All About the Goat.

It’s been a ‘taking time’ sort of year. That sounds wrong, as if I had snatched time away. So I guess I’d rather say I have been working on ‘being with time.’

Monsieur Goaty Goat

Monsieur Goaty Goat

This goat is the perfect example of my being with time. During soccer season, my husband drove our son to practice and to coach, and on alternate nights, I drove our daughter. The fields were located at the end of a long driveway that wound through a place stuck in time. I thought it was the coolest thing: decayed buildings with worn pictures of what looked like British Colonial Indian men wearing turbans and holding rifles. We drove by an abandoned miniature golf course, and just past that, a large penned in structure with peacocks, chickens, horses in a field beyond, and this fat goat.

It became a ritual for my daughter and I to hope that the goat was hovering at the entrance gates. Most nights he was, and we were the only ones to stop the car, get out, and say hello. The goat didn’t give a shit, of course. Merely sniffed an outstretched hand, turned and trotted off to his perch. But I loved that we did that, even as other soccer moms raised eyebrows driving by, I loved it.

Being with time was sometimes a struggle; during our moving crisis, it felt narrow and tense. Many other times, I argued with it; wanted it to speed up so that healing could be done faster; anger and resentment would fade quicker. But time goes at its pace, and we must go with it. Like the one lane road we often find ourselves traveling on, stuck behind the slow driver with no passing allowed.

In the roominess of the space I sit when I’m feeling at peace, I see how valuable this particular year has been. I will admit to clinging to certain sufferings and still, I’m not sure why. They aren’t ready to be understood yet, so I am still…always…continually…learning to accept them. But when they rise up I can lash out; I’m working on that. But mostly, time for this year has been so beneficial to the most loving relationship next to self, and that is with my husband.

Bidding adieu to 2013, a time of learning, growing, stretching, understanding, loving, fearing, anger, detaching, resentment, judging, wishing ill-will, forgiving, apologizing, making peace, reaching out, hoping, wishing, hugging, kissing, making love, creating, writing, expanding, thinking, separating, dancing, crying, seeking truth, breaking, sitting, mindfulness, meditating, thanking, gratitude.

2014 will no doubt, bring more of the same, although with a little less financial crunchiness, and that’s just fine.

Now for a little bit of visual feastiness:  My favorite video of the year. The song by itself is ok, but when I watch it with the video, it makes me so happy.

Lose Yourself to Dance. Why? Because, really, it’s just a wonderfully, uninhibited, freeing, soul-reviving thing to do.

Peace to you All.  Keep Dancing!

Now is fine.

I stand in front of the mirror applying make up. I am doing this without thought or feeling; simply doing what I do as moment follows moment. Suddenly, happiness rises up. I am, in that moment the happiest soul I can be. For a few seconds in the gap I see clearly, and I feel joy and gratitude. It is fleeting but its imprint stays with me as my day progresses.

Squabbles between my children, negotiating traffic, obstacles arise throughout but I am flying and smiling, rising above it all. Sure, stuff gets under my skin but there’s always something to bring me back. Some thing that I can do to regroup, to find peace because I’m on a wonderful part of my journey. Nowhere truly special, no vacation, no fabulous happenings…just being here is all it takes.

I wave to the couple moving in across the street. I have been wanting to connect in this small way after I watched their scene unfold last week – she was stressed, he was trying to help. Their neighbor, a young woman, pulled into the parking space next to them and I observed the man look at her a few times in an attempt to establish first contact. But the neighbor utterly ignored them despite the close proximity of all involved. I wondered why. So, I remedied the situation in my own way this morning. They waved and smiled in return. I could tell that my reaching out made them happy and that made me happy too.

Lately, I am doing so very well; my heart is singing. I am humorous and laughing and making others laugh.

Perhaps I have learned to stop fighting certain things. Currently, these things float as if they are lily pads on the surface of a pond. There, I can be curious about them. I think I’m fine with that because these things just can’t be banished no matter how I struggle to fling them away.

Of course, this may change and I may find myself wrestling with them again at some point further down the road.

If so, then that will be then. For now, this is now. And now, I’m doing just fine.

