Archives for posts with tag: opportunity knocks

Between what? Between plans and outcomes, perhaps, or between what was and what may be, at some future point – in either case, I live just the one moment, ‘now’, and what I choose to do with it seems to matter so very much more than what may be planned for the future, or may have been planned for the past. It’s a quiet morning to contemplate time, planning, and outcomes. I find change far less unnerving when I plan things out, then prepare a good Plan B, then follow that with some alternate plans, contingency plans, wild cards plans, and anticipate potential outcomes of the unplanned possibilities – rendering them much less unexpected. Doesn’t matter that much, though; life tends to be quite unscripted and spontaneous regardless of planning… Which doesn’t have any tendency at all to stop me attempting to plan my life. 🙂

flowers

Perspective. 

The emotional climate seems very nice ‘here’. The emotional weather lately has also been sunny and mild. Storms of change are on the horizon, piling up like distant clouds – will it be a spring shower, or a powerful thing crafted of nightmares, hurricane winds, and monsoon rains, that sweeps aside all other considerations for a time? For planning purposes, scale matters a lot – or seems to. Opportunity sometimes seems to transmute change from something uncontrollable and potentially devastating to something almost festive…a see-saw on life’s playground. Here I stand, between moments, between metaphors, staring at the horizon on this perplexing and wonderful journey… still smiling, still okay, and feeling fairly ‘ready for it’.

flowers

Life is busy. It’s easy to miss details that matter.

I need to get some solid contemplative time alone at some point in the very near future. I find myself considering a day trip to the coast or up to ‘the big city’ (Seattle is the nearest of those), or a hike out in the trees, somewhere more distant than nearby nature parks. In any case, I need time to sort some things out with care, whether it is at my desk, at my easel, on foot, or traveling by some other means; my mind needs time and opportunity to wander. Easily done… there are verbs involved.

Walking my own path, one step at a time.

Walking my own path, one step at a time.

Today is a good day to walk on, to consider the alternatives, to choose wisely and with great care. Today is a good day to take care of me, to love without reservations, and to listen deeply. Today is a good day to “stay on the path”… It’s definitely leading somewhere.

The recollection of my nightmare lingered much of the day, unprocessed, and in the background. It wasn’t distressing me. I had already accepted its existence in my experience, and ‘dealt with it’ – I thought. In a spontaneous moment of unintended sharing with my traveling partner, it clearly still had the power to unsettled me, and I felt the emotions rush through me. It was a powerful moment to share, and he was there with comfort and support and his steady calm demeanor on which I so rely when I am in distress. A hug, a kiss, and our moment ended; I went back to work. The day finished well, and I thought no more of my nightmare…

…It was on the walk home tonight that the threads of that distant dream began to unravel, to tangle, to take new shape as I walked and considered love, considered the book I am reading now and a book I have long yearned to read and simply never started. I considered the nature of time and opportunity, in the context of this one finite mortal life stretching back 52+ years, and ahead of me some indeterminate additional number of (I hope) years. That was no mere nightmare last night – I walked home today grinning in the sunshine over the feeling of sunlight on my face, on my back, and a feeling of being illuminated from within. Perspective is still a very big deal.

Darkness must exist for illumination to reveal what is hidden.

Darkness must exist for illumination to reveal what is hidden.

Proust is on my Kindle now. There is a blank canvas on my easel. There is time in my day, and a feeling of lightness in my heart, as if all that is not mine has fallen away – some strange sort of ‘letting go’ has occurred in my sense of self. I’m okay with that; it’s a beginning.

Yesterday feels very far away from this morning. For me personally, it was eventful and busy. For the world, filled with turmoil, conflict, confusion, suffering…and not much more if you rely on the news for your information. Babies were born, though, and are loved. People find each other, connect, experience passion, romance, and love each other. The vast quantity of human knowledge grew a little more, although it’s hardly going to make a dent in the even more vast quantity of knowledge we don’t yet  have. There was sunshine, and storms, rain and breezes; there was weather. Some people shared what they have. Others guarded their assets closely. Sick people were cared for, and the dead were mourned. The living thrived in various degrees, struggled, faced challenges, grew as individuals, made choices great and small. It was a day, and it is behind me now, in the past.

We exist in the context of our experience.

We exist in the context of our experience.

Funny how our choices and experiences build our future out of that past bit we’ve already had. We’ve got right now, if we need to make still  more choices, tweak things a bit, or reach for some desirable moment or object on the horizon. My yesterday has a ripple effect well into the days ahead, that much I can see and is very real to me. What about days further out? Or years? Those, too, may be affected by yesterday, but when I get there will I have any awareness of the moment of yesterday that I’m standing on?

My traveling partner is heading to a festival next weekend. My at home partner is taking advantage of an exciting opportunity to join him there, and have an experience. I am excited for her; it will be a very new experience. I’m happy for him to enjoy the companionship of a loved one at the event. I am not suffering, because the ripple effect washes over my own experience most pleasantly; I will have an uninterrupted weekend to paint. It’s a rare treat, and already a stack of new canvas waits for me, and I am immersed in inspiration, and eager to begin work. It’s still days away. Days of delightful anticipation, and planning, and considering the moment to come with great joy. (I hope my partners have even half as much joy and wonder in their weekend experience as I get from painting.)

The artist within is already hard at work.

The artist within is already hard at work.

These days of planning are important for me. Taking care of me, and being self-sufficient as an artist with a brain injury, means taking steps to ensure I do stop painting to eat, care for myself, and handle daily chores (like feeding the pets and attending to their needs).  Without some structure, I lose myself in inspiration and put my health, sometimes my safety, at risk. (I once filled my apartment with smoke and almost asphyxiated myself while doing sketches and watercolors of… smoke; a neighbor broke in on my reverie, and possibly saved my life.) So, the next day or two is about supportive infrastructure – alarms, reminders, notes to myself stuck here and there, little attention-getters to ensure I eat, sleep, and take care of what must be done, so I can be free to paint. For days. I’m very excited.

I can be amusingly impractical. My at home partner is eager for my needs to be met by this change of plans, herself, and excitedly pointed out that I’d have the car all weekend. I felt puzzled about the relevance of that, and it was not until this morning, in the shower, that I realized that although I know I am not likely to go anywhere while I’m painting, that may not be obvious to anyone else. lol Perspective isn’t just helpful, some things are not understood without it.

Balancing the practical and the emotional is part of the ongoing experience of studying perspective, of being mindful, and of understanding sufficiency.

Each moment, each experience, utterly unique, and entirely our own making.  Choose wisely.

Each moment, each experience, utterly unique, and entirely our own making. Perspective matters. 

Today is a good day to be a student. Today is a good day to consider choices, and choose wisely. Today is a good day to treat myself well, and kindly, and show the world similar care and good treatment. Today is a good day to move softly through shared space. Today is a good day to consider how I can help ease someone else’s burden, even if for only a moment. Today is a good day to change the world.