Whelp, December turned into one of the longest and hardest months I've had in the last 35 years. I spent a large part of it in bed, really unable to drag myself out on more days than I would like to admit. I managed to get some things under the tree for the munchkin, thank you Amazon. Most my workouts, I just skipped. I got an injury in my knee that will prevent me from racing any of the ultras that I signed up for in January and February. That didn't help me get out of bed. Whenever I go though these times I tend to hole up. I hunker down, usually in covers. I had depression...have depression...had a bout of depression...heck I don't know what to call it. I felt sad, and acted sad, and left the house very little, and watched a lot of pointless crappy shows on hulu, read a few books, stayed up all night, slept all day, you name it. Why so glum chum? Well, I think many people who have had times where they were off balance would agree that there isn't really a cause, just a consistent darkening that they can't seem to pull out of. I would agree. I have good things in my life and I have sad things in my life, just like everyone else on this planet (aka tiny ball of dirt spinning around in the universe). I would just say that I stopped putting up the good fight against the sadness. I just stopped, and then I kinda just got headed down that path.
I had a lot of talks with Troy through this time. Sometimes I couldn't talk to him for days, and sometimes I had to talk all day. He's an exceptionally patient man. He listens, and he doesn't tell me things like "you need to fix this." He just tucks me in, checks on me a lot, and encourages me to do more of the things that seem to make me happy in the moment.
I quietly hoped that all that time being down would eventually turn back up and that I might learn something in the process. I kinda felt like I just had to wait it out. I thought about a lot of stuff while I was chilling. Mostly stuff about my daughter. My daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia over a year ago and that means that I worry constantly. If you know me, you would not peg me as a worrier but in this case I worry and I worry, and then I worry some more. All the confidence I have in other areas of my life seems to just be gone here, it's my baby girl, and I can't fix the struggle for her. And the school, and the teachers, and the right path, it's all a problem, it's all a worry, daily. You would think this is a known thing in these days, and that there is a clear course and clear options for her, but I'm here to say "nope." Getting any follow through on the items in her IEP is akin to pulling teeth. But we have a great tutor, and we have money. So we are using those as well as we can.
Just typing that last paragraph may seem kinda tame to you with your personal problems that don't look like mine, but I just put that out in the world forever. And that is literally the definition of airing your dirty laundry.
But I promise this post isn't all doom and gloom. Because while I was down, things in my brain were stirring. Why the heck am I even here, on this blob of Earth? What's the point of it all? Why the pain? I have asked myself this over and over and over during the last few months. What's my responsibility to this fleeting life I have, to my daughter, and to my family? What's the flipping point?
A little angel sent me an email with the link to a blog post a few days ago. And in the space of a few hours I started to see the light. I started climbing out, and I started to get clear, real clear, on all of these things. And the clearer I got, and the more nodding I did, the better I felt. I started combining it with other stuff I've read through the last year, and things just really started coming together for me, my I's started getting dotted and my T's started getting crossed.
Here comes the "I think" part of the post. I wonder how many people ever voice what they think? If you have I would pat you on the back, because even this over sharer is finding it really really hard. What you think probably isn't what I think. I think that's cool. Some of what I think may intertwine with some of what you think, that's pretty darn cool too. I may have at one point, but I no longer have any judgement on what you think. Since figuring out what I think, that judgement just went away. You think stuff, I think stuff, it's all good stuff. So, here goes.
I think that we have a mind; this consciousness/soul/spirit/essence/heart, and I think we also have this body, and the two are really pretty separate. Something I read that really stuck with me once, was that 10 seconds after we die, we still weigh exactly the same as we did 15 seconds prior, but something is gone, something in us is really really gone, and that Something doesn't weigh anything, but it's a Something. It's a big Something. I think that Something is me. That's me. And because I think that, I tell Troy that when that something is gone, just burn me up, and scatter me around somewhere pretty.
I think that Something is vast, and I think there are other Somethings, like the one in you, and I think the different Somethings have gone through different experiences that have lead to different levels of consciousness. I think the something in a bug is the same kind of something that is me, but the bug might not have gone through as many past experiences as me. Maybe I did my time as a bug, and now I'm here in a body, and maybe after this I get to go to another physcial form next. I think that there are "somethings" that know a lot more than I do, I think there are a lot of them, and I think some of them are here on Earth, but a lot of them are elsewhere in the universe. This is what I think.
