Escape into Reality

I’m sitting on my patio, iced tea creating a wet spot from the sweating on the cement next to me. Clove is tethered to my ankle, free to explore the length of her leash but close enough that I can be there before a dog or hawk. It’s a perfect 73 F only partially spoiled by hesitant grey skies and light mugginess.

Weather like this makes me sleepy and unmotivated to do anything except lay in bed and scroll TikTok or Pinterest. Actually, that is exactly what I was doing before this. I came across a TikTok of someone who was told that if they feel that way, to go for it, just outdoors at a park instead.

I have found that taking care of others is vastly easier than taking care of myself. Why that is, I’m not quite sure. I do know that the way I perceive things has a large sway on their impact. I have used my imagination to escape from real life as longa s I can remember and never once did it occur to me until this week that I could use my imagination and creativity to actually change my reality instead of escape from it.

“Bad” feelings are still meant to be felt. Greif, pain, anger, are not meant to be ignored and pushed down. Instead of beating myself up for feeling more than happiness all the time, I need to learn to process the emotions that are generally frowned upon, remind myself that they are ok to feel, just don’t wallow in them.

Maybe you came to this realization long ago or maybe you don’t relate to my same feeling of needing to escape life at times. Either way, I hope you’re finding a way to take care of yourself.

Thank you for listening strangers and friends.

(written May 23rd but forgot to actually post it)

Climbing

To make a dent in my never-ending to-do list, sometimes I have to trick myself with external motivation or a reward system. If I do a load of laundry, then I can eat an extra tasty meal instead of whatever is around. If I haul my trash out, I can sit and pet Clove for a little while and not think of anything else. A clean and organized living space is sometimes reward enough in itself. Attempting to push myself to get back on my grind today, I put on some upbeat music and blasted through cleaning my kitchen. Finishing that up by leaving an old potato in the little patch of forest behind my apartment, hoping that it will deter the critters there from feeding on my newly planted herbs for a little bit longer, it struck me. I really wanted to climb a tree.

So I did. Sap welcomed the grip of my hands on the branches and bare feet, testing my weight with each new step. The feeling of being a child again washed over me and I couldn’t help but smile as the breeze lifted a strand of my unrestrained hair to catch the bark. Looking out at a different height, far above my usual, the sun broke through the clouds and all of the little spores and seed fluffs floated past me, like a flock of fairies, merrily on their way.

I plan to climb that tree more often. It totally counts as exercise and certainly provides outdoor endorphins! Why is rock climbing normal for adults to do but it’s kind of weird for us to climb a tree?

I wish I could bottle the feeling that I was given climbing that tree barefoot, package barely noticing a scratch on my leg as I perch, transported to a different world within my own.
That really is the idea that lives, nebulous in my head, if I ever start a business: Small boxes that give people a taste of different adventures through products that capture that essence. Include a written glimpse of story to go with it and suddenly you’re baking bread in a cottage while your cat swats at a butterfly through the open window. You’re perched in a tree, unafraid of falling because you’ve lived in the forest your whole life. The hem of your cloak follows your steps down the corridor of the castle as you make your way to convene the council. It is a beautiful (and far more detailed) goal in my head but there is much to do before starting a business. Maybe someday I can bring that dream to you in the world we live in.

Thank you friends and strangers for coming on this current adventure with me. Do something that revives the child in you this week, okay?

Keep climbing, friends and strangers.

Outdoor Ambitions

A breeze keeps blowing my loose strands of hair into my face and if I tilt my head just right, I can see a threading of web reflecting light through the blades of grass. The smell of someone grilling and the sound of birdsong mix now with the quiet clack of the keyboard. I am somehow in a different life but it is my own.

I haven’t read an actual book in maybe, over a year. Someone was kind enough to send me one off of my Amazon wishlist, suggested by my mentor. It’s so beautiful outside today again, after most of the week being rain and snow. Going on a walk is suggested but the mentally tired bug bit me earlier today and was not shaken. Resting outside, reading for the first time in forever, carding my fingers through the velveteen fur of my rabbit, has melted the work day away.

It’s not just any book either. It’s not an escape (which I am constantly seeking) or a cover up. It requests that I face reality and ask myself hard questions.

we need to figure out where we are before we plot a course forward

Bob Goff – Dream Big

I am urged to open my eyes, take a clear look at everything I think about myself and why, sort through my desires and ambitions as if doing an internal spring cleaning, and truly put in the work to make my life what I long for it to be.

