Sunday, March 19, 2017
Notice What I Notice
Judging by the suns position and the activity on this Caribbean, I figure it must be 10 am. I mentally take note of this not to record the the time, but as a confirmation in my personal growth. Matters not really what time it is, but what matters is reaching a milestone point in my life where I no longer wear or feel the need to wear a watch. As well, I make a conscious effort to keep my "Smartie Pants Crack-berry" phone parked in pocket and ignored as much as possible. Mindfulness meditation is a wonderful teacher. Yet there remains plenty of "pruning" to be done in letting go of the digital distractions, and becoming more mindful in every moment. My shears are out in full.
"Notice what you notice" has become a mantra of mine. I try to practice this gospel, and kick ass and pull myself back when I stray. Did my deafness start me on this journey I wonder? Did my utter and profound deafness/silence which arrived overnight ten years ago put me on this journey? Or is it an inner unconscious reaction to being in the remains of my day/my 4th quarter/the late innings in my game?
I sit on this beach now and mentally divide my life into quarters. If I live to 80, then that puts me in my last quarter. Even as I write the word "last", I do so slowly to make it "last". Is this my answer to the why and how I want to slow down the moments, and notice everything I notice?
In my first quarter (birth to 20 years old) life is carefree for the most part. The second quarter is the "Better get my shit together" before half time. Go into a hurry up offense before the 40 mark arrives. After all who wants to be 40 and a loser? But for me, and perhaps most, the second quarter has the carefree exuberance of enjoying life at 75 MPH.
So why is it that I feel that I missed (there is that word again) so much by traveling at the "speed of life" in my "Q2"? I was 29 years old when my Father passed away. I don't recall being tremendously sad, but it was not a happy moment either.
It was what it was.
Where these feelings a result of me not taking the time to know my Dad? To take note of his life's accomplishments, and question him on his story, rather than focus on his failures as a Father? Was it a selfish reaction from being a son of an alcoholic, and finally being being free of the questions from my school mates: "So, what does your Dad do? Where does he live? I saw him lying a field last night, is he okay or just a Drunk?"
Answering those questions in a truthful way was cause for embarrassment, so perhaps my non-reaction to his untimely death at 59 years of age was indeed selfish.
Now in my 60th year, I have outlived my father. I find no real significance in the number 60, nor do I take any joy in outliving my Father. My marvel comes from taking almost 60 years to reach this stage stage of serenity and acceptance.
Am I where I want to be? No. My journey has not ended. But I know (or think I know) where my growth has to come from. I know which branches need pruning.
This in itself is an achievement
It is what it is