We are so lovely, and what's heartbreaking is how rarely we realize it. Loveliness has nothing to do with age or genetics, products or clothing, size or stature. We are nature and essence, mineral and bone, color and light. We change with time, moment to minute to decade, and that transition is poetry, artistry. And if we can live the transitions? Actually reside in our impermanence, celebrating its ephemerality, well, we are unstoppable blazes of pure energy, and there is nothing more beautiful or more inspiring, than the awareness of abundance, and the possibility of constant creation and re-creation.
Probably, in the past, way back when our daily intention centered on nuts & bolts survival, we didn't worry about how much--or how little--we liked ourselves. We had no access to such luxury, or such anxiety--take your pick. And maybe that was better in some ways, maybe that focus on the primary objective was healthier to the mind, if more dangerous to our longevity.
Of course, I can't say. And, of course, my intention is not to make light of what it takes to survive, but to offer a contrast to what and how we label what's vital, what's important, and what we allow to take up our mental space, day in and day out. Because the truth is, we're lucky. We're lucky that our prime directive isn't primarily to get through a day intact.
But it feels that way sometimes, doesn't it? We FEEL lucky to have survived some days, and no amount of "at least..." will shift that. But on the good days, we see it, don't we? We see the divide, we understand what makes us so lucky to be here, now, in this spa...
As I type this, there's a bird outside my window learning how to sing. I can't help but think that, if I hadn't been up at this hour, if I hadn't stared out the window waiting for inspiration to strike, if I hadn't listened, I would never have heard something so marvelous.
But that's the thing--I was here. I don't have to think about why or about how I could have missed it, had I woken later or earlier. There's is always something that marvelous, we're just usually too wrapped up in ourselves, in trying to solve and remember absolutely everything, to notice.
So looked at that way, our timing is always perfect. Do you think that could be a philosophy by which we could live? If so--what freedom we could grant ourselves. Our timing is always perfect. Full stop.
Imagine how easily we'd breathe. Imagine how much we'd notice.
This is why I love the sunrise--I need the reminder to be present. I need the reminder that this achingly beautiful event happens again and again, every day, without fail. It's effortless, and it reminds me that I really needn't try so very hard.
If we can rise above our daily fears, the small things that nab us with sticky fingers and for whose minor marring of our day we contort ourselves all out of shape, then we will have the clear head and clear sight necessary to sink effortlessly into endless beauty and infinite potential.
Sometimes what is broken is of better use as compost, as literal or figurative fertilizer.
I try never to keep what is no longer of use or of beauty to me, but a very few objects live in my heart. Those I will mend again and again, and when mending is no longer possible, I'll put them aside and call it art.
Beauty is not exclusive to youth, and while I think this is something we're accepting as mainstream, we seem to believe that we can't maintain the old arbitrary standard without a lot of work. And I wonder, if that's the case, is it worth it? Is the label itself worth the time, the effort, the money, the advertising-induced psychological damage?
They're trying to sell us something we've owned since our first breath. Our definition, were we given time to formulate one before being invaded by theirs, would most likely look quite different. Gone would be the agony of comparison and, in its place, the peace of that same reaction that arises when unexpectedly coming across a field of wildflowers, a forest clearing, a glacier-arranged assortment of rocks, a waterfall.
Nature does not hurry or worry or agonize over this bit or that. It adapts. It takes its time, and it puts on the best show it can, for its own survival, with what it's got that season--wind, sun, rain, early fro...
I've never been a high-heels/make-up/hair kind of girl, which is no judgement on any of those lifestyle choices. On the contrary--I completely understand how the fashion game can be thrilling. I admire the instinct and the creativity it takes to put together a signature look, and the men and women who can do it with poise and energy are certainly forces to be reckoned with.
But that's the key--it's their instinct, their default setting. If I were to try, I'd be nothing more than a poor copy of the original. I would be ridiculous in any heel higher than my Frye boots, sticking out like an elephant in a tutu. It's just not right. But the point is, I've been there, I've tried. I've tried the make-up/hair thing (briefly, in college; it wasn't pretty). I felt like I was wearing someone else's ill-fitting clothes. Talk about self-conscious.
I'd rather arrive underdressed than overdressed. I'd rather be overlooked than stand out (at least in person; I'd rather let my work speak for itself). T...
I talk about strength a lot, I know. I think it's one of those whistling-in-the-dark tactics, like when I used to sing loudly to myself if I were alone in my grandparents' haunted house. You know. Scare off the ghosts. But that's a post for another time.
It's the same thing, though, right? Talk about something enough, explore it, turn it over in your hands, and innately understand it enough to either realize how easily it can be attained, or that you've already possessed it in the first place.
Now, I'm not a fan of the whole fake-it-till-you-make-it philosophy. I hate faking anything and I hate lying--they do not make for firm footing. I'm much more a fan of authentic transparency. If I don't get it, if I'm not comfortable, I'm not going to pretend I am, even if, with practice and time, I could be. I mean, how will we ever get to know each other, our exquisite faultlines, our unique jury-rigged attempts at survival, if we're taking refuge behind some flimsy wall we've thrown up until we...