Growing Older 1

Day 2 of 4 days off. I explained in another post about how COPD [not touting for sympathy] is like having an ongoing mild chest infection, wheezing, shortness of breath and for me bizarre sneezing [you don’t want to hear it] This is chest cold v head cold. It’s not that bad. It goes into remission when I’m active and sometimes activity like cleaning is quite tiring. And sometimes, very much more so in rainy weather, I want to stay home.
So without banging on any more about my ailments, because I know many who are suffering far worse, I’ll get to the idea of days off
I woke up on Thursday and decided to cancel everything, classes,a weekend seminar, a health treatment appointment. So I’ve passed two days, not leaving my flat, engaging in voice messages with a very close friend, which has been joyful and actually connecting in the next best thing to real-time, with wonderful people.
I also reconnected with a very dear friend who had me to live in her home in the States, for prolonged periods, and with whom I’d gone quite far in creating a business together, which would likely have flourished, it was a great idea for online learning, and she was so up on tech as well as being deeply rooted in spiritual pursuits, not woo woo, deep stuff, as well as researching alternative health methods.
I learned of what’s going on in her life, and what she is facing right now, and how she’s researching and exploring alternative medicines still.
The business didn’t get off the ground because I let myself be spun into a web of fantasy by the charismatic energy of a man and I decamped to the US to be with him.
This friend is also an extremely good writer and at one time, we had ideas for a story, a fantasy novel, prompted by our experiences with two men that we’d shared… two classic narcissists.
For those of you whose minds go ‘there’ LOL, by ‘sharing men’ I don’t mean group activities or one being the mistress secretly. We both had relationships with them. One of them introduced me to her, she introduced me to the other. We’d shared two classic guru narcissists. By sharing I don’t mean group activities, I mean we both had relationships with them. One of them introduced me to her, she introduced me to the other.
So this has been a very powerful time. I don’t do holidays, although this year I had a magnificent experience in a Chateau in France with friends I’ve known for many years on a workshop with our mentor.
I booked a traditional package cheapo tour with a friend for late September. That didn’t come off.
I just don’t feel the need for formal holidays. BUT this, this taking time out, like a holiday has been profoundly revealing.
As a daily user of facebook, writing my thoughts, philosophies, engaging it was interesting to neither post nor comment, but instead I felt an ongoing inspration, ideas popping up around creating a story, many stories, formats. WRITING was big on my agenda.
I FREAKING LOVED IT..
And I also developed even more enthusiasm for my yoga class, exploring more ideas and activities around yoga and aging, coming up with routines, adaptations, and whilst doing this, I was so content.
Three weeks ago, I had an interesting experience on ‘something’. It offered a quiet coalescence that rippled into me profoundly and calmly
I feel and have felt since that experience,, as if there is a settling, a kind of calmly energized serenity, about life, and about what’s possible for me, about how best to use my creative talents and skills given the limitations.
I am very careful to take care of me. Despite doing some things that aren’t so good for me, I know when to rest.
And I love being here. Every writer needs somewhere they can create and although it’s a studio, I have ideas to make it easier, on a budget, for me to write. Upgrade my tech, nothing grand. An alternative form of desk, this one has a keyboard shelf and it keeps falling down.
Get a new chair, not sure I can write on my kneeling chair. I find myself even now, sitting on the chair, with my knees crossed. I am constantly having to uncross them..
And then I have to make time to write. And I have to rein in, and be disciplined about so many things from diet to distractions.
This has been a long process for me, but this taking stock time,after talking frequently over the years of writing a ‘book’, the writing is now encompassing writing e-books as fodder.
I’ve been commissioned by PR companies to write booklets before, and my experience tells me that, when I put my mind to it and sit down to do it, I can get it done in a fairly short time frame..
And I am considering developing a story that draws the reader in, not my life story, but which is a learning experience. Story is my medium.
I feel deeply supported and that enhances my capacity to support others in ways that are not at the expense on my health. Ways that are easy for me but meaningful for them, and vice versa.
