Archives for posts with tag: my home my rules my way

Sipping coffee and thinking about cautions and warnings and good advice at the last possible minute, and strong recommendations against very foolhardy actions. All of that? Don’t do those things! lol From the earliest “don’t put that in your mouth” observations from childhood to the latest-in-life reminders to “wrap it up”, “vaccinate”, “don’t drive drunk” or “don’t reheat reheated leftovers again, especially after they’ve been out on the counter for hours”… and the lingering, oft-repeated, equally often disregarded “what the fuck are you doing??” – Don’t do the thing!!

I’m just noticing, I guess, how frequently the cautionary advice in life is seriously fucking basic.

It makes sense to refrain from just picking shit up off the floor or the ground and sticking it your mouth. Just saying, we generally grow out of that impulse fairly young, but… I do actually know folks who are “bare backing” their casual sexual encounters and don’t seem to realize how stupid “aw, hell, I mean, they don’t look like they have vd…” actually sounds. Excuses about not getting the flu shot don’t sound more reasoned. People still choose – deliberately choose – to drive while intoxicated, or exhausted. People still disregard the basics of kitchen hygiene at home and make themselves or their loved ones sick with food borne illnesses, regularly (they’d never pay money to eat in that kitchen, though, and they’d raise hell if they got food poisoning from a restaurant).

Take care of yourself. Skillfully done, good self-care enhances a lifetime – potentially a longer one. I’m not sure it even takes more effort to heed wise cautions, and to care for ourselves with the same attention we bring to our jobs. Isn’t it mostly a matter of choices? Of listening? Of acting in our own best (long-term) interests?

What’s stopping you? What’s holding you back from a life well-lived, and from enjoying the results of good decision-making?

I reflect on my own failures to take my own best advice to heart. I reflect on how my emotional qualify of life can influence my practical decision-making. I consider where I can improve, and what choices I can make differently, every day. I find myself wondering if taking steps to practice the very best, most skillful, self-care has any positive outcome for the world… or just for me…

…Soon enough, I notice it is already time to begin again. 🙂

I woke yesterday so incredibly groggy that the drive to work felt as if I were sleep deprived. Most of the day passed that way, and by the afternoon, I didn’t feel “well” at all, and on top of being groggy, seemed to be headed toward a migraine. I went home. Laid down awhile. Got up feeling mostly better, a bit later, and called it an early night, well, early.

This morning I woke up feeling entirely awake and alert, and basically fine. Being human is so weird.

I didn’t have it in me to write yesterday. Today feels rather as if I’ve nothing much to say. Which is odd; I’ve had plenty to think about. lol Most of it, though, is just me feeling stirred up and agitated over life or Other People’s Drama. We don’t need to spend more time on it than we already do. 🙂

I realize the weekend ahead is a three-day weekend, and find myself considering a down/back trip south just to see my Traveling Partner, share a hug and a few minutes over coffee, and to drop off some things he’s asked me to bring down “next time I come down”. Recognizing I also need to enjoy some real downtime, and that I’d like to spend the weekend in the studio, having a longer weekend finds me feeling as if I can force everything into the weekend. It’s an illusion… but I may still try. lol So human.

My coffee is good. I think about coffee and life, generally; I can’t drink all the infinite potential coffee I might drink in a day, from a single cup, made in a single moment. The cup won’t hold it all. The intoxicant is also too strong for that behavior; I could sicken myself on too much caffeine, or wreck my sleep later on. I also can’t just drink cup after cup of coffee all day – same outcomes remain problematic. Too much of something I enjoy can have undesirable consequences. It’s a metaphor. It’s important to pace myself, even in life itself, to enjoy only what is (and remains) enjoyable. Choosing to refrain from over-indulging allows something I enjoy to continue to be predictably enjoyable.

Choosing to do things that wreck my body, my mind, cause me pain, or degrade my general quality of life seems fairly silly. I at least suggest considering the longer-term outcomes and consequences, and choosing based on how much value your body/mind/soul-wrecking choices may really have. A fleeting sensation? Likely not worth destroying your relationships or your career, right?

