Up until last month, my internet usage was limited pretty much to obsessively checking my inbox, my Facebook feed, and loitering in a state of passive watchfulness for the ideal craft-time-waster/eat-cake-and-die-happy-recipe on things like craftgossip and designsponge and ohfranson, and lolling around dooce and girlsgonechild and other places with a sense of i-wish-i-could-do-that but I'd need another lifetime, and i-will-never-be-that-good (but just keep trying). [P.S. Don't read the GGC link if you're prone to sentimental waterworks and privately bawling over your child's incessant growing up like I am.]
Somewhere along the way (and six-thousand-page-views) I went from voyeur to valiant charger in point two seconds. What?
I also seem to have missed my rabies shot this life, so I have a hard time letting go of idiots when they poke me in the face. They get stuck in my teeth and give me IBS and I'm starting to think it would be wise to go on a diet, or make a life change, or start working out my frustrations with some resistance training and a treadmill instead of chasing after juvenile delinquents.
I get to do that as many times as I want, apparently.
I've also been spending a lot of time on media-centered sites that publish a good bit of baited B.S. on the off-chance that they might have work for me, and in trying to get acquainted with the way they work, I'm finding that (in the comment sections at least) maybe it's just not my scene.
The conversations leave me feeling depleted, moderately depressed, dissatisfied with others, and unhappy about my own inadequate rambling. Note to self: don't participate (unless of course, you're going to play nice and have taken your meds this morning with your breakfast).
I can't say this advice is going to stick. I have a tendency to ignore my own advice. I give it good, but am not so pliable on the receiving end (as I'm sure my past lovers can attest).
For a day or two I started to think I could side-step the last ten years get approved for a do over, but let's get real--I don't need someone else's life. I don't need a do over. I just need to do me, and my life, as it is. It's true, I can't move to New York and work my way up through unpaid internships and then sway somewhat drunkenly in the afterhours of a dimly lit club packed with genderless beauties who dress way better than me. But my fashion sense was never really that good anyway, and I have too much boobage to be genderless, even with a buzz cut and a button up.
I've got my own dance party. Right here in the living room. We tearin' it up, yawl, here on the carpet with some PBS Kids and some Raffi. Boom chick boom chick boom chick boom chick. We're letting it ALL hang loose.
It's not exactly giving up on a dream. More like adjusting my expectations to meet up with my circumstances at the moment. Trying to be a little more real with my recent past-time of playing the woah-is-me-my-life-is-so-inadequate card. That doesn't win against a full-house, no matter how many trumps you have on deck.
Rolling the dice. Gambling a little. They're not so bad, so long as you eventually decide to do away with signs of an addiction to wishing for a different life.
And to be honest, I haven't really been wishing for a different life, so much as one that includes a future for myself beyond this moment. It sounds so stupid to hear that in my head. Because knowing that this moment might be all you get, and knowing it, well, somehow those are different things.
How do we get from knowing to being? I guess it just takes practice, and for me, constantly reminding myself that my brain and my body are interrelated. That what I do, and what I think, are often diametrically opposed enough to make me a hypocrite, and boy that's unattractive, but possibly also human, and recovery is a long road when you're daily using the drug that distracts you from sobriety.
Words. I mean words. They run me round in circles and take me back again. I've been doing it my whole life. I actually thought to myself yesterday, wouldn't it be great it there was a word processor that wasn't hooked up to the internet? Someone should invent that. And then I remembered: the typewriter still exists, and then pen, and paper. Yeah. I'm still an idiot.
Stupid is as stupid does, right? Ah well.
But when I'm looking through my camera, things are more present. I notice more, because I'm looking around with intention. I see more beauty, more gratitude, more stillness and purpose, more peace, because I'm expecting to find it. I know if I wait, if I watch, I'll catch someone carrying on as though time were just a word and all there is, is this instant.
I’m present in a way that I haven’t yet figured out to manufacture when I’m online. Somehow, having the camera around and the opportunity to focus in on the people and moments I want to save, makes me more aware of gratitude. It’s a lesson I could stand not to miss.
You know what else I missed? An eclipse and another new moon.
So here's my list of advice I didn't take last time ten intentions for the next thirty days (late, though they may be):
- If it doesn't make you better, don't participate.
- Take your meds & eat your breakfast.
- Turn off the screens and get out of the house.
- Enjoy this moment, you might not get the next.
- Belabor the positive.
- Carry around a camera lens, even if it’s just in your head.
- Do not be unnecessarily patronizing or mean. Jerks are people too, and they're not your problem.
- Don't dwell on the ways you've failed. Human is as human does, smart one.
- Keep reminders handy of why you love your life, just as it is.
- The have-not habit is nasty. Stop picking at it.
Reruns:• New Moon, New Intentions April 22
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