~ K is for ~

An animated GIF of a kaleidoscope.

An animated GIF of a kaleidoscope. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kaleidoscope is the first word I thought of that begins with K. I do not know why. I remember having a kaleidoscope as a kid and being totally fascinated by the colours and changing patterns. I could get all deep here and say that a kaleidoscope is a great metaphor for life and that constant phenomenon we all have to put up with: CHANGE.  I have read that the only thing we can really rely on in life is change, so I guess we should enjoy it in all its glory.

Did you know that a synonym for kaleidoscope is phantasmagoria? What a great word! Its synonyms (thanks to that handy-dandy thesaurus someone thought to put in my computer—I know it is part of my word program, but I would rather think of it as a more magical force) are dream, hallucination, mirage or fantasy.

A kaleidoscope does show us a kind of dreamy fantasy world–and an ever-changing one at that. Gail Sheehy I think said it best, when she stated:  “If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.”

My favourite definition of change from the Encarta Dictionary is the word “deepen”. I think change gives us the opportunity to “deepen” and “to become”.

“To become” means we are not stagnating, or as Ms. Sheehy said more eloquently: not growing.

If I were honest, sometimes I don’t want to grow. Sometimes I get tired of change. Sometimes I just want to be comfortable and stable and content. But that gets old. I was asked recently if I am retired, and  my response (after being exceedingly surprised to be asked this as I think of myself as youthful—although it could just be immaturity in disguise) was to say a simple “no”. But I thought to myself: I am just getting started.

Now, I know that people retire young from some professions, and they too are just getting started on their next life. Personally I think the term “retired” should be re-tired. I have lots of tread left.

A toy kaleidoscope tube

A toy kaleidoscope tube (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Published in: on September 12, 2012 at 3:15 pm  Comments (33)  
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33 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Definitely lots of thread left! Life seems to be a bit of a balance between resisting change and wanting to learn new things.

    • It does – I sometime resist change and need to embrace it – as there is really no choice — I like your take on it that is learning new things

  2. I love kaleidoscopes. We have a local pottery store that also carries items hand made by other artists. While everything in there is gorgeous, I am drawn to the kaleidoscopes which are made out of just about everything. They are quite pricey in some cases, of course those are the one’s I gravitate to. They are made with real gems and cut glass.

    As for change, I love change, I have joked all my life that I should have been a gypsy. I settled down because I felt that my children needed stability, and now I have the bug to move pretty much under control and am finally happy with life, but I still enjoy change, whether it’s the changing weather, or just the simple changes in decor in my home. I like for each day to be different and bring new challenges.

    • you seem to have this whole change thing under control – I should take a lesson from you

      • LOL it’s stability and staying put that I have trouble with

      • we all have something don’t we — I think wanderlust is a wonderful thing

  3. I don’t care for change very much. I much prefer things to be familiar and constant! As for kaleidoscopes, your picture at the end brought back a lot of memories for me because I had one just like that!! Thanks for the memories :).

    • I know- it did for me too–I just loved those things–and I agree with you about change – both of us had to undergo a lot of it this September

      • We certainly have! I’ve been meaning to ask you – how is your son doing? Is he liking his courses better now, or did he make any course changes? Bryan seems to be settling in pretty well, but the big challenge now is going to be how he handles the girlfriend situation. She is at Laurier University which is only 20 minutes from him, but where he is loving the independence of being away from home, she wants to go home every weekend or every other weekend. He is not happy about this at all because he thought they would be able to spend more time together now than they did before when they lived 40 minutes apart. So, the other night I was on the phone with him trying to cheer him up and telling him to be patient because I think girls tend to get more homesick than boys do. Wow, there’s always something isn’t there? LOL

      • there is always something–when I lived in residence I was only 45 minutes from my house and my dad worked in the city where I went to university, so I could get a ride home whenever I wanted — and that first year I went home a lot for dinner or part of a weekend
        My son is settling in–but is not as happy as I want him to be – keep your fingers crossed for me

      • Fingers and toes crossed :)

  4. LouAnn,
    It’s a tad off topic, but it just so happened that the Flaming Lips was playing when I was looking at your animated GIF of the kaleidoscope and it was slightly trippy. And somehow I felt compelled to share this with you all. Voilà.
    Le Clown

    • I have been doing some stupid bookwork and the numbers are making me trippy – I was an english major, what the heck am I doing keeping my husband’s company books–maybe I should be listening to Flaming Lips and looking at the animated kaleidoscope instead–or maybe it is time for a beverage!

  5. I don’t think you can ever really get old, and feel retired unless you want – my grandpa always says that if someone is 15 years older than you in the world you are young :)
    I never thought of you as the retired age anyway – you have too much of a cool and modern perspective of life :D
    Like the kaleidoscopes! How many adults would find the beauty and not the toy in a kaleidoscope? :)

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    • I did not think I was either — like the way your grandpa thinks — there are are lots of people 30 years older than me

  6. I used to fear change but there has been so much change in my life lately, some good some bad, that I am seeing the beauty in it. I now think that dealing with change is a character building experience. The old saying is true “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” or something like that.

  7. Oh Kaleidoscopes! I had a few when I was a kid. I thought they were so cool!

    “Retired” is not a word my family knows – At least on my dad’s side. My grandpa’ passed away at the age of 95 & up until about the last month or so – he was still going about his day for his dairy business back in the old country. He liked dealing with people & keeping busy.
    My dad is 75 & still working – manual labor. We ask him when he’s gonna’ retire & he looks at us as if we’re speaking to him in a foreign language.
    I know everyone is different. But – whether it’s a formal job or not – who really retires anyway? I think most people just keep working all their lives until their clock stops ticking. What do you think?

    • I agree–age really means nothing unless you want it to–thanks for these lovely comments – I think your dad is right

  8. What a lovely concept! I agree that sometimes change is very difficult to face, especially when we really don’t know what could happen. But as you said, stability really does get old and I’d much rather keep growing than stay static.

  9. Thank you for the kaleidoscope memories! I absolutely loved mine when I was a child :D

    Maybe you were asked if you are retired because you look relaxed! I’d love things to stay the same, but unfortunately they never do. Like King Solomon’s ring with the words ‘This Too Shall Pass’ inscribed on it :)

  10. I’m not retiring, I’m renewing.

  11. Thank you for the delightful memory you evoked re kaleidoscopes, such pretty fun.
    As for change and retirement. I have retired from my teaching job but am so busy learning! Change can be scary but we can try to get the best from each transition. I love what Choc chip’s Grandad said! :)

    • retire doesn’t mean retire from life at all! I love what her grandpa said too!

  12. Well done. I would have never thought to use that word. Also, I’ve retired from nursing but not from the world. I love what I’m doing now just as much as I did when I was actually getting a pay check. ;)

    • that is the difference — we just stop doing something to do something else — I think I am taken aback when asked if I am retired as I have not achieved all I want to in this chosen “career”

  13. Every now and again I rearrange the furniture in a room. I don’t know why I do this. I just wake up and I know that I have to a make a change. Change is good. Change makes us ask new questions and have new thoughts. Without change we would stagnate.

    Love your post.

    • I would rearrange the furniture in some of my rooms, but there is just too much stuff in my rooms–so I have to make do with other types of changes –like get a bigger house!

  14. K’s are really neat! They are sort of mesmerizing once you start peering into one – hard to put down. Yea for K!


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