rich emollient used in the management of eczema, psoriasis and other dry skin conditions.


A few years ago, I decided for Lent, to give up complaining.


Talk about an eye opener.  I bit my tongue many times over those forty-some days.  What happened though, was a small miracle.  I found myself, toward the end of Lent, barely trying to complain.  The thoughts didn’t even bop into my head, much…

Not complaining left space for  thanking, joking, analyzing, admiring, praising, listening, and singing.  (I don’t have a great voice but happily husband Cliff never complains unless I sing the same song ad infinitum.)

And not complaining inspired this poem, titled “Socks.”

Socks don’t lead

An easy life.

Missing partners,

Sweaty feet, and

Hours squinched

In tight quarters,

Yet I never hear

My socks complain.

Maybe I should be

More like socks.

Complaining less,

Absorbing more,

And ever ready to

Step into shoes

For the next adventure.

I hope you won’t complain about my pun, but  I have to say that menopause socked it all to me.  I’m  finally getting  that life throws us punches; that not everything is fair; that yes, there’s plenty of malfunction in the world; and that complaining IS optional.  Time is short and why spend it as an old grump.

What about you?  Do you find yourself complaining more or less the older you get?  And what lessons have you learned from your humble socks?



Barbara Younger

Barbara Younger blogs from her home in Hillsborough, North Carolina. Along with Friend for the Ride: Encouraging Words for the Menopause Roller Coaster (, she writes books for children and adults. She lives in an old house with her husband Cliff. and collections of everything from dolls to buttons to bookmarks. She's the mother of two grown daughters and the grandmother to one adorable baby boy!

4 Responses to My Non-complaining Socks and Me

  1. I love the poem. Brilliant! I think we could all try being a bit like socks, though of mine are getting a bit holey and worse for wear. I find I complain less. I think you come to terms with who you are, the cards you’ve been dealth, and complaining doesn’t really help. Smile and world smiles with you. However, I do find a good rambunctions rant is necessary every now and then!

  2. Ruth, Thanks for the kind words about my socks poem! I think you’re right about the smiling. The rant too! (every now and then.)

  3. My friend is a happiness expert and this is essentially a big part of what he teaches.

    When you complain or find a negative you’re training your brain to look for more problems, and you’re strengthening the pathways already in place.

    Think of the brain like a series of paths (or desire lines) the more you walk down the path the deeper, wider and more established it gets.

    He, and I, encourage finding three things you are grateful for every morning and saying it out loud. Not before long you will find yourself going about your day generally happier and always finding the good in catastrophe.

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