There are a few local folk, that have come to me for ‘chats’ and I enjoyed being able to help them and keep my coaching skills oiled, but I didn’t charge, and don’t feel the inclination to build a coaching business but if a client appeared, I’d consider it, if they were a match and fit.
And I continue to be there for ‘chats’ as long as it’s not challenging for me.
I have a policy never to ask someone to help me in a way that’s challenging for them. Except for the time I asked Bob to do my bathroom ceiling 😉 He needed the work. I made lunch and we sat and chatted so it was more bearable for him.
He’s the best at fixing things [also a creative welding artist] but I know and ceilings and decorating are not his first love. He’s a superb all-round handyman and currently he’s working for my friend who is in dire need, helping her unpack into her home and fixing little niggles.
He’s so kind he’d do anything for everyone. I make a point of not overtaxing the folk who help to the point that it’s detrimental to their wellbeing.
And in the same way, I know what I cannot do because it would tire me too much. We also have to know how to say ‘no’ and sometimes we have to say ‘no’ to others.
I am not so grandiose as to yearn for a legacy, a monument to my work. I simply want to use myself and my remaining time on earth to share my unique gifts; to have people get something
of value from me be it my writing or coaching or yoga classes or by offering a sprinkle or few of ‘sunny sun’
When I came back here nearly 7 years ago, somewhat ravaged and disoriented, started a blog to process, let out the stuff that was swirling in me. I called it Sunny Soleil. Emerging from the Darkness. I look back and see ‘wow I have come quite far from that place.’
I have also gotten past the need to romanticize my relationship in the States ‘torn from my beloved’ etc and accept that I was spun into a narcissistic web by a brilliant, articulate, ‘broken’ man, his words. I was reckless, idealising this as the ‘wow I’ve found my dream’ then seeing it for what it was, having to face that I was in deep doodoo and plotting my escape, not to the UK, but to somewhere else in the States.
Too late. I had my computer open, emailing a friend co-ordinating someone to pick me up and drive me to her home [hundreds of miles away] when I got nabbed by LEO and it all unravelled. In jail, knowing that the Iceman was coming, hoping I might get out of it, I romanticized, relied on daily phone calls with him, sorting out my commissary money, visiting. He was my lifeline. So it’s natural when I came out that I clung to this.
I had to face and dismantle so much in order to emerge from the darkness.
In Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey terms, I return into the ordinary world after this one of many adventures, to share my learnings versus becoming the hermit.
When I was younger and into things like affirmations manifesting, the law of attraction…., I wrote ‘I am building a spiritual centre, where I live and all kinds of learnings go on’
At the time, in the days before virtuality was a reality, I envisaged a real-life building, with beautiful grounds, therapy and workshop rooms, yoga and all that. Ten-a-penny nowadays.
Now I am beginning to consider that this ‘spiritual centre’ I wanted to build was actually the ground of my being, within not without, as a place from which I can, like those I treasure, respect and value, radiate a unique gift into the universe and enjoy every moment, knowing we are ‘doing who we are being’ easily and effortlessly.
BTW – EVERYONE has a unique gift. The secret is in uncovering it and discovering how to use it and with whom.
I am learning so much from my friends and those close connections that I have reached out to revive are rich in wisdom, stimulating exchange that inspires, entertains, and feels so satisfying and, in some cases, offers cooperative creative possibilities.
So as a result of feeling under the weather and following my instinct to do nothing. Much has swirled into my awareness.
The ‘under the weather’ feeling was the most obvious signal. Deep down there is an ongoing need for more space, more do-nothing time to allow the ingredients to alchemize and to signal to me the next step.
For me, it all goes much more slowly as I age and the drive to achieve is replaced with a ‘let it be’ ‘let it emerge’.
BLIMEY! If you’ve gotten this far, I’m impressed. you have ‘reading stamina’. Here’s a question for you. It’s an oldie but a goodie
If you were asked to write your own eulogy .what would you say about yourself and how you’ve interacted and presented in your lifetime?
What happens in your body as you read that question? Does it feel easy to express or daunting or repulsive or is there a sense of excitement, say, like ‘I dun good’.
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