You know you should be grateful. What has to happen to make you feel and realise it?

I remember my mother telling me to be grateful when I was growing up. Lately I’ve come to the conclusion that I grew up with a deficit complex. I thought I was not good enough. I went through unidentified FOMO. It actually didn’t even exist in those days. “Fear of Missing out” is a 21st Century diagnosis which I self-diagnosed, while not even needing to consult with Dr Google. Personal Friend Facebook was enough to set me straight and educate me.
In my childhood, I wanted to sit on the couch beside the adults while they had their fascinating talks. Those talks were mostly in Czech, as my parents met with their friends who had also emigrated to Australia. They sang their old Czech songs and told their stories. They even occasionally rolled up the carpet and then they told us kids that we had to stay in bed and could not come out to bother them. That was in the 1960s. I am a baby boomer. I didn’t even know what that meant for a long time. Now you can Google it and even write your own definition and post it to Wikipedia if you want.
Did I tell you how times have changed? Oh, you’ve noticed that too? Oooh! You’re a Baby Boomer too? So what you say?
Yesterday we celebrated my birthday and met as a family for the first time in over a year. Josef was planning to celebrate his birthday last year when Corona hit and, despite the invitations which had already been sent out, his birthday party never happened. His birthday is in March. In fact we missed most of our family birthdays the past year. So, actually, it was a bit unfair to say we celebrated my birthday yesterday. My birthday is in June and the first of July is our blessing anniversary. So lots of our colleagues are posting photos of their blessing thirty-nine years ago. I’m still catching up with this blog reflection on gratitude.
You know it was quite a few years ago when I realised that I am not a hot news journalist. I am more the magazine archivist. At first, I thought it was because I did not have one of those phones which can connect to the internet and send off messages at an instant.
Meanwhile even I can do that. I have to think back to January 2009 when I was secretary of the VNGOC Committee on Narcotic Drugs. I was invited to attend an executive committee meeting in Italy. The guys had their phones and were reading their emails in the middle of our meeting! Of course, today, I can do that too. Twelve years ago, maybe I had that deficit feeling and thought I was being disadvantaged. In fact, I felt privileged. My other NGOs had not managed to invite me anywhere, let alone pay my expenses for my services to the organization!
Looks like all I posted about that meeting was a few photos. David Turner, RIP, left us a few years ago. How easy to lose touch with one another. Michel is now retired too. And every time I think of Eric, I think of Queen Silvia of Sweden. It was such a moving event to meet her at the Swedish Embassy. When we presented her with an award for her support of the Drugs Committee and her comment: even a Queen likes to be recognized.
So, just for explanation. You must know by now that I can’t help but include background in my commentary. The Board meeting entry was a stab in the dark as I was actually busy with a real life while attending these NGO meetings in between. I just searched through my files and found the video recordings I made of the meeting where we presented Queen Silvia with an award. She graciously said: “Even a queen likes to be acknowledged”. You can just catch the end of it on the video. I have just tacked together a few snippets I had from the meeting in the embassy and the meetings at the VIC. Often there were even official photographers at these meetings, but I never had any access to them or their material.
So, I’m grateful for the opportunity offered by modern technology to write my own reports, be my own journalist and maybe even step on a few toes and prick the conscience of some officials to truly serve the public. After all, my goal and vision is to build Heavenly Parent’s Holy Community of interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values. I’m doing this by motivating you, inspiring you and showing you what I have already done and achieved.
By the way, this post started out with overwhelm and a personal recording of one of my five sons and his birthday poem composition.
We are grateful that we can make a difference. We have made a difference. Josef and I too, celebrated our Blessing anniversary on July 1st. That was 39 years ago for us too. We were one of those 2075 couples in Madison Square Garden in 1982.
Have I waffled on too much now? That’s how it’s gotta be. I have a meeting I’m going to. There’s testimony about Unification missionaries who have just published a book in German. I was asked to help with the English translation and before I could give my final answer, there were a dozen other things going on and it was assumed I wouldn’t do it for free. I’ve done the proof reading for two other books which were both mammoth tasks and I must say I am rather thorough. So I was reluctant to commit to another major task now that I’m working on my life project.
I guess once I get around to writing my own memoirs I will really have to be more disciplined. Meanwhile I am all over the place because I have done so much and am still picking up the pieces. Like finding my videos, organizing my photos. Hope you appreciate the video of Queen Silvia. I know, the quality is not great. I have also not done that video editing course I’m planning to do. Yet I see it as an archive, an historical record and I just had to share it with you. Sorry if you don’t see the value in it the way I do.
In one way, it’s a cry for help to get others, more capable, younger people into the processing of this historical stuff. Yet, as I’ve said before, how can you take time looking back when you are busy planning the future? Well there is that wise quote that we can also learn from the past. So I do see my role as that voice from the past, seeking to provide the inspiration for the future.
Birthday Crew

At Heuriger Eischer with all the boys. Now here’s that poem from my wonderful son.

Oh, and by way, we celebrated my birthday together in the hot pools of the spa in Fussing, just across the border in Germany. Then we went out for an ice-cream and coffee.