Archives for posts with tag: right down the line

I can see, beyond my studio window, the thunderstorm I drove through earlier today. The same one that I lay awake listening to, smiling, as it rolled through a town further south, sometime around 3 a.m. … I hadn’t been sleeping, just laying quietly, resting in the darkness, smiling, and letting random memories live again, for just a moment. It was a busy, adventurous weekend, and wrapping up the whirlwind of activity, connection, and fun on a quiet restful sort of moment was a lovely way handle things. I certainly needed to rest. I’m still… so tired. 🙂

This weekend was not, in any reasonable fashion, as I’d planned it. I’m okay with that. I had to be quite spontaneous, for days and days, and while that presents me with some challenges, I also got the quiet time to reflect and process things, which I need in order to manage it. I’d still rather have executed to skillful plan… lol I’m still myself. I wouldn’t have swapped one moment of this adventurous weekend for any other; where it wasn’t entirely delightful, it was at least educational, and often humorous. I have grown. 🙂

A memory. A moment. A flower.

8 years with my Traveling Partner, now thoroughly celebrated, cherished, savored, and acknowledged with shared joy and love. That, at least, was wonderfully well done in every possible respect. I still feel wrapped in love, as I sit here sipping water, rehydrating, and contemplating next steps for the day, and how best to get the new week started. I’m so tired. lol I could quite happily just go right the fuck to bed, right now, at 2:54 in the afternoon, and figure as long as my alarm was set for tomorrow morning, all is well. I just don’t have to force myself to work harder, right now.

There is value – so much value – in lingering over pleasant experiences.

There is a dog barking. I only sort of notice it today, and it is less than typically annoying. The breeze picks up, and the leaves seem suddenly a stranger brighter green against the storm-cloud backdrop of imminent rain. The hallway is obstructed with partially unpacked weekend details. I stalled between inspecting, repacking and putting away all the actual camping gear, and unpacking and putting away everything else; I’d gone away this weekend prepared to paint, prepared for evenings out (one never knows what the occasion may require…), prepared to camp – or not camp, prepared to read awhile, prepared to take photographs… all of which have their own “gear” requirements. I really only put away the camping stuff. There’s… so much more. My aching feet, my bad ankle, my tired back… all say “just chill”. My headache says “drink more water”. My fatigue says “take a nap”. It’s not actually possible to do all of those things at the same time. lol The sweat that cooled me while I worked in the sun on a warm afternoon has now cooled to chill me, and I run my fingers through my hair, and realize a hot shower would feel… so nice. I breathe, relax, and finish this glass of water right here, with a promise to myself to refill it and have another, on my way to the shower.

This moment right here, so human, so entirely ordinary, and in every way unremarkable, fills my senses quite pleasantly. I feel content. I feel a soft surprise to realize how unremarkable it has become to feel contentment, and sit with the moment awhile, listening to the breeze rustle the leaves beyond the deck, and feeling the sweat cool on my skin. Is this happiness? I’m not sure. I’m not even sure it matters; it’s enough.

I smile when my mind responds “this too shall pass”. Yes, yes, of course, it likely will. It is the way of things. All things. That’s okay. I can begin again, any time.

I drove home through miles of choking smoke yesterday; Oregon is on fire. Scary. Not as scary as some of the alarmist images being shared on social media. So, I re-calibrate my understanding of what is real and true with something more reliable.

Fighting fake news with real data works nicely.

I arrived home to a very different homecoming than I might have experienced at the apartment, in a number of small but important ways. The house was comfortably cool in spite of the heat of the weekend, thanks to having A/C and a good thermostat. My new place also feels very safe – emotionally and physically, which is a win. Because I had closely followed a carefully managed “deployment plan” for the weekend, I also returned home to a nicely tidy apartment, suitable for really relaxing as I unpacked. It was a delightful homecoming with only one fairly obvious flaw. I already miss my Traveling Partner dreadfully. More than I generally do for having so recently been wrapped in his arms, and lit by his smiles. Manageable, fully human feelings of loneliness competed briefly with the all over ease of living in my own space. 🙂

A lovely misty looking view from Sunday’s hike. The mist isn’t mist at all. It’s smoke from distant wild fires.

