The Little Engine That Could

Friday, September 18, 2009

Gym and Spiriual Reconnection

Yesterday morning I went to the gym and ENJOYED it. I did legs and then walked/ran for 48 minutes. Today I am a bit sore, but the nice thing is that I got a lot of stuff done yesterday-- namely nails and toes.

I went to a sister Circle last night. Now before people get all weird on me, this circle is just a gathering of women who are taking 2 hours out for themselves to honor the women that have gone before them. It has nothing to do with witches and warlocks and Harry Potter-ish things.

Think a puritan gathering of women who come together to sing and share and laugh and create.

I forgot how much I enjoy that. The candles, the sage, the calm of being in the presence of other women who are honoring themselves by creating intentions for the month on the New Moon. It's like wishing on a star, a little girl wishes being told to her best friend, and going back to a much simpler time.

Last night was a guided meditation on what we have forgotten, that part of ourselves that we have left abandoned. I found my creativity again. It was just waiting for me, and I picked it up and dusted it off, and so now it's with me.

Along the line from my move from So Cal to NYC (14 years ago), I decided that I needed to be grown up and not be creative. I decided that having a real job that makes money that gives me the life I want was more important than being creative. But really, I decided that my creativity wasn't worth money-- that I couldn't make a living being creative-- whether that's writing, singing, dancing, painting, acting, comedy, sculpting, etc etc. And because of that decision, I left my creativity up on a shelf in a room I moved out of long ago.

So when I was doing this meditation, I found that although there have been times when I have transformed my creativity to suit the job, and have written/ sang/ danced/ etc off and on, that I haven't cultivated it. I haven't given myself the gift of what I love to do-- to be expressed artistically. At the time I abandoned it, I felt that since I couldn't make money "being creative" then I had to let it go. Which now I know is not necessarily the case. Do I have to give up swimming or cooking or anything else I love to do because I can't make a living doing it? No. I can keep cultivating my creativity, feeding it, watering it, and letting it be-- to grow into something great.

I feel connected.

Merry meet, merry part, merry meet again.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Me meet Old Me

Over the weekend, James decided to clean the apartment, which of course freaked me out. I mean, he moved in with me, so I should clean, because the place still very much feels "mine". And I for sure should clean because I am home all day, although I am interneting, interviewing, phone calling and job searching. But I am HOME ALL DAY so it should be done by me, right?

James explained that he too lives here, and wanted to clean and straighten the mess, not "my" mess, not "his" mess, but "the" mess. Our mess. So away he went, I worked on the kitchen for a moment, the office for a while, the closet, and then left him to clean the bedroom-- pulling furniture away from the walls, sorting out the garage sale stuff from the just throw it out stuff. During the course of his cleaning, he came across my trunk of journals.

He's asked before if he could read them, and I've said no. I don't mind him reading my work, but he only knows the new me, I don't want him to see the old me. I don't mind showing him pictures of old me, or having friends tell stories of my antics, or trying to explain to him my mindset I used to have, but I can't have him read my very very intimate thoughts. From just past college to now. He put the trunk in the corner and started piling things on it for the sale.

Yesterday morning, I went through each page from Sept 1995 through just before surgery. The sum of my thoughts and words are:
"I am going to lose weight, a pound a week, exercise more, quit smoking, get off the couch, start a diet"
"I failed at my diet, losing weight, exercising, I'm still smoking, etc"
"I hate that I am alone"
"My so called friends are anything but"
"I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up"
"I hate myself, my body, my decisions, my apartment, my roomates, my lack of roomates, my boss/schedule/job/commute etc"

The old me worked through so much garbage on self-esteem. She made plans and deadlines and goals. She wanted to be 260 (which is what I am about) and be able to run (I can) be a non-smoker (I am) have a boyfriend (I do) and have a job beyond her wildest dreams (I did, and am currently uncovering that again). I wonder if old me actually worked on this stuff, or just declared it.

Old me on her way to the new me created possibilities, she took courses that changed the way she looked at herself and life, she met people that impacted her existence and sometimes gave her a purpose much larger than herself, she learned to be an amazing coach in life and career, ask for what she wants, not lie, etc. Old me was the one that chose to get weight loss surgery. Little did she know she signed her death warrant.

New me appeared. She slowly got more confident, unrecognizable, pretty, thinner, older and wiser. New me is fun and frolicky, she has energy and everything she puts in her mouth she thinks about. She no longer eats automatically-- she thinks about food as fuel first and then taste. She takes her vitamins, she pays attention to her body and the aches and pains. She reads up on health, mental and physical, and works on her well-being. She says "no" way more often, doesn't feel guilty all the time, and has a solid relationship based on trust, fidelity and love. She has a good idea about what she wants her life to look like beyond just losing weight.

She is also scared that her new addiction is red wine and she is taking steps to correct that.

New me, meet old me. As I was reading my words I got so confronted that I lived that way for so many years. It's just a tape in my head, and it's playing it's greatest hits with me now-- along with a few new ones-- you haven't lost all your weight, you only made it to a size 18W, you should have done more, done better, etc. You should have never started smoking, drinking, eating ice cream, testing out pasta/bread/sugar. I can eat it all, minus very oily things, and not have an issue. You should you should you should.

That's all part of the old me trying to resurface. The new me says you made it to your old me goals. Now, time for new ones. Ones that are meaningful to you. Ones that are about life, work, relationships, health. Ones that have nothing to do with "when i get to this weight i"ll be...." and then fill in the blank. I am healthy, active, and strong. I have very slight amounts of being down, and yet that road is always just a turn off the highway of my life. I don't want to dwell there. Just visit when it's necessary to re-group.

I went through the journals. Ripped out the important things I wanted to keep. Tossed out the stuff that was old me, old negative me. The half filled journals, the directions on pages to places i'll never go again, the old phone numbers to people I can't remember how I know them, notes from classes taken long ago. I kept a very small box of things that were important to me.

It's not like I am trying to get rid of that old me. I just don't need her past clouding up my future. I know I will not go back to read most of it, so out it went. And it felt good.

The only room in the house that is not clean is the office. It's time. Oh boy, it's time.

I might let James read the old stuff I kept. Perhaps.