Thoughts, Wednesday Wisdom

Finding Forgotten Joys

A few months ago, I was astonished to find my old clarinet buried under a bunch of afghans in our blanket closet.(Yes, I was a band geek in high school. Props to all the rest of you out there.) Anyway, I thought my clarinet had been lost in a house fire back in 2006, so this discovery thrilled me.

Then doubt started to settle in. I graduated high school in 2004, and by that time I had more interest in playing guitar. I literally hadn’t touched a clarinet in over 13 years. Would I be capable of making music with this relic from my past?

So I bought some new reeds and a tube of cork grease. I assembled the horn, and I googled some sheet music from my favorite Disney songs. Bam! Music began flowing out of the ancient instrument like water.  Don’t get me wrong, I was definitely rusty and made mistakes. But like little soldiers, my fingers still remembered the positions drilled into them from years before. I didn’t even squeak that much. And the delight that filled my soul after such a long time is something that I’ll never forget.

People think time travel can only be found in Science-Fiction, but it’s a lie. Sitting in my room playing that clarinet transported me back over a decade. It felt like I was having a conversation with myself at sixteen. And I asked myself what in the heck took so long to come back to something I love.

Helen Keller, one of the true heroes of history, wisely taught us that “What we once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose, For all that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” And the great Toni Morrison said, “Something that is loved is never lost.” I’m grateful that this lesson has been reinforced so powerfully in my life recently.

Now, some time has gone by and I’m still playing my old clarinet. It makes me happy. It gets my creative juices flowing. And ironically, picking up an old hobby has filled me with more desire to try new things and be more adventurous. I want to have as many marvelous experiences as possible. I want to love this life and make it a part of me. I want to encourage you to do the same.

So if you’re up for a challenge, try this: take a few minutes to think about the things you have loved most in your life. Are there things that you miss? If so, it’s not too late find them again.  Maybe it’s been awhile since you played a pick-up game of basketball with your friends. Maybe you used to paint, or go to the beach, or fish, or play board games. How long has it been since you read a good book just for fun? Whatever you loved when you were younger, chances are that you will love it still. You may be a little rusty and make some mistakes, but I guarantee that the joy you’ll find will surprise and delight you. So rekindle your old passions, find some new ones, and live the vibrant life.


Hello Goodbye 2017/2018

Well Peeps,

The end of another year is upon us, and I’m not going to lie, this has been a tough one for me. Posts on this blog have been few and far between. I’ve had a lot of personal struggles and haven’t seen as much success in my goals for 2017 as I would have liked, but I’m done licking my wounds and determined to make big changes in this upcoming year. It’s a blessing to have this time to reflect and truly choose to #LiveTheVibrantLife. The future is looking bright!

Here’s a little song to start/end things off in the right way. Best wishes to you and yours and Happy New Year!


Spread the Love

What makes your heart tick? Are you an artist, scientist or musician? Do you love working with your hands? Do you enjoy working with people? Are you an athlete? Are you one of the quiet ones finding pleasure in the details of life that so often get taken for granted? I am often overwhelmed by the numerous ways people contribute to the beauty of this world. In my mind I imagine each of us with a gift in our arms aching to give it away.  Each unique individual on the planet has something that only they can give, and every gift is precious.

Ironically, though we are all so different, we are also the same. It goes right down to the core of who we are. We want our gift to be accepted and we need to be loved. Sadly, many times our gifts may be rejected and we may find ourselves feeling hurt or betrayed. How we handle ourselves during these times defines us and refines us. It shows us who we really are.

It’s also helpful to realize that what we have to give might not be a good fit for someone else. If I’m trying to give milk to someone who is lactose intolerant, obviously they won’t appreciate that. Not because they don’t want to accept me, but because they can’t drink milk.

Sitting at my computer tonight I found myself in a quandary. I’ve been extremely disturbed by hateful things people are saying and doing to others who disagree with them. I believe that these caustic words and actions are coming from hearts that are hurt and people who don’t know how to respond when their gifts or ideas are rejected. This has got to stop. Words matter, actions matter, kindness matters.

It’s ok to disagree with someone. It’s ok to believe different things. It’s not ok to disparage or belittle someone because they have an opposing view. It’s not ok to riot in the streets or disobey the law because we are unhappy. We are better than that.

Now more than ever is the time for people to come together and respect each other. We can always be kind, even if we can’t always agree. Let’s spread the love people and be grateful for the wonderfully diverse and beautiful world that we live in. Let’s live the vibrant life!



