Innisfree Spirit Ministry

Innisfree Moment Archive

May 2022

The Hats We Wore

The Hats We Wore


Listen to the audio version by Dorothy

Remembering Carmel Marchant,
December 1938 - April 2022

The idea for this month's topic arose when a friend and I decided to attend an upcoming luncheon with the theme: Mad Hatter's Tea Party, based on Alice in Wonderland, and suggesting attendees dress up in keeping with the story. I do like hats and still have an assortment of various formal and informal styles, although nowadays wear ones of a casual, jaunty or colourful nature, including a bright green one on St. Patrick's day!

Hats can be symbolic of the phases of our lives, just as for men who shifted from wearing ties to a more casual style. Yet, each stage can have its own story. With advancing years, I became comfortable being the only person wearing a hat, whereas my younger less-confident self preferred to fade into the crowd and not be noticeable. That being said, I think you will agree that the hat I'm wearing in this month's illustration is certainly too large for my five foot stature, but I loved it and had such fun wearing it for the photograph. Here is its story:

At the completion of my ministry finals, while visiting with a friend at her vineyard in California she showed me her hat, saying she had recently worn it to a wedding and that while walking down a street in San Francisco a gentleman had stopped to compliment her on how elegant she looked, adding that he wished women still wore elegant hats. That was some years ago but I can still bring to mind my thrill when putting it on ... and, yes, I left it behind with my friend ... but, recently purchased a new hat, albeit smaller in size!

While the references above deal with hats and changing styles, I see the shifts as a metaphor for life's passages - youth, career, parenting, health, loss, moving, and friendships that change over time. Some transitions are peaceful and others traumatizing, spinning us into a whirlwind of angst as we search for answers, and forcing us to dig deeply for inner strength.

Last week was such a week for me, with each day presenting a different challenge that drained my energy, including learning of the passing of Carmel, my sister-in-law originally from Dublin; yet, I knew she was at peace, after the painful grief she experienced since the death of her husband, my brother-in-law, Michael. So I talked to a caring friend, listened to music, washed my floors and made Irish soda bread. Then, some days later, the sun shone again, I went to a restaurant for breakfast, reflected on how to deal with the challenges, and my life came back into ... well, balance!

Life at times is a rollercoaster of emotions, with each of us handling them in different ways. Maybe washing floors or playing in the kitchen isn't your way, but maybe a walk in the park is. Maybe you don't care to wear hats, but what is fun for you? I made mention last month of my late friend in her nineties who loved to laugh and with whom I read stories when she got herself tucked into bed; she had such fun wearing her Mother Hubbard hat when giving out Christmas gifts.

Last month at a Hospice function I received my 20 year plaque on a beautiful mantle clock. I do love clocks and have them in each room, from ticking to swinging pendulum ones (again, not everyone's preference)! However, very significant, and still sitting on my table, is a draw prize of a black coffee mug with an inscription by Neale Donald Walsch: Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

So when your comfort zone is stretched to the limits, look for those moments of wonder that lift your spirits, and know that your life is about to enter an amazing new beginning phase, perhaps of sharing your unique gifts to make a difference and inspire others. Until next time, I leave you with today's message on my Louise Hay calendar: Each day is a new opportunity. I choose to make this day a great one.

Blessèd be to you. Namasté!


May's Fireside Insight: "... we each know people of all ages, from pre-teens to those in their nineties and beyond, who are inspiring us by who they are and what they do ..."
By the Fireside with Dorothy ... Into the Mystic, Ch. 20, P96.

Dorothy B.
Dorothy B.

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Rev. Dorothy Blandford, Ph.D
Apt. 202 - 1655 Martin Drive
Surrey, BC, V4A 6E1, Canada
604-535-9016
info@innisfreespirit.com