Monthly Archives: June 2014

Okay, so I didn’t do so well

DSC03670cToday the cleaner I hired worked in my one bedroom apartment pulling out appliances, cleaning walls and carpets, all the things I am limited in my knowledge or physical strength in how to do. I am surprised how much less apologetic I am then I would have been in the past about such things. I think my ability to handle letting someone into the corners I missed comes from the timing of this move.

In January I began seeing someone again to deal with some of the last residual dregs left behind by those dark spaces in my life. Cleaning out the corners of my psyche, I have room to accept the need to clean out the corners of my physical space.

This move is a chance to begin again with more understanding and awareness then I had at the time of my last move. It is a challenge though, too. Starting fresh, in any form, is a new chance to make decisions about where you will go from here.

This is where I am glad I have learned about mindful living in the past years. I get to begin in this moment I am in. I am able to acknowledge that this is where my life has brought me. This is who I am. I have the power to grow from this now because I accept this self as my identity in this moment.

There is something that feels strong in accepting yourself right at the place you are. The feelings of stress that come by striving to be something else aren’t there to take energy away from living what is. Within each moment there is a recognition that choices matter. I am not longer waiting for something out there to start me living. I get to choose to live right where I am.

DSC03672cI am thankful that I began finding this out before my home changed to something more spacious (to me) and more freeing. If this inner freeing is tied to things or others than if they are lost, it can be lost. By learning to center myself no matter what, I give myself freedom to live no matter what is gained or lost in my life.

I have not arrived in some place of peaceful bliss. I still have fears. I still have my “if only” lists that play through my mind. Yes, I would have like to have not felt a bit of humiliation of having someone come to clean the places I didn’t know how to reach into in a space too small to move large things. These are all a part of this me where I am right now. By not trying to pretend those things aren’t there, I free energy to move forward.

Yes, I think I am going to like this new stage in my life.

 

Lesson Learned in Moving

No this isn’t my first move. There is a part of me that has never really settled anywhere. Growing up I attended 11 schools by the time I graduated from high school. That was after having lived in at least 5 other homes before I started school. Post high school I still never settled. In over 55 years of life only twice have I lived in the same dwelling for over 5 years, one being in the apartment I just moved from. You would think I wouldn’t have anything new to learn from moving. Yet, there always seems to be that one more place to grow.

P1070735Moving to my new home in the past few weeks, I had an opportunity to see what I have kept as important all these years. There were so many replicas of things that had been buried and forgotten as my interests changed or as I needed something and couldn’t find what I had. Things has replaced really living as I treated my home as a stasis chamber or a bed in the corner of an office — simply a place to exist in between work and the rare times when I spent time with others. I am not sure I would call myself a hoarder but there was enough to give me a window into understanding to some degree.

The move uncovered supplies for crafts I didn’t have the room to complete before. I would dream dreams bigger than the space I had to carry them out in. I would sometimes begin until work intervened with some task that required me to put them away to clear space.  Now they reside on shelves in the basement next to a room where I can get them out and work. All I have to do is get some kind of support for the table top I have.

There were clothes and items stored for a someday out there when I would get back to my old shape or restart some past activity — tems that could be used meaningfully by others if unburied from my past. Moving unburied the need to let go in order to move on. Even after moving to my new place there were things that could still be let go of. Like working clay and smoothing rough edges I mold the new place I will be calling home until I move on.

The room to breath and think I find where I am now opens my eyes to the nonliving that had become so much the norm of my life. My world had been so much reduced to a chair with a table on one side and a desk on the other. My communications had become computerized. The introverted part of my nature lost balance as space became storage instead of living. The home I had wanted to bring people into is possible now.

Moving here feels a bit like waking up from a long sleep. From here, I have choices to make to decide what this home will be. There are those who have indicated interest in being in my world. I have to open the door to let them in. That is the wonder of living. By letting go, we receive. By stepping out, we make room within. Each ending begins something new.

Perhaps this is my focus as this month heads toward its end — moving forward, moving on. The first steps have been taken. Where will this new path lead me from here?

 

A New Crossroad

I stand at a crossroad of change, a potential hectic place where stopping and looking at what I have gained from this stage in the journey is my next step. Mindfulness tells me to look at my thoughts of what all I need to do as just what they are — thoughts. They are not prescriptions. They don’t come with a premade time line though they do come with deadlines. They are thoughts. Rushing in to them empowers them to create stress. Stopping and weighing them as thoughts allows me to determine priorities for completing what needs to be done.

I had a plan for Saturday. I was going to get my keys to my new place and then work on my report card comments. It was a good plan but was not based on learned information. I would be allowed to get in the place. My neighbor would come by and ask how early I want them to come to help me load boxes in their van tomorrow. This weekend, the resources are in place for me to do much of the moving I had planned to spread out through the week. My thoughts shifted toward the move and focus elsewhere was compromised.

In the old model of coping, this is where anxiety would leap in empowered by guilt at what I “need” to get done. Having practiced mindfulness in a form throughout May, I have learned the power that comes from stopping and looking at thoughts.

When I am at school during the week, the focus is on school. I have the ability to stay after hours and work there where I am not distracted by the scatter that is a part of moving. Why was my other plan so much better anyway? I was viewing the comments as a stop gap, waiting measure for moving much of my stuff in tomorrow. They would have not had the attention they deserve. Staying and working that extra time each afternoon this week is a more rational expectation of my attention.

So mindfulness reminds me that I can stop and refocus. I can reprioritize today in light of the knowledge of potential. As such, my work becomes more productive because my mind is not scattered and fighting guilt while stressing over wanting to have everything done now.

Today, I only took one load and reloaded my car for an early run in the morning. I started organizing a few things in the kitchen helping me to assess where I want things to go to save steps of others that will be helping me. I even got my flowers in the front garden to cheer my heart with colour.

journey treasureIt is a new beginning as I draw this mindful journey of posting to a close. Will I make this journey again next May? Learning mindfulness teaches me to make my commitment to live my moments. I have also learned this month that mindful gifts can be found in any circumstance so, posted or not, I will be seeking the mindful gifts in each experience, each day.

The mindful gift I chose to celebrate today is this moment of time. It is the only one I have to live. In living it, I live toward whatever is to come.

**** To those reading my posts, for the first two weeks of June I will be reevaluating my writing as well as using my words to keep in touch with friends and write report card comments. I will be back to posting by the third week in June. Will try to keep an eye on your posts until then. If there is something mindful you would like to share with me, just leave me a note on here. Peace to all as you make choices on your own journeys.