Outrunning It All

Beloved likes to say that you can eventually outrun or outwork whatever it is that haunts you.  He’s applied this theory to his life in a full-steam ahead manner.  And it seemed to work.  For a while.

The thing is, nothing really holds that kind of pressure from bursting forth.  And the more you try to hold it back, the more that intensity builds and suddenly you have to release the pressures. Don’t ask fast enough and it will release itself in the most spectacular way.

For Beloved the release becomes a rather noisy eruption.  A bellow sometimes.  A door slammed.  Maybe a hand slapping against the table.  And of course it wasn’t always like that.

Oh  no, for the longest time he kept things to himself.  But it builds you see, it builds and soon its to our much to hide.  So you wake up from dreadful nightmares.  You try to hide from a planted bomb or dodge the bullet.  And you carry on as if nothing is wrong in your life, hoping the cracks don’t show.

And they always do.  Those cracks.  They show and deepen in time.  Unless you get help.  Which Beloved has done.  But I know this is a long haul and it won’t be a total fix.  And I also know he isn’t facing this alone.  Sure I’ve never worried about a bomb in my hotel or bullet from a high-rise.  So no I don’t fully understand, but I will do what I can to support him.  And if that means checking for bombs, or putting up with the odd loud noise, so be it.

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Letting Go To Leap Freely

While faced with a rather large amount of work to do and really no strong motivation to get it done, I decided to take my laptop with me while I grabbed a coffee.  The logic was simple, if I could get a table in a relatively quiet corner, I’d attempt to get to the work.  It such a spot could not be had, my laptop and coffee would make the trip back home and I’d just have to plop myself into my den and get on with the working.

Thankfully I was able to settle into a nice corner with a vat of coffee, okay not really a vat, but a very large cup of coffee.  I set about getting on with the work that needed to be done while enjoying my coffee and letting the quiet noise act as very gentle background noise.  And work got done.  Not all of it, not when there were distractions to be had. Such as careless words tossed around and even more immature reactions to those careless words.

A couple of women had found a spot near me after I had been there for a half hour or so.  One was talking about how she was ready to make some big, life altering changes.  The other woman was trying to support her, but at the same time was pointing out some of what the first woman was saying happened to contradicting other things she had said.  The first woman said something about needing space to make her changes and the other woman said that sometimes the changes that need to be made do not require physical space, instead they require emotional space.   The first woman went back to needing to have her space, physically while at the same time insisting that the second woman be there to support her.

At some point, I had stopped listening to the back and forth of this stuff, the second woman said something about how this was the stuff of books. The first woman became very quiet and got up, heading to the washroom.  When she returned the second woman apologized if she had somehow upset the first woman.  And then all heck broke loose.

The first woman went on a tirade about how the second woman was supposed to support her, encourage her, protect her and such and yet by choosing to use the phrase “stuff of books” the second woman had proven she wasn’t going to do any of those things for the other woman.  After that, the first woman stomped out of the coffee shop. The second woman finished her drink and left quietly.

And I stopped working altogether.  I had been curious about what exactly the first woman had been trying to change in her life and equally curious bout how the second woman was supposed to do all these things for the first woman.  Was there a contract?  Did these two women not realize that I needed to know the rest?

After a few hours, when I was back home, I finished the work that needed doing and realized decided that because nothing happens in a vacuum, the changes one person makes will have repercussions that aren’t always easy to foresee.  And sometimes to make a major leap you need to let go of the safety rope and all those people who keep things safe.  Sometimes you need to just jump and see where it takes you.  Some people find this easier to do than others. And it seems the ones who struggle the most with this are the ones who end up making the most rules around things.

Listing Through Life

Are you a list person?  Do you write lists to start your day?  Do you return to your lists throughout the day to cross of the items you have accomplished?  Perhaps you are a list person, but keep the list in your head, checking out items off your list as you go.

I am not a list person.  I have tried to use them.  I write lists for things I need to buy or things I need to do.  Inevitably when I need the list, I don’t have it with me or I go from memory.  Thankfully my memory is pretty decent so I end up doing what needs done, buying what needs bought without the assistance of the lists.  This drives Beloved crazy.  Partially because he is a list person.

Beloved lives for lists.  From what he needs to do for the day, the week, the month, to which books he’s going to read and in what order.  He never shops without a list. He doesn’t believe in going into a store and simply buying what catches his eye or his fancy.  Need a new phone?  He will do up a list for the phones you are thinking of buying with the pros and the cons all sorted out.  That way you have it right in front of you and can make the purchase with all the facts.

Recently Beloved wrote a list of things we needed to get done before the Christmas break.  Some of the items were minor, but some were rather large. Some of the items were things I didn’t even know he had on a list.  Anyway he wrote this list and stuck it where he would be able to see it, in this case the refrigerator.  And all was good as far as getting some items completed on the list.

He crossed off items as we finished them and he was rather pleased with himself for the progress that was made.  And then he decided to clean the kitchen.  And in cleaning the kitchen, he lost the list.  Yes the list was lost. The world came to a stand still for him and in his panic he asked me if I had grabbed the list.  (I hadn’t.)  When his panic settled down, I asked him if he had managed to take a picture of the list on either his phone or his tablet.  Thankfully he did.  And the world was right again because the list is back to save the day.

