Now I'm in the I've got to work and I've got to write phase of my life. Which pretty much means, I am involved in some form of work for a majority of my waking hours. Even my entertainment involves work-- going to open mics and reading my fiction. Going to writing venues and learning and sharing with other writers. My world has narrowed, and I absolutely LOVE the box of work as play as work cycle I'm in.
BUT THE WORLD IS SO MUCH LARGER THAN OUR BOXES!!!!
So last night at the community party, I told my friend how rigid I'm starting to feel. That I have to make myself get into the mood for a lot of things that, quite often, don't seem worth the effort. I have a hard time drumming up excitement about the stuff of life in general-- if it doesn't have anything to do with my work as play phase.
So I mused about it. And this is what I think: Life is a series of phases. As we go through each phase, be aware that we won't always be whomever we are at the moment. The world is HUGE, and our choices are infinite. So I think it's important that we stay flexible enough to be all right with the whole world as we encounter it at any given moment (as long as nobody's getting hurt). We need to let our minds sort of loosen up and be-- without thinking, judging, or interpreting how everything sits with us in relation to the phase we're in. Because all kinds of people, holidays, professions, opinions, celebrations, experiences, and occasions are the ingredients of a rich life.
Last night, at the party, there was a woman of my mother's generation, while most were a couple of decades younger than she. She was relaxed and natural, conversed with the guests, and really seemed to enjoy herself. She, I believe, is a model for me and how I want to approach life. We must do what we must within our boxes, but being a happy human means appreciating and participating in the world as it happens. Otherwise we paint ourselves into tiny little corners that are hard to move out of. And as we age, it will be harder and harder to experience the spontaneous joy available to us. If we get too attached to judging and nitpicking about what we want and don't want to do, believe in or don't believe in, are comfortable or uncomfortable with, we may create a habit of counting ourselves out of the many games of life.
|This picture is entitled "Lonely." As we go through our phases, embrace more of life-at-large, so we are always living beyond our narrow margins.|