No more doing what merely occupies, entertains, and numbs us?

Bob Goff – Dream Big

Can you be honest with yourself? How difficult is it for you?
As the light fades into evening and the breeze becomes chilled, I will go back inside but take these questions with me.

From only three chapters into the book, I already highly suggest it. Have you heard of it? Read it? Dream Big by Bob Goff

Forward

I wonder, if someone was to write the “forward” to my life right now, what would they say?

I have such an overwhelming desire to create, to push my boundaries, stretch my wings and see how far they can take me. I want the time to devote to these pursuits, to learn and grow.

This pandemic has given me so much but also left me wondering where can I really go from here? I would love a creative field to be my sustaining career but currently, I work in an office position that drains me emotionally and fills my bank account better than any previous employment. I have ideas that I want to test and joy that I want to bring to people but my energy after a work day is close to zero and my weekends are spent trying to catch up on the “adulting” to-do list, taking care of myself, and preparing for the week ahead. This does not leave much room for the things that I am passionate about.

Does anyone out there have any advice on this?
The logical, responsible, side of me says, this is how it is and you just have to do the 9-5 thing in order to be taken seriously, to properly provide for yourself, and to make anything of yourself in society’s eyes.
The other side of me, high on imagination and dreams, keeps saying that there must be a way to make it possible. This blog is the only step I’ve been able to take in the direction of my dreams lately. I don’t know if it will be able to ignite the others and bring them to life as well, but it’s a step.

My very idea of what I would want to do for my own creative business rests in the idea of a mental escape. We all need that excitement, that adventure and glee, like the kind you get from immersing yourself in another world through a good book or a fantastical movie.
Not all of us can go study at an elite university in Europe, get caught up in a dramatic love, worthy of poetry that lives through ages of history. Not (any?) of us were born royalty, struggling to make the right decisions for our kingdom, while pacing the halls of our castle in elegant garb. There are some who live in cottages or on farms, surrounded by the quiet morning until it is pierced by the rooster announcing arrival of a new day. Dark, hidden hovels, tucked into the lush forest, rafters strung with herbs and the aroma of fresh bread, all of these beckon to me as lives I do not have but want a taste of.

I’ve been trying to bring bits of, pieces of, these feelings and ideas into my own life as much as I can. The way the sun shone on a stand-out piece of moss or the mud squished under my boots, on my walk with a friend, these are things that I find myself clinging to.

There are many things for me to be grateful for, many provisions, I just wonder, if I reached out, could I touch the stars?

Thank you for reading my brain explosion/rant/excitement. If you work in a creative field that is considered much less likely to “succeed” by society, (artists, musicians, creative writers, etc.) do you have any suggestions?

Processed with VSCO with c6 preset

Simpler Times

I often find myself wishing for “back when things were simple” or “the good ol’ days” but when I really think about it, I can’t tell exactly when that was. Was it last year? (No, not 2020. We don’t count 2020 as last year yet.) Was it the year that I moved out of my parents house, completely on my own to a different state? Was it my time in college, or highschool? Maybe it was when we lived in what we thought was our dream house, when the internet still went skeerrrrrrrreeeeeeeeee, or I would play for hours outside by myself.

When I think of these times generally, most of them don’t strike me as the best time in my life. I know all of the struggles and the shadows on the other side of the bright spots that can reflect as “the best”. Has anyone out there mastered the perspective of seeing the past and the present for what they actually are in relation to each other?

The past sure feels like simpler times when my hippocampus lazily floats a memory to my neo-cortex, packaged up so prettily in nostalgia and sunshine. Yes, I went on a tangent and looked up which parts of the brain are responsible for memory. Brains are super interesting. I could go on a multitude of rabbit trails about brains but I digress.

I’m not sure what to do with this information. I try to frame my present as a good time and fight against the skewed image that the past was the best time of my life. A lot of it wasn’t.
Part of the reason for this site is to bring that good, that simpler time into my present. I have so many ideas I want to explore but am not quite sure how to get there. My next blurb should (hopefully) be something more in that realm of things I’m passionate about.

Thank you for reading this post of ramblings. It is not nearly what I consider good content but I told myself that I would work through and towards my future here, on this site and this is part of it.

May we find the simple things in our days, the good in our times.