This video of a TED talk is resonating with me this morning:
I found it at Chookooloonks (great blog, by the way), and I already feel lighter this morning. This pulls up a wonderful memory for me.
My dad is a minister, and he's a bit of a kooky minister. He loves to put a smile on the face of each and every member of the congregation when he preaches. I am rarely embarrassed by the person I'm with, and I can likely attribute that to all the supremely embarrassing (but joyful and funny) things my father did while I was growing up. You can't hide when you're the minister's daughter.
One of the loveliest Sundays in our church in Nebraska, when I was a young child, was Pentecost Sunday. My earliest memories have us releasing balloons in flame colors. Each balloon contained a tag asking whomever found the balloon to please write us. Some people even did! Watching those metaphorical lights go out into the world was lovely. But it was also dangerous: potentially harmful to animals, long-persistent in the environment, and possibly litter that would bother someone's day instead of bringing joy. At some point, my father switched to a more benign but still lovely tradition. We blew bubbles.
We didn't just blow small bubbles with the typical wands one can buy in the summer aisle of the store. We had huge wands, cloth strips, and wire circles. We created giant bubbles! And what can be more fun than an adult reconnecting with a childhood love of bubbles? Thanks to my dad, I am still mesmerized by bubbles. Blowing bubbles in the freezing Minnesota winter is quite the experience (try it sometime!). And creating giant bubbles to lift into the sky, to lift the spirit and the eyes heavenward, brings us that joy we all so desperately need.
Election years are pretty bereft of joy. How can you spread joy amidst all the tension and conflict that surrounds us?