COLUMNS Word & Wisdom

We’re Back!

I like that phrase. In this case, I’m referring to Hipfish. I am just so pleased it is back up and running. Not sure how Dinah did it. Does it. Keeps on going. Keeps on moving. Its admirable. Feeling pleased is a pleasant emotion to have these days. When things seem tough, and every day events around the world  are sure to depress, I find it inspiring to see one, such as Dinah, pick herself off, get the dust off and start in again. Thanks, Dinah, for demonstrating such grit.

I think you have to recognize something, such as perseverence or stamina, in order to admire it. I admire those that can survive with grace.

For a while there, maybe in the ‘80’s I wondered if we were becoming a nation of whiners. Striving for all the wrong things. Overextending in unhealthy ways. Whining when glitches and problems arose. Money solved a lot of problems back then.

This past year put most people to the test. Be it destruction of a facility via fire or foreclosure or job loss, we’ve had to somehow come face to face with serious stuff. I also have to note: I didn’t hear a lot of whining from those most hard hit. One friend who lost his house stated it may have been ultimately a good thing. He found living debt-free to be a freedom he hadn’t had when house payments and repair bills held him hostage. Another friend found her job loss tto be the impetus for starting her own business, something she wanted to do for a long time. These are not just happy stories. In interviews with tsunami survivors, it was impressive that, despite the huge losses of homes and people, to be alive seemed miraculous. The bottom line of being alive was something for which to be grateful.

Bottom lines:  We finally are getting to them. Less frivolous spending of time and money. Less whining. Less yearning for an imaginary life and more appreciation of what is. More real. The ability to process the odds and ends in life and still end up feeling like its all okay, is  a process of maturation. We’re growing up and maybe just growing:  Growing more real, more spiritual, and more compassionate.

We’re a nation that likes tangibles and statistics. We quantitfy. We add up. We put a number to our net worth, our credit worthiness, and think it somehow shows us where we “fit” into this big society of ours. We even look at our Facebook count as if it might hold some useful info. (It doesn’t.) I suggest we take stock of those things  that we had all along but have no quantitative value – strength, stamina, compassion and hope.  Money and stuff comes and goes. The real deal remains. Character endures. We always knew it. But now, we really really know it. And it is priceless.

Tobi Nason is a Manzanita counselor. She can be reached at for feedback or ideas. Welcome back, Hipfish!

By Tobi Nason

Tobi is a Manzanita counselor.