I drove home as quickly as I safely could, and it became clear it was a safer choice to eschew breaks along the drive in favor of getting to the other side of the worst of the smoke of the many Oregon wildfires currently burning; the air quality could easily be called “not safe to breathe”. My burning eyes, irritated sinuses, sore throat, and the cough I quickly developed in spite of having the a/c set to “recirculate”, were all the confirmation I needed that breathing more of that air more deeply at some “rest stop” along the way was just not a great idea. Visibility much of the way was down to only about a thousand feet. So I drove continuously, content to find relief from stiff joints on my yoga mat when I got home, with only one very brief stop to pee.

…And of course, there was traffic as I got closer to home. It was, after all, the end of Labor Day weekend.

None of the details of the drive are actually particularly relevant to my experience of the weekend, except to observe that the air down at my Traveling Partner’s current address was already pretty shitty from the smoke of the Chetco Bar fire. I got in one decent hike, over the weekend, but didn’t push myself because the air quality was so poor. I stayed on a well-maintained local trail, got some miles while he worked, and took some pictures of the local wild flowers. We stayed indoors and enjoyed each other.

A hike-able trail, a yoga mat and meditation-cushion waiting for me when I arrived; I felt so very welcome. I felt at home.  🙂

My heart is still beating to love’s shared rhythm. It was a lovely intimate connected weekend with just enough hours in it that he had had to commit to work that I also got plenty of “me time” for meditation, yoga, and reading that I felt quite at home. I’m eager to find the perfect balance of proximity and distance and be close enough to spend a great deal more time together, more easily. I definitely want to spend more time together. 🙂 I already miss him.

The details of the weekend itself aren’t really built of anecdotes to share, or life lessons of note. It was time spent on love and loving. That’s enough. It needn’t be anything else; love matters most. 🙂

I sip my coffee contentedly with a soft smile of satisfaction. It’s a good cup of coffee. It’s a pretty nice life. I return gently to weekday routines feeling wholly loved and appreciated, and ready to return to work for another week. Eager to begin all manner of things again, and follow threads and paths wherever they may lead me. There are verbs than want doing. Lessons to learn. Improvement to make. Calories to burn. Choices upon choices upon choices – all of which will likely result in changes. I still don’t know what the future holds, and I am unconcerned; I have now. 🙂

I check the clock. It’s time to begin again. 🙂

 

Have you ever noticed how time sort of “stands still” in those fully engaged intimate moments of connecting with another? I know, I know – those moments are so fleeting, so cherished, so hard to pin down, or duplicate later. I still find them “timeless”, at least in the moment.

That’s how it was last night. My Traveling Partner came over and hung out awhile, before he heads off for work elsewhere, far away. We talked rather seriously through the evening. The future is vast, and broad, and the choices on life’s menu seem to… breathe… expanding and contracting day-to-day, sometimes moment-to-moment, and I am having trouble choosing my adventure with any comfort or efficiency.

Sometimes life is uncomfortable – and inefficient.

We talked. We enjoyed a pleasant evening hanging out. No TV. No music. Just us two, talking about things to come, where we’re headed in life, what we each want – or need. As evenings go, it was intimate, nurturing, adult, romantic, supportive, practical, and connected. It met needs upon needs upon needs, no tears or tantrums required. No demands. No frustrations. Two people who love each other, loving each other. Sharing.

Sometimes it’s not about words.

We talked – and we also just chilled with each other, hanging out in my somewhat too warm apartment. He shopped and talked about things he needs in life. I went over recent changes in thinking, and discussed the profundity of change. We shared pictures. We shared anecdotes. We shared concerns. We shared hugs and kisses. The evening was quiet and relaxed. We’d thought about going out for a movie, we could have done it, we didn’t need to “do” so much as we needed to “be” – together. So we did that.

This morning I’m smiling. I slept more deeply, and woke feeling more rested, than I generally do. I grin at myself to notice the quality of my smile. I “hear” a Nicki Minaj track in my head, in the background, it’ll probably be there all day (or at least until a love song replaces it). 😀 I find myself wondering about the connection between feeling so well-loved, and sleeping so well… Is that a thing?

