Don’t Mind My Busy Body

Certainly was a different time. Decades ago, to be frank. That very tree is gone, the uncomfortable sneaks and entire outfit were standard early 80’s, and those shades I remember well. This wasn’t a senior picture portfolio shoot or young men’s magazine ad modeling submission (thank heavens 😉). It’s just a young me standing beside a tree … doing absolutely nothing.

… And I honestly believe it was the last time I did that.

Somehow I learned how to be busy all the time soon after this picture was taken. A skill lasting well into my 6th decade of life. A wonderful journey, of course, since then. Up, down, and every plausible direction in between has been a bucket of moments spilling over into channels of lifelong memories. Being busy, active, and engaged in life – with people, especially – is a certain, special kind of constant immersion I’m glad life has afforded me.

There was the loss of loved ones, disappointment and happiness, financial want and success, sickness and healing, learning, rejection … all at the hands of others – and I would not exchange one second for something different. Out of each experience came a better me, if necessary. If not, I remained active in educating myself: understanding the “why” as I’ve written about previously.

“Why” is important to me. Yeah, probably just to me, but this keeps my mind busy. To a fault, I need to understand the “why” behind a lot of crazy that stirs in my busy stew pot even today. Folks make decisions that indirectly, or directly, make my life go, “Huh?”, and I ask myself, “Why you do that?” as they merrily go on their way giving it no second thought. I busily stew unnecessarily. It is an acquired skill. Ruminating over their ruthlessness is still worthwhile, in my opinion, because stress is released into the universe. In addition, weight is lost pacing endlessly back and forth over well-worn tread marks in the carpet.

Tonight, I had such a moment. The end of my evening event presented a “why” moment as a conversation went nowhere. Three explanations hit a brick wall. I couldn’t get my point across to save all the mustard left in China’s largest squeeze bottle. She just didn’t hear my words and listen to what I was saying. So frustrating. Why? Why did she make the decision earlier that affected my business so negatively? Why didn’t she understand my possible remedy for the future? Why did I walk away feeling disrespected?

People are still people. I’m no different, but I do know what I know. Nice is nice. Mistakes happen. I’m busy seemingly all the time and make goof-ups appear normal. I get it. Understanding others’ motivations or reasons for what they do, however, scrambles my brain – keeping me really busy all the freakin’ time.

All the time educating myself on how to better handle these situations.

It will be my “busy” for however many decades I have left on this spinning large blue, weird-shaped ball. I’ll never completely understand why people do what they do. I have a sense that I’m not supposed to, either. In the end, what would be the point of it, anyway? The process of learning how to better cope with frustration and disappointment? Maybe. The “whys?” are almost always associated with downslopes and dismays, so …🤔

Being busy, active, and engaged with people, like I wrote, is my thing – my lifeline to experiences I need to have. With those come the inevitable breakdowns that force the “whys” into existence. Yeah, sure … sometimes even “Why me?” jumps out of the pot and I don’t have an an answer from me to me. Go figure.

It’s all good, though. I don’t want to go back to the early 80’s. I want my hair and health back from those days, however, and possibly the cool shades. I also want my mom back who took the picture.

All of those are not possible, of course. Time doesn’t return. It moves forward … constantly reminding us of our limited time to grow, learn, and experience all we can.

I should start asking “why?” to learn about the virtuous surrounding me. Focusing on “why is there so much good in the world?” may be a better use of my busy mind than pressing more carpet flatly into the floor. Understanding that people are just people and do their people-thing up to their current ability may be the best path forward. Experiencing the experience of a life lived while doing absolutely nothing would be wonderful to revisit once again.

Probably with a more comfortable pair of sneakers this time.

S’pots and S’pans

I love how light bounces off these four lids. Yes, the kahlua bottle proudly standing in the background reflects an inner beauty as well, but I’m referring to “being lit” in a less colloquial sense. Literally, I love the way four identical scenes glide from one to the other on sleds of light … as the pan toppers gradually increase in size. Remarkable.

Reflecting back on my life, it has been a remarkable journey – as I’m sure yours has been as well. All of our forward steps stack up against each other’s timelines quite impressively … with none being better, or worse, than another. We are equal. The air we breath has no discrimination attached. The ground upon which we walk knows no color, race, or gender.

S’pots dot our past, as individuals – of course they do. We’ve made mistakes along the way. Our S’pan of time on this big, blue marble, thus far, has shown us when and where we could have done better. Hopefully we didn’t repeat those mistakes, but, if your experience(s) was/were like mine, I bet you did. It’s being human.

Life’s a big ‘ole pain in the butt most times – doing the same crazy little s’pots over and over again. The trick is not smooshing our thoughts around them so much as it is focusing on all the wonderful things we did right along the way.

First of all, you were born. If you weren’t, I find it highly unlikely you’d be reading these words. Birth is a remarkable process. This was something that went right in your life. Granted, YOU had nothing to do with the process and, perhaps, there was a bottle of kahlua emptied nine months prior. Regardless, the universe decided it was time to introduce you to grass stains on your knees, toes on table legs in the dark, and income taxes. Your S’pan began.

Friendships started to develop. Some of these you did inspire and have lasted breathful years so far. Maybe they started spontaneously over pre-school bright, colorful Crayola crayons sprayed over a large white swath of paper. You, as well as I, drew sticks with heads, trees with odd shaped leaves, and tilted roof houses while laughing crazily with other little gigglers, soon to be classmates twelve years hence.

Playground plays, elementary experimental years s’potted us a few scrapes and bruises to our Easy Reader brains. T’was all good. Friends stood by our side. Even Captain Kangaroo kept his promises while Sesame seeds sprouted good feelings along a very familiar Street where a happy grouch lived and a big yellow bird taught us to love one another.

Middle school push throughs prompted awkward s’pans. Friendships strained a bit. Parental controls turned up the heat under the s’pots previously resting comfortably on warm, gentle simmers. We s’lid into teenage years unaware of the hazards facing the young, specifically, as facial recognition software would have been so, so helpful to the cause. Yes, zit would have!!

Counting down to marvelous matriculation meant meandering through hallways with books under arms … passing by the very friends, met years ago, occupied by their own intelligences. Wasn’t ever anything to put a lid on, or hide under solitary expectations. Just pre-mature adulthood s’pots we worked through. Crayola crayons were replaced with more permanent markers for our lives as the normal for four years. The Freshness melted slowly into Soph-ness… Juniority would eagerly jump into Senior status. Then life changed.

Adulthood at the stoop of a door into college, trade school, the military, