Your Reality Depends on How You Build Your Forms

There are lots of ideas out there in the world. Lots of information, lots of controversy. I have no designs on telling you how to believe. I just want to mention that you can always change your views, outlook, opinions. It takes some analysis of your thoughts, and honesty with yourself. It takes a pinch of humility and a scoop of compassion for others.

As the cliche goes (I love a good cliche. They’re around for a reason: they illustrate a truth) your world (reality) is what you make it.

What is reality? Firstly, reality is not “real.” There is no objective reality, only our subjective ones. Reality is something our brain projects onto the items, people, ideas in our lives. Reality is a contract; one we sign with our global community.

As a child, and now a young woman, I’ve seen a bit of concrete be poured. I’ve seen men build forms. Forms are important to a pour. Forms mold and hold the cement while it dries into the final product. Let me show you something, and you can do with it what you will.

The following is a metaphor, and is not intended to incite the destruction of any concrete or sidewalks. In your town/city, or mine.

Our thoughts are the cement

Our agreement as a whole society is the water

Mix the two together and you’ve got a hard reality.

At the moment, people are “mud-jacking” reality: trying to fix cracks in our ideals/morals by back-filling the old sidewalks with dirt, foam, whatever chemicals those “mud-jackers” use.

Sidewalks are breaking up in every town. And those sidewalks can’t be fixed. Concrete impedes the Earth’s breathing, and no one walks on ’em anymore.

I think a complete “tear out” would do the job; get that concrete off the grass. We will need some jackhammers. We will need some loud voices to break into our reality and dig it out, turn it back into dust, leave space for something new.

Updated to include a credit to my husband, (S.), whose thoughts on how the Earth breathe inspired this post. My husband is an expert in concrete, and it’s how we make our bread. Es mexícano, something that makes me feel persecuted for being proud of. I love my husband because of his culture, not in spite of it. Mexicans don’t steal jobs, they build foundations for them.

P.S. I have tears in my eyes as I write that update and quiero que todos los latino(a)s sepan que estoy con ustedes, y que la única cosa que puedo hacer es tratar de no vivir con miedo. Lo siento por lo que está pasando.

P.P.S. Any and/or all comments including hate speech, threats, forms of racism will be deleted (as they should be). I do not tolerate slurs or disparaging comments, as I’ve said before and will again.

An Experiment with Grapevine

Last year, my mother and I discovered a most amazing creature: the grapevine. While clearing a thicket of invasive Honeysuckle and grape vines, we carved out a flower bed and created a path. We had long, thick vines drying next to our house and soon knew how we would use them.

My mother, a creative and resourceful person, thought that we could use the grapevines in several ambitious ways. I, a bit skeptical but wanting to learn everything I can from the older women of the world, listened to her thoughts. I have learned a lot from my mother about critical but open thinking. So, we made a few wreaths from the thinner vines, and played with the larger pieces for a few days.

Inspiration finally struck, and this is what we created.

A fading echinacea and some hosta are enclosed by grape vine hoops.

It is important to note that I cut these vines in the fall, let them dry through the winter and early spring, and pushed the bent vines into the ground after heavy rains.

When cutting the grape vine, we looked for natural curves or particularly bendy pieces and cut the bottoms at angles (to make them easier to stab into the dirt). We were very surprised that this worked and most of the vines, those that are not battered by my son or the dogs, have remained in the ground.

We were even more surprised to see new, green tendrils sprouting from the old vines and curling around other hoops. The vines pictured above have been “pruned” twice this year. The grapevine grows fast and I know how difficult it is to remove, so I am a bit stern with the new growths.

I love to recycle and reuse things of any material so this was an exciting project. My mother’s creativity really shines in the garden and I have learned a thing or two about grapevines, thinking outside of the box, and giving others space to create.