Today has been one of those days where things are just alive with cohesion and ease. You know those days? Those few-and-far-between-days?
It was my first day back to normal after the relaxed schedule that the holidays afforded us. I’ve been sick for the past week and yesterday was the first day I’ve felt really alive in a while. Today I’m nearly completely back to normal save for some residual sniffles. So I was really really excited to get back into the swing of things. Fall into routine again. I expected that it would be a tough day. I expected that I would have to force myself to work and that it would be clunky and stupid and I would be frustrated.
There is a voice that doesn’t use words. Listen. –Rumi
I really want 2018 to become the year that I learn how to find, recognize, and work with my flow, so this morning I just practiced it. I let the dog out, put on a pot of coffee, sat down at my desk and thought, “what next? What’s going to get me into a creative space?” So I pulled out my journal and started writing. And it went exactly the way I hoped it would on my most ideal day. One page about, “I don’t know what to write about” leading into another page about the dry, desolate plainscape that is Kansas in January where every comfort is man made. The the polar (pun intended) opposite of Kansas in August. Isn’t it delicious?
I filled two pages and thought what do I need next? I wanted to change my clothes but first I needed a shower. I needed a shower but first I wanted to move my body for a while. So I moved my body for a while and really paid attention to how it felt. How it felt to sweat and how it felt to move gracefully and how it felt to support myself and be caring of myself. How it felt to strip off my clothes and step into a hot shower filled with eucalyptus. I even put my dirty clothes in the laundry basket. Can you even?
And then, since we did laundry last night and I had the pick of every single thing in my entire wardrobe, I got to stand in front of my closet and wonder, “what exactly do I want to put on my body today?” What fabrics do I want to feel on my skin, what colors do I want to glimpse out of my field of vision? I settled on leggings (for full range of motion) and a striped t-shirt and cozy socks.
Just now, I ate a bowl of vegetarian chili and I didn’t eat more than I needed and I didn’t multi-task as I was eating. I was mindful and grateful and thanked past-me for making leftovers for current-me to enjoy. It felt so good. I feel so in-tune with my body and my mind and my needs right now. Like I’m firing on all cylinders.
I’m watching a big black dog run through the back yard behind our house. I love, love watching big dogs run fast. It’s alive-making. Have you ever watched a dog run as fast as it can just for the joy of it? I feel like I’m in tune with that dog, today.
After this, I’m going to sit on the floor and do a guided meditation for creativity before I start working on my other projects. This is what flow feels like, today. This is what I’m like when I’m my very, very best self.
AND also–I know that this is not ordinary. Mornings–especially first-day-back-mornings, are usually at least a little bit annoying. In fact, you’re probably annoyed right now just hearing about how my day is teeming with perfection. I know, if I wasn’t so perfectly mindful and zen right now, I’d be at least a little annoyed at my own self (this is where I’m tempted to employ a winky face emoji).
I could make a mental note to decide to do exactly everything the exact same way that I did this morning so that everything will always feel this good and perfect every single day. And I’ll do those things. And there will be days when things *don’t* go so great. And I’ll get so frustrated because I did everything right. I’ll have ruined this great day by making an example out of it when I could just sit back and soak it in and feel gratitude for the good days.
There’s still a second half of the day ahead of me. A day when I’ll have to work with the general public and when I’ll rely on things outside of my own control to happen in order for me to be able to get to places and do things and there are a hundred things that may go wrong. And they can. Maybe they won’t but they could.
Because things just happen and we respond however we respond and that’s what we’re in charge of. Sometimes the coffee is a little more bitter than you like it and some days you’re wearing that pair of underpants that slides down all day and some days there’s an ache in your neck that you can’t get rid of and some days someone said something so outrageous that you have to talk about it on the internet. I don’t say that to scold us into having better attitudes at all. Do whatever you’re gonna do. But let’s recognize the ownership we have over every moment that we’re in.
Even if the rest of my day happens as seamlessly as the beginning did, there’s still tomorrow. Tomorrow might be hard. In fact, it probably will be quite hard. Especially with a great day like today so fresh in the back of my mind to compare it to. And that’s fine. Every day is a new day with new challenges and new opportunities.
I’m my best self in this very moment right now and so that’s why I’m writing this to remind me, when I’m not my best self, it’s okay to have shitty days. Sometimes our shitty days are just that–just a wash and we’ll be glad when they’re over. But sometimes our shitty days are invitations. Invitations to change. Invitations to take ownership over our moments.
This is me on a good day.