Saturday, November 03, 2007

stop, think, feel and listen........do i have the time?


I seem to be in start and stall mode right now. I start writing a piece and then it either seems too darn depressing unintentionally, or too fluffy. I can't seem to find the middle ground. And I wonder why. I think part of the reason is that I am juggling many tennis balls right now, and the activities or projects are compartmentalized in order to manage and sort them....in order to prioritize. Consequently, my thinking is the same. It's like I have a short term narrow view and if I go beyond those borders, I find my thoughts and feelings are just too broad to explore within the timeframe I have to offer.

And yet........... I have many stories in my head simmering. They want to be told. They all want my time and attention. But I only have time for snippets. I only have time for quick glances when really they require more than that. So, I stall...........halfway through a story and I'm left wondering if I can bite off more than I have time for.

Reflections take time. Reflections are open ended journeys which have a life of their own because one never knows how connected they are to the iceberg of thoughts and feelings down below the surface of the original thought. One story, one encounter, one experience, one activity in a day of many of all of those..............leads to a myriad of others. Our lives aren't compartmentalized. Our lives are strands of interwoven threads which link and knot and connect and blend together to form our own fabric. You start pulling on one of those threads and you never know where that will lead you. I guess I'm feeling like I don't have time to pull the various threads all vying for my attention.


And yet............


Writing offers me a venue to empty my personal cup of life which by the end of a week is full, full, full of deep red wine. When I write, it's like I am dipping a piece of bread into the wine to soak up it's flavourful body. The cup becomes lighter, easier to manage as I dip and sip and stop to reflect on who and what helped fill it............to reflect on how it makes me feel, on why it makes me feel.............to reflect on the feelings and activities of people I brushed up against this week. If I don't, the wine spills over and stains the threads......turns them into a different pattern, or perhaps hides the real lessons found in the pattern. If I don't take the time to dip the bread, I may miss out on assessing the meaning and significance.......the impact the interactions have had on how I think and feel.


Reflection is a key part of counselling as well as in living a more aware life. It's a pertinent part of the debriefing process so that one encounter doesn't blend into another........so someone else's hurt doesn't leave me bruised and myopically observant of the next person I meet with. When I don't take the time to sip the wine and eat the bread, I feel replenished. I will only feel weighted down with heavy full cups that will spill too easy.

Luckily the process of reflecting can happen during any other activity too. It doesn't need written words. It needs acknowledgement. It needs breathing space. The pattern of the threads can be touched and reviewed while sipping from the cup, while doing other tasks. Reflections can accompany other activities..........housecleaning, errand running, dog walking, dish washing, grocery shopping......all the "must do's" .......... Though it's best when one can sit down with another person keen to do the same for an open ended evening of unrushed unravelling. But we can't have that optimum all the time. Life is too busy most days. Still, it's not something one can ignore.


The stories and the written words may have to wait for another time, but the reflections can't wait. Today I will go about my busy schedule all the while looking back on the week, reliving the feelings, and sorting it out. If I happen to have a faraway eyes in aisle 10 at the grocery store, you'll now know why. And for goodness sake, don't be jumping out in front of me.....I startle easily when I'm multi-tasking in my head.

So..................

I'm off to the market. Saturday at the market is where the reflections begin for me. I always feel replenished after my meanders and chats at the market. I always have time for that.


9 comments:

Leigh Russell said...

As far as your writing goes, it sounds to me (being brutally frank) as though you're a skilled procrastinator. Stop making excuses, it's too fluffy or too sombre, and finish what you start. I suspect the completed piece will be a lot better than you think. Be confident and have faith in yourself. You write fluently and you have things to say. "You can't have writer's block, you just can't. So If I'm stuck I just write something. Then you can at least do something with it."
You're welcome to visit my blog any time. I love hearing how fellow writers are getting on so please drop by some time.

Awareness said...

Welcome Leigh and thank you for the kick in the ass. However, I'm not procrastinating. I'm actually tight for time. I have many topics and ideas lined up in my head ready and waiting to be written. But because I have a few other projects on the go right now, I can't give them the attention they warrant. Consequently they are coming out too one dimensional......ie, too depressing or too fluffy and no depth.

I would LOVE to hunker down without any interuptions to simply write, but my life doesn't work that way, especially this month. So.........instead, I wrote about the act of reflecting, which I wanted to write about. To me, it is a very important part of one's day, one's week, one's life, and the type of work I do.

So.....the kick in the ass is accepted and what I will do is use the incentive to complete the other projects as fast and as efficient as I can and then get down to capturing my ideas in writing for all the world to see.....

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

What an important examination on the value of reflection ... I will hold your words with me as I dip my bread. Peace & love, JP/deb

kenju said...

A thorough reflection, for me, is always achieved most easily by writing. If I record my activities, thoughts, revelations and emotions - I will see patterns and understand my life much better. I guess that's MY dipping.

Michele sent me.

BreadBox said...

Awareness, I'm with Leigh, and yet I am also very sympathetic: I know how hard it can be to get to the stage of actually writing the words --- I will, on occasion, do almost anything else but write.
You certainly don't need to worry about the quality of what you write --- even when I disagree with what you say I love the way you say it! And as for quantity, I think that you put out lots - if you need to kick back occasionally, you should:-)

N.

Awareness said...

Hey Deb......dip dip and swing.......oh wait a minute. I think that's a paddle you do that to.

Judy....It's amazing how the patterns can reveal themselves after writing for a while. Yes a thorough reflection for me is the same as you. Glad Michele sent you. :)

Hey Nice...WHAT? YOu don't always agree with me?
I truly am not procrastinating. I have written a few drafts of stories and they need some attention which I can't give them right now. I would give anything to sit down for more than a short period of time and write.....not avoiding...........really! I have overstretched..........

Presently, I'm coordinating a convention day for person who is vying for candidacy for the riding. This happens on Wed. And I'm assembling a variety of Christmas bazaar things......this event is on at the end of the month and it's a huge fundraiser for my son's school. I love getting involved in both activities......politics and crafty things seem to go hand in hand....

So...........am continuing on reviewing and editing previous work.....and looking for a chunk of time to finish a few of the stories.

ps. good to know you still like my writing when you don't agree with my ethereal topics. :)

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Why not write shorter pieces? My blog is full of them and I have a great time writing them.

Thanks for visiting -- nope, no hurricane bothering us here in Western PA, which is good 'cause we took the kids on what turned out to be a four-mile walk!

Hang in there. If the writing's meant to happen, you'll find a way.

BreadBox said...

Awareness, there is nobody in the world that I agree with all the time! Heck, I only aree with nyself 75% of the time!

N.

Awareness said...

hey Nice.....Heaven help anyone who completely agrees with me too......! I make stuff up as I go along. One has to factor in the bs right?

And Canucks are chock full of bs. it's the main ingredient in back bacon and poutine.