This site is a container of sorts – a Comfort Jar – where I blog daily about what lifts my heart. But it’s very much a communal jar. I’m asking you readers to tell me what brings you comfort, little or big. Every day for 2017, I’ll open a little origami star (details below), read its quote and share it with you.
In case you didn’t catch my first post, I’ll add it here to explain where this all sprang from…
I know I’m in good company saying a hearty Good Riddance to 2016. My year went a lot like one of those country songs you think will never end. And on November 8th, the Annus Horibilis shifted gears from bad song to shuddering squeal. On that day, I was on a plane from NYC to Dublin, as the election results seeped in through my seat companion’s live feed. I went from smug (sure I was about to witness the first female US president smash her glass ceiling) to chest-caved-in horror somewhere mid-Atlantic. And the worst part was, I was not amongst my kin. That’s you. I was surrounded by perfectly nice people. The woman beside me made me laugh. She was watching ‘Bad Moms’ and drinking vodka with cranberry (x 3). The guy on my right made me feel safe…mid-Westerner, late 50’s, cosy sweater, tidy hair, no booze. Just the guy you want near you if the ship goes down. But somewhere above Greenland, things took a terrible turn and the lovely people all around morphed into party mode as it became clear that their choice, Trump, had been elected, ‘By a landslide,’ the bad mom told me gleefully, as I scratched myself back from dumbfounded haze. Then it all felt very Snakes on a Plane.
And therein, I simply fell to pieces. For months. And thanks be to gawd, I understand I’m not alone and this is where you come in. I very much need your help with a little project called The Comfort Jar to climb out of my Trump slump.
The idea is, I’ll be here every day of 2017 with at least one morsel of comfort and asking any of you who find the time to share any moment of comfort you might wants to share too. It can be very small (cinnamon on my cappuccino small) or something monumental. I’m sure you’ve all seen those Facebook posts by now showing jars full of Post-Its scribbled with good things. I started one last January when my dear old dog died (see above – country song fodder). But this year, something amazing happened …. My sister Kate and her daughter Aoife came from the US to spend Christmas with me in Dublin. And they gave me this:
At first I thought it was a jar of rainbow-coloured popcorn. And I was happy. But once I got up close, I realised it is a jar full of lovingly-folded origami paper stars. There are 365 stars in the jar. Can you believe I have family like this?! And it gets better…for inside each tiny, loving star is a message…an inspirational quote, I’m told. I’ve only opened the first one because I clearly understood that I couldn’t keep all this comfort and joy and inspirational quote stuff to myself with the year that’s in it. So I’m going to open a star each day and tell you what it says.
Today’s message is, “Artists can colour the sky red because they know that the sky is blue,” Jules Feiffer. I Googled Jules. He was a cartoonist, writer, satirist and lots of other things. Born in NYC in 1939, he’s also famous for saying this, “I loved cartoons the most, because I couldn’t write well enough to be a writer, or draw well enough to be an artist, but I realized that the best way to succeed would be to combine my limited talents in each of those fields to create something unique.”
Which I’m finding inspiring already!