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Picture taken by my friend Cyndi Leos....thank you Cyndi.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Reflections, perspectives and generally, thinking out loud...


Driving to California, gives me plenty of time to think and reflect.  Today I was contemplating the impact of moving to Nevada and being away from family and friends.  Creatively, it has been very good for me.  I was self reliant and independent before I moved there, despite being "taken care of" (which I will get to later) I have become so much more productive and explorative creatively. Personally, I am bolder and have more self awareness.

I have learned to fine tune by voice.  To speak up for what I want.  To believe in my intuition and to trust my instincts.  Having faith in myself, following the flow of creativity, listening to my gut, has helped me grow into a more confident creative place.  Personally, I now believe whatever the outcome, it will unfold as it should.  In the past, I always second-guessed myself and it wore me out.

I may find myself at a dead end, but that is OK, because whatever I was seeking, the particular question gets unequivocally answered. It feels good to trust myself.  Moving here and not working, forced me to focus on me and not on everyone else I love.  I missed them terribly, but when I did not have the familiar comfort of their company, I had to learn to redirect back to myself.

I was distracted from my own life because I was more focused on everyone else.  I worked at a job I disliked, so I craved a creative outlet to balance me. When I was home, I could not deny myself the joy of my family and friends... Yet, doing so, prevented me from creative outlets.  All I could manage then, was journaling in my notebook.

The first two years in Nevada, I was absolutely miserable and so very lonesome.  I kept myself "busy" landscaping our yard and decorating our home.  The satisfaction of my accomplishments were temporary. Fulfillment eluded me.  Nothing made sense with out the ones I love there to share it with. I refused to call Nevada, home... All my structure and familiar rituals, were gone.  I found myself with too much time on my hands...

The loneliness and sadness I felt from missing my family and friends, eventually propelled me into seeking out solutions.  The solutions were a process of endless questions.  Funny, how, Donna? What do you really want? took so dang long to answer! I think it was having the time to be forced into focusing on myself, without the preoccupation of my loved ones. I began to tap into making myself a priority and giving myself permission to seek out the answers.

Regarding my comment in the first paragraph, about being "taken care of"... By that, I mean, I do not work for a paid wage. For the first time since I was 16, someone, other than my parents, supports me financially. Being fiercely independent, this was a difficult adjustment for me not making my own money.  I know, I know, when you are married, it is joint money... but living as long as I did, making my own way, on my own, it was a definite personal challenge.  I felt I had no purpose.  He provided everything.  He paid the bills.  He did the grocery shopping.  All I had to do was keep the house clean and cook. To some, that would be an answer to a prayer.  Never having it before, I thought it sounded nice.... but in reality, it bothered me.  It still bothers me.  I want to be married, but I also want to contribute. I want to make my own way. He still does not understand that.

Before we moved to Nevada, I made an excellent salary at both of my jobs. Even when I was married before, to my daughters' father, I worked and contributed substantially to our lives.  At one point, I supported all of us, while my husband traveled far from home attempting to become a professional golfer.

When I was single, prior to meeting my husband now, having two jobs, gave me discipline and direction. It forced me to be organized. It provided the infrastructure to see myself as viable. I needed to  provide for my children, yet, it was more important to be a "good mother". My emotional relationship with my daughters were my priority. Work was just a way to earn a living and create security. At the time, it was all I knew. There was no time for me. My soul could only whisper to me then...I dreamt about what I would do creatively, "if" I had the time...

That's why I enjoy driving back and forth between Nevada and California.  It allows me substantial and  powerful time for reflective thinking...

Self discipline is a trait I am lacking now.  I get lost in the moment. I become obsessive with my creative focus. I've turned the switch too far the other direction.  All I have now is time to myself.  My husband's job is very stressful and the TV is his escape hatch.  Izzy reminds me how desperately I need balance.

One bad habit I must leave behind in 2009, is spending the day in my pajamas.  I could do it days on end.  Totally sucked into cyberspace writing blissfully away as Izzy empties the trash cans in frustration. I would get up, feed Izzy and go immediately to my computer.  Eating only when my stomach snarled at me.  I really want to walk Izzy once, preferably twice a day... I really do want to finish de-cluttering our home... I do want to corral my creative talents and decide if writing really is my favorite thing... Most of all,  I want to have more quality time with my family and friends.

I could accomplish GREAT things if I could discipline and organize my focus. If I could concentrate more strategically...  If I can do that, I can refrain from deluding myself, in thinking I have plenty of time... or, I can always do it tomorrow.  Time is no longer on my side.  I have a good twenty more years, if I exercise and take care of myself,  where I can still be active.  Twenty years snaps by in a blink of an eye.  I remember my 40's & and 50's, those years whooshed past me.  We all delude ourselves in thinking we have plenty of time.  We don't.  Time is not promised to anyone.  Carpe Diem!  Seize the day!!

5 comments:

Marylinn Kelly said...

To learn the trust required for living by intuition our only tool is practice. I ignored those wise voices for much of my life, though thankfully they never stopped trying. My current learning curve involves self-acceptace, abstaining from criticism and reproach of myself and my choices, and being intentional about working from my heart with the mind and its running chatter becoming less of an influence. Somehow embracing our circumstances, whatever they are in the moment, allows us, in that moment, to feel free of the victim state, to be generous and forgiving with ourselves and, by extension, with the other aspects of our life. And I'm beginning to understand that love really is all there is.

JeannetteLS said...

I am enjoying this new blog, Donna. I am in transition this year, as I well know--PT, selling the house, just trying to find a way first to LIVE. THEN, I do have my plan. Two years to devote to nothing but my writing, my painting, my health. Not caregiving, not hustling to get whatever little contract I can, not running to "family" when they say jump. In my case? I DO have self-discipline. I can sit and focus fine. It's permission. To tell myself I have earned my time to paint, to go after my dreams. I will love my friends as always--I agree that love--AGAPE--is all there is, but some of that love can be of the gifts we were given. We love by using those gifts, mining them for whatever is there when we sharpen them. And this is what I feel called to do over the coming years. I am painting more already, in this transition, and have begun to write again... but I struggle with the word "no."

GutsyWriter said...

Your post touched me as I realize how similar we all are. Why do we spend so much time analyzing? I wish we could just enjoy and stop questioning. At least that applies to me. I have the reverse. I've stayed home with odd jobs here and there, never enough though to support a family, and although I've enjoyed this, I feel guilt about not making money. Thanks for your comment and all the best with writing and blogging. Stay in touch.

Laoch of Chicago said...

Fine post.

Donna B said...

Laoch, thank you!

Gutsy Writer, We really ARE all so much alike, in that we all want the same thing: Love, Meaning to our lives and Acceptance. I am very analytical too, so thank goodness for my sense of humor, because I have finally learned to laugh at myself.

Jeannette, GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION! You are the Captain of your own ship!! Sail away and chart your own course. You KNOW where you want to go. Create your own life.

Marylinn, Learning to trust our intuition is a big one, and you are so right, it takes practice. Some of us tune into it earlier than others. I agree that embracing our circumstances can help in making us not feel like victims, but I also believe there is a difference between self-ness and selfish. There are moments where we get the opportunity to lie down or stand up with assertiveness. Again, big difference between assertiveness and aggressiveness. You have inspired some thoughts for another post...I really enjoyed your comments. Very thought provoking...