It’s true. I’m sipping my morning coffee, half-wondering if I need to adjust my process, or choose different beans…and gently discouraging myself from eagerly planning to move. I consider the move, I’ve organized my thoughts on it, and made some decisions about how it can best be handled – all in the abstract, aside from some exterior photos of the new unit, and a carefully examination of the floor plan. What I haven’t done is get a lot of boxes, and start filling those with books, small items, etc – I could be pre-packing, and I’m not. Not yet.

I’ve no doubt that I will make this move… except for just one small but important detail; price. The unit will be repriced after the remodel is entirely completed. If I can’t afford the price, I won’t be moving – at least not as soon. I’ve come so far with my traveling partner’s guidance, support, and skilled coaching, I will likely be buying a little place of my own within the next two years regardless; the comfortable near-certainty and lack of insecurity about the possibility feels very good. Stable. I have choices and, since choices to be made in the future are not ideally acted upon today, I chill and smile about the possible new apartment without taking further action in this moment. I continue to sip my coffee and let the morning unfold around my thoughts.

52 is late in the game to be buying a first home…and this won’t be my first. It will be my first unencumbered by domestic violence though, which is pretty huge… and it’s going to be the first that I’ll be wise to consider with retirement specifically in mind – I’d like to retire before I am 65, and the home I buy may be the last home I buy, when the time comes.  I want a place that is mine – that I can redecorate or rebuild, as suits me. A home in which replacing the carpets or flooring is entirely up to me, and in which I can freely replace all the light fixtures with whatever I choose without asking anyone at all, would be very nice. Comfort doesn’t have to be expensive, neither does luxury, but too often I find that I can’t ‘get permission’ for small changes that would be so wonderful while living in a rental, or as a housemate. Besides all that, I earnestly want to be able to leave this world knowing, when the time comes, that the choices I have made in life benefit my loves after my departure! I would feel considerable joy knowing that my traveling partner, although grieving, would be grieving his loss from a secure home, his home – unconcerned about going without and able to focus on healing his heart. “Feeling homeless” or displaced is something both he and I have endured far too often in life, already.

Be love.

Be love.

That gets me thinking about feeling secure in life – and in love – and how often people allow anger to cause them to say things to each other that specifically and directly undercut the emotional security of those they claim they love most. “I hate you!” “Get out!” “Why don’t you just go?!” “I don’t want you here!” I hope I live the entire remainder of my life not ever saying something so horrible and distancing to someone I love. How brutally unkind, how lacking in any compassion, how… mean, simply and frankly mean, to say such things to a loved one. How do you justify it (if you have said or done such things)? Isn’t the better choice to make note of our own suffering, and take care of ourselves before we lash out with pure uncensored nastiness toward someone we’ve claimed we love? Seriously? When I see that kind of thing unfolding, I nearly always find myself also wondering “How is it anyone sees this as being ‘love’ at all?”

One great relationship best practice I follow these days is; I don’t threaten the emotional security of my loved ones by withholding affecting, or being mean, when I am angry. I make the effort to replace emotional attacks with authenticity, vulnerability, and listening deeply. Just that. Surely if I love the person I am angry with, the better choice (versus attacking them) is to take care of my own emotional needs (put my own oxygen mask on first) – which really doesn’t leave time for attacking people – and then reaching out to my hurting loved one, connecting, talking, and reaching a comfortable mutual understanding – ideally with all hurts soothed, and the wreckage tidied up with hugs, kisses, and real affection, and because we started with love, why would we end anywhere else? 🙂 There are, of course, verbs involved, and The Big 5 (Respect, Reciprocity, Consideration, Compassion, and Openness) make an important appearance, too.

Treating our loves truly well requires awareness, the choice moment to moment to do so, and practice.  It also requires the basic assumption that our loves mean us no harm, hold us in high esteem, want the best for us in life, and are most specifically and earnestly not “trying to start shit”*. That by itself is pretty huge; if you go around all the time assuming your loved ones have it in for you, aren’t playing fair, don’t look out for your needs, don’t have you in mind at all… well… I gotta wonder first why you think that person loves you if those things are true – and if they aren’t true (or you haven’t made any effort to verify your suspicions clear-headedly in a fact-based way in the first place)… um… wtf is your problem? How do you call those feelings love, yourself? What is it, exactly, that you think love offers you? It definitely took me a while to sort that one out for myself. 🙂

Love.

Love.

My thoughts wind around slowly to values and value statements, generally. I find myself chuckling about the ‘company values’ at work; some of them are two or three sentences and include contradictory statements. I generally find that a ‘value’ can be stated quite simply, and most commonly with a single word. If it takes a sentence – or more – to state a value, it tends to communicate [to me] that the value being expressed is not well understood by the individual making the statement. Sometimes value statements are deliberately unclear, in some cases because the value is being hidden rather than expressed directly. The nature of values – and value statements – became much more important to me when I began, rather late in life, to re-explore my own values explicitly. My ‘Big 5‘ developed out of those conversations with myself.

The power of mindfulness practices to spark honest self-reflection and support self-awareness, as well as awareness generally, has been an important source of personal growth, and necessary for developing a sustainable condition of day-to-day contentment and joy (without needing to aspire to be anything other than entirely human). I don’t really need to count down the days until I move – I will or I won’t, and in time I’ll know which, and that will be plenty soon enough to start a countdown. I don’t really need to count down the days since the last time I hung out with my traveling partner – I’ll see him again, soon enough, and each visit is a lifetime of its own to be cherished, savored, and enjoyed, no counting or score-keeping required. There is so much less sensation of rushing, being rushed, urgency or panic these days. It is enough to enjoy the journey as it is. 🙂

Practice the practices that take you closer to being the human being you most want to be.

Practice the practices that take you closer to being the human being you most want to be.

 

 

*It should go without saying that if you mean someone ill, willfully treat them poorly, want them to suffer, and are regularly actually trying to provoke them into anger, fear, jealously or sorrow, you really seriously honestly just do not get to say you “love” that person – because love doesn’t behave that way. I can at least hope anyone treated thusly will have or gain the wisdom to understand they are not being loved!