on paring down

paring down takes on many different forms.

for some, paring simply means saying “no” more, reducing schedules, and creating more time.

for others, paring means trimming the proverbial fat, ridding homes of excess furniture, trinkets, and objects, and maintaining a simple, straightforward lifestyle.

for still others, paring means enacting a complete overhaul, shaving down schedules, jobs, possessions, and living situations, enacting an all-out ban on excess.

for me, paring down means walking a delicate balance between living the way i’d like, and living safely and comfortably within the framework of my family.

in my home growing up, value was paramount. sure, the shirt might only last a year, but if it was on sale, that took precedence over quality.
sure, coupon cutting might mean purchasing items we’d never normally purchase, but if there was money to be saved (a loose definition, mind), that opportunity had to be leapt upon.

in my husband’s home, the opposite was true: any given table or surface is adorned in trinkets and artifacts, some of them glittering and expensive, others proclaiming status or achievements. value was not paramount… but nor was practicality.

in my own life, i want to find the medium. i want to spend responsibly, consume consciously, and consider my time far more precious than money or status.

so, we’ve begun. a composting bowl sits perched on our counter, ready and willing to be mixed with the earth, infusing the minuscule green buds bursting forth from the soil with life, energy, and fuel, and starting us on a path i’ve been to scared–and possibly too lazy–to truly, powerfully pursue.

on priorities

too often,

all too often,

i create my priorities based on the opinions and wants of others.

not my wants, my needs, my dreams.

but those of others. what others want for my life, my family. what others need from me. what others dream for me.

 

on feeling trapped

‘i like that you practice yoga.’

‘why?’

‘i love seeing your face just after you’ve finished. you look happy.’

we are, all of us, on a journey. birth is our beginning, death is our ending, and the journey is our middle.

journeys all look different. some are vibrant, colorful, vibrating with life and energy like plucked guitar strings, creating a beautiful melody.

some are monochrome, shrouded in shadow and slivers of light, occasionally low and occasionally high, but never between.

some are sheets of glass, dotted with colors, then black and white, then colors again, forever winding, forever transparent.

i struggle with this–the journey. despite all that life has offered me, has taught me, i still cling to a notion of arrival. of achievement. of sitting atop a mountain and looking around me to see that there are no more mountains to climb, no more hurdles to overcome.

i still struggle with loving the journey, rather than expecting a prolonged ending.

march 1st, and this year has not quite gone as planned. i mustered the courage to begin a beautiful journey… a road that is still beneath my feet, but bearing extremely different outcomes and processes. i started out hoping to conquer old fears, step into shoes i’d longed to occupy for years… only to have needs shift, priorities rearrange, reality settle in, a weight on my chest.

and perhaps that’s the most difficult part of it all: i do not hate these changes. i am not angry with them. often, i am grateful for them, and what they will mean for my family and for myself. but just as often, i feel lost, adrift in a sea alternately raging and calm, with dreams coming and going, some of them hanging around, some of them whispering of tomorrow, of a year from now.

just wait. they say. we’re coming. 

wait i will, ebbing and flowing, waxing and waning, a moon moving through cycles.