They say that eyes are windows to the soul. It’s how the light gets in. I have been worried about losing the light for as long as I can remember. I am very near sighted and had thick, thick glasses in childhood. Not only was I worried about the light but being unsightly as well. Thank God for high index and contact lenses and inplants. Now my vision is better than ever.
I did not know in my youth that short vision can be a good thing. In Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott talks about writing as much as you can see through a one-inch picture frame, taking one-inch bites at a time. And E. L. Doctorow said writing a novel is like driving a car at night. “You can only see as far as your headlights. You can make the whole trip that way.”
I can see the wisdom in that – staying in the present, looking ahead to see what lies within the range of your headlights. You can live your whole life like that. So I take a deep breath and take a step ahead. Then another, walking in the path lit by the light.
I’m thinking about self-love. What does it mean to mean to love oneself? One thing I know for sure is that you don’t hurt yourself. But in real life, how many times do we sabatage ourselves – knowingly or unconsciously? It’s good to have this time here to give it some thought.
The day is really dreary and life has been difficult. I try not to feel sorry for myself. It would be harmful rather than helpful. I suck it up, knowing that it is the same for everyone. Not thinking I’m special is self-love. I move onward and forward. I go to my exercise class. I did not enjoy it. That is not a requirement. I still benefit from it. My mood and body are healthier for it.
I’ve dropped out of my history class – American Politics in the time of Trump. I rather have the time for myself. The class is very interesting and the professor is fabulous. My schedule is crammed and it is taxing to rush from one thing to another. I choose what is better for me – my exercise class. There is too much Trump all around already. Do I need more? I can pick it up at a later time. It’s for interest only.
So here I am, showing up again. Showing up is loving myself. It is wonderful that I have this time here. I am not worrying about my grammar, my tenses. I am just sharing my thoughts, what I am doing, my successes, my failures. We can benefit from each other. These are a few ways I’m loving myself.
Now that I have made the return to my words, I need to heed them as well. I need to do as I say else they would be empty words. They would be like the emperor without clothes.
273 days in my journey of change, it is still easy to fall into the same faulty behavioral patterns that Portia Nelson talks about. It’s good to review her words again.
“I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I fall in. I am lost… I am helpless. It isn’t my fault. It takes forever to find a way out.
I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don’t see it. I fall in again. I can’t believe I am in the same place. But, it isn’t my fault. It still takes me a long time to get out.
I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it is there. I still fall in. It’s a habit. My eyes are open. I know where I am. It is my fault. I get out immediately.
walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it.
I walk down another street.”
I’m not as helpless and lost as I was at the beginning of the journey. I’ve been lost and had fallen into the same hole quite a few times. This morning I was right on the edge, teetered and stood my ground. Nope! I’m not falling in this time.
Practice. Keep on trying. Let go. Love. Be kind. These are some of the things I need to do over and over. It’s a meditation. It’s living. It is.
Today I am focusing on utilizing those spare moments. So here I am – showing up again, remembering that small moments can add up. One of my mother’s favourite say is those drops can fill a bucket. Let me fill my bucket list/drop and cross them off like the 17 year old Becca with terminal brain cancer. I already have had more moments than she ever will. Let me join #beccatoldmeto have faith, to be kind.
We do not have to be special. We can just be.do.whatever.however much.we.can.each.moment.each.day. The bucket will fill a drop at a time. At the end of the day, I will have done that much more, be that much fuller, satisfied…I will have a sense of movement, that I have gotten up, dressed up and showed up. It’s enough to celebrate.
I’ve learned recently that there are no failures in life. You get different results. Sometimes they are better than the intended and the longed for ones. We are so blindsided with wants, goals and dreams. Sometimes we cannot see a good thing even when it slaps us in the face.
I like to think that each day is perfect unto itself – no matter sunshine or clouds. We need sun to grow and thrive but we also need the clouds with its rain. I’m learning to welcome each day as is. There’s always a light through the darkness. Every cloud has a silver lining. Being the human that I am, there are and will be days that I will cry and fight against it. That’s okay. That is my nature. It will pass and I will be tranquil once more. I will take up the word and continue to tap, tap,tap here. I want to bring light and hope with them. I want to urge you on to make your world just a little better each day.
