Archives for posts with tag: show me love

To change the world
It starts with one step
However small
First step is hardest of all
Once you get to your gate
You will walk in tall

by Dave Matthews Band

I start the morning with music. Yesterday was a good day of self-care, and housekeeping. Needful things. I woke feeling rested and cared for, with the smile left over from visiting my Traveling Partner still lingering at the edges of my mood. So far, another good day. These good days are not coincidental in my life, I build them with my choices, and my results vary. Oh, that’s not to say that circumstances can’t (they do) intervene and change the course of a day for the worse (or for the better), it’s just that over time I have learned how much power over the quality of my days I actually do have. It’s enough. It’s more than enough, generally.

Today is a work day. A day in a life. A day of choices and practices. A day of moments and opportunities. It could be any day of so many. Where will it take me? What will I do with it? Will it go to waste, lost among bad choices and disordered thinking? Will I build lovely memories from a quality experience? Will I commit to action, but find myself resenting it as “wasted time”, wanting instead to play? Will I snatch the chance to meditate in the evening from the waiting clutches of more moving in that could be done?

Last week was a reminder that my choices are my own, and that how I make them is what my week – and my life – are built upon. I all but gave up on self-care trying to force everything I thought needed to get done into the limited time I had available to me. I ended up exhausted, aggravated, and too tired to follow through on the entirety of my original plan for the weekend. Lesson learned? I’d like to think so, but it’s doubtful. I’m a human primate. I’ll need more practice. 🙂

Today I’ll meditate in the morning. I know this works for me. I’ll have any dishes started before I’m out the door. The bed will be made. The garden will be watered. I’ll have had my coffee, my oatmeal, a shower, brushed my teeth, and fed the fish. I’ll make a point of hitting the gym at work for some strength training, and get a good walk in over my lunch break. I’ll get home after work… and the evening will be mine. Then what? I don’t really know all that yet; I’m satisfied to have mornings more or less worked out at this point. lol

I notice I’m tugging at a jagged bit of cuticle. In the dry hot weather, my cuticles have begun to split in places. I fuss with the edges mindlessly, often. I try to stop that behavior when I catch it. The effort required is hard to adequately describe, even after a lifetime of partners, friends, and family members nagging me about it. I make the effort of will this morning. Put myself on pause. Actually fully mindfully stop myself… but then, I have to also stop writing, also go get the little cuticle nippers to trim that up so it isn’t so tempting… again with the damned verbs, right? lol Yep. There are always verbs involved, somehow this is true even of the things I want not to do.

Oh hey – it’s already time to begin again. 🙂

 

I’m slow to wake up this morning, even though I woke quite naturally minutes before the alarm would go off. I almost fell asleep again. My night was restless, interrupted by wakefulness, disturbed by strange dreams of disappointment and sad surprise. The worst of those was surreal and hard to distinguish from “real” and I was glad wake to this world, here.

I had dreamt that my Traveling Partner stopped taking my calls, or coming around. We didn’t divorce… he just…sort of… drifted away and became inaccessible. He chose to distance me, but there was no resolution, no certainty. I woke feeling odd, rather than broken, feeling stalled instead of wounded, and mostly just fairly confused that such a thing could be – or that I could even imagine it. I returned immediately to sleep, and to further strange dreams.

It was a  weird night. This morning I am sluggish and my consciousness creeps along slowly instead of soaring. No headache for now, though, that’s nice. My back doesn’t feel unmanageably stiff, either. Also win and good. 🙂 My coffee is hot, tasty (well, for some values of “tasty”; if you don’t like coffee you would likely disagree). I still struggle to really “get going”. I think ahead to the weekend. The blues and grays of dawn sky filled with big fluffy clouds is breaking up and revealing the possibility of blue sky later. The not-yet-peach-or-pink lines of imminent sunrise silhouette the trees on the skyline. I think about hiking. I think about a piece of land I am looking at this weekend and wondering what the sky looks like from that vantage point? I think about the beach, and wonder when I’ll next see the sunset there. I get all the way to recollections of humid summer mornings of childhood, on the screened in porch, sipping root beer after swim lessons before I realize that my brain is “idling” in neutral. I’m just sipping coffee, gazing out at the sunrise contentedly, as recollections and daydreams flow through my still-waking consciousness. I could so easily return to sleep from here. lol

I begin again. I pull my spine erect and find healthier posture that improves the odds I’ll still be mostly pain-free at the other end of the day. I breathe deeply. I finish my coffee and dance to a current favorite piece of music. The day ahead is the last of the work week for me, now. Fridays and Saturdays will be my days off for some time to come. It’s a good fit for me.

