By: Cozette Eldridge, W.P. Co. RSVP Field Representative

A few months ago, I asked a friend I hadn’t seen for a while, what she had be up to. She said in a matter-of-fact way that she had been rearranging rocks in her basket. Curious, I asked her what she meant. Was she building a rock garden?

She laughed and explained that ever since her mother had passed, her brother and sister-in-law hadn’t been getting along with her. They were convinced their mother had squirreled away a fortune, and she was lying when she told them there was no fortune. That was a stone she had put in her basket. She had forgiven her mom for some of the things she had done to her when she was young. She was able to get rid of that rock.

I couldn’t get out of my mind the image of carrying around weighty psychological and emotional stones in my inner basket.

Everything from distress over world events, an argument with a friend, a betrayal of a loved one, contribute stones, rocks, pebbles, and boulders in our inner baskets.

The weight of the basket changes, some days lighter and some days heavier depending on how we take care of ourselves, both physically and mentally.

Every time we exercise, eat healthily, read an inspirational passage, enact forgiveness, learn a new skill, let go of the past, clear the clutter in our lives, or any activity that supports us in a positive way, begins to eliminate the stones in our baskets. If we get caught up in negative emotion of any sort, be it fear, anger, unkindness, judgment of others, self-righteousness, mental darkness- weight of various sizes gets placed back into our baskets.

Don’t despair. This is an ongoing life exercise. As humans, all of us will have a few mental stones in our inner baskets. I think this image is useful to keep in mind, even if all we are doing is rearranging the rocks in our basket. The idea that I might be able to rid myself of some of these stone feels hopeful to me.

What issues are you carrying in your basket of rocks? What do you do for yourself to lighten that basket? Is it working? If not, don’t give up, lighten up.

Today is Thanksgiving, and I am thankful my basket isn’t as heavy as it once was.

SENIOR CENTER MENU

NOV. 26–30

MONDAY: Chicken Fried Steak, Mashed Potatoes/Gravy, Vegetables, Mixed Fruit

TUESDAY: Pork Roast, Au Gratin Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables, Fruit

WEDNESDAY: Minestrone Soup, Tuna Salad, Roll, Fruit

THURSDAY: Meat Loaf, Mashed Potatoes/Gravy, Steamed Spinach, Roll, Fruit Cup

FRIDAY: BBQ Chicken, Macaroni Salad, Vegetables, Melon Mix, Birthday Cake