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Sunday, May 17, 2009

To Get One Thing Done

The older I get, the more life reminds me of a framed puzzled. You know the kind, where there are 15 pieces and 16 spaces and you move the pieces around to get them in the right spot. You always have to move every piece to get one piece in place, then two, and so on. It gets tedious and frustrating and can feel hopeless and stupidifying [is that a word? ; } ].

Nothing on earth freaks me out more than frustration. Death, destruction, financial ruin I know how to cope without much ado. But when I see a solution to a problem and the key element is in a framed puzzle, my brain implodes and I lose patience altogether.

This isn't just in one instance in my life right now, either. It seems to be a theme that I'm meant to deal with and figure out. Meditation is good, but doesn't stop that nagging "Godammit!" thing every time something new turns into yet another framed puzzle.

This deal has even become an issue in my itsy bitsy apartment. There is no storage space here; one closet in which stands a water heater doesn't do it for 50 years of crap collecting, much less clothing. I've given away more than I own at this point and don't accumulate things on purpose. Even so, my own home is at the point of being a framed puzzle. It's become even more complicated with limited abilities. Where repotting a plant is a 6 or 7 step process for most peep, it's a 26 step project for me.

So, I'm changing things. Change the puzzle and voila! you have space to negotiate. There are limits- I can't make my apartment bigger, but I can get rid of things that have become obstacles. I try to not invest emotions in material things in general, which makes giving them away quite easy. Still I own some things I'd never willingly part with, but those are distilling, refining perhaps, to the useful and the mirth-giving. Clothes that don't fit? Bye! Books I won't read again or have reread too many times? Outta here. This is my mission lately, to live more simply and without impediments. I have plenty of bureaucracy to fulfill any sick need I may have for complexus.

Which gives me a new view of growing older. I was almost grieving at watching my parents all do this over the years. My Father's apartment seemed so Spartan to me when he died and my brother and I cleaned it out. When my Stepfather died 18 months after my Mother, there was little to keep from their house, compared to the years of life and family there'd been. I understand now.

What I've got to guard against is my judgment of people my own age who are still gathering material things. It's in me. A kind of haughty snobbery that somehow I'm maturing faster than they, and they don't "get it" yet. One of my innumerable faults. Just because I don't need a houseful of stuff doesn't make it bad that someone else does. To each their own bliss. There's gotta be a profound jealousy or denial in me that I haven't dug out yet. But I will.

Another tool I'm using is handing the reins over to someone else who can get a thing done faster than I. If something should be done and it's too tough for me, I'll gladly toss the ball to a more capable hand. It never mattered to me that I get credit for an idea or solution, which makes it easier. All that really matters is that the problem, or idea, gets to fruition and resolution. Some sage said that so much more would be done if nobody cared for the credit of its doing. I believe that and keep that in mind as much as possible.

2 comments:

MoonRaven said...

I know only too well what you mean by too much stuff.

But I really, really like that last bit. Yeah, do what you need to do and don't worry about the credit. If you can do that, you are really helping the world change.

Austan said...

You've been an inspiration for some of this, Moonie. I've always clearly known & seen the Buddha Nature in you. As they say, stick with those who are something you want to be. It's something I wish I'd learned long ago; instead of trying to help those who are miserable and happy being so, just be who you are and with those who want a better life, and you'll all rise together.