I was busy. I’d been fighting a headache. I almost cancelled but instead, I went late. And of course, I was glad I did.

I missed the supper (the leftovers looked delicious!). I also missed the discussion of the Happiness Project chapter for the month. Truthfully, I hadn’t read it. Life has been a little, as Carter says, redonkulous, and the Happiness Project got sidelined this month.

I did manage to read the other two books. Two books! Are we an ambitious group, or what?! Both were books by Mitch Albom: tuesdays with Morrie, and have a little faith. I’ve actually read both of these before. But I enjoyed the rereads very much.

There are many things that are similar in these books. As per his style, Albom is drawing on his relationships with other — older and wiser — men for his material. He is telling us how these men – how his relationships with these men, how spending time with and observing and having conversations with these men – ultimately changed him.

Both of these little books are bursting with wisdom. Although most of the book club women said they enjoyed tuesdays with Morrie more, I couldn’t pick a favourite.

I think the thing, if I had to boil it down to a single take-away message, that has meant the most to me at this time and stage of my life, is the idea of creating your own culture. This is a Morrie-ism, but I think it is part of the story in have a little faith as well. And maybe I’m not understanding the message the way Morrie (or Mitch) intended, but for some reason, this little statement has stuck with me and tickled my thoughts ever since I reread the books.

Create your own culture. This is part of Morrie’s advice to Mitch when they are discussing how to be happy. And I think he is bang on. Choosing for myself how I will live, what I will make important in my life, where and how I will spend my time, what things/people/activities I will ascribe value to … these have been the meditations of my heart lately.

It’s why, when my husband recently lost his job, I asked him these questions:

What will we learn from this experience? Because the greatest tragedy in this situation would be for us to learn nothing. And,

What do you really want to do? Not, what do you think you should do, or what might be easiest, or what might make the most money … but what will make the best life?

We are working on the answers to those questions. I’m certain our lives will be different going forward than they were in the past.

Creating our own culture. It’s actually pretty dang exciting!

Well, for one thing, the culture we have does not make people feel good about themselves. We’re teaching the wrong things. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn’t work, don’t buy it. Create your own. Most people can’t do it. They’re more unhappy than me — even in my current condition.

tuesdays with Morrie