I imagine in some circles this comes across as over sharing, Facebook and Instagram often appear as highlight reels, top 10’s and plays of the week. Snippets of our best selves. I decided to start sharing some writings simply because I felt like it. It is less about approval or applause, sympathy or attention, and more about having a place to express yourself. Recently I’ve felt somewhat uninvited, in fact I wrote about it and maybe at some point I’ll share it. It began to feel like the people closest to me didn’t want me around, or they tuned out pretty quickly. And I felt unworthy of their attention, as if I deserved it. So I stopped sharing and I stopped talking. And I retracted, I hide in the haze. For now I feel like doing the opposite, sharing a bit, without any need to hear back. I am aware of a bit of speculation about what I’m up to, a narrative around what I do and who I am, it trickles in, often as whispers, and it rarely has much truth to it. Maybe this is what inspired me to share a bit of what I write. Who knows. I do spend a fair bit of time writing, sometimes parables, and other times clips of passing thoughts. I had a note from a friend the other day implying I was being vague, rather cryptic. I dont feel like I am, there are things I feel like sharing and there are other bits I don’t. It’s been an up and down few years, I’ve struggled at times, who hasn’t. It was never meant to be easy, or straight forward. What good would that do, where are the learnings. May we live in interesting times, maybe a little less interesting at times would be nice, but if there is a throttle I can not get a grip on it, at times I try but what good is that, life often has other plans we can not always foresee, it is an illusion to think you can control it.

 

One suspects it is better to just steady yourself with daily rituals through self regulation, live into your values, give unto others and hold on for the ride. Be prepared.

 

So there it is, in a bit of a nut shell. For now I am sharing, later I might not. It will be what it will be.

 

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{yesterday} had been a long day. A productive one. It started well and eventually ended well. In between it had variety, with a window of angst to which I had to pass through. That disjointed feeling was there when I got home. Having not worked out to start the day I needed to burn it off, one way or another, lest it take over.

 

I started the day, post morning routines, with a visit to the  Branch Coffee Company . I head there for internet, which is no longer welcome in my home, Netflix be damned, I am back to paying late fee’s at Pick a Flick renting DVD’s, and loving it. Between that and my flip phone I am reclaiming self authority of my attention span. These little black mirrors, with their constant contact, are whittling away at our will power and our ability to be present. Programming us to pay attention to an agenda we do not necessarily have agency over, despite the reassurances to the contrary, denial ain’t no river in Egypt.  I am tired of it. When it comes to the internet, I duck in and duck out, as best I can.

 

After a quick in and out with my emails I had the wonderful opportunity to speak to my daughters grade one class. Evelyn sat front row, wide eyed and ridiculously cute, I could have hugged her until the end of time. We haven’t had much opportunity to connect in the past few days as she has been at her mom’s, it is a struggle after almost 5 years I continue to do my best to adjust to, it is disorientating to be away from your children, it is as if your ‘high alert’ won’t turn off when you are not there to protect the den. If something happened while you were away you would howl at the moon until the end of your days, as it is now, I feel like I often do, it is a feeling akin to being lost in the woods beyond the pale, away from the fire, unable to find the way back home. 

 

As it tends to “what do you do” turned into “what did you do”. 

 

I spoke to the kids about audacious dreams, representing your country and being in service to others. I started by speaking to them about morning routines, beginning with making their bed, as an act of empathy for their future selves, as if you are saying “hey me later, I made the bed for you, as a gesture, because I like you. In fact I love you, I am going to do my best to have a great day, I will see you when I am you”. It is a big concept for a seven year old, but there is no time like the present. I told them about my morning routine; after I make my bed and my butter coffee I sit and I write. I write a about what sparks joy in my life, and I write about three things that I am grateful for and three things that will make today a great day, and an affirmation, as a “this is how I see myself”.

 

I write that “today will be a well paced day, my thoughts and my actions are synchronized, I am as capable as I imagine myself to be, I am loving and I am loved”.

 

And then I told them to journal, just as they were when I arrived, quietly writing their morning pages, learning first hand about the remarkable ability we have to conjure up, orchestrate and make happen our wildest imaginations if only we have the courage to first write it down.