I think my something decided to take a ride in a body, on this Earth. Woo, Hoo. It wanted another experience in it's path of development and it went for a human. Go me. I think that our time here on Earth is itty bitty. Just a blip, a blink, hardly a postscript. When I think about "what's the point" I think about "legacy." Thinking about legacy really gets me thinking about people who's deeds stuck around after their something moved on. They are few. Really few. What famous caveman do you know? Most of the deeds that most of the somethings do with their bodies are just actions, that don't really matter. When I really went down this line of thought, I got a little sad at first. Nothing I do will live on. Even if I become the next President, or I set a gajillion world records, or I help raise a super amazing kid, or I start a huge great company, in time, it's all gone. And then I thought, Hummm, I think that means that those things must not be the point. You know "the point"...you know what I mean.
When I was thinking about this, I kept coming back to a petrie dish. It's a petrie dish, we're in one! I remember in High School science putting the little bacteria cells in, and watching over several days as they went about their business which was purely based on their environment. I, as the researcher, was watching them in their little petrie dish planet do their thing. Some of them didn't play nice with others, some of them gravitated towards each other. They were such a product of their environment. And what was their role? What was their responsibility? To me? To themselves? It was just to "do their thang." Were they supposed to please the researcher? Um, they didn't have that level of consciousness. They were there to go about their business in the tiny petrie dish world, getting the most out of their current environment and experience. That resonated with me.
I know that I don't know a lot. I know there is tons of stuff on our planet that I don't know about, but then taking it outwards into our universe and beyond that and not only do I not know, but we here on Earth are clueless about the majority of what's out there. Can the bacteria in the petrie dish understand the depth of my love for my daughter? I'm pretty sure not, and therefore I think there are vast amounts of stuff out there that I'm not capable of really getting either.
So what's the point? I think I'm experiencing these 80 (hopefully) trips around the sun to see what the human thing is all about. I'm doing my time in the petrie dish of Earth, and I think this is probably my only chance at a little human body. And it's a short trip. In the grand scheme, its just a blink of an experience for me. Once I got to that place, I started to feel really good.
“If you knew your potential to feel good, you would ask no one to be different so that you can feel good. You would free yourself of all of that cumbersome impossibility of needing to control the world, or control your mate, or control your child. You are the only one who creates your reality. For no one else can think for you, no one else can do it. It is only you, every bit of it you."
- Esther Hicks
Humm, okay, what to do now? That's when I started to get really clear. I get this one chance, and I think the point is to experiment and explore the potential of the human body/experience. I am just a lump of atoms, running around on some dirt, colliding into other lumps of atoms along the way. Meander, collide, meander some more, collide again. Some collisions are good, some bad, some are wrong place wrong time, some are right place right time. But my purpose is to explore potential, the potential that is: My "something" in this "body".
When I think back on the things that felt good/fun/fulfilling/truth/destiny, it was always when I was searching for that edge in human capabilities. When I was in school and I was getting to the limit of what my brain could compute (I have a degree in Pure Mathematics and grad school was literally brain ironman on many occasions) I was like Wowah...this feels really fulfilling. Same with triathlon, testing the limits of my human form, and this last year using more mental tools, and tapping into my something to get more out of my physical body, I was like "there are some limits I'm finding here, and that process feels like what I was meant to do on this Earth."
I am here, for this short duration, to experiment with the limits that come from the combination of my "something" and my body. I have explored math, I have explored triathlon, I've explored marriage, there are a lot of things left to explore and there is no check list. I am free and capable to explore any direction I want to. I can head towards art, towards music, towards making money, towards more physical outlets. I like the physical outlets. Those really speak to me, so I think I'll keep heading in that direction for now. Anything on this planet is open for exploration, and I'm not going to get to all of it. I'm only going to get to the things that I want to. Oh Yea, and it's supposed to be fun.
That's another one of the "I thinks"...
I think it's supposed to be fun and enjoyable. Yup. I think that.
Also. With this ah-hah, I had some clarity on being a mom. I started with "What's my responsibility to my daughter?" It's a special thing, at least I think it is, to birth a new life into this Earth. It's cool beans, and it changed me, it changed my "something" big time. But, I also realize that I am just a something (right now she is called Sonja) with a 26 year head start on another something (whom I chose to call Annie). We are the same thing, and we have the same purpose on this planet: to experience the human form. I just get to help this little one, and we are the same, I just have a head start.
Coming to these conclusions has really stirred something deep inside me. Suddenly I feel like a sponge who wants to travel around the Earth picking up bit of color from all the unique places that are out there. Possibilities seem very open and at my core I feel grounded in the fact that I am here to explore potential. I want to taste all the foods, visit all the places, hear all the noises, smell all the smells, and also push this body to the limit while doing so.
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!"
- Hunter S Thompson