Oh hey, don’t be discouraged if the choices you’ve made in the past have been less than ideal (or even really terrible) you can commence making very different choices any time. You can begin again. 🙂 Even every single day! Was yesterday terrible? Do today differently. (Easy to say, and yeah, there are verbs involved, and no one can live the life you live aside from you, yourself. Choose wisely. Be present. Your results will vary.) Choose one thing, make choices differently, and build on that. We become what we practice.

What are you practicing? For real. Does that represent the person you most want to be? Who would that be? What would that version of you choose to practice?

Begin again. 🙂

My coffee, well, the remaining swallow in the bottom of my cup, has been cold for a while now. I was up at 5:30 am (on a Sunday), after a long, deliciously restful night of sleep, that began much earlier than usual. Reasons. I was tired. lol

I’ve “wasted” the entire morning writing. It’s not actually wasted time, though, any more than it is “wasted time” when I am inspired creatively, head to the studio, and work relentlessly for hours without producing any completed work. That’s not “wasted” time – it’s used time. Spent time. Passed time. It’s time no longer available to me in the future, sure – but it is not “wasted”.  I reset my expectations and understanding of myself, contentedly, and notice the time with more real awareness. It’s still early (ish). Plenty of day ahead of me, even now.

I finish off my cold coffee, and consider a second cup. Then I consider going to the grocery store. Then I also consider tidying up, and having a shower. I consider the lack of peanuts for squirrels, sodas for guests, and clean socks for me. I consider the housekeeping that keeps me smiling when I return home from work. I consider the vacuuming that needs to be done. I consider the dishes. I consider having breakfast. I make a point of noticing that the kink in my neck I woke with yesterday is gone this morning.

The day is ahead of me. No list. Yet. I consider making one. I also consider simply setting a timer and doing a “drunkard’s walk” through the tidying and chores – one of my favorite ways to get ahead on a ton of minutiae is to set a timer for one hour, and just do things in the order that they catch my attention. I find it exceedingly efficient if I’m “not sure where to start”, and when I’m dithering. 🙂 It’s a tad too random for noteworthy chaos; still works, but the end result might not be as orderly and obvious as you’d hope, for such a scenario. Best to have (and execute) a plan for serious disorder and untidiness. lol

I could do both… I could make a list, and then disregard it. LOL It wouldn’t be the first time. 😉

I take stock of the day’s potential, and decide to begin again, where I began in the first place; with a cup of coffee. 😀

Sometimes self-care (or, just managing all the details of adulthood) is a bit like carrying all the groceries home without a bag, while riding a unicycle. Challenging, requiring extraordinary balance, and resulting in a lot of fucking juggling and shit being dropped. lol

There are dishes on my counter. 😦

My vanity is strewn with a couple days of earrings I’ve worn and not hung back up.

I haven’t  yet gotten on with my plan for re-organizing the studio to make room for my Traveling Partner’s music gear and whatnot.

The deck still looks like my landlord stacked all my potted plants willy-nilly against one wall (which is what he did do, and I have not yet restored order).

Well, shit. Still human. LOL

My nails need a touch up, the laundry needs done, the bed wants made (well, actually, it hasn’t said as much, I just prefer it made)… There are things to do, and at least for me, pretty much all of this tedious housekeeping and maintenance “bullshit” is part of my self-care; I do best in an orderly, tidy living space, that feels comfortable and cared for. It aggravates me and causes me stress when things slip, however briefly, and however inconsequentially. Few guests would look around and take note of the plate, coffee cup, and fork, rinsed and neatly sitting on the counter, waiting for me to empty the dishwasher of clean dishes. I do. That’s what matters; it nags at me. It reminds me of trauma, and past terror. Same with things like my unmade bed; who really fucking cares? Me. Laundry? Well, clean clothes are nice, and I’ve got weekend plans, and at least one item I’m thinking about wearing is in the laundry, so in a purely practical sense this is a chore that needs done, but…

I look around and allow myself to really see the untidiness as it is; not that bad. I allow myself to sit with both the acknowledgement that it isn’t that bad, and also the awareness that it is not as I prefer it. I allow myself to be aware that this feels like I’m letting myself down. While that’s uncomfortable, it’s also real – and okay. I breathe and let go of the stress over a neatly organized, rinsed, 1 meal stack of dishes on the counter. I’ve got this. Just needs some juggling, and attention to details.

Verbs. It also needs some verbs. Don’t forget the verbs.