All New

smallsweptunderrugThe spirit is incredibly strong.  When the body has squeezed out its last ounce of effort, the spirit can pick it up and do its bidding. Someone asked, “How’ve you been?” and I replied that I had moved house.  Two words that do not convey the enormity of the event.  At all, really.  How about “I packed, lifted, dragged, hoisted, transported, hauled, carried and plopped every material thing that matters to me, from my daughter’s plastic ring that she received in a party favor bag to the 60″ HD television and every inanimate or living object in between, large and small.”  Would that cover it?

We spread the work over three days to avoid the stressful, nerve-jangled one day of it all but it was still exhausting because it seemed that the material stuff oozed out of unseen spaces.  When I thought I’d accomplished one part, I found more overlooked crap to go into another box that I didn’t  have.

The back aches and twinges upon stretching and says “If I gotta help you lift one more thing and you don’t do it from the knees, I’m just gonna quit and you’ll be stuck like this for days.”  So I tried to be mindful of that.

Cats don’t move well.  At least the skinny, nervous kind.  On top of the fatigue and the whole pulling energy from all corners of the body, I became embroiled in a hissing bloodshed escape attempt.  But again, the spirit overcame and four days into the new place, my cats are adjusting.  They still have the low-girdled, jerky-faced look of a prisoner on the run but they’re coming around and it seems my skinny kitty and I have forgiven each other for the pain we inflicted.

And so life begins again.  In a new home.  A new road to take.  New places to frequent…mostly the liquor store.

I like the organizing, the finding new places for furniture, the new pathways around a house.  I like the new.  As much as I loathe moving (and this one was particularly fraught with worry) I do rather relish the Mary Poppins aspect of everything in its place and a place for everything.  It’s refreshing for my soul.  And with that, certain cares have had the carpet lifted from them and their dustbunny existence has been blown from me.  It’s quite freeing.

Purpose in the detour

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What is purpose?  A life devoted to that which feeds the soul?  To pursue that goal in the name of love, of enlightenment and all that is true to the self?

I envy those that can do it, not with hatred; merely a coveting of the free time to pursue the actions of the heart.

Now I would not, for one second, wish my children or my life to be anything than what it is.  I could have taken the path to follow my dreams as a young girl but given the frame of mind I had then, I wouldn’t have survived in such a brutal industry and most likely would have come to some unfortunate end.  I was mildly put out but followed Dad’s wishes and toddled off to college to get some skillz.

I find these days, a frustration swimming below the surface; I want to do and see and take part, but I am not in a position to do so.  I find other avenues which take longer, are less nerve-wracking but are still satisfying.  Until I find that they are unsatisfying to others who would help propel my purpose forward.

There are old hands out there, my Mother included and I’m thinking that in order to really move ahead, it would behoove me to seek impartiality rather than family when it comes to my writing.  I had my first rejection and was not that fussed at first.  A week or so later my thoughts on the subject have become insidious in their jibery and pokery – You write too simply.  You are not eloquent.  Look at this writer, be more like that.  Maybe you should gear yourself toward young adult.  I counter with – I think I’m easy to read.  Being eloquent and flowery isn’t me and most importantly, I love my work.

Eventually, it’s easier to pile other crap on top of those thoughts because let’s face it, there’s plenty going on.  But sometimes, they poke through like Carrie hands from the ground, reaching, pointing, cramping any sort of creativity.  On a whim, I’ll browse jobs that would take me away from writing but they require time and commitment I just don’t have.

I have trouble accepting that writing is all I have time for.  I can move an entire house with pets and children and spouse, set up the new one, write a best-selling novel AND go on auditions, right?  No.  I feel like my Dad to myself.  No, Lisa.  You can’t do that, you have to do this.  And I am petulant for it.

I am a crazy life-driver, veering left and right without signalling.  Sometimes I make the sharp turn only to find the road is blocked and all I can do is stare forlornly at the goings on over there.  I turn the car around and drag my wheels back to the main road that is meant for me and continue on the Highway of Life; searching, writing, doing, coveting, loving, thinking, wanting, and yet… still feeling content with my lot.

Such a strange meeting of feelings.