Like Others

I read somewhere that if you didn’t spend 80-90% of your time trying to be more  like other people, you’d be more authentic  and be further ahead.  I understood what the aurora was trying to get at, but I seriously wonder if he ever considered that there are some people who if they don’t try to be more like others will simply be left out or behind.

Beloved learned how to talk “posh” to overcome a childhood in what I’d refer to as the ghettos. His language, until he went to university was coarse and common, but when he realized what he wanted out of his life, he had to learn a different vocabulary.  He also had to learn how to pronounce things properly.  When he’s tired, intoxicated or in pain, the language of his childhood comes back as his way of speaking.

My mother insisted that I would learn to not have an accent that would have people deduct IQ points when I said hello.  I had to learn how to tone down my accent, avoid saying y’all and things of that nature.  But those are the things that most folks say are enduring about me.   Granted no one wants to attend a  class with the facilitator saying things like “we’re fixin to learn ’bout all that.”   So I do appreciate that my mother had the foresight I didn’t.

My mother also insisted that collecting worms was not ideal.  It’s probably a good thing that I was broken of that habit too because I can imagine that my pockets, full of worms, would simply be a huge mess. And I’m pretty sure the worms don’t want to go through the washer or dryer, which would happen if I still collected them.

So maybe we all need to be a bit more refined, so we are more suitable to be out in the general public, but I can’t see how that’s using 80-90% of my time trying to be who I am not. Perhaps others have bigger things they work with.

Unfastening or How It Comes Undone

A button flew across the room, with a friend shortly following it. No there wasn’t a revolt of buttons happening in my house. The buttons had not decided to unionize and refuse to fasten things any longer. Rather the buttons were protesting their work load. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say the buttons were protesting the strain they were under due to the load….

Hmm if there were to be a revolt by the buttons I wonder if they would be the Buttonistas or perhaps under the leadership of Che Button? I’d like a good revolutionary button, someone to lead the way for the working buttons of the world. The underappreciated fasteners of clothing and such. I mean it is a cause I’d end up getting behind, probably along with most other people because buttons do a lot of work, work we never think of.

But no there was no revolution, just a tired thread no longer able to support the button in its brave attempt to keep Beloved’s suit jacket done up. The thread let go, the button flew across the room in what was no doubt a bid for freedom with another button following close behind. Naturally my response to this was to burst out laughing while Beloved grumbled about poorly conditioned thread.

And then his stern look gave way to mirth as he said he may have had just a wee bit too much here or there. And then the mirth gave way to unbridled and unfastened glee on his part while we searched for the escapes.

Trips And Travels

Robert Frost wrote a poem about taking the road less taken. It’s always been a favorite of mine as it reminds me that my journey and the path I travel is not meant for anyone other than myself. It also reminds me that the going may be a little tougher on this path which has been less travelled. After all the ground won’t have been trampled on the same way.

Beloved is also a fine of the less travelled road. He is also a fan of tarrying along a road if the spirit should strike him to do so. He doesn’t necessarily believe that time needs to be felt as something rushing past him and he refuses to make it priority with everything in his life. It has allowed him more time to take in the views, and to be late and not offer apologies other than the views he has witnessed.

I, on the other hand, have a desire to chase and make up for lost time. As if there is always going to be something better just up ahead. Yes I know this won’t really be the case, but while he tarries along, I run headlong through the valleys ignoring the views in the name of time. I reason that this is better than being late and having no real explanation to offer up to people who are waiting on me.

Is one of us more right than the other? Some would say yes. Some would tell you that enjoying the view and working at your own pace, allowing yourself to not have to worry about what could have been because you make it so, would be the better way to do things. And for them, they’d be right. But for me, I have a need right now for speed. So I shall rush into each stumbling block on my less maintained path and enjoy the stumbles, trips and rolls all the same.

Going Somewhere With No Place In Mind

Sometimes you just need to leave, no destination in mind.  Just hop in the car, climb on your bike, or walk some where.  Just for the sake of going somewhere and getting away from where you currently.  I’m not talking about running away as per say, just a change of scenery for a short period of time.

And sometimes where you end up going, is something more than you expected it to be.  Sometimes it leads to adventure, romance or something new to explore.  I have been blessed to experience that more than once in my life.  Once on the seashores of my own continent and once on the seashores of another.

I’ve been a thousand miles from where I started, heck I’ve been several thousands miles from where I started, and discovered that there was no place that I’d sooner be than where I was at that moment.  Foolishly I have tried to keep those moments for the times when I would need them and be nowhere near the seashore.  I’ve bottled the sea’s water, placed sand in jars and tried to capture it all on video.  It never works out the same.  You cannot recreate the seashores of other places when you haven’t one of your own to work with.

And that’s okay because it makes those moments that much more special.  It makes them so much more precious and dear to the heart.  The trick is to not try to recreate it, to not just take off back to that place you landed and expect it to be the same.  It isn’t possible.  Instead capture those moments in your memory, hold them safe in your heart and open yourself to something new.  Seashores are not required.  Nor are picnics, but I’ve found both to be, well, rather good when it comes to getting some place that I wasn’t at before and enjoying it all the same.