The Sparrow’s Demise

Death smacked into my back door tonight. I sat at the table paying bills and feeling apathetic about life. (Bills somehow do that to me.) When suddenly I heard a thwump behind me and my heart froze. I was home alone. But when I looked out of the back sliding glass door, my heart immediately thawed and then it sank. A little sparrow had crashed into the window and lay on the ground, dazed.

At first, I thought it would be ok. I could see a little movement. I cheered the sparrow on in my mind.  Come on little bird, shake it off.  But time slowed down, wrapped our two souls in a blanket, and I watched it die.

I remember when my Grandma was dying. She’d been failing for a while and we knew the end was near. So I drove to Idaho with my Mom to be with her in the final hours. Moments in life can be so singular. Our family gathered around our Matriarch and we talked to her. We laughed over cherished memories and cried with each other. My grandma had experienced a stroke, so she couldn’t talk back to us. But your eyes can say everything when your mouth doesn’t.

When the time came and she was actually dying, I left the room. I went down to the lobby to wait for other family members. The thought of actually seeing Grandma leave hurt. So I didn’t watch. But the pain came anyway. Later, seeing the body was fine. I had seen other dead people. I knew that wasn’t her anymore. But those milliseconds that hover between life and death, it’s like they create a singularity. The distance between worlds is so thin but it stretches so far.

And tonight I was caught up in another event horizon of time. I sat in my kitchen but I was really back at a hospital in Rexburg, Idaho. The choice loomed before me again. Do I look or do I turn away? . . . This time I stayed.

When the small sparrow slumped over, my heart felt the journey that my vision denied me. The soul is a mysterious thing, but it is very real. I ached at the loss of such a joyous little creature, but I witnessed a transition of that joy as it soared up to the other side. It’s given me a lot to think about on a humdrum Thursday evening, and this thought stands out most of all:

Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. ~ Matthew 10:29-31




Thoughts During Lunch Today

Today the sun finally decided to shine like it meant it.
I lay back in delight letting the warmth seep into my skin.
I found myself gazing into the first truly blue sky in weeks
And wondering at the clouds like I was a kid again.

Clouds are the tai chi and yoga masters of the sky.
Ever changing from one form into another.
Never fixated on one position for too long.
Drifting in and out of various attitudes at will.

My eyes settled on a puffy mass above me in the air.
It metamorphosed from turtle, to duck, to volcano
And then split in two like an amoeba under a microscope.
If only humans could divide ourselves like that
And follow all of the conflicting currents inside our hearts.

I continued to consider each new cloud as they floated across the horizon.
The Sun flexed and stretched radiating his joy at awakening from a long sleep.
My two little clouds shivered in the heat and melted away into steam.
Taking with them any lingering cares or worries of the morning.
I walked back inside invigorated. Ready for whatever adventure came next.


2016 with EclecticEmily

Dearest Readers,

I wanted to apologize for my lack of consistent posts on 2015 was a big year full of highs and lows. Such is the human experience. I had some personal struggles that kicked me off course for a while, but I am embracing the new year with optimism. I am truly excited for all of the great adventures ahead. Here are a few updates on what you can expect from me in 2016.

This site is the place to find my personal thoughts and writing. We live in such an interesting world. I am captivated by so many subjects that I’ll never settle on just one. I am just as eclectic now as I’ve always been. My hope is that you will come here to find a little inspiration, and I hope you will use that inspiration to feed creativity in your own lives. Life is meant to be lived together, and this little blog is my voice in the world’s chorus. I want to encourage you to share your voice as well in whatever form suits you best.

Coming soon, I am thrilled to be re-launching my podcast “The Vibrant Life” this month. This is a project that has been simmering in my imagination/heart for some time, and I can’t wait to share it with you. “Living the Vibrant Life” is a phrase I came up with that simply means to live as fully and joyfully as you can. I hope you will join me in my attempts to discover exactly what that means.

I also plan to continue with EclecticEmily’s Reading Room. This is a simple site where you can find my personal recommendations for good reads. Books have been and always will be such a big part of my life. I started the reading room as a sort of online log of favorite books I’ve read, and it has grown from there.

Finally, I just want to thank all of you for your wonderful support. Even though I haven’t been posting regularly, I have received a lot of encouragement and kind comments. Thank you for taking the time to visit the site and for all that you do to share the love here. I have the best followers! Keep up the good work, and live the vibrant life!

Much Love,

Emily Romrell