My grandmother keeps a home in her mind that she fills with the beautiful things she finds in stores or catalogs. She has a real home filled with beautiful things already and decided to start building a less restricted one within herself. Over a decade ago she and my grandfather lost their retirement home to a fire that took out many homes in Uvas Canyon (Morgan Hill, CA) on the Croy Road stretch of land. In rebuilding her life, she took a lot of spiritual journeys and had to learn to let go of a lot. To have your most treasured items reduced to lumps of burnt metal and charred ash, and lose your home on top of that, it really takes a lot of self reflection to move forward. While losing your home isn’t the same as losing a loved one, it still causes distress and anxiety. She first clung to her memories, living with the hope that it was all a dream. As someone who has also done similar things after losing a loved one, I don’t find it hard at all to understand how she got to that point. She is lucky that she recognized her withdrawal and was able to pull herself from it. She has long released her emotions through poetry and prose. Her cathartic journey from victim to survivor was all logged in a book of poetry she wrote about rising from the ashes.
I’ve been writing a lot of blogs about spiritual-y stuff like introspection and Personal Deities. It really helps me sort my thoughts and “change” my personal .ini file so I can be who I want to be, not who I think life made me. I’m exactly who I made myself no matter what I’ve done or gone through. If I seem to be going in a cycle on something, it’s probably because there’s a lesson there I haven’t gotten around to learning. It could be anything from learning to put my socks in the dirty laundry (so I don’t keep running out of clean ones) to stopping myself from exploding over small things instead of finding a more cleansing and healing release. Screaming isn’t exactly HEALING, mind you, but it helps get rid of the echoes in your mind that can cause untold self doubt. To use it metaphorically (please don’t drink any), Bleach cleans while destroying. Some things need to be destroyed so that you can be clean. Sure, chopping up celery on that counter will just make it dirty again, but the alternative is to chop celery on a progressively dirtier counter. Nobody wants to eat dirty celery with peanut butter and raisins on top. No, they want to eat CLEAN celery with peanut butter and raisins on top! Just because you have to do some things endlessly doesn’t mean they don’t serve a purpose. Don’t stop just because you are tired of THAT cycle. Healthy cycles have a purpose and cannot be ignored or you’ll find yourself in the hospital with salmonella poisoning because you got tired of cleaning the counter.
I know some people who have to plan their day down to the minute or they, quite literally, cannot finish their day properly. If even a minute is unaccounted for they can spend the rest of that day or week or even month agonizing over that minute. It’s not something we all experience to that degree, but you’ll find some organization really helps you feel like you’ve accomplished something. It gets you started moving in the right direction so that you don’t end up wasting a day laboring over what to do with your day. I’ve actually got my google calendar filled up with all sorts of suggestions for what I should be doing now (you don’t even want to see what I think should happen on Saturday, especially if you’re one of my children) and I’ve found I tend to sort-of ignore the ones I don’t feel like doing. The best motivator I’ve found is to setup an alarm for events that I feel HAVE to happen (like taking meds at the exact same time every day, waking up, etc). If I want to add it to my DO IT DO IT DO IT! list, I make it an alarm that goes of every x days at x time for however long I want to deal with doing it. I haven’t done it for blogging, but I did add a google calendar entry. I’ve now gotten to the point that every day I think about blogging around lunch-time (I have the calendar set for 1:30pm) and spend bits of time driving in the morning considering what to write in my blog.
Today’s blog was inspired by a dream I had that was translated by a good friend of mine (that one I was so mean to a few blogs ago). She helped me see that the old house in my dream (scary creepy one I was scared to even look out the windows of) and the new house in my dream were reflections of the steps I’m trying to take in my life. She said she can really tell I’m succeeding because of my blogs, but I wasn’t satisfied with that. If I were changing it would reflect in ME, not my blogs. To be honest though, even subtle changes can make huge differences. They aren’t easy to see, so you can’t always judge by any one day. That’s why writing in a journal or verbalizing into a recorder can let you go back and reflect on who you were and who you are. It’s not important, though. Who you were is in the past. Who you are is far more important. Seeing how far you’ve come can help give you a positive push and make you motivated to move (hah hah hah…see what I did there?) when you are feeling down-in-the-dumps and grumpy about how you aren’t succeeding at all. Success can’t be measured by individual situations, it must be measured as a whole with all aspects accounted for. There’s no sense in using a scale to rate because each event will have its own personal heaviness or lightness. When it feels like life is weighing you down left and right, focus on the things that brought you up. Seeing your son’s first steps, watching your daughter take her first bite of cheesecake, or taking a walk at lunch and enjoying the view. The light moments of the past can make the heavy moments of the now brighter and new again. My new house (in the dream) was nothing like the old one. Everything was shiny and new. There was one thing that was broken, but I knew how to fix it. I have no idea how I even managed to get a whole new house like that, or if it’s even part of me yet, but knowing what is waiting and what I’ve been in is a huge motivator!