Everyone must write
His own book,
Compose his own music
And live each new day
As it arrives.
Those who know what they must do
Are freest to
And quickest to renew
And live most fully.
______© Nellieanna H. Hay
Vivian was a special person. In a way she was vivid as her name and in many ways, she was subdued as a mouse. She was older than I and from an even more formal generation, as well as a more formal background, beiing related to the Havilands of revered porcelain china dinnerware fame. There was something of an Edith Wharton character about her. It was so natural, it just seemed to BE her, who she really was.
But unlike those celestial denizens of Wharton's early 20th century upscale drawing rooms and lavish lifestyles whose ordered lives seem almost transfixed in its era, Vivian had married someone who was of a more ordinary societal background: in the terms of her generation, "someone beneath her" which changed everything she might have expected.
As it was, she had simply accepted as fact that her own status was so determined by her retro-step and tried to make the most of it. One detected the deep, half-buried personal reality, but she was not wont to reveal it casually, nor to complain.
We did become close enough, however, that I had a chance to know her beneath the surface.
I met them much later when her husband retired and they moved to Dallas to be close to their daughter, Anne. They took a modest apartment and joined in the rather fun-loving circle of Anne's friends which overlapped a circle of friends of which I was a part. We had frequent parties, boat excursions, celebrated birthdays and holidays and enjoyed a special camaraderie. Vivian reveled in it in her dignified way and her husband seemed to enjoy it as well.
Beyond question, Roland was a good man who adored her and they were a devoted couple who celebrated an anniversary of quite a few decades. Their one child was their pride and joy. There was much to admire and respect about this dedication, endurance and self-giving.
But one sensed a deep unfilled chasm in Vivian's soul. When I saw "The Thorn Birds", I was immediaely reminded of Vivian in the fictional character, Fiona, the mother of the heroine in the story, with the similarity in both marital situation, selfless courage and undying love of the husbands. It makes one glad to not be the judge of others' life choices.
Whatever the circumstances, Vivian had that rare ability to transform anything she touched into something of rare and unique beauty and to imbue it with an enviable quality of superb excellence. She was an inspiration in so many ways and she seemed to really care about me.
However, and possibly not surprisingly, she was the first to doubt a decision I made to end an unfulfilling relationship by offering an almost classic remark for a situation in which a woman chooses being on her own over being trapped: She said, "But where will you go, What will you do?"
So illustrates how thoroughly indoctrinated was in conformity that it was beyond her comprehension that one might be able even to exist and make it as a separate, whole person. I could only reassure her that I would find my way, as I did. Unfortunately, somewhat in accordance with the mores she followed and subscribed to, she "chose up sides" and I found myself outside of the entire group of which I'd been an integral part for six years.
The price of authenticity can be high, while either choice can be almost devastating.
II've wanted to share her painting with my beloved Hub friends for quite awhile, and the theme of this hub suits it, I think.
I've wished that Vivian had more fully realized her own vast potential before she passed on, though I respect her choice. Perhaps sharing this lovely painting of hers which she gave me many years ago may give her a little of the well-deserved recognition she almost totally missed during her life.
I've been among the many
And been among the few
I've sounded out their souls
As best I could
And all I really know, as yet
Is me and you.
But that makes - two!
Just as it should!
______© Nellieanna H. Hay
So much untamed,
I think I would have been
Had I been called
____© Nellieanna H. Hay
Written at age 12
A Facet of Authenticity - Aging Gracefully
The theme here is Authenticity, which, in its human sense, means being genuinely oneself. It is not primarily linked to or dependent upon a particular background, gender, age or stage of life. But what about changes in those most intrinsic parts of one's being?
My friend Vivian illustrates a person whose social vantage point changed and she responded in her own way in order to remain true to herself.
So, - especially in a fluid area, - such as status or age, one's entire perspective is challenged. One finds oneself challenged to rise to the occasion in order to maintain one's fullest and most genuine self-hood when major changes are in progress and as one continues forward. Surely that, in itself, is one of the best opportunities to be all one really is. Pretense is self-defeating, while authenticity enhances the stage of life and the state of one's being!
Various life changes which affect one's sense of being are numerous, but aging is surely among the most affecting and progressive of such changes and is one everyone faces eventually if they survive.
I found this video after I'd written the main parts of this hub, and it was almost surreal to find something which so perfectly and dramatically illustrates the entire point and spirt of what I want to share as it relates the factor of aging to authenticity and the importance of authenticity as it relates to aging.
About Haviland China
- Haviland Online - Haviland China Resources
Haviland Online China Resources- Identification, Background, Sample Pieces, Books, Dealers