Love is the oil that eases friction!
This past weekend, I went to my brother’s 80th birthday party in Hout Bay, Cape Town, South Africa. Yes, I know it’s hard to believe but I do indeed have a brother who turned 80 and yes, we were born to the same parents.
I am what is known as a “laat-lammetjie” which is Afrikaans for “late lamb”. The translation of the meaning is that I was the last child born into the family, several years later, although in my case almost 2 decades after my eldest brother was born.
There were 2 siblings in between my brother and I but I was the unexpected surprise that most parents dread but often love deeply. I believe that once the experimental stage of parenting is over and the rest of the children help to take care of the baby, the ‘laat-lammetjie’ can sometimes be extremely loved and sometimes not so much! My siblings were 20, 12 and 9 respectively and I believe that I was loved because all I have for them today is deep love and respect.
As I enjoyed multiple family get-togethers over the last few days, reminiscing, chatting and enjoying good Cape wine I realized just how fortunate I am to have this large, loving and caring family that I was born into.
Laughter and tears were part of almost every conversation and on the flight home, my husband and I reflected on what creates a happy and fulfilled life. We came up with one resounding and overwhelming piece of evidence that we were grateful to have observed. That a fulfilled and happy life was about care and love.
Caring about each other enough to make contact as often as is necessary and loving unconditionally without reservation is what happy and loving families are all about.
My brother is a legend! We came from a poverty-stricken background and at the very young age of 16, decided that he wanted to help his family by taking on the responsibility of supporting everyone because my father was doing a poor job of that.
My father fought in the last world war and was a prisoner of war for a while. Post-traumatic stress disorder was not even a word that people understood, least of all what medicine could treat, so he dealt with his memories and pain by abusing alcohol. Alcohol abuse became mental and emotional abuse and eventually physical abuse. It was not a happy home. Yet, in spite of this, my brother refused to be a victim of his circumstances and chose the path of hard work, determination and success.
In his speech after his children acknowledged and honoured him, my brother said something that will stay with me forever. He said that the private aeroplanes that he owned and piloted for many years, the fancy cars and big house, the businesses that succeeded and the money that he worked so hard for cannot compare to the pride and love he feels for his family. He also said that it wasn’t always like that; that he made many mistakes and that it wasn’t always easy but he is so glad that he always focused on family and that it has been so worth it.
He said that the only thing that really matters is family and it showed. It showed in the people who came to celebrate with him. It showed in how much my sister and I adore him and it showed in how many of his children and grandchildren were there to express love to him.
I often tell my brother that I am watching him. I am watching him as a role model and an exemplary man of honour and sincerity. I tell him that I hope I have his good genes, so that I too can experience what he has experienced in his life, but today I believe that there is one defining thing that sets the happy and fulfilled apart from the unhappy and unfulfilled – it’s the BELIEF that you can be whoever you choose to be.
Being a brain-based life coach and dealing with the hundreds of people that I have over the past 37 years, I can honestly say that I can guess what kind of beliefs are driving a person within the first few minutes of a session. It all lies in one profound statement:
“The most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly or hostile Universe.” – Albert Einstein
Beliefs are programs and until you create new, empowering beliefs about yourself and your life, you will stay stuck in the same old programs, some of which no longer serve you. Believing that people are out to get you and that everyone else is to blame for your situation is a limiting and self-sabotaging belief. Fortunately, science has proven that we can change our beliefs!
How? With practice. And more practice. And still more practice.
Find an affirmation that is present, powerful and passionate for YOU! Say it, print it and draw it or paint it and then continue to use it until it becomes you and you become it. Stick with it and watch how your life unfolds over time and maybe, when you have the privilege to live to be an octogenarian, you too will be able to say – “It was all worth it!”
“In family life, love is the oil that eases friction, the cement that binds closer together, and the music that brings harmony.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
Sometimes family are those that we surround ourselves with, not necessarily blood but bonds that bind us to another or a few or many. Whoever you call family, love them, be there for them, and don’t just tell them that you care, show them!
These two short videos by Dr Bruce Lipton speaks of the love he discovered while working with cells as a cellular biologist – hope you watch and decide how you can shift up a gear in the ‘love of family’ department.
All my love
New new new
I have decided that I would like to start a new series of “Conversations with Sharon” that anyone can attend. This will take the format of no agenda, no structure and no prerequisites other than to turn up and allow the conversation to flow, through asking questions.
I have a request though – please let me know if this is something you would enjoy and if you would like to attend. I don’t know the days or the times, but will gauge by the responses I get, how it might work. I look forward to hearing from you at firstname.lastname@example.org