Monday, January 21, 2008

The Fullness of the Day

I'm reading/doing 'Simple Abundance' and 'The Artist's Way' again. It was ten years ago when I last did them and I can't help but notice what a totally different place I am in this time.

Ten years ago, I was desperate for 'soul food' - starved, it seemed. There were, besides Brian & I, four teenagers in this house, five kids counting my oldest daughter's boyfriend. The physical presence of so many people in a space, all of us carrying great amounts of emotional/hormonal 'luggage', was suffocating & draining at times. I loved it, mind you, and was happy - but I think that it had been so long since I was my own person - actually I had never gotten to that point - that I thought that I might never arrive there. That person was struggling so desperately to emerge, that I read everything 'soul' oriented that I could get my hands on. So many of the exercises, like the 'artist's date', even daily pages, seemed like such an extravagance and completely out of reach.
Fast (and I mean FAST) forward ten years. My house is quiet. That's been a surprisingly easy adjustment because I've filled my day and my life with lots of other wonderful things - friends, adventure, creation. And thankfully, my brood is all just minutes away from me, so at any given moment, the house is filled with the chaos & noise that it (and me) is accustomed to and thrives on.

Where I used to crave 30 minutes that I could call my own, I now have the entire day to fill as I choose. It's wonderful and exciting - but I wouldn't trade those days where my life was governed by the needs & wants of my children, for anything. If not for that, I wouldn't appreciate what I have now. I wouldn't be aware of how I've changed. And I wouldn't be reading Simple Abundance & The Artist's Way, with completely new eyes.

There is a line in the book, 'The Red Tent', that I think of almost daily: " in her hands, she held the fullness of the day, numbering the pleasure of work and the sweetness of children." I say ... Amen.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Here We Go Again

For about the last twenty years, on January 1st, I write a dozen or so goals (as opposed to resolutions in the fact that I actually plan on accomplishing them) at the front of my new journal/calendar and I go over the list from the previous year to see what I accomplished. Never have I been able to check off more than three or four. I add the ones that are still relevant to the current year's list - some of them have been there for all twenty years ... actually most of them - like, losing weight, being more physically active, getting my pictures in order, dunging out and organizing my house.
On last year's list, was 'Start a Blog'. I get to check that one off this year ... ONE entry qualifies for START. This year the listed goal is to actually WRITE in it - more than once. I wasn't motivated much to keep it updated, because I thought - who is ever going to find this thing? And who really cares what I say/think/do? I guess that's not the point of a personal GOAL. So I'm going to give it a shot ... again.

And once again, I'm going to give a shot at Losing Weight, Getting More Physically Active, Dunging Out This House, Putting My Pictures in Order. The one thing about not actually accomplishing ones goals during the year - saves me time on January First, having to spend time thinking of new ones.

OH OH EIGHT.... Here we come!