Daily Archives: January 26, 2014

Day of Rest

Today is a day of rest, but I don’t feel rested. I feel depleted, disappointed, stinky, a little overwhelmed, lost, a bit lonely, and completely in love with the whole brilliant mess. I still have goals: get clean sheets on the bed, do a little laundry, meditate, take a shower, eat some food and drink some water, maybe finally put up my new desk, maybe do my homework for yoga teacher training, and most certainly make sure two dogs (and one boy) are fed, rested, cared for, and loved.

I’m sad. With my guest post for Be More With Less, I got a surge of new traffic and some followers. I felt like what brought them here was exactly right, that I write about exactly the kind of stuff they’d be interested in — when I’m writing. But right now I’m in a fallow time, when I’m so busy with other things that all I’ve been posting about is the new puppy, how hard it’s been, how cute he is in spite of that, how right it was that this particular boy is with us at this moment. Those new kind and gentle readers must have been so confused, like being invited to a lecture on mindfulness and showing up to find a kid’s birthday party instead, being led to the chaos and noise of a bouncy house when what you wanted was the peace and stillness of a meditation cushion. It feels like this huge missed opportunity, the most unfortunate of timing, even as it is exactly as it should be.

I am trying not to give in to external pressure, but rather trust my own inherent wisdom. There will be no “perfect puppy in 7 days,” (if ever), I won’t be as prepared as I’d like when I practice teach forward bends next weekend, (hopefully I’ll have my homework done), my CSU office is a wreck, (but I’m still doing good work), I feel heavy and most of the time my clothes don’t match and I’m lucky if they are clean, I’m not offering meaningful deep content on my blog or making any progress on my larger to-do list. I can barely remember what day it is and I’m not getting enough rest.

I forgive myself. I drink tall glasses of cold water. Sometimes when the puppy naps, I nap instead of doing whatever chore has been put off. I take a hot shower, floss my teeth, use the good lotion on my hands. I give myself permission to get rid of those jeans I don’t really like, that aren’t even comfortable. I remind myself that even if I do nothing, I’m good enough, worthy of love, deserving of ease. I assure myself that I can’t screw it up with Ringo, that no matter what I do or don’t do, things will turn out alright. I sit gently and compassionately with the underlying nagging fear that if I stay quiet, still for too long there will be no one left to listen or serve, that I’ll be left talking to myself, alone, no one to help me when I need it.

I do what Susan Piver always suggests and take a seat right in the middle of my life, just as it is, just as I am. When my mind wanders off, when I panic or worry, when I find myself lost, confused, generating my own suffering, I “let go, come back, take a fresh start,” the promise being that the number of fresh starts available to all of us is infinite. Take a deep breath and start again.

#smallstone: Walk

ringosfirstwalkRingo accidentally went on his first walk yesterday. His new harness came in the mail and we were testing it out. I didn’t want to risk walking him just on a neck collar because he sometimes backed out of it, just like Dexter used to do. I put the harness on while Eric held Ringo, and then we put him down. For the first few minutes he fought it — backing up, biting and scratching at it, rolling around on the floor, whining and limping like he was being wounded, but then he got distracted and forgot about it.

I got some treats and clipped on a leash, walking him up and down the length of the kitchen. Just as I was about to go out in the backyard with him, I realized I could now risk taking him somewhere else, so went out to explore the front yard. Unlike our other three puppies, who were too afraid at first to leave our yard, Ringo immediately started walking down the street, wanting to explore. After a few houses, I realized I was taking him on his first walk and Eric was missing it, so we turned around. Eric and Sam were heading out on their afternoon walk anyway, so they went around the block with us. It was so nice, to be four again, walking together. Just on that short walk, Ringo saw (and sometimes barked at) a woman on a bike with a dog, lots of cars, a few people, and two dogs barking at us from their yard.

This is a big deal. Walking is our thing, it’s what our pack does and loves the most. To have one dude who couldn’t go, meaning we couldn’t ever go together, was sad, and I hadn’t expected it to happen so quickly, so easily. He still can’t be expected to go too far, but he can go.

He also figured out the Kong this week. How to hold it, throw it, get out the food frozen inside. Anything safe that will occupy his time and attention right now seems like a miracle.