Bird on a car

Well.  Here I am in a much better frame of mind.  The pendulum began to swing back up after a very low month or so and needed one extra push which led me to my crystal/reiki lady at Penns Place.  I visit every couple of months to lay on her massage table with the appropriate stones linked by string, placed on my main chakras.  We meditate for a few minutes and then she performs reiki on me.  It’s one of the things I love to do…it’s only the third time I’ve had it done but it’s essential; it restores my wellbeing and I feel energized and happy.  Sometimes extraordinary things happen too.  When she places her hands over my Third Eye, the internal vision blossoms a dark blue or indigo, it’s amazing.  At other times as she is working her way down my body, I can feel myself lying straight but also crooked and jutting out on either side at the same time.  It’s sort of like Jodie Foster’s character in Contact when she’s strapped to the chair in the machine.  At times, she is separated from her own self – it feels like that.  Last Saturday when I visited, I had vivid vignettes; fast, colorful and with no discernible meaning.  I wasn’t sleeping yet I couldn’t remember them when I sat up.

Our living situation hasn’t changed.  We are 12 days away from our final day at this house and still have no place to go.  Currently, we are waiting for an answer on a lovely house we found less than a mile from the one we are in.  It has a huge back garden with a treehouse sort of thing and when I drove by it a few days ago, I couldn’t help but take a sharp breath in and think “I want to live here”.  It’s in a cul-de-sac and would also mean no hassles with schooling for the kids.  We are hoping the agent will approve a co-sign.  We wait and we hope.  In the meantime, per our realtor’s instructions, we keep searching just in case and I’m taking the kids to see another house this evening.  Not close by.

Last week on the way to work, the radio was on but I wasn’t really listening, just sort of looking at things and vaguely wondering things.  One random thought was the question of birds and cars.  Specifically, do birds alight on cars when the cars are stopped?  And if so, why have I never seen it happen?  It went unanswered obviously and I thought nothing of it until yesterday when I pulled out of work to the traffic light.  Right in front of me, a bird with wings and legs outstretched attempted to land on the roof of the car in front.  The light changed and the car moved, thwarting his efforts but he appeared to follow it a few feet before veering off in front of me.  I chuckled, slightly amazed that my question had just been answered.

And that brought me to my thoughts about Angels.  I do believe in spirit guides but angels were a gray area until I started this biscuit journey of mine. I ran across an entry on WP about numerology a few months ago and since then, it’s been darting to and from the forefront of my consciousness.  So much so, that I have a page on my Google Chrome app permanently set to Doreen Virtue’s Angel numbers.  I’m not that au fait with it all but I do notice, mostly on license plates, the triple digits.  I saw 333 twice yesterday.  I saw 555 the day before which I never see.  I also see 444 a lot.  It’s a step too far for my husband so I don’t share with him as much.  In fact, this is the first time that I’ve admitted to dabbling a squidge in numerology.

Given the way my path has been lately, I’ll grab those numbers and run with them to help build up my faith because the empty, hollow, faithless feeling I’ve had recently, although is part and parcel of this journey, is not a place I want to be in again anytime soon.

Lisa…

Square Pegs, Round Holes

master_oogway

Really thinking this morning on the way to work about recent events and how they affected me, when I was presented with an image of Master Oogway from Kung Fu Panda. I figured I was shown him for a reason, I mean he’s wise and spiritual and if I feel I’m having trouble connecting through the usual teachers, why not turn to a cartoon character?

Amongst other quotes, he said, “One often meets his destiny on the road he takes to avoid it.” I gotta think long and hard on this one, particularly the “road” part because there is a part of me that is stubbornly refusing to understand it. Seriously, I can read the phrase but when I try to lock in on the visual to interpret, my mind veers away. I’m having trouble moving forward spiritually since circumstances outside of my control went awry a few weeks ago. I threw up my faith like a golden ball and when it came back down, it had fractured into many pieces.

Meditation is sporadic and feels different, unfulfilling. I concerned myself with the lack of presence and awareness last week, as if I had knocked myself back too far to ever return. But perhaps I should listen to the quieter train of thought that simply says, “It’s ok. This is it. Allow it to be what it is.”

Perhaps I was too loud along my journey for a while there. Perhaps I’m to tone it down a little, not try so hard. How amusing for me to attempt that because my personality is rather gung-ho, headlong and tripping filly. I thought I was reining things in, muffling the voice, but perhaps I got tired of trying too hard to do things less.

