oh how she loved him and her loved her.
Or like the time when she finally realized that the boy, Allen Smith, whom she had loved from afar did not even know she existed. Her father sat at the edge of her bed all night long hearing her sob, frustrated that the days of kissing the boo boos away were nearing the end.

When she was leaving for college he helped her pack, put on his most convincing smile,then watched his daughter drive away. He would be lost without his princess.

Time past, she married, had a daughter of her own. On the night of her daughters birth her husband present for the big event, looked down at his feet , together they laughed almost hysterical, it seemed while rushing out of the house he had forgotten his shoes, just like her father had done many years before.

They took their baby home . She stood at the door way of the nursery watching her husband singing softly to his new daughter, holding her tight, swaying as the moon and the stars danced in the sky.

She thought of all the things she wanted to give her tiny daughter, sugar and spice and everything nice. Mostly, she was eternally grateful her daughter would have the one thing she herself had longed for all her life, a father...

She had never known the father who dominated her dreams. If she had known him he would have shared the same memories, known the story she invented in her mind. He would have memorized every word and no matter how many times he read it, together, they would giggle at the part where he forgot his shoes.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Nothing inside but love

Self Portrait / With someone

When my oldest son was in Kindergarten he came barreling out of school one day with a package held firmly under his arm.
It was obvious by the exesesive amount of tape he had wrapped this box himself .
Eager to play with his friends he rushed past me hurling the gift like he was passing a foot ball.
I heard him utter as he passed by "here Mom, there is nothing inside but love"

Attached to the box was a hand written poem I hate to admit it, but I cannot remember the exact wording. It is the last line that will travel with me through eternity it read, " there is nothing inside but love"
My son is now 23, to me it is like he is l inside that very box, captured in time, frozen, bright eyes, beautiful toothless grin a personal time capsel for only me to open.

I want to tell him.....I am the little girl holding that same box, in my mind and he is inside.
I am speaking the same words he once spoke to me, Here Son, there is nothing inside but love ".

Monday, September 04, 2006

A Place for me


Drifting, silence, raw.
Time now beckons, dance sharp, turn
clouds, fluffy pillows.

Conflicting spirits
Cannot see my soft steps smile
Dancing alone, my space.