Lovely moment. Lovely morning. Lovely day. Loving love… so… loving life, too. Funny how hard it was to find my way to this place. No idea how long it may last (it’s not really a helpful question). I let the cool morning air fill the apartment, sip my coffee, and smile. There’s nothing to add to this, really. Life is no less complicated, busy, or challenging, just because there is Love, but the love does seem to make all the rest less… troublesome. It’s enough.

Love is enough. Loving starts with me. Starts with the woman in the mirror and how I treat myself. What a strange puzzle. There are definitely verbs involved.

We become what we practice. ❤

I’m not bragging – I’m just saying, this is a lovely moment right here, and it’s authentic, and warm, and it is built on the choices I have made in life, and in the recent moments just concluded; it’s mine and I get to keep it. It is my experiences that are my measure of wealth – and self – and they can’t be faked or stolen. I am.

I am floating, uplifted, and for the moment utterly transcendent. I fucking love Love.  Just dinner out and a drive through the countryside with my traveling partner’s masterful hand at the wheel, laughing and talking and singing along with a favorite song together. It wasn’t an exotic or expensive night out; we don’t need it like that to feel loved and cared for in each other’s arms. Great conversation built this relationship we share, and great conversation – intimate, vulnerable, connected, open and real – is what sustains it. I have never loved like this, so deeply, so easily – and we’re not even talking about the sex. By comparison, the sex almost doesn’t matter – and if you knew me ‘in the flesh’ (lol) you would know how significant it is that these words come from me. We are just so right together. Even when we fail – we win. Tonight was all win and good.

This isn’t about good moods or bad moods – and I’m in a lot of pain this evening. I’m tired from the long fairly intense week at work. I’m feeling the ups and downs of acknowledging the pain and fatigue, mingling with the eagerness to see the dawn for a weekend trip to the coast, and this fully saturated feeling of love and connection. I’m not crazy and I’m not making excuses – I feel.  I feel a lot, and I feel pretty intensely, and I’m not always sure this fragile vessel can hold the contents of my heart in some moment or another – and I’m okay. This, right here, feels like an ‘everything is going to be okay’ moment on some other level…  Is it ‘just’ the love, ‘just’ the connection…or is it absolutely and entirely always about the love, always about the connection – on some level, with some soul (even if my own, with myself)?

My life could use more hugs and more eye contact, more cuddling, and more connection. That may easily be the most true thing I have ever put into words about life. Any life. Tonight I am smiling. I am grateful. I am loved. Love doesn’t need me to wait around for it, either; there is a wide world on the other side of my door, and it is filled with people who love, and yearn to be loved in return. Have you ever had that experience when the day is difficult, but some unexpected conversation with a stranger turns it around? I definitely want to have more of those. lol

I’m just saying – lonely is a thing, and there are practices for that, too. If I could just stand right here in life, feeling wrapped in love, secure, satisfied, content – motionless in this moment – I might not need to understand loneliness. I am so human… I am amused, for the moment, that some things about loneliness seem more obvious from this entirely different and not at all lonely perspective. Is that strange? When I feel loved, I am more able to love. There’s a lesson there. I will contemplate it tomorrow as I walk the beach, a solitary figure – alone, but not lonely, and very much loved.

Be love.

Be love.

I am rambling, and disrupted – but not in a bad way. I am moved. 🙂

I woke during the night, or rather more accurately I simply realized at about 1:00 am that I was awake. My state of wakefulness continued for some time, and I finally recognized that I wasn’t returning to sleep; something was keeping me awake. I wasn’t sure what was disturbing my sleep, but I got up for a little while, keeping the apartment dim, and figured some meditation and yoga might send me easily back to the land of dreams. I was incorrect. Once I got up, it was clearer that there was a physical source to my discomfort, and although I felt no hint of nausea, I knew I was going to be sick, at some point in the imminent future. I sat meditating comfortably, and waiting for that more acute moment of discomfort that would signal immediate illness to come. I didn’t have to wait long, and it was all over very quickly. I was easily able to return to sleep.

