A strange thing happened today. The dark and stormy clouds gave way to a brilliant sun. And the brilliant sun streamed light through the large windows, leaving huge patches of light all over the floor. And it was in these patches on the floor that something strange happened.
The four-footed one flopped down in one of the patches and happily took to napping. As the light would shift a bit, she’d wake up and move into the next spot where the sun was just a fraction brighter than it was where she was napping. She did this on repeat cycle until she managed to use up all the patches of sunlight in the room.
Then she moved into the next place where the sun was stronger and repeated the whole process again. She does not, typically, spend her day napping. Instead she insists I play with her or take her out for walks. In between all of that she is begging for food or eating food that has been provided to her.
Other than all the peaceful resting she seems to be her normal self. It’s as if the sun, finally making an appearance after so many dark and overcast days, has placed her in an enchanted sleep. If she’s waiting for a prince to come along and wake her up she will have a long wait. Thankfully she is able to wake up as the sun moves.
I am, I confess, a bit envious of her being able to recklessly nap in the sun. If I nap in the sun, I’m flirting with a trip to the hospital and a guarantee of up close and personal time with lupus. I think I’ll pass thanks all the same. I will just be envious from a safe distance.
Questions. I have a million of them. Probably more if I actually did the math. But I’m deathly allergic to math so let’s just stick with the fact I have a million questions and you probably have a whole bunch of questions as well.
Some of the questions I have are silly little things. Things like why did he do this, or why does she insist on doing things that way. You know, the type of questions that don’t really matter in the end, but plague you nonetheless as if your brain doesn’t have anything else to focus on. And of course, this happens when I have stuff that requires my attention, but my brain won’t stop focusing on the trivial stuff.
Some of the questions I have are the kind that never get answered. You know, stuff like the purpose of life and if there is anything beyond what we know as reality. These are sometimes the questions that keep me up at night and sometimes they are the questions I consider while I’m doing nothing in particular.
To be fair, regardless of the type of question, it seems that there are always a million running through my mind and more just starting to form themselves waiting for the space to clear so they too can become fully formed questions rattling around in my head!
Beloved assures me that while everyone has questions, not everyone will question things the way I do. He refers to it as me imitating a dog with a bone. Sometimes, he tells me, it’s okay to let go of the bone as something better will come along. But I can’t. I have to hang onto that bone until I know I’m finished with it or that the promise of something better has come to truth. And I have questions about this very thing too. Why can’t I just let it go? What is wrong with me that I have to hang onto these things and why do I even care? See, lots of questions. So many in fact that it gets exhausting just sorting through them all. Which begs the question why does this even happen.
The email politely invited me to join Beloved on a trip this summer. A trip that would have Beloved meeting a prominent person. It isn’t the first invitation I have had for such a trip or even such a meeting. I have, since being with Beloved, found myself at dinner parties, galas, dances and such where there are far more prominent people that I need to know. I may have become a bit jaded by this as it doesn’t actually impress me all that much.
When I phoned Beloved and explained to him that I was thinking of declining, a close friend who was visiting made such a loud gasp that surely half the universe must have heard or felt the effects of it. She had seen the name of the person I would be meeting, and she could not fathom turning down a once in a lifetime type of meeting with such a figure. Beloved wasn’t surprised by my response, he is used to me declining things due to health and, well, I reckon my own independence.
He suggested, in his gentle way, that I should not respond to the invitation yet, to sit with it and think upon both attending versus declining such a meeting. This too is not new for Beloved always makes these suggestions when I am faced with the fact that being in a relationship with Beloved has a very heavy dose of interacting and meeting prominent people. I knew this aspect of his life when we first were together. But it was his life and I was free to have my own life.
Beloved finds it charming that after all these years, these invitations and such rankle me. I rail against the idea that I’m property or something to be brought along because I must be occupied in some way. I know that isn’t really what is happening and it’s a nice thing to be invited along and so on and so forth. But there is a part of me that digs in my heels and points out that it is his life, his professional choices that have this aspect to things. It isn’t my choosing or my life.
I do not ever insist that he come along with me on any of the things that I do for my professional life or even for the advocacy work I do. Those are part of the make up of my life. Yes Beloved and I have a life together, but we are also two separate people with different interests, needs and passions to fill. Sometimes I think people, especially people Beloved spends time with, forget this wee aspect.
And now if you will excuse me, I need to save the universe from another incredible gash while I sort out how I shall politely decline this latest honor.
Beloved, not being from North America struggles sometimes to understand why certain things are held onto as near and dear to the heart and other things are ignored. Such as the need to own one’s own piece of property and while ignoring how one can work oneself to death just to have the money to acquire land. He finds it amusing that people will put work before everything else to get the money for a down payment on land and then continue to work like crazy to make all the payments.
He grew up knowing that he wouldn’t ever really afford land. A small flat perhaps, but not a single-family dwelling unit that stands alone. Not one with a white picket fence and 2.5 cars in garage. So he didn’t spend his early adult years working three jobs for a down payment on something he would forever more be a slave to.
