Saturday, January 4, 2014

the ways i can instead of the ways i should...

Exploring creatively this month via Lisa Sonora's 30 Day Journal Project.  The prompts for the first four days were for:

  1. exploring where we start, 
  2. how we commit, 
  3. considerations of roots to tend, and 
  4. what it means to be in practice

As I sat with each prompt, the first thing I noticed was just panic. Actually it's a panic that has been building since my bod took a turn for the "you-will-be-flat-in-bed" tendencies since Winter Solstice night. The panic now was facing the reality that I cannot show up as I "woulda, coulda, shoulda" doing physical art journaling each day.  Facing that I've been realizing how much there is I "woulda coulda shoulda wanna" in the last couple week, but I physically cannot do much of it.

It's a weird space to be in because I can think it.  In my head, I can do it.  I can vision things.  Well, to a point.  There is a certain point of exhaustion where I can't *see* to put my brain cells together in a coherent way.  But for the most part, I'm flat out like a deflated cartoon, but my head is still tending the to-do list that woulda coulda shoulda wanna.

Lots of guilt and shame around not being able to ... do. It's an interesting spiral of shame.  A bit of wondering if it wouldn't be easier to be so far gone that I don't know I'm gone and then I wouldn't care.  A bit of apocalypse'ing around not being able to do, so all is lost, and it's no longer flat out in a bed, but flat out on a street corner, homeless and all.  A bit of doing the sorry-for-myself and omg, I'm letting everyone else down, too, and I'm the worst marriage partner and worst business partner.

Thankfully, my partner is a very mellow kinda dude.  He reminds me to steer back to breathing meditation.  Which in turn helps me touch back on a powerful dream image that came recently.  The image of trying to get home.  But all the buildings are empty shells like a film set.  And on the dark street, I'm suddenly hit by lightening, with all the sparks flying off the edges of my supposed body.  But then looking at where my body normally is, there is just empty space.  Like the Hubble Telescope kind of space.  Wide, open, empty, dark matter, endless universe SPACE.

And that reminds me that all is groundless.  Most people don't like that.  But death knocked me out of the grounded and impatient world long ago, and as blaspheme as it is, I'm grateful to my dead sons for giving me a life that is entirely outside the impatient world, that is entirely groundless because I know how quickly it ends (even when we "count" it as a long life). And you know what comes with living a groundless life?  Making it up as you go.

So here I sat and thought, hell, I don't have to do anything in some prescribed way.  1) I'm morphing the 4 days of prompts into one.  And 2) I can't physically do the art journaling now, but I can use my computer and digital tablet.  So my journal page -- the one you see here at the top of this post -- is a 12 x 12 journal page, created in a digital landscape, using bits and pieces of physical art that was created previously and scanned into jpgs.  No fumes. No need for setting up a table and water and supplies.  No ache reaching for this and that.  Just my computer and tablet, close at hand, propped as I need to be, ease on my elbow and hands.  And it is actually a decent interpretation of what I was trying to get at...what I could see in my head and dream.

And happening in the ways I am able to show up instead of the ways I was woulda, coulda, shoulda, wanna'ing myself about...much less panic this way.  Now if I can just apply this heART lesson to everything else, that will be that much more panic released.  :)  In the meantime, breath breath breath and staying with my breath.

How are you tending you today?  Are you creating ease or panic for yourself and others?  What kindnesses can you show yourself and others in this moment?



  1. I too am doing the ROOT journal prompts. The first day she quoted-"There is no beginning too small."
    (Thoreau). That is how I am doing it. baby steps

    1. Hey Gemma!! Wonderful to hear you are doing the ROOTS, too... yes, soooo good to be reminded that no beginning is too small!! Baby steps and micro-moves (a la SARK :)) Sending you so much love! xoxo


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