David Whyte, Krista Tippet Interview, On Being, December 27, 2018 "...the deeper discipline of poetry is overhearing yourself say things you didn’t want to know about the world, something that actually emancipates you from this smaller self out into this larger dispensation that you actually didn’t think you deserved."
Well, I always say that poetry is language against which you have no defenses. "
Vulnerability is not a weakness, a passing indisposition, or something we can arrange to do without, vulnerability is not a choice, vulnerability is the underlying, ever present and abiding undercurrent of our natural state. To run from vulnerability is to run from the essence of our nature, the attempt to be invulnerable is the vain attempt to become something we are not and most especially, to close off our understanding of the grief of others. More seriously, in refusing our vulnerability we refuse the help needed at every turn of our existence and immobilize the essential, tidal and conversational foundations of our identity.
To have a temporary, isolated sense of power over all events and circumstances, is a lovely illusionary privilege and perhaps the prime and most beautifully constructed conceit of being human and especially of being youthfully human, but it is a privilege that must be surrendered with that same youth, with ill health, with accident, with the loss of loved ones who do not share our untouchable powers; powers eventually and most emphatically given up, as we approach our last breath.
The only choice we have as we mature is how we inhabit our vulnerability, how we inhabit our vulnerability, how we become larger and more courageous and more compassionate through our intimacy with disappearance, our choice is to inhabit vulnerability as generous citizens of loss, robustly and fully, or conversely, as misers and complainers, reluctant, and fearful, always at the gates of existence, but never bravely and completely attempting to enter, never wanting to risk ourselves, never walking fully through the door.
I found this word powerfully just a few days ago in a passage from the Daily Reflections, December 29, page 372 "The joy of living. The joy of good living is the theme of the 12th step. AA is a joyful program. Even so, I occasionally balk at taking necessary steps to move ahead, and I find myself RESISTING the very actions that could bring about the joy I want. I would not resist if those actions did not touch some vulnerable area of my life, an area that needs HOPE & FULFILLMENT. Repeated exposures to joyfulness has a way of softening the hard outer edges of the ego. Therein lies the power of JOYFULNESS to help all members."
And so the journey continues to clarify and reveal. Thanks to Krista and David... AGAIN.
I guess I've had what amounts to writer's block for a bit. I still write daily in my journal, every single day. I don't feel quite so clever as I once did, perhaps? I feel a bit shy? The words just don't quite flow along the lines of a fun or curious idea? Not sure folks. I've been busy learning, growing, remembering, playing, working, hanging out, etc. Lots going on so I finally decided to just come here and write and see if, like so many times, the answer is provided just by actually writing.
Where I am RIGHT NOW - is utter disbelief because I'm living absolutely fucking EXACTLY what I dreamed of and wished for. There's a part of me that's holding my breath, not sure what's next... A bigger reverie? A continuation? I am blessed beyond my wildest dreams and am looking for a way to give back while I'm creating the next phase and being grateful for ALL of it. My last frontier at the moment is a consistent practice of self care. That's it for the moment. I have fun, I have friends, I have a partner and lover, I have work that's meaningful, I have volunteer work that's rewarding and I have every possible physical thing I can need or wish for.
It's an odd feeling to "arrive" in so many ways. The biggest and hardest and scariest and most transformational is still in my face... me... my body side. I've tried so hard for so long to find balance and fun and solutions that work ongoing it seems particularly challenging at the moment. There's such a subtle - nuanced approach that's needed as well as a decision. Perhaps I'm finally ready for the decision moment? Who knows!
I went to an after Christmas sale at Ann Taylor Loft and picked out a couple of very awesome sweaters - pullovers. I had the thought then, staring at the dressing room mirror, that I could tell the staff that I'm just finishing with a play and the character required that put weight on intentionally to be a little pudgy. I'll get back in shape in no time so I'm keeping that in mind as I buy these sweaters. There was something about that story, (that I only told myself... BTW) that really appeals. Is it appealing because it's partially true? So much of my life has been unintentional and only now am I truly moving into myself.
I've been a member of this body/mind/spirit unit for nearly 54 years and it's still such a mystery... I like to think that anyway... is it really? I'm noticing that I've hit a wall and had to spend a significant investment in awareness surrendering various layers of cultural conditioning around scarcity, urgency, mastery, competition, judgement, and disunity. Unlearning is challenging. It is like untangling a handful of beautiful necklaces that are currently in knots. You follow one for a while and that leads to another that distracts your attention until you find it may be best to lay it out with the knots in the middle and all the loose ends separated toward the outside... anyway I digress, you get the picture.
