Rabbi Harold Kushner

by artist having fun on March 14, 2010

I really needed to hear this on KUOW this morning. An interview with Rabbi Harold Kushner, who wrote When Bad Things Happen to Good People and Overcoming Life’s Disappointment. He was talking about not completing everything he had set out to do in his life and how to overcome the disappointment of not achieving certain goals. I am feeling a lot like that lately. Maybe I need to read that book. You should listen to the entire interview, it is really touching.

“In his seventh decade, Kushner wrote Overcoming Life’s Disappointments. He says that when people look back on life, they realize that many things they had their hearts set on doing remain incomplete.”Does that brand your life as a failure? Or can you find the secret … of failing and not feeling like a failure?” Kushner says. “The difference between a person who has a happy old age and the person who has an unhappy old age is not how successful they were, but it’s how much the things they failed at continue to gnaw at them. And no matter what you’ve achieved, if you’re not able to still that little voice of disappointment, you are never going to be happy.”

I think about the quilts I want to make, the clothes, the paintings, the postcards, the graphics, the illustrations, the assemblage art, my projects that fill up my “little book of big ideas” … my list is long. I so want to accomplish just a few of my ideas, see them fail or succeed. Maybe I should re-define my list? Go check out my Mondo Beyondo list and see if it is too ambitious? But there is my book and I can scratch that off my list now.

Sorry, not much blogging this week. I am a woman obsessed with organizing the photos and files on my computer. I know I have deleted thousands of images. It all started during the book production, trying to find photos I knew I had, but just not where I had them. And my book, just tweaking. Making postcards.

I spent the most wonderful hour with my neighbor, who went through my book with me, page by page, flower by flower. We had a great discussion about the “quietness” of the book. No captions, nothing to take away from the peacefulness of each image. She was touched, and I was touched that she got the book in such a way. In the vein it was intended. Remarkable. I get a little embarrassed when talking about my book and taking compliments. Difficult for me not to turn red. But I was so thrilled to hear Julie’s take on my images. Thank you!

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