My daughter began her senior year of college this week. On Wednesday I got a text from her. In the text was a picture of her and her roommates, holding a sign saying “First Day of Grades 15 and 16”. Of course, I started crying.

I am grateful that my daughter and her roommates were thoughtful enough to send this sweet note to all the Mom’s who have recorded every one of these “firsts”. I’m also grateful that no one at the gym saw me crying, because I was getting ready for class when she sent the text.

My word for the week is GRACE. Here’s how it was used in the books that I’m reading:

  1. Don’t look over your shoulder. The past is past. Just try to get through it, and give yourself some grace. Mary Kay Andrews
  2. These are the moments when we have to find the most grace: when we come to atone for the worst ravages of our conduct in darker times, when we have to tell truths that we’d rather ignore. Katherine May
  3. I’m not long for this world. My days of grace are far spent. Daniel Black
  4. She thinks about what Tabitha said, about how hard things had been for her in New York when she was younger, and wonders if in twenty years she and John will be more like Tabitha and Perry are now, if they will be confident and calm, if they have the money and the grace and the experience to handle anything. Eleanor Brown
  5. He was laughing, reveling in the presence of his beloved girl. He was full of grace. Stephanie Foo
  6. Her natural poise and grace combined with everything she had learned in her time in the limelight became the building blocks for taking my father from visionary to successful working artist. Lian Dolan
  7. It’s (China) ornamental floral descendants grace our springtimes with bold yellow forsythias and splashy rhododendrons, azaleas, and camelias; our summers with roses, peonies, gardenias, clematis, apricots, and peaches; our autumns with chrysanthemums; and our winters with citrus- oranges, grapefruit and lemons. Sarah Rose
  8. And also that in every tragedy, large or small, there are moments of remarkable grace. Kristin van Ogtrop
  9. Glenn compares the hungover state to conditions of nirvana or grace. Rob Walker
  10. Tyson writes for everyone and refutes science-deniers with humor and grace, in books, on radio and television, and most pithily, on Twitter. Jane Mount
  11. You’ve got to move on from the end of your marriage, and you’ve got to let go with good grace, because you have two wonderful sons who are the best part of your life, and you love them, and that’s an incredible gift from your ex-husband. Natasha Lunn

Here’s how I’m going to think about GRACE:

  1. Is grace tied into religion?
  2. Do we ever give ourselves grace, or are we too hard on ourselves?
  3. When we use the word grace, what do we actually mean?
  4. What are synonyms and antonyms for grace?
  5. Does grace have negative connotations?
  6. Can Grace be learned?
  7. quote 8- When amidst a tragic situation, are we able to see and value the grace, or is it only seen in hindsight?
She Walks in Beauty
BY LORD BYRON (GEORGE GORDON)

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o’er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express,
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!

44 thoughts on “Gratitude and Mindfulness: 8/27/22

  1. I LOVE Lord Byron! And your choice of word for the week. I shall adopt it for my week also! Thank you. I don’t think Grace is tied to religion but it is tied to spirit. Regardless of religion or lack thereof there can exist a state of grace.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My daughter’s been doing a very specific “1st day” photo with the girls since preschool. I don’t know what they will think of it by the time they finish their education but I hope they look back on the pictures with good memories. As to the word grace, the first thought for me is forgiveness but I also think of it in terms of an ability not to pre-judge a situation or even a person.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes. But she wants to take a gap year and do reach for America. So even I can’t hope she’ll remember to take a picture first day of law school…

        Liked by 1 person

  3. One of my favorite books is Sarah Kaufman’s “The Art of Grace: On Moving Well Through Life.” She examines every aspect of grace, often using Cary Grant as an exemplar. It’s both self-help and luminous writing. I think you’d like it a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think of grace as being synonymous with elegance and manners. I rarely reference the word with a religious connotation.
    When I think of many innovative women I have admired over the years who have been role models to me, they usually show strength of character combined with a quiet grace that shines through . It’s a quality of confidence, dignity and self assurance that is exuded.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Your daughter and her friends showed grace and a little humor in snapping and sharing that photo for their caring moms. They knew it would be appreciated. Already booked your hotel room? Organized and smart!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wanted to be somewhat close to campus (the hotel is less than a mile away so we can walk if need be) and hotels in the dc area get super expensive, so I wanted to nab a reasonably priced hotel.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow! A senior already. How wonderful!

    When I was a child, a gymnastics teacher told me I was graceless because of the way I held my arms and hands up. What a cruel thing to say!

    I know some people who I consider to have a sense of grace. I strive to be that way someday.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Grace has had many meanings throughout my life. Grace is being graceful. We said grace before meals when I was a child. I converted to Catholicism as an adult and learned about Grace from God. Then of course there is Grace Kelly, who I adore her movies.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I made it back to comment on Grace. Surprisingly I didn’t forget. 🙂
    Yes, it has to do with a large part of religion but its not only about religion.
    I think for the most part we give ourselves too little grace! We are better at giving it to others.
    I don’t feel that if has anything negative to it.
    Hmmm…on your last question. There are times amidst a tragedy where we can see grace but I do think we see it more clearly afterwards. Our emotions are just too muddled up during the hard situation to really appreciate it for what it is.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I feel like the person who has a story for everything you post, but here’s another.

    When I published the Daddy book, one of the co-authors wrote about how her therapist said she needed to give her father grace, and the co-author was so astounded because she didn’t think people could give one another grace; she thought it was something only God could give. So, to answer one of your questions, yes. I think this concept is very much tied to religion, which imo, has kind of distorted our understanding of what it really means.

    Congrats also to your daughter ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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