I'm currently reading and listening to Communion with God by ND Walsch. I wanted it to be enlightening but also touchy-feely or cuddly or something... I want to cuddle with God right now. I want to have a slumber party and hang out and paint our nails and tell secret stories and giggle and maybe have a pillow fight. It's not that, at least not yet. It's disturbing, quite frankly, it nicely outlines how the human race is incredibly off base - which I already knew - but the details are unnerving in their accurate descriptions. The 10 Illusions he refers to in the book are lining up all to closely with my discovery of the debilitating and annoying cultural conditioning I'm untangling. Perhaps the answers are in the book to continue to untangle them more efficiently. I will finish the book - eventually.... it's dense and intense. Maybe these instructions will help! =)
3 Easy Tricks to Untangle Necklaces by KAT COLLINGS
Apply baby oil to the knot with a cotton swab. This will make the chains slippery and the knot will come undone easier when you pull on the chain. If the knot is still tight, gently massage it until you begin to feel it loosen. Once you've untangled the knot, you can rinse the baby oil off the necklace using a mild soap.
Insert a straight pin into the center of the knot, then slowly pull up to separate the chains that your fingers can’t reach. You may need to work this a few ways to loosen up particularly complex knots. Be sure not to catch any openings in the chain of the necklace and risk breaking it.
Sprinkle baby powder on the knot. This will act as a lubricant to make the chains easier to pull apart. Once you've untangled the knot, rinse the baby powder off the necklace using a mild soap.
Maybe I'm totally typical. Who the fuck knows, for real!? What's typical?
I do know that I have been playing around with exercise again here in the new place. New house, new habits, new space, new me... feels like that anyway! I did my program every day for nearly a week and a half. Then, poof!! WTF?! I have managed to do it a few times. Just break it down into tiny steps... get up stairs, press power, press play. No really, just fucking press PLAY. DON'T THINK! Please just don't think about it.
I may have had a breakthrough today, time will tell. The comparison of exercise to brushing my teeth came to mind while journalling this morning. There's a lot more to the story, of course, but just to get this out and down... The transformation has to do with is something optional / negotiable / or just required... The distinction is, of course, in my head, although there is some cultural support. Maybe five times a year I go without brushing my teeth for a day. I can't usually make it longer than that, fuzzy feelings and nastiness. So I am exceeding lucky that I have amazing teeth. Some people do their tooth detailing in depth daily and still have major dental problems. For some flossing, brushing after each meal, treatments, etc. still they have inherited shitty teeth. So this thought was genned by Chris' news that he has to have root canal when he got back from the dentist yesterday. For some, their daily tooth routine may take as long as my workout.
Where are you going with this shit? Well... so... I make time to brush my teeth daily, no discussion in my head, no back and forth, no "making time" etc. etc. I JUST DO IT. Same thing with a shower at least every other day. So... daily workouts are now considered in that same category. That is all. Easy! I managed to do with with writing so I'm just expanding my daily self care routine to include exercise. Eventually I will work in reading, laughter, guitar, meditation, drawing and prayer.
It's all in my head so there you go. A sweet combination of the mini habits idea and a mind fuck, sorry, a mind game. No game either. I can do the exercise now or be doomed to some shit in the future, no doubt, knee surgery, hip replacement, who knows along with all the PT you have to do daily for that and you're still never quite the same. How about some simple, sane, low impact thorough exercise daily instead?? OK! Will do! Sold!
If I had kids, I would just make it part of the daily deal. Just like brushing your teeth before bed... did you do your jump rope? jumping jacks? push ups? Holy Crap... I just found all these good habits posters online. Serious!? I'm learning to be a responsible 5 or 6 year old! Good to know!
What shall I forgive this day to amuse and delight?
I decided back in November 2015 to make my poetry available and journal online. I'm not exactly sure what "blogging" means but I am quite sure this is an online journal. Feel free to read on with an aire of open minded curiosity. At no time do I intend to offend, judge or pretend to know anything really, I'm just an observer and explorer, as we all are. Feel free to "boldly go" through my observations and perhaps it will spark or inspire. Comments are off because I don't want to be worried about political correctness when I'm writing. I'm not thinking about "you." I'm just writing because it feels "right". Feel free to enjoy or surf on.
Fibber McGee's closet!