The Creative Flood

Hi Everybody...

I haven't been blogging much at all lately -- I'm sorry for the silence.  Even getting an occasional "tweet" out seems challenging sometimes.  I have a theory though, that in these modern times, we reach out to our virtual communities and hubs when we feel a need to be heard, to find witness.  So either I haven't felt that I've had much to say (except for the dozen tweets and FB entries tonight while hopped up on a white mocha here at Coffee Garden), or that I feel witnessed enough in my daily life that I have been content there lately.  Okay, there's the third option of just facing the fact that having a two-and-a-half year old in your life pretty much draws every spare extra second out of it.  (And replaces them with laughter and sweet insider glances with your honey).  Maybe it's a melange of the three elements....

I've seemed to notice an interesting phenomena about ideas lately -- how they come in an all-encompassing, engulfing flood and then seem to recede all at once too.  I feel so surrounded by possibility that I'm almost drowning, so full of realized visions that I don't want to stop at one.  And other times, the emptiness, the vacuum in me feels as if it's just as complete.  Focus and incentive ebbs and flows in screwed up inverse proportion to time and energy available for exploring a project.  A few times in the past month, I've found myself with a couple hours open unexpectedly, and instead of diving in to something cool and creative and fun and ready to get rolling, I've been unable to catch the spark of intention and excitement  that typically sends me down a specific project path.  Maybe there's a deep "resting of the fields" going on, maybe I need the insistent pressure of a deadline to get all the neurons firing -- I don't know.  Maybe I'm just not very good at forcing myself to do anything.  

I'm thinking a lot about right livelihood, in the Buddhist sense.  What is the purpose and value of my work?  Of anyone's?  What is the right direction of our time and efforts?  Is there a better way than the one I've chosen?  

Sometimes I wipe down the counter and realize it's the fifth time I've done it in a day.  And I find myself extrapolating how many times my mom (and her mom, and hers) did these necessary, repetitive tasks.  I think it's all good -- that we think in different rhythms, sometimes needing the idling time that menial tasks provide in order to work things out -- but still, the over-and-over of it does get to you.  I know I'm not alone.  How many times has Mark watered trees, sorted photos, snow-blown the driveway?  How many patients' eyes has my Dad checked with repetitious precision?  How many gigs have my friends played?  

I'm thinking about space, too.  What does it mean -- the spaces you create around you?  What do they say about us?  How quickly do they reflect what's going on within us?  As houses foreclose around us in the Utah market -- both those of wealthy speculators and working people who got in over their heads -- I'm conflicted, feeling pulled by opportunity and compassion, possibility and warning. . . wondering if it's bad karma to want one of these suddenly more affordable (well, kind of) homes, or a sign to find more contentment in exactly the place I am, to release the sense of striving that is so celebrated in American culture.  

Maybe it's the fall, enhancing a touch of meloncholy.  I know the changing seasons always bring up a sense of accountability for me.  Another autumn here.  The hillsides changing again.  What was I doing last year?  What did I hope to have done by this year?  I had a teacher in high school, Bill Sinon, who once suggested that people who live in four-season climates are more motivated and action-oriented than those in climates with only one general season.  In Hawaii, he said, if you don't do something today, you can do it tomorrow.  You're as likely to have another sunny, comfortable, lovely day as not.  In the midwest, we're pushed along by the seasons, always knowing that winter -- and spring, and summer, and fall -- is just around the corner.  So we move forward, creating deadlines, noting progress.   There are so many projects in my life that are done and out of my hands -- the Crab Cove kids music cd, my book -- that I guess I'm feeling a little all over the place, wanting to control that which is no longer mine to control.  

5 Things I'm Thankful For Today:
1.  Faith. 
2.  Laptops.
3.  my favorite new (to me) novelist, Harlan Coben
4.  Possibility
5.  Contentment.

Love to you.  : )
mb








1 comment

  • Van

    Van

    Interesting. Here in FL we tend to think in two seasons, nice, or hot. And I do find myself setting goals for what I will accomplish during the on season or during the off season. So maybe your teacher was right. BTW, as a retired professor, I can tell you that your teacher would love that you remembered anything he said this many years after! I also struggle with finding contentment versus a culture of striving as you put it. My wife and I are so fortunate, and yet I seem to so easily slip into thinking about "more" (like the real estate listings in MI--though in my case it is Petoskey). Is it okay to want, if you recognize that you don't need? Can the wanting diminish the appreciation of what you have? And is it okay to want new MBM music---sorry couldn't resist :) Thanks for the post, and Happy Fall.

    Interesting. Here in FL we tend to think in two seasons, nice, or hot. And I do find myself setting goals for what I will accomplish during the on season or during the off season. So maybe your teacher was right. BTW, as a retired professor, I can tell you that your teacher would love that you remembered anything he said this many years after! I also struggle with finding contentment versus a culture of striving as you put it. My wife and I are so fortunate, and yet I seem to so easily slip into thinking about "more" (like the real estate listings in MI--though in my case it is Petoskey). Is it okay to want, if you recognize that you don't need? Can the wanting diminish the appreciation of what you have? And is it okay to want new MBM music---sorry couldn't resist smile Thanks for the post, and Happy Fall.

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