I should probably chill out on the coffee. I don’t really think it works to down half a pot of joe along with two scrambled eggs for breakfast and expect to feel calm the rest of the day. Granted, it gives me enough energy to get through yoga, but then I have a leftover buzz. My answer to this problem, of course, is to drink more coffee, keep chugging until I feel I’m going to vibrate out of my own skin. I don’t know–I may have a small problem with excess.
This afternoon I worked on week eleven (of twelve) in my creativity workbook. A few of the exercises dealt with specific ways in which I plan to nourish myself in the coming days and months. Sadly, I don’t think over-caffeinating counts. Exercises like these are always a bit challenging because they make me realize how much I push rather than nourish myself. I guess I treat my body like my car–run it all the way down to empty before I’m willing to stop and fill it back up again. On one hand, I recognize that I take care of myself in a lot of ways–I go to therapy, I do yoga, and I read a lot of non-fiction books and am always trying to better myself. But on the other hand, it’s a lot–a lot of work, a lot of pressure I put on myself to “improve.” Some days–almost every day, really–it’s exhausting.
I should probably bring this up in therapy–again–say something like, “I think I need to go easier on myself.”
She’d probably slap her forehead and say, “You think?”
This evening my mom and I talked about her mom. She’s dead now, so I’m just going to be real. She could be a serious hand full. I mean, she liked to complain, she made everything about her, and boy, could she hold a grudge. Of course, she had her good points–she did pretty well with Thanksgiving dinners and birthday presents. Once she gave me a Polo shirt she bought off the extreme discount rack and said, “That’s probably the nicest thing you own.” Okay, so she did pretty well with Thanksgiving dinners.
Also, I may have inherited that grudge-holding thing.
Since I moved back home, Mom and I have had a couple conversations about Grandma. Tonight she told me that Grandma was one of nine children, and none of them were treated that well. Growing up, Grandma had two outfits–one to wear and one to wash. Her underwear was made out of flour sacks. And although her dad would pay hundreds of dollars to bail her brother out of jail, he wouldn’t give her a quarter for a library card.
They say there isn’t anyone you couldn’t love if you only knew their story, and learning about my grandma’s childhood really opens up my heart–for her, my mom, and for me. I didn’t have the perfect circumstances growing up, but mine weren’t anything like Grandma’s. I guess Grandma passed down what she knew. She and mom had a rough go of it at times. Luckily for me, my mom decided she could do better with my sister and me, and she did. Still, when I think about my issues with forgiveness and abundance, I’m reminded that I didn’t start this life with a completely clean slate. Like everyone else, I joined a show already in progress, and perhaps if we could step back, we’d be able to see that we’re all doing the best we can with what we’ve been given.
Tonight I went for a walk to try to burn off some of my nervous energy. I just needed to move. The above photo was taken as I walked across the interstate. There was a beautiful sunset, but–as always–my phone camera didn’t do it justice. Actually, it fucked it up big time. But trust me, it was gorgeous.
About an hour and a half into my walk, all the coffee hit my lower intestine. I was about two miles from home and I thought, Uh-oh. I’m sure you’ve been there, that moment when everything tightens up and your eyebrows disappear into your hairline. Well, things calmed down, thank goodness. But rather than risk walking all the way back to the house in flexion, I decided to call Dad and ask for a ride, which he graciously provided. When I got home, I told Mom that I walked about half a mile to meet Dad, and she said, “That’ll change when you get older. If you were my age, you would’ve had to just stand there and wait.”
Oh good, anther thing to look forward to.
There are a lot of benefits to being right here, right now.
Before I started writing tonight, I took a really long shower–shaved my face, clipped my nails, tried to nourish myself a little. Then I sat down at the kitchen table, ate half a grapefruit, and talked to Mom and Dad about whatever. These little treasures happen now and then, moments when we can discuss our challenges, laugh about the day, or talk about relatives who aren’t in the room. Sometimes I think I really need to “adult” and be out on my own again, but I try to remind myself that there are a lot of benefits to being right here, right now, time at the kitchen table I may never have again. In a way, I think the three of us are getting–and giving–something we didn’t get growing up.
I guess being at home again is teaching me is to improve, but to improve gently. One of the best quotes I’ve ever read is by Vernon Howard and says, “What’s your hurry?” Honestly, it’s something I forget a lot. I think whatever it is I’m aiming for has to happen now. I need to drink all the coffee now, make all my dreams come true now. But when I look back a couple generations, I can see that I’ve already come a long way. What’s more, I’m not in this alone. Just when things are literally going to shit, my family is there to help. Indeed, we’ve all come along way, we’re all in this together, and we have more than enough time to improve.
Quotes from CoCo
"There’s a power that comes when you meet life’s challenges head-on. Those are the times you breathe the deepest. Those are the times the waters come forth and your heart beats every bit as loud as the thunder claps. Those are the times you know more than ever—no matter what happens next—in this moment, you’re alive."