Hiatus

Anyone that knows me, knows I’m not a reclusive person. Not by nature anyway. But as the curtain began to close on this year, I realized I needed to pause and to clear my ever incessant mind. This meant making less time consuming plans with others, shutting down electronics more often, and spending much more (and much needed) time at home. I set out to accomplish tasks that only i bestowed upon myself and to go about them as thoroughly or as apathetically as I chose; then to spend some days in my pajama’s with no intentions or guilt whatsoever. I took the longest consecutive time off of work that I’ve taken in close to three years. Reminding myself of the scant periods of time in my adult life where there weren’t places to rush off to and endless tasks looming. I needed to sort of just exist for a few weeks, to almost purposely be uninspired for a time, as I knew a great deal of reflection and refocusing was just around the corner. The continuation of my search and accumulation of substance from within myself, others, experiences, books, nature…the list is endless.

I was able to enjoy a little time away with my children, and for that I’m most grateful. A few days away from responsibility to spoil them and remind myself of my greatest role in life, that of being a Mother. Their Mother.

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(Outside of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The same spot I posed with them one year prior.) 

And waking up to the colors of the sunrise reflecting off of the bay from our room was a wonderful way to spend a quiet morning before the kids awoke.

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Along with a little getaway, I was able to begin my quest to de-clutter. The truth in this statement motivating my slow but steady realignment:

“Clutter is not just the stuff on the floor – it’s anything that stands between you and the life you want to be living” – Peter Walsh

I put an effort into the physical aspect of this, attempting to make my home more organized and paying bills a quicker process. However, one of those not so physical area’s of “clutter” I have been able to identify for some time is social media. Not only the amount of time wasted checking it repeatedly, but scrolling, commenting, and the pointless articles that I would get sucked into reading. I realized, unfortunately, that many of the people I was connected with truly had very little to say or offer. The overabundance of negativity, perpetual crudeness, and the endless “test results” posted of what I’m sure comprise of about five recycled answers as to “How many kids will you have”, “When will you get married”, “What are your greatest attributes”, “What celebrity do you look like”…etc, etc. None of it was adding any substance to my life, in fact, it was doing the opposite. So of the two social media accounts I have, I’ve deleted one and plan to delete the app of the other off of my phone after I save the pictures I want and make a permanent decision to delete it.

“When I loved myself enough, I began leaving whatever wasn’t healthy. This meant people, jobs, my own beliefs, and habits – anything that kept me small. My judgement called it disloyal. Now I see it as self-loving.” – Annonymous. This sentiment fully describes what I’ve come to appreciate about my life, my world. It is mine, and mine alone to create, fulfill, nurture, and mold. I don’t owe anyone an explanation as to the decisions I make on a personal level, nor should I ever feel guilty about taking a hiatus at times. A step back from society in general to regroup and restore myself.

I hope everyone reading has had a wonderful, positive end to 2016 and that 2017 is everything you want it and make it to be.

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Immersion

I have been reading a lot lately about the concept of immersion in relation to creative non-fiction writing. You find a subject of interest and then immerse yourself in that culture/trade/way of life, whatever it may be. In memoir style writing, YOU ARE the subject. You are essentially immersing yourself in your own life. Not in a “head in the sand” type of way (unaware of what’s going on in the world surrounding you, or uninterested, caring only for yourself). Rather, in this refreshing, self-enlightened kind of way, albeit incredibly vulnerable at times. You learn what made you, what moves you…tapping into memories, emotions, hesitations, and ambitions that shape you in one way or another.

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When you lose someone close to you suddenly, you begin to think about all of the lingering questions you wish you would have asked them and the stories that were yet to be told. That was, in part, the reason for me to begin writing…the realization that there were many adventures and tales unique to my Father that died with him. Narratives I will never be privy to. I decided I didn’t want the same to be true of myself. And then, as if to cement that way of thinking, I came across the following piece of advice: “Start telling the stories that only you can tell, because there’ll always be better writers than you and there’ll always be smarter writers than you. There will always be people who are much better at doing this or doing that – but you are the only you.” – Neil Gaiman.

One definition of immersion is “deep mental involvement”. In a world that’s become obsessed with being “involved” in the lives of others (even those they’ve never met), the idea of developing a deep mental involvement in my own life, an awakened consciousness, is a concept I’ve welcomed with open arms. Something I truly hope sticks with me through the remainder of my life, whether that life includes a future in writing or not. It’s something I want my children to observe and to learn because what this world lacks greatly, is compassion. And I believe compassion cannot be shown without understanding, and understanding can’t be achieved without consciousness and recognition. We understand others when we can relate in some way, either with feelings or experiences, aspects of ourselves that we must learn to be in tune with if we wish to tap into them for the better good.

To write about something, actually, to write WELL about something, one must have a level of interest that mirrors passion. I have, through this process, become  increasingly passionate about my life…how, where, and with whom I spend it, and most importantly, how I view it. As my immersion deepens, I have found the following state of being to be less and less elusive:

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And that is what I wish for anyone that is reading this. Now, and for the coming New Year.

 

Wordless Wednesday

The tranquility of nature….

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North Lake Tahoe, October 2015

 

*Side Note* So apparently I stick to a challenge about as good as I stick to a diet (haha). Totally failed with the third day of the quote challenge! Got super busy with work then took some time off for the holiday and to accomplish some projects around my home (which I actually succeeded at), to make my life a bit more organized/put together. I missed reading all of your posts and connecting with you, but definitely needed the little break from electronics that I was afforded. Hope everyone enjoyed time with their loved ones last week and I’m hoping to catch up on what I’ve missed from all of you talented people!