I woke with a headache, and arthritis pain on the ‘winter’ setting. I am physically uncomfortable, although the morning begins well enough in all other regards. I could make a big deal out of the pain and the headache and stomp around snarling, but there’s no point in doing so, and I would prefer to enjoy the morning, content, and quiet. The quiet morning was interrupted by my own laughter at one point; morning yoga with this headache and arthritis pain resulted in some ‘turtle on its back’ “fun” when I toppled over during a moment of vertigo, and couldn’t quite get up, because of pain and stiffness. I was still chuckling when I tried the same sequence again, successfully – which is a far better outcome than if I were helplessly weeping in frustration and anger, and storming around the apartment annoyed with myself. This ‘being human’ thing is rich with comedy – and with frustration, and I enjoy it when the former mitigates the latter.

Coffee time…oh, and goodness it is good this morning. Yes! I pause everything, move to the wee love seat, and make room in my morning for stillness, just chilling quietly, hands wrapped around the warm coffee mug, basking in the contentment of this moment right here.

Enough.

Enough.

My traveling partner arrived safely home last night, and I am eager to see him – I don’t actually know when that will be. Last week our attempts to plan time together were undermined by the needs of another relationship; I saw him only once, unplanned, for a short period of time when he urgently needed an emotional safe haven from stress and mistreatment. I don’t regret not living in that environment with him; however convenient it might have seemed, it was actually damaging the relationship I share with my traveling partner (far too valuable to sacrifice carelessly) to live around his other partner. It took some time to come to terms with that, and to recognize how much more easily we love each other, and how deeply, and to see our profound connection restored – through distance (about 12 mildly inconvenient miles). It is fulfilling to live in accordance with my own values, by my own rules, with my injury accounted for in my day-to-day environment, able to paint when I am inspired, unconcerned about inconveniencing anyone, and absent the stresses of OPD. It’s never been about winning, or losing, only about living, loving, and finding my way to being the woman I most want to be. I will see him when I see him; when we are together our time is well-spent on love. 🙂

What matters most?

What matters most?

Soon there will be sharing of tales of adventure, and cuddling, and romance, and plans for the future. There will be laughter, and an intimate connection that still strikes me as singularly deep, and profoundly insightful. There will be encouragement, and enthusiasm. There will be affection, a sense of fun, and shared humor. For now, there is a work day ahead of me, and plenty to do. I smile when I think of my traveling partner, wondering what his day will look like. I’ve traveled a long way, myself, on this journey that is loving, and in the brief time we’ve been together (only about 5 years) my traveling partner has been with me to see much of that growth. There is so much of the everyday routine of life that brings him to mind, I sometimes forget we don’t live together. lol Even simple things like cleaning the kitchen seem like acts of love; he taught me the food safety practices I still use in my kitchen, and encouraged me to get my food handlers card, not because I needed one, but because it was a great way to ensure I really did understand food safety basics – and do so without badgering me, frustrating me, or hurting my feelings. Love isn’t exclusively about smiles and kisses; love encourages us to grow, nurtures us while we do, and celebrates with us when we have.

Unfinished work?

Unfinished work? “Uplifted Hearts” I think a lot about love.

Another day thinking about love? Sure – I think about love and loving a lot. What better use of my time, and studies, than reflecting on love and loving, becoming a more skilled partner and lover, treating others well in every relationship (because that, too, is love) and savoring the successes, learning from the moments that go sideways unexpectedly, and continuing to invest moment-to-moment in what love offers? Seriously? It’s a major disappointment to me as an adult that we don’t teach love and loving more honestly (or at all), with more depth, and with more acknowledgement of the power love has in our lives to heal, and to enrich our experience. How many of us stumble through decades of our adulthood before we sort out the difference between lust and love? Sex and love? Being loved and loving? Before we understand that there are verbs involved? Before we even understand all the many sorts of love that exist (each having value all its own)? Instead, we argue over the value of sex education and don’t bring love into the conversation at all, which is pretty telling of what primitive creatures we really are, still trying to restrict and regulate a need (and a drive) that is fundamental to every breath we take, instead of coaching and educating and promoting the well-being of our entire society of humans from a loving place, regarding matters of love.

Be love.

Be love.

Today is a good day to love, to explore love, to reflect on what love asks of us, to consider what we have to offer. Today is a good day for loving, and for being loved – there are verbs involved. Today is a good day to invest our vast lifetime of emotional moments in the treasures that love has to offer. Today I will start with loving the woman in the mirror, and smile; loving her well changes my experience of the world – and the world’s experience of me.