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"What are the sources of human joy? Look no further than the spread of our arms." JOhn r. Nelson.

I know this Christmas and holiday season are different than what you likely planned.  I too have had to make some adjustments.  But what these past few months have taught me most of all, is how adaptable the human species really is.

I see it in the way businesses have learned to improvise.  The way parents have learned how to keep young minds busy.  And how most people have adapted to new ways of connecting with friends and loved ones while still remaining safe at a distance.  We are a resilient bunch, we humans. Our sheer survival depends on it.

But what about any anxiety or fears you may be carrying about an uncertain future?  Or worries about the lack of money, opportunities, or freedoms that you’ve had to adjust to.  How do you overcome the feeling of scarcity as the world seems to be turned upside down?

I firmly believe that abundance is a state of mind.  It’s something you tune into.  A way of being.  It’s like the story I told you about in my December 9 blog about Viktor Frankl being able to see beauty in a bowl of dirty water with a floating fish head.  It’s all about perspective.  And in his case, it saved his life.

I also believe that at the core of an abundant state of being are the highest vibrational frequencies of all – gratitude, joy, and love.  These are the ingredients that make everything possible and the gifts we have been endowed.  And when we realize that we are 100 percent in control of how we think and see things, then we open our arms to the abundant joy available to each of us just for the asking.

With Christmas Day only 2 sleeps away, I am dedicating today’s blog to the best example of loving abundance that I have been blessed to experience – that of the love of my parents.  Both have now passed on and it’s at this time of year that I especially miss them. They loved Christmas.  But most of all, they loved each other.  And it was the power of their love that made their legacy so abundant. Here is their love story.

Photo of Gloria's mom and dad

One of my favourite memories is listening to my parents tell the story of their courtship and subsequent marriage.  Like most stories, it probably got grander and more exaggerated as most stories do in their retelling but here’s what I remember.

My mother grew up on a farm in rural Saskatchewan in the 1930’s and ‘40’s. She had two older sisters and a younger brother.  Their home was filled with hard work, laughter, and lots of love for the giving and taking. My father was a townie from a community several miles away.  He had an older brother and two sisters.  His dad was the epitome of adaptability and resilience.  He provided for his family by holding several jobs in their small town and was even the town undertaker for a while.  Their home was a little more reserved and serious than my mom’s but loving none the less.  When my dad was 12 years old, the family moved to the town nearby where my mom’s family farmed.

Now the way my father told the story about when he met my mother for the first time, he took one look at her and said, “I’m going to marry that girl someday.”   He was only 12!

Now my mom wasn’t impressed.  You see she was 13, an entire year older and a teenager, which meant in the small one room schoolhouse, she was a grade higher than my dad, so she wasn’t having any of it. But my father didn’t give up.

My dad, was an industrious young fellow (he got that from his dad and I’m grateful that those genes got passed down to me and to my son).  He got a job at the drug store in town and at the tender age of 12 would always go to work wearing a shirt and tie. A tie! It didn’t bother him in the least when others made fun of him.  He wanted to show up at his best. And I think secretly my mom admired him for that.  My dad remained a snappy dresser throughout his entire life. 

My parents would see each other at school of course and as they got older, my father continued his pursuit of my mother, often walking the two miles from town to my mom’s farm to see her and then he would have to walk all the way back home again. Winter or summer, rain or shine, he was relentless.  One day when my dad was visiting (they must have been older teenagers by then), my grandfather could see that a big rainstorm was heading their way and told my dad to get going.

Now my mom’s family’s sense of humour had started to rub off on my dad over the years, so every time my grandfather told my dad to get on his way, he would take his time, moving really slow and finally opened the house door to make his way to the lane towards the dirt road. But each time my grandfather would shout at him to get a move on before the storm came, my dad would look back, smile and walk even slower.

prairie storm

This apparently went on for a few minutes until my grandfather grabbed his shotgun and fired it up in the air to scare my dad.  But as he fired, my father hit the ground in a heap.  Shocked and terrified that my grandfather may have shot my father, he started to run down the lane to inspect the situation.  But as soon as he was just a few feet away from my dad’s body, dad got up and started running as fast as he could to the main road, laughing all the way.  Then my grandfather really did want to shoot him!

That was one of my favourite stories that they used to tell us kids about their courtship.  There were many more but that one has stuck with me the most.  Eventually my mother gave in and stopped all the teasing she had done with my dad to keep him guessing. Despite the years of teasing, there was never any doubt that they belonged together. It was simply meant to be.

They married in 1951 and over the years had three children, me being the eldest and then came my two brothers.  We lived in Saskatchewan until 1967 and then moved west to Alberta where my parents both built successful businesses and remained for the rest of their lives.

Their story was a true love story.  As children, we knew we were loved, but we also knew that their love came first.  In fact, my father would insist that they take a winter vacation for two weeks every year so they could recommit their love and union. We kids were always well looked after by family members or sitters while they were away.  It was good for us growing up and made for an unbreakable family foundation.

At their 40th wedding anniversary, only two months before my mom drew her last breath on December 30, family and friends came from far and wide to watch them dance their final dance together.  It is a treasured memory I will never forget.

Gloria's mom and dad dancing

I am so grateful for the abundance of love that I grew up with.  Their example shaped the lens through which I see the world.  It’s times like these, when I believe we need an abundance of love and understanding more than ever, that I feel their presence the most.

If you’re on your own this Christmas, remember you’re never really alone. There are people living today and those who have since passed on, that are with you in the spirit of abundant love.  Let it in and let it wrap its arms around you.

Until next time, keep your frequency high, your mind open, and your joy ever expanding!

Love from your Joy Mama,

Gloria Stewart signature

P.S.    If you haven’t already read my book Being Joy™, it’s a simple 40-day practice of replacing old self-defeating beliefs with new empowering joy habits. As your vibrational frequency increases, you’ll not only experience more joy, but you’ll also be a beacon of hope for others who have forgotten their own joy.  Please join me on this important Joy Revolution by ordering your copy today!

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like these:

The Spirit or the Material?
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Image courtesy of Pixabay.



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