Fucking hell, self-care is hard sometimes, yeah? Do the things. Do the stuff. Do the things and the stuff. Sort shit. Handle shit. Manage shit. Do tasks. Check in with self. Repeat. It’s a lot – and it sometimes feels like I’m doing battle just keeping myself on track with my self-care. Why the hell is this so hard? I get up and go to work every day like a fucking machine – how do I not also come home and relentlessly take care of me, also? (Easy answer? Not enough spoons.)

I’m still learning to “pace myself” in life. lol I am reminded of a humorous song, and pause myself to listen to it. Smiling I sip my coffee and remind myself that all of it takes practice, repetition, more practice, iterations of improvement over time, refinements based on what really works – and throughout all of it, I’ll still be quite human, quite prone to fatigue, totally likely to let something go another minute, or overlook something that in some other moment felt quite important to get done. All of it totally okay, and very very human. 🙂

I check the time. My coffee is done. It’s time to begin again. 🙂

I am munching a healthy, nutritionally dense, calorie appropriate meal. Later, I’ll meditate, exercise, have a shower, and wind down for the evening. When I finally call it a night, the dishes will be done, counters clean, and there will be a general sense of tidiness, completion, and contentment. Is it “the right way”? I suggest it isn’t about that; it’s what meets my own needs. Your needs may differ. Do I live this way out of privilege? Wealth? Nope. It’s not that, either; I have lived this way without means, making do with nothing besides effort, will, and a sense of self. (It’s easier, as is everything else, when we have means, there’s no question about that, in my mind.) I’ve also lived quite differently.

…I’m not a kid anymore, and I’ve had time to explore what works for me, and figure out what “my way” may actually be. That matters, too… it has taken time to get here…

…I’m glad I had that time; there is further to go.

Tonight my Traveling Partner is far away, enjoying a very different evening, in the company of another person. I’m cool with that – even encouraging. It’s not reasonable, I think, to expect to be all things to even just one other person. I’m glad he has friends (and yes, even lovers), and a life beyond our relationship; this is what works for us. Our way. It fits. It is comfortable. The suffocating cling wrap of true monogamy doesn’t fit our natures, so it is not what we choose for ourselves. Is it “the right way”? You already know the answer; it isn’t about that. It is what meets our needs, and the needs of our loves. Your needs may differ. We treat each other well, and with great consideration, and this, too, is very much part of our way of living and loving. It works for us.

I’m not going to seek to persuade you that my life is “right” for you. I am not you. You’ve got to walk your own path. Discover your own values. Embrace your own journey. Chart your own course. Make your own choices. Walk your own hard mile. Sort yourself out. Find your own way. I’m not blazing a trail through a wilderness here; I’m living my life. I am neither prophet nor teacher. I’m one human being, with a lifetime of my own challenges, sort of “thinking out loud” while I work through them. Maybe you find that helpful, or entertaining, maybe you don’t. It is what it is.

I’m here. So are you. It’s enough. 🙂

I don’t need to be “right” on any of this. I’m just finding my own way in the darkness, and hoping for the best, each day counting on myself to be able to get some little detail a little more well handled than I did the day before, to maybe live with greater skill, and greater love, and maybe, just maybe… a small amount of wisdom gained over time.

…I’m glad I’ve had some time for that, too.

You know what I don’t have time for? I don’t have time for hate. Do I hate people who don’t live “my way”? Of course not; they are walking their own path, having their own experience, and quite likely also, generally, do whatever they individually think is “best”. We may differ on our approach, our choices, and our values. We may experience very different outcomes… but I, for one, do not have time to hate. Do you?

Do you, really?

I finish my dinner, and think about the future. I think about all the many beautiful dreams of beautiful futures that have, over time, come and gone, rather like soap bubbles. Fragile. Colorful. Delightful. Unable to endure life’s breezes and thorns long enough to ever be anything more than beautiful dreams, already gone, so many already forgotten. There are others. There likely will be other dreams of beautiful futures for however long a future seems to be ahead of me at all, down to the last day of consciousness, and living. That, too, is what it is. I am very human.

This moment isn’t as poignant as it may sound, reading it off a page. There’s still time to begin again. I finish dinner, and start on the dishes. 🙂