As I wake more fully I feel myself vaguely yearning for… something. A moment. Something specific, but just out of reach… I miss my Traveling Partner. My unsettling strange dream finds me taking a moment to fully appreciate the joy in the relationship we share, and all the ways that we are “there for each other”. We’re planning to spend time together on an upcoming weekend (my birthday). I smile. No doubt that will meet many needs. 🙂 In the meantime, I do my own thing quite contentedly, eyes wide to the wonders that life reveals, and taking care of me. I do miss morning coffee together, or brunch… I’ll have to invite him to do that sometime soon. 🙂

The sun is nearly up. The sky is light, and shades of green, lawn, leaf, and tree, are varied and easily seen as distinct. Streaks of magenta, rose, and violet peep through the trees, separating the blue and grays of the lingering clouds from the blue sky trying so hard to take over the day. In an instant, the clouds are painted in hues of orange all along their underside; the sun has risen fully, just beyond what I can see – but I see the clouds. As I watch the sky change color like a Polaroid, I feel the energy of the day to come fill me up with eagerness.

There’s an entire day ahead!

I am awake. It’s time to begin again. 🙂

Yesterday turned out to be a strangely difficult day, and the difficulty of it confused me; I had all the ingredients of a very good day, and yet, the day unfolded so poorly. Amusingly, the title for yesterday’s post remained relevant throughout; it was all very subjective, and it was clearly a matter of my own unique perspective on matters. The color of the day wasn’t a factual matter at all, it was pure emotion. One very awesome thing about yesterday? It’s yesterday. It is not ‘now’. 🙂 I am okay right now.  That’s enough.

Growth can't be forced; I unfold like a flower, opening my heart on my own timeline.

Growth can’t be forced; I am a flower, opening my heart on my own timeline. My journey and my seasons are my own.

My traveling partner takes being supportive and makes it his own, showing me the depth of his love by giving me space when I need it; that’s got to be hard for him sometimes, knowing how he adores me, and enjoys being with me. He misses me even when what separates us is not a matter of miles in distance, but more about my chaos and damage piling up between his heart and mine. This morning I take time to smile gently, grateful, appreciative, and content to have the strength of his love, even when I haven’t got strength enough of my own to be easy to share it with.

Love is always 'there' for me, when I recognize it sources from within.

Love is always ‘there’ for me, when I recognize that it sources from within.

Love sounded like it would be ‘easy’ when I was young. Easier still because I really wasn’t sold on it as a notion; it didn’t seem likely, or real to me, and I had had no experience of it to show me otherwise. Love, then, was a fairy tale. When I did eventually meet love, I was as a child bringing home some wounded animal and attempting to keep it as a pet; I didn’t know what I needed to know to treat love well, to nurture it, to grow with it. It quickly diminished, and eventually died, leaving me wondering how real it ever was. I probably had other chances at love, and didn’t even recognize them, after filtering every experience through my chaos and damage, and taking life coaching advice from my demons. I spent some portion of my life snarling ‘fuck love’ and striding purposefully through my experience without regard to my heart, on a campaign to stamp out emotion entirely.

Love being what it is, I did not succeed in stamping out my emotional fire. We are creatures of both emotion and reason; crippling one, mocks the other. Love, being what it is, gave me another chance to open my eyes – and my heart. I’ve managed to muck it up now and then, pretty badly, nonetheless. I’ve been frustrated more than once to make such an important journey without a map…or a rule book. Love does have rules, it needs to be built, to be nurtured, to be invested in, to be taken seriously – and not taken seriously at all – in order to thrive. Where romantic love must be reciprocal to thrive, love itself – the fundament of love, the foundation of love, the essence of love – all that must come from within, and it’s hard to get to the best that romantic love has to offer without doing the important work of loving myself, preferably first…but certainly at some point. ‘Now’ serves nicely.

If we don’t know how to nourish our love, it withers. When we feed and support our own happiness, we are nourishing our ability to love.”

How to Love, by Thich Nhat Hahn

The journey ahead winds through the chaos and damage, and no mystery there; love touches everything within me, every hurt, every sorrow, every shard of broken dreams. Like a rope thrown into a well, it’s up to me to pull myself out of the darkness and it looks dreadfully difficult sometimes, but the opportunity is there, the choice is mine, and with patient practice, and the will to do the verbs…well… I can see the light, just ahead…

Love is a living, breathing thing. There is no need to force it to grow in a particular direction. If we start by being easy and gentle with ourselves, we will find it is just there inside of us, solid and healing.”

How to Love, by Thich Nhat Hahn

Easy? Gentle with myself? Why does that sound difficult? Is it only because my skill is limited, and I need more practice? Is it because I am still fighting off demons, and wading through chaos and damage? Is it because old programming and negative self-talk get in the way? Is it because I sometimes overlook that will, choice, and action are required, moment to moment? Is it because when I am hurting I still punish me first?

Why, yes. All of those things. There’s good news, though; I have choices. 🙂

My path takes a turn I don't expect; the way ahead holds so much promise.

My path takes a turn I don’t expect; the way ahead holds so much promise.

Today is a good day for love. Today is a good day to change the world.