 

“Mom made pancakes this morning, I love pancakes, I hope we have them again tomorrow” and voila, it often comes true. Pancakes!

 

I told them about how I used to write down that I wanted to hear the national anthem, and see the maple leaf fly high, and I showed a picture of me when I was younger standing on the podium, with the flag in the background, and I joked about it, “here’s a picture of me when I was younger, all pictures of us are when we were younger…” it’s a Mitch Hedberg joke, I’m pretty sure that went over their heads. And I showed them my Olympic medals, and a huge Canadian Flag that once hung on the peace tower in Ottawa. And then I came back to daily rituals, because my daughter was there, sitting in the front row, listening intently. And I felt I had a duty, an obligation, to speak from the heart; be a centred individual so you may be in service to others. You are as capable as you imagine yourself to be, and in doing so, you may express your gifts.

 

Pippa and Evelyn get it, they watch and they listen, kids, they are always watching, and listening. They do as they see.

 

After that I rushed off to meet Bill, and work on his reno, to use my hands, and build something. I’m working a couple times a week as his apprentice, to continuously emerge myself in skilled attention. And learn something new everyday. It was more of a Mr. Meogi “wax on wax off” “paint up paint down” kind of day. Liquid nails, grout, moving cabinets, pulling up floor boards and replacing a door. In one way or another they were each little puzzles, none too complicated, in fact all pretty basic, but I enjoy the work, getting in amongst it. Learning skills with your hands, skills my future self may need, simple skilled attention my present self does need.

 

I couldn’t work for long though, I had a counselling appointment I had to get to. I work with a blood smart dude, he is full of insights, little gems. After our sessions I take these gems home. I ponder them and hold them in my hand. I rotate, dissect, distill and sleep on them.  And when I wake another layer is revealed, a window is opened and with it a breeze carrying messages of hope, and love and awareness. Never to be underestimated. We spoke of having propriety with our emotions, and hooks; are we drawing ourselves towards the actions and thoughts to which we wish to embody, or are we being pulled away, like fish, are we on the hook, reacting without control of our response; coping, indulging vices and avoiding, all of which ultimately detract from our inner resiliency or are we aware, adapting, and prospering.

 

We spoke about relationships, love, trust, honesty, companionship and how we define ourselves, to whom we feel defined by.

 

And when I left with some gems in my pocket i felt exhausted, as I tend to, drained. I needed a deep breath.

 

On the way home, with the “busy stuff” behind me my mind began to whirl, my inner fisherman appeared, and with his bright green floral jacket he cast his line, and on it a hook, with bait, a promise of temporary reprieve from the inner angst that comes with adjusting to missing your closet, the person you spent most of your time with, you felt enmeshed with, and whole, the one who nestled in closer to your heart then any other, who you sang to, as you rubbed their back - the hands you thought would never let go. The profound one, with those eyes, those eyes, to which you felt fully revealed, completely vulnerable and cherished your moments with when you had the privilege of seeing their day unfold first hand.  One to whom you walked a path with, shared the road; but as it is with life, sometimes the time comes, and paths diverge, and we are reminded once again that often we do walk alone, for there are lessons we can only learn by ourselves, certain valleys, with lonely paths we must navigate on our own before we can climb up the other side. And when the time comes, our paths may converge again, or they won’t, and you either let it go, or you let it be. You move past it, and often that means diminishing it, or you sit with it and you take a breath, a deep one. To move past it is an act of doing, an intention to let it go, often driven by fear. To let it be, is to sit with it, to do nothing but be still, to observe and breath. No action is required, inaction being the key.

 

Fear fears breath - breath and just let it be.

 

When the hook hit the water, and the angst came on I powered washed the deck, and when that didn’t work, and I found myself still looking for the bait I headed out to the shed and tried to punish the Erg, and when I lost that grudge match too, I got in my car and drove to the ocean, and I pointed my board into the waves, and I paddled straight on, straight ahead with all that I could muster. Eventually I turned around, rode the waves back to the shore and then I sat on my board and breathed, and with this breath came the promise of a new day, new beginnings, and the lifting of the fog. I was able to look beyond the longing, and lost sense of belonging.

 

I just let it be.

 

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