1. Travel Reflection

    I travel for many reasons: a change in scenery, mixing up the day to day patterns, and perhaps visiting with people.

    I’m just rounding out a trip to Colorado which satisfied all of these desires. But I got one added bonus I wasn’t expecting — a crystallization of my life story and my next chapter.

    As I spoke with the people I visited, I realized that the next step for me was not completely clear. It was a challenge for me to present as coherent of a picture as I could. But in speaking with them, and hearing their reactions, it gave me a reflection of my life story, which helped me see it from a new perspective. The narrative became clear.

    I’m psyched! I now have more confidence than I did in where I am and where I’m going.

     
  2. I found it you guys.

    I took a chance, switching careers from IT to Operations. I was 9-5, Monday-Friday, made a great wage…but I found myself oscillating between boredom and anxiety — there were always 100 projects, and nothing ever truly got done. And I spent all day working with systems, with some people thrown in for spice.

    That all changed when I took my current job as warehouse supervisor. My hours flipped to 3PM-5AM, 4 days a week, and I took a pay cut. Crazy, right?

    Now, the first 2 weeks were really difficult. I went from “this is awesome!” to “I’m fucking exhausted and I have no more will left” to “this is actually really hard!”

    But by the end of this last week, I felt a subtle but clear shift into what you might call the “Flow Channel.” I just have this feeling that I can and will work as hard as I can, and I have this inner drive to push beyond what I thought were my limits. I think I am feeling what Eminem was feeling when he rapped, “Give me the mic, show me where the fucking studio’s at.” I am loving interacting with and leading the team. It’s what I thought it would be, and, as I’m coming to learn, more. 

    I guess the practical component of this is that if you feel kind of stifled — especially in that way you can hardly even feel because you’ve gotten kind of numb to it — make a change. Spend time listening to your intuition, then go with it. You may screw some things up, but change is worth it.

     

  3. I came across this quote from Gandhi today:

    "Where there is love, there is life."  

    It kind of woke me up. I’ve been so preoccupied with my emotional state lately, playing such a short game, that I forgot about the bigger picture. There’s a whole world out there, replete with possibilities, and I’m just waiting to come out of this hole long enough to really go for it.

     
  4. I’m reminded again about the power of truth. I find it hard to be completely honest, especially in situations where something really important to me is at stake. Yet I find when I enter into that vulnerability, I am given the opportunity for true growth.

    (via be-reckless-nr)

     

  5. We Are Each Other’s Lessons

    She taught me how to laugh at myself. Both of them taught me how to make others laugh even when I didn’t know what was going to come out of my mouth.

    They taught me how to face them despite the fear.

    One taught me how to be the asshole. One taught me how it is that someone can disappear.

    You taught me what love was, and then how to have faith in it even when it was nowhere to be seen.

    When I was young I learned from them what shame was.

    From him I learned how to lose my head, and then how to deal with losing him.

    You first taught me trust, and then betrayal. Ultimately, from you I learned how to forgive and move on.

    From you all I learned that these lessons won’t stop. I learned of my perpetual imperfection, and that it’s okay. 

     

  6. What Makes Us Glow

    bethanystarr:

    As we get older, we often lose our glow. We’re told the things we day-dream about aren’t enough for real life, we lose our passion, and therefore we lose our glow. It’s not something that happens all at once, but over time. While a lot of words exchange it creeps up on you. Some lose it much quicker than others. I hope I can hold onto mine, I will fight to hold onto mine. I hope others can hold onto theirs. That glow is something worth fighting for, that glow is worth dying for. 

    Well said. I accept this challenge — and it is so challenging!

     

  7. What We Gain

    It is really common (and tempting) to concentrate on what is lost in a transition. Every time we change, we lose one set of things and gain another. My sense of it is that what we lose and gain probably weigh about the same, but it’s the content and shape that changes.

    "Oh you’re vegan…what do you eat!?” Well yes I gave up eating meat, dairy and eggs. Life must suck, right? The fact is I LOVE eating and as I went vegan the foods I gained access to were just as, if not more delightful than what I left behind. I gained the conscience-booster that I wasn’t interacting with factory farms in my food chain. I gained a healthier body.

    I recently stopped drinking (for an undecided length of time). “Dude that must blow!” Well it kind of does at around 7PM, to be honest. But let’s talk about the good stuff. I feel much better and happier, in spirit and body. I lost 6 pounds in a week. I now have wonderful mornings, free of the physical and mental implications of drinking too much the night prior. I have an earlier morning, which I love. At night I gained the ability to really feel. As much as that can be a bit painful, it is a real feeling.

    These are just two examples, but this stuff comes up all of the time. Could be sugar, gluten, sex, a relationship. We are constantly stopping certain things and starting others. Just try not to dwell on what is lost, because that is a one-way vortex, and it won’t allow you to grow or move on. This is much harder practiced than said, so let’s all learn together.

     

  8. You never know how things will turn out

    I went out last night with a partner on “Street Teams” — which is where 2 people go out with sandwiches, coffee, band-aids, socks, and other miscellaneous items, and distribute those things and a sense of hospitality to homeless people. 

    We met with one woman who asked us to help her move her encampment to the Portland Rescue Mission. While we were walking she explained to us that she came to Portland for a 2 week vacation, but ended up staying 15 years. It took awhile for that to sink in, and it hasn’t yet, fully. 2 weeks blending into 15 years — that is pretty crazy! Yet I can see it. Like so many things in life, one thing leads to the next, and where we end up is anyone’s guess. It all happens fast.

     

  9. "We don’t know what’s going on here. If these tremendous events are random combinations of matter run amok, the yield of millions of monkeys at millions of typewriters, then what is it in us, hammered out of those same typewriters, that they ignite? We don’t know. Our life is a faint tracing on the surface of mystery, like the idle, curved tunnels of leaf miners on the face of a leaf."
    — Annie Dillard ~ Pilgrim At Tinker Creek
     

  10. Birth and Death (but mostly the latter)

    It occurs to me that a greater than statistically probable set of death reminders converged for me today. There was my leafing through Sun magazine and coming across a really moving piece on dying. Then I saw on facebook that a friend’s friend passed away. I am also seeing so much on James Gandolfini, who died young. Just yesterday someone posted a photo of me and several friends from high school — two of which have passed away.

    What does one say about death? I feel like the universe is telling me to confront it and make some sort of assessment of it.

    Here it is: I think it’s the saddest, most natural thing in the world. It is the most dramatically real thing that anyone can witness — next to birth. The two are opposites: birth is the arrival of a living, clean slate, full of potential — a story yet to be told. Death is the culmination of all of the stories that a person has accrued, neatly packaged and sent away, never to return. 

    I will never say that someone died too young. I can only say that it is very sad that someone died. And not so much for them, but for those that survive them, that find their own meaning intertwined in the one that died.