Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Present and The Future

I feel, at the same time, a sense of stuck, of rigid, of all tensed up, and a sense of compassion that is the very opposite of stuck, rigid, or all tensed up. Compassion is like water; it flows and pours all over everything; it's lava, even, sometimes. It can melt things.

So I'm melty and I'm tense. That contradiction just sits in me all day, or it battles back and forth, like a fencing match taking place inside my heart, ribcage, and belly. All the places I breathe into. Yoga breathing keeps it at bay, but when the classes are over, and my verbal narration ceases, so does the sense of ... well, escape. Then the relentless drumbeat of my thoughts march back on to center stage.

I've been told I think too much my whole life, and I resented every motherfucker who ever said it to me. Maybe they had a point, but who asked 'em?

It's Tuesday, and my daughter won't nap. I rocked her, and I nursed her, and I filled her belly with homemade mac and cheese, and read her stories, and left her in the crib awhile, and it's just not happening. I feel a certain benign detachment from the whole thing. If she naps, she naps. If not, I just do the next thing to bring peace into the household. And so it goes.

Of course, that's why we're outside on the deck on a muggier day than I'd prefer, and my laptop is almost out of power. That's why I sat down to write at 11:30am and now it's 4:30pm and I'm only just beginning.

But then, the compassion rolls in. If I'm tired, how must she feel? And then the benign detachment: and who cares if we always nap? Let's eat strawberries and cheese, drink juice, and sit in the muggy air. Why not?

In the living room, I let the kids climb in and out of the big footstool that opens up for storage. Weeks worth of Sunday newspapers are sitting inside it, and I let them throw it around the living room, and stomp through. We knead basketballs out of sale ads and toss them into paper bag baskets for recycling. I keep picking things up and putting them on shelves. The kids keep taking them off and playing on the floor. I shrug. The stuck, rigid, all tensed up hasn't anything to do with them. It's inside me.

I can flow like compassion when I do what needs to be done next. I freeze when I look ten steps ahead.

But dammit, if I ain't always been just the type who can't help myself from looking ten steps ahead.


  1. I hear ya, sister....I have to WILL myself from looking to far ahead. Acupuncture has worked wonders for me, btw. And vodka...I kid you, but...er...vodka.

    1. Ha! I haven't had vodka since my freshman year of college, and mostly I remember that it made me a violent and very mean person! Of course, that could have been raging hormones and a battle with depression contributing too, so perhaps I shouldn't draw any final conclusions. And all my stupid thinking ahead IS resulting in a stronger plan that MIGHT actually get me where I want to go in life. BUT it's still kind of annoying.

      I might have to look into acupuncture.