I’ve been absent recently. Haven’t we all? Absence is requisite these days. It’s essential to life.
But, absence of self is not the intention. The purposeful and social absence we are experiencing has shown us the importance of distancing from the pressures we have created for ourselves. For the first time since my mother inhabited this neighborhood where I now live, have I known that my neighbors have children, cars, animals…it’s eerily reminiscent of decades prior. Times when we played outside until the sun went down, and hung out in the driveway with family.
This is clearly a self intentioned moment in time. A time to reflect and be peaceful and to relinquish the “must dos” and the “I really shoulds”, and instead to allow oneself permission to simply be.
Absence. Yes, I am absent today. I am not ill. I am not skipping out. I am just absent.
I don’t think I will ever forget…so many, many things. Such every day things that express the most significant moments for me. Cake. Cake makes me cry. She loved cake. And she loved cake every day. Grocery shopping is a very emotional experience these days. There is so much cake in the store. Sandwiches. Sandwiches too. I long to make sandwiches. No crusts of course, and never with mustard, and always with tomatoes, but sandwiches every day. There is no more cake and no more sandwiches every day, and that leaves me with a great sense of emptiness.
I don’t ever want to forget all the little things. The unique expressions she had to describe things, hearing the same story time and again, and learning to appreciate it as if it was the first time that I heard it. If it wasn’t important to her then it probably wouldn’t have come up as often as it did…whatever it was that was worth repeating needed to be repeated. again… and again…probably so that I would always remember. I know that now.
It is hard being left behind when I wasn’t ready to say goodbye, and even in the knowledge that it was near…I am not sure that I would ever be ready even if given the choice of when that was…I don’t want to forget to remember all the things about her. I also hope that someday I won’t cry as often, but that I will begin to feel more joy in the remembrances rather than sadness in the fresh and tender loss. I do understand that we all have a journey of our own and that when that journey is complete, it just is.
What’s best, you ask? How the hell do I know? Does anyone know?
Probably not, but somehow we keep making choices based on “what’s best…” for ourselves, our children, our parents, our friends…everyone.
Damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. It REALLY is true. And to be too sensitive to what everyone else thinks that you “should” have done for yourself or them just keeps you in a state of doubt, discomfort, angst, and question interminably.
That is no way to live…and I want to be clear though. Merriam Webster’s no. 2 definition of BEST is this:
: most productive of good : offering or producing the greatest advantage, utility, or satisfaction. What is the best thing to do?
When we give our “best” advice or opinion, especially to and for those we love, it is usually because we love them.
First, I had a great revelation at the dishwasher. All of the years that we as parents dread emptying the dishwasher suddenly became an enormous void for me.
As I gazed upon the FULL dishwasher, thinking that I will not be emptying so many drinking glasses or dishes in the present or future, I was struck by the reality that I would soon be an “empty nester” ….I really, really despise that term. I DO have a dog and 2 cats after all…geez…
LIVE. live in the present. ENJOY. enjoy each and every moment. LOVE. love it all – even those moments that appear for all unimaginable reasons to be unloveable. EMBRACE. embrace the now…the people…the moments…it all….
and, that’s all…but again, it’s everything…as I MAY have mentioned before…take heed.
It’s time. It’s been time for awhile. I started 14 years ago with my book…and it IS TIME
IT IS TIME! But, you know, I have way more material now, and frankly, it is good. I will certainly be exposed. I will probably offend people. I will also engage people. People who have shared my experiences. It will be glorious. But, at last I will be free and true to it all. And, those of you who love it will know exactly what I mean. I am actually excited about something passionately for the first time in over 10 years.
This is excellent.
It has seemed to me that everyone else is allowed to be exactly who they are without criticism, without judgement, without contrition. Perhaps, it’s my own self doubt and judgement that has restricted my ability to be exactly as I am to all people. I am ready. It’s like a baptism, like a communion, like a ceremony, like no other freedom that I have known. EVER. And, I. AM. READY. And as frightening as this seems, it is also exhilarating. I might end up friendless, and I might not. If I am, I will know that all my relationships are conditional, and THAT is a thought I don’t wish to own. Knowing and learning about all kinds of people is what I have done for over 3o years in my professional life. Without acceptance of the various individuals that have crossed my path and that I have shared numerous hours with, I would not have survived. It doesn’t make me exceptional, just accepting. And with the political climate as it is, it has been difficult at best (to say the least).
My only hope is that others can truly accept me exactly as I am, in the way that I am expected to accept them. Hope springs eternal? I hope so….
Each moment, each minute, each hour, each day… is the beginning. The beginning of each new action, feeling, emotion and miracle of our life. We choose our destiny and who we are and who we become. Coincidence is actually fate.
It is true that we repeat our inconsequential and disappointing moments because we have not learned what we need to know yet. We relive these times until we get it “more right”.
Resolve. yes. I accept resolve. I am learning.I WILL continue to learn. I WILL get it right. And that is because I choose to be true. Be True. A powerful message that I accepted in 1980 and have lost touch with off and on over the years. My mantra for 2017.
Tonight I want to talk about success. Not as it relates to monetary acquisition but more as it relates to emotional and spiritual acquisition.
So, you ask ? “what exactly do you mean?”
Personal success for me has been centered around the intangible gratification of my artistic contributions. Yes, I have been paid…sporadically and inconsistently for my work. But, that has been inconsequential to my well being. I have certainly, and morosely, over obsessed about the lack of financial infusion to my bank accounts, but that has not pre determined my dedication to the project at hand. Each year that passes, I consider the fact that I have not contributed to a 401(k) or some other pre-destined retirement plan. I wonder if I should be really worried…and then, I forget that I thought about it at all.
My point is that success is determined by those who own it.