I had fully intended to have a Donna Day, pj’s, Bose, paint brush in hand. I did all of these, but I have been distracted all day, combined with the untreated ADHD, we are talking some major bouncing today.
Received some very hard news this morning that is not up to me to share, but I have been sick to my stomach all day. Perhaps one day I will be able to share on it all, but right now I cannot, and will not until I have permission.
As everyday comes and goes I am always reminded of how short life is. To see my great niece and nephew’s pictures on fb, I am shocked at how much they have grown and matured. There has been so much that has happened this year, in the past year and a half, that I can’t even keep up. My head feels like I am on a hampsters wheel this minute, trying to wrap my head around all the changes. I think of my dad who will be 85 in a couple months, and how difficult that situation is, I guess when your parents are that age you have to think about their passing, but Lewy Body Dementia. NOT FAIR. But NOTHING has been fair in my family.
I have been feeling good, accessing some hard times and working diligently on the book I promised myself I would write 10-15 years ago. As a creative I sometimes feel like I am channeling, because I sometimes read back what I have wrote, or painted, and I think “who did that?” And just when you think you’ve caught a break, something else shows up to knock you to your ass. Yes, I know, this is life. We were never told life would be fair, nor was I born with a silver spoon in my mouth. But I come from strong line of parents. Brave parents. I have often shared about how they taught me to be resourceful. As an artist it is a wonderful trait and skill to have.
Right now I am not centered, and I am walking in circles, and if I allow myself to feel anything today it is anger. But we all know that anger is a whole lot easier to feel than emotional pain, or sadness. I have thought about those souls who “cut” themselves. It offers relief from their pain, their torment, but of course it’s temporary. But what I am reminded again today is that everything is temporary.
In my life I have vacillated through much. Decades ago now when I had to have a sportscar, or designer clothes. Those days are long gone. That doesn’t mean I don’t have dreams or see cars that I like and say “damn”, it’s just that for a long time, I have struggled with basic survival needs. Right now while I am not where I want to be, but I am so better off than I have been in a long time. I sometimes think to myself “When I get here, I will be okay, etc.” Then days like today I am reminded that TODAY, this moment is all we have. Rather than beat myself up for where I wanted to be at this point in my life, I am taking a very deep breath tonight, saying prayers of thanks, and asking for the ability to help someone I love.
Life isn’t about money, yes, it is easier to have it, I remember the days fondly when I could buy whatever I wanted, but now those things mean very little to me. The greatest commodity we have is time. Tomorrow is promised to no one. The successes in my life have to be celebrated each day, not as certain intervals that I think would bring me more happiness, or at a lower weight, or whathaveyou. Future’s have a way of falling down in midflight. So today I am right back to basics, and feeling grateful for where I am, that I have a comfortable bed to sleep in, that I have food in my refrigerator, that I have a place called home, and that as far as I know today, right now, I have my health. Cannot stress enough how if you have your health you have it all. If you don’t understand this, you one day will. I think it’s a right of passage per say. When you or someone you love is faced with serious illness, the gift that comes out of it if you’re strong enough to grab it, is perspective.
I take things for granted, we all do. We leave our driveway and take for granted that we are going to go to the grocery store and come back with food, safely. We take for granted much. And yet, how I feel right now tonight, is that it is the recipe, or all that we take for granted that really can define your life one day. It’s the smaller things in life, the tiny steps, the smiles, the tears, reaching out your hand to someone in need, these are the things that really matter. I am reminded when I spent some time at Mass General Hospital with serious illness, infection, and the night prior to being admitted I had been bitching about my hard mattress, and stupid shit that the next day, upon admission and realizing I was in a fight against time, none of that mattered. It didn’t matter. When I passed the danger zone and was released and I drove myself home, and I got home, the very things I had been unhappy with a week before were now embraced, loved, as luxuries.
It’s impossible not to take things for granted, otherwise we would live in constant fear, etc. But in the classic christmas movie, I cannot for the life of me remember the name of it right now, but he grabs the broken stair bannister and smiles, celebrates it. I think if we can recognize that everything here is temporary, so you do your best (if that’s who you are, and you give it your best, and if it’s a hard day, you hope tomorrow will be better, but if for some reason you don’t wake up tomorrow, or tomorrow comes with more calamity, what were the simple things of yesterday that you had that you wish you had on this new day?
I am not a religious person, I am highly spiritual however, and I try not to judge others, but I fail, and I give my life my best, and some days, I can’t get out of my own way. I win, I swear like a parrot at times because it makes me feel tougher, and that somehow I will not be hurt again, or being tough will keep others at bay. Whatever. It’s all so stupid, it’s meaningless.
Life isn’t about hiding from the hard shit. It’s about walking through it, and if you’re fortunate, coming out the other side. It’s about growth from A – Z, it isn’t about the destination but the journey. How brilliant our lives would be if we were appreciative of the smaller things.
I am going to try to be kinder to myself, I am going to try to slow my mind down, feel each step as I take it, and look around to what is there, and I hope I will become more aware and appreciative of the things that I take for granted. I have been doing this somewhat with my painting. I used to paint something to finish it. Not anymore, I work on it slowly, sporadically, I think about it, where I want to go with it, what I like about it, or what I don’t. It has made me a better artist. So no doubt, slowing my ass down and recognizing all that I have to be grateful for, will make me a better, happier person.
Go forth, in love and acceptance of yourself and others. And I pray that from this moment forward I will not overlook the itsy bitsy things that are more precious than gold!