Those financial and where-the-hell-are-we-going-to-live woes still encircle us. And, with each day that passes, with each credit check that marks us as ‘bad renters’, the wagons press in. The rollercoaster carries my family on its jerky journey and I have no idea of the future, except mine and my husband’s dreams and goals for the further flung future. Despite the uncertainty and slight consternation for my spiritual wellbeing, I feel calm.

However the square peg in a round hole feeling persists within…something isn’t fitting properly. Perhaps it’s just a different road that I’m on and it feels weird; different scenery, different experiences, a different be. I’m not sure about many things anymore and perhaps that’s where the feeling has roots – in the unsure-ness of things, when I had previously thought I knew more. Perhaps I don’t know as much as I thought about myself.

Lisa…

What’s on your plateau?

I am not lost. I am not in a quandary. I am not confused. I have simply…taken a step away. Definitely in a spiritual valley, a lower plateau so to speak, certainly not on any part of the journey that slopes upward to a peak affording magnificent views of the land ahead.

I felt it, a certain snapping last week during a particularly hellish emotional time, which bore the fruit of my last post. Initially I had prepared myself for a big change; an impending house move – another move in a long 43-year timeline of moves. Except this one had snuck up early and at first I was a bit out of sorts about it but came back around to my usual, “y’know…it’s gonna be ok, home is where my family is and that’s what’s important.” I laughed at that, my husband rolled his eyes good-naturedly and we swept any concerns about the wheres and the hows under the now, very lumpy rug.

Money’s Too Tight To Mention so sang Mick Hucknall and it has held true for too many years but we could see a light at the end of the tunnel, my husband and I. He had started to bring home a real, honest-to-goodness paycheck and so was I. He had a plan to pay off some very important overdue bills so that by the end of this month, we could begin to put aside funds for the move….deposit, moving company etc.

The most pressing thing was to keep our kids in their current school; we felt another switch so soon after making new friends and finding a new rhythm would be too hard on them, despite their resilience and adaptability. Thanks to a rather nice Delaware education clause named “Choice”, we found out that we could move out of the school district yet still keep them in the same school, so that gave us some breathing room. With that in mind, and now with a sense of urgency, we expanded our search of homes to surrounding towns but it soon became apparent that we were woefully short of the amount needed to move into anywhere. We were also uncomfortably aware that our past credit history would drag behind us like an anvils tied to our legs. It began to feel hopeless. Then my husband delivered another blow which I was totally unprepared for; a possible move out of state to a townhome owned by a builder who knows a business partner of a friend, who knows this guy and is the accountant of that friend who knows his Dad – yada, yada, yada. The feeling of puppetry working all over us, herding and shuffling us around from here to there, forcing us to obediently bow and scrape our thank you’s and gratefulness was the final straw. You see, it’s a continuing theme in our lives – this lack of control.

I threw my spiritual hands in the air; had enough of believing in source and abundance and love. I relinquished it all and have not felt at all like meditating or reading my favorite uplifting blogs or having anything at all remotely to do with wellbeing, mindfulness, love, light and spirit. I am not the least bit interested. Neither am I bothered by my indifference. I know the true me is there, always will be, would never abandon me because that’s impossible. And no doubt I will return in my own good time. I don’t want to admit that “I’m just being” or “I am letting it be”. To say it implies that I am interested when I just don’t care right now. That’s not to say that I’m grouchy and miserable either (although I am on the tail end of the flu, so may be forgiven for being a bit limp) I’m not at all. I’m civil, I’m nice and I’m genuinely kind. I’m…simply holding steady, I think.

My husband would like to see me back on track; he feels a certain responsibility for my current location and I would just like to say that no matter the lowest of lows and the joyous high of highs, I wouldn’t want to be stuck in the trenches with anyone else but him, even if I want to flick trench mud in his face from time to time.

And so we wait, almost as if on the precipice of someplace. We wait for news of a place to move into which all hinges on background checks, credit checks, references etc. It’s a nice place that we could afford after a little help getting our feet in the door. And I wait for news of a short story…will be published, will it be rejected?

We wait. And no matter what happens or what direction we go in, we take steps forward together. And I will come back to the spiritual when I’m ready because sometimes, you just gotta take a break.

I have sheep on my plateau!

I have sheep on my plateau!

Ell…