I started reading “Rising Strong” by Brene Brown today. I pre-ordered it five months ago, and waited with anticipation for UPS to bring me this hard cover full of brilliantly insightful pages.
It was the first time I’ve ever looked forward to an eye examine, but I was lusting after the time in the waiting room where I could read. I started reading the introduction when it was time to move to the exam room. The nurse with the chocolate colored glasses asked me some questions, and started typing in her computer. The typing went on and on and I couldn’t help myself; I picked up my book and got to read a few more pages when she wanted my attention again. I decided that it was quite rude for me to think she was interrupting me, when actually, I was there for her to look into my eyes. I put my book back in my purse, and waited to be with it again.
The last thing I can remember was nestling into my bed, where the sheets were incredibly soft and the space felt warm. Five hours passed, and now I’m awake. I wonder if five hours of sleep will be enough to last through today? I started to witness the battle between my body feeling incredibly comfortable and the marathon my mind was running. I started making a list of these runaway thoughts, as if lining them up would slow down their momentum.
1) What will I wear today? Jeans and boots for my walk on that client's property or my patent leather green driving mocs that make me feel happy.
2) Have a meeting with that co-worker
3) Call that committee member and talk about the next steps
4) Buy that birthday present for this weekend’s party
5) Tell Sam that time stood still when he and Kennedy went for a bike ride at 6:00am yesterday
6) Don’t eat onions at dinner again; they keep you awake
7) Call that client
8) Share that flyer with your friends who might be interested
9) Read those 3 books that just showed up today
10) Never forget what it felt like when you watched Eric and Kennedy ride the Gator tonight. Her hands up in the air, screaming. His generous smile.
I think reason and logic get distorted in the middle of the night because I literally heard the book on my dining room table calling for me. “Everyone is asleep, it’s the perfect time to read me. I am excited to spend some time with you. Please come hold me!”
While I heard the books’ call, I also felt an intense attachment to the sheets and pillow. But the turning over and over was getting more and more frustrating. I put my feet on the ground and rushed to the book. I picked up my glasses and made my way to the room upstairs to nestle into another bed, under another warm blanket.
Yesterday, I listened to Elizabeth Gilbert’s podcast, “Magic Lessons.” She was talking with a woman who was creatively burdened, and Liz’s advice was to get sexy, dirty and naughty with her creatively. At first I thought it was the most ridiculous advice, but the more I listened I felt attracted to it.
I thought about this as I turned on the light next to my bed and opened my book. Everyone around me is asleep, and yet I’m engaging with words, yet again: the words in the books I read; the words in the stories I write. Words are my life’s oldest companion, and when I’m not reading something exhilarating or writing something courageously, I begin to long for the companionship. I'm borrowing this phrase from Mama Gena because the sentiment feels exactly right. The writing seems to have "been busting a hole in my soul" for years; a seduction almost.
I feel passionately alive when I connect with other people and we share brave stories. It helps me make meaning out of circumstances and set intentions for my life. And so my love affair begins.
I'm going to wear my green mocs today.