I’m baking bread this morning – back to 6 loaves again. Making good use of the oven. I’ve never failed. Well, one time my dough never rose at all. I think I killed the yeast with too hot a water. Sheba had lovely doggy biscuits forever and a day. I made pita bread with it and was nice and crispy. It made for wonderful pizza crusts, too. So you see, ‘failure’ has its reward.
I’m listening and heeding my own advice. I need to show up and do – even if it’s a little to succeed. I’m counting my blessings that I am still here, standing/sitting, tap, tapping away at the keyboard. It’s grand to feel their rhythmic breathing beneath my fingertips.
I am grateful for the flowers my friend gave me. I light a candle for another. That’s how it is. We take care of each other in whatever way we can. It’s enough. What more can we ask of each other? I take the gift and hold it close to my heart. I say a prayer and send it forth to heal and comfort. It is what I can do – prayers and love.
The day is cool and grey. I turn on my inner light. I turn on my inner power. I walk, jump, shuffle. I line dance. I pump iron. I can do those planks but not quite the pushups. It’s okay. I’m building up my muscles. I’m building up my resolve. I can. I can – show up.
One way of guaranteeing success is showing up and doing. Here I am. I will dispense with the fancy words and fancy pictures. But if they do pop up, I will use them.What is new for me today? David Whyte’s piece on Rest. It’s what I am trying to attain. He says it so well. So here it is:
I’ve been striving too hard to obtain whatever. Now I want to live into that essance of giving and receiving. It is the breathing in and the breathing out. That is what I have to remember, to come back to over and over when I have wandered into the exhausted, in wanting and striving for it all. I have forgotten about the pause and empty spaces. They are beautiful notes that pull everything together. I am remembering them today.
A week has passed since I’ve been here. I’m doing the best I can. My Income Tax is done but not sent. Enough time left for that. I like to hang on to my money for just a little longer. I am not a fan of afternoons. It is rather funny since I was not a morning person naturally. Somehow I got converted. I wasn’t Catholic either but I converted to that, too. Goes to show anything is possible. But I am a somewhat inactive Catholic.
I feel and do the best mornings. There’s a rhythm when you get up. There’s an order to it. You dress, show up and do your stuff. Then noon comes. I am okay getting lunch on the plate and all that. It’s uphill after that. Sometimes getting the dishes done and things put away are monumentally difficult. I moan and groan inside. My body and brain hurts and I have to tend to each task one.at.a.time. I would like to drop everything. But a person can’t do that, can they? Surprisingly things do get done. I wonder how and why it feels hard. There’s no answers. I already take vitamins. Some days are harder than others.
I am tending to change how to tackle my afternoons so that I can enjoy them. What can I do different? Perhaps it is more my thinking that needs changing. Perhaps I don’t need to be thinking and doing so seriously all the time. I’ve been scheduling in a 40 minute body scan a couple of afternoons. The first time lasted only 22 minutes. Interrupted by the pesky dog barking. I was more successful today, having closed all the blinds so she can’t see people walking by. Having 40 minutes of nothing feels wonderful. I shall do that 2-3 afternoons a week.
My concentration is poor now. I will call it quits for now. Maybe I can show up again tomorrow with another thought for improving my afternoons.
Lassitude is painful and difficult to overcome, especially if the dog is barking incessantly at you. My brain is already foggy and spongy like a swamp. Her noise adds another layer of mud to it. I had to bribe her with a chew.
I am trying to get back to my words. Not trying to recover lost ground but to start from where I am. Today is day 261 of my year of doing different. I have been absent here for 21 days. Life happens. I’ve been busy. I’m trying to be flexible. I have so many reasons and excuses. The thing is I haven’t shown up here though I’ve been marking my journey on Instagram. If you are still following my year, you can still find me here on the Instagram sidebar.
My year has been full of ruts and repetitive errors. Change is difficult, even in thinking. It is most difficult in thinking because if we could think different, we could do different. With 100 days in the year, I’m paying more attention, putting a little more oomph into the push. I know I am changing, getting stronger bit by bit. I’ve pushed through some of my lassitude today, finishing some started projects. The trick is to set the intention and to do it now. That was what I did this morning. Instead of sitting and brooding, feeling my fatigue, I descended the stairs to my workspace. And here she is, my Petite Fille, almost finished.
A small success can give me a ray of sunshine on a cloudy day. It can give me some momentum to take the laundry down, fold and put them away. And now to do the dishes.