Do I love this world too much?
The rising chatter of the birds when the sun is but a thought on the horizon.
The rush of fresh morning air as I lean over the kitchen sink, open the window and gulp in the world.
The red winged black bird landing delicately on the tip of a cattail.
The butterflies dancing and beckoning on the path ahead of me
The Joe Pye weed, bursting with clusters of purple flowers that wave from the tips of the tall stems.
The mass of wild flowers perfectly arranged and color coordinated by a master designer.
Do I love this world enough?
Have you ever woken from a daytime dream wondering where you were and how you got there? Not from sleep but from the slumber of the daily grind. Someone has called your name. You pick your head up and find surprise in front of you.
My eyes startled open and I was gripped by a sense of loss. Years, opportunity, talent. Joy, freedom, enrichment, bird chatter, wildflowers and invigorating morning air.
I didn’t stay there. Instead, I began a journey back to myself. Like many personal journeys it wasn’t without obstacles and flying monkeys. I doubted myself, regrouped, whined and gradually forged ahead. For me there was no other way.
Many of us have, or will have, this experience as we step into the middle of our life. We never really know when that is. Given longer life expectancies, 50 could very well be the middle. Let’s assume it is. That’s a lot of time to live. It’s also a lot of life to live.
Where do you start once you’ve woken up?
Before you brush it all away and continue on with your day, week, life, take a moment to observe. Observe without judgment.
Observe your thoughts, your emotions, your responses to your thoughts.
Observe, as if you’re watching an interesting and heart-worthy video.
Observe, as you might observe a loved one going through these thoughts.
Observe with curiosity.
Observe with the clear understanding that there is nothing you need to do at the moment.
All you need to do is observe.
Then, ask yourself a small question. Can you tell me more?
If you journal, take the question to the page. When you’re driving or walking or brushing your teeth, ask the question and watch for what comes up.
All you need to do initially is to ask and observe. Notice that the journaling, driving, walking and teeth brushing are solitary activities. You don’t need to let anyone in just yet. You are in the waiting stage.
When you’re ready, use this exercise to help clear the view in front of your eyes and begin your journey back to yourself. You know more than you think at this point.
Set aside 10 minutes. Close the door; turn off your electronics. Take a sheet of paper and make 3 columns.
Kathy Kane blogs about the creative process in the everyday, in writing and in the magical transition to the second half of life.
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