I first want to thank everyone for the overwhelming response to yesterday's post! I can't begin to describe how freeing it felt to write it. Knowing that others breathed easier because I did? Yeah, I'm doing a happy dance. We are on the path to peace....
Continuing on with the spur-of-the-moment, writing-because-I-feel-called-to celebratory practice:
Fingers poised over the keyboard, this is what I need to share:
It is hard being alone.
And I don't mean alone in the sense of no one around me. I'm a mother to two school-age children and a wife to a loving husband and a caretaker of an old dog who snores VERY loudly and likes to pee in rooms when the doors have been left open.
I don't mean alone in the sense of no one understanding me. I was blessed to begin to connect with people many years ago around the world who resonated with LifeUnity, who continue to journey with me through Being Breath. Oh, you mindfully creative adventurers you - I hear you. We are hand-in-hand in this. I am SO grateful for you.
I mean alone in my thoughts. Alone in my decisions.
The world of school and employment might not be "easy", but it is easy. When you have someone telling you what to do and where to be, your life has a since of ease. You may not enjoy it, but you don't have to wonder when you are supposed to shower and where you are supposed to be at 10:00 and if you are doing the right thing. Your teacher or boss or co-workers will let you know.
I learned many years ago that the life of a stay-at-home mom and on-again, off-again entrepreneur (yeah, I am) is challenging because it leaves me alone.
I know when the kids' bus arrives and when the PTO meeting is and when dinner needs to be ready. I know the deadline when someone asks for a guest post and what I have to do in order to meet that deadline (usually working right up to it).
Beyond those moments, though, my mind wanders like a puppy let out in a field. Where to go? What to do? WHEE!
You'd think this freedom would be exhilarating.
And it is.
For the first few days.
After the third day of forgetting to shower or napping for 2 hours, though, it begins to become a bit heavy. The questions starting to bubble to the top of my thoughts are not, "which dried pantry good can I most easily grab to stop my stomach from growling?", but "what am I doing with my life?", and "how can I start to breathe life into those passions that gnaw at me as they lie unfed?"
When I say I am alone, it is a nakedness, a rawness. It is coming face-to-face with my thoughts and having no one standing beside me saying, "Here's what you do".
Every day, every moment of aloneness, I must choose to sleepily drag myself through my old habits or to wake to a conscious choice...to hear and respond to those calls to do something more, to wake up to this expansive moment. It isn't comfortable. And heaven knows that I often sleepily drag my butt right back to bed.
But when I wake - oh my.
A morning run cresting the hill where the sun rises over a fog-lined valley (after nearly stepping on the dog in the dark and uttering a few curse words because I didn't want to go for that damn run)....
A fascinating moment of deep connection with a dish - yes, a dish - because I chose to mindfully wash it instead of being pissed that, once again, mom was the one cleaning out the sink.
A show of my art - MY ART - hanging on a wall in a store somewhere because I painted even when I didn't feel like it and stayed up past midnight many nights and sometimes, more than I'd like to admit, I let the kids watch another movie while mommy played in the studio.
This aloneness, so noisy. So full of screaming questions.
I reject the structure when it presents itself, fighting deadlines and meetings. Who wants to add something more to a schedule that is already so noisy with shoulds and musts and guilt over feeding my children hot-dogs and missing another PTO meeting and flubbing up another blog post?
This aloneness, so quiet. The absence of directions, requirements - deafening.
I reject the lack of structure because when that inevitable question of What do you DO?? arises all I can offer is that stillness, that quiet, or those (albeit unfairly) unfulfilling words of i-am-a-stay-at-home-mom. I am MORE than this. I have so much more to offer myself, the world, my children, and I want to DO something ....
This aloneness brings up every bit of me and then tears it apart like the pumpkins that the wolves gnashed into at Wolf Park that my daughter so loves... (We need to go back there. No time for silence - I need to go add this one the calendar.)
It is hard being alone.
But I wouldn't have it any other way.