Then he came here and realized it was the thing to do. Own a house, own a piece of land. And he watched people he knew work insane numbers of hours at the cost of time spent with loved ones just so they could afford a piece of dirt. Dirt that ultimately does not belong to you because when you die, move or what have you the dirt can be sold to someone else. When he was first here he said that land doesn’t enrich anyone’s life.
And then we bought a small house. Very small. Too small really. Because it was cute and we liked bumping into each other in the hallway. (That got old, but we love the house so there is that issue still there.) And suddenly this man who claimed land does not enrich people’s lives is spouting all sorts of stuff about the need to feel the earth on one’s hands to be truly fulfilled. The man who claimed he did not need property now not only needs property, but feels a need to put his stamp all over it.
Wait until we have to move and say goodbye to our wee bit of land. What will he do then? Will he revert back to the comments about how land has caused nothing but damage, wars and strife or will he still feel the same? I wonder if he will settle for a flower box of dirt to put his hands in!
Somewhere in the library sits a picture of Beloved from when he was a young boy, around 8 or so. A smattering of freckles adorns his cheeks and hope radiates out of his clear eyes. There is barely a hint of the man he would become in that picture.
After a bright, sunshine filled day when he has failed to apply sunscreen those freckles are faintly visible. Just there if you know where to look from them before they fade away after a day or two. The hope that is visible in his eyes these days is different. It still radiates from them, but it’s a different hoe. One that is more confident, a bit more weary and just a tad less bright.
Now and then there is just a faint hint of the boy from that picture. As things change it gets a little harder to see that boy in the man he has become, but somewhere deep down that child still resides within him. That child who has hope and a quick smile because he is secure in a much smaller world occasionally peers at me from a veil of age and jaded cynicism.
I suspect the same can be said for me, the shy little girl peers back now and then, careful to not be seen if she can help. The thing is if you were to ask us, we still feel like those young children we once were now and then. I hope we never fully lose touch with those youngster as we continue to be jaded, cynical and such from all that life gives and takes from us.
Do we all have the ability to bend things, to make them be what we want them to be in order to make sense based on our experiences, desires, wants and such? I’m going to say yes. I base this on the fact that there is enough evidence around the art of positive thinking and how it influences what and how we perceive things in our lives.
We have the ability reframe our thoughts from negative to positive if we so choose and the theory is that by doing so it will influence and change how we see the experiences and events in our lives. The reality hasn’t changed. You’d still be stuck in traffic, but if you think in a positive way, when your car is sitting next to someone else and you catch that person’s eyes…well see if you weren’t stuck in traffic you might never have met the person.
If we reframe things into a negative way, getting stuck in traffic would consume more gas and waste our time and we’d miss out on something truly amazing and we’d never get that chance back in our lives.
The reality of being stuck in traffic does not change. How we see it, how we see the results of it, well that’s what changes. And when we can change how we perceive that reality we can alter our responses. Altering our responses will of course change our experiences down the road. This could, in theory, allow us to be closer to our dreams, wants, desires. So that’s the secret to manifesting or reaching what we want. We can bend things to our will in a way that makes it seem that the universe is working with us, in some way.
Does this mean we all actually are in control of reality? Nope. Just how we perceive it and what we make of it. Reality is just that, reality.
I’m not a huge list person. I have an informal list of things I’m working on or doing, but it’s a loose list. It isn’t written down, just what’s in my head, but if it were to be written down it would be in pencil with almost no pressure put on it. And the paper it would be written on would be a tiny scrap of something, you know the kind that’s just perfect for a piece of chewed gum to fit into.
This morning I woke up and decided I had maybe three things I would consider doing. I got on with my morning routine and then suddenly I was all out of energy. And I felt, well, very unwell. So I got ride of my list and opted to get done what absolutely needed doing. accepting that the rest could wait. For another day. Or later on if for some reason lupus decided to cooperate. (Wishful thinking for the most part.)
Now in the past, I would have considered this all to be a failure. Failure to get the few things accomplished I had planned on getting accomplished. Settling to get done the one thing I absolutely had to get done would, in the past be a sign of giving in, almost a weakness. But that was the past.
I’ve learned that if I don’t heed these warnings there will be many more days where things just won’t be gotten to for a long time. Some things will have to be forgotten at this rate. And at that point the failures are bigger. Big enough to result in barely getting out of bed or managing to take care of myself. Big enough to result in unwanted, but exceedingly necessary trips to the hospital. So yeah that kind of failure.
So today when that sudden exhaustion and other feelings hit me, I just did what needed doing and curled up with the four-footed one. We watched mindless shows and napped. We did not worry about what we failed to get done. Instead we celebrated the success of holding lupus to a specific line. That line is minimal interruption in my life. One day is minimal versus a week or so in the hospital. And this, my friends, is why I don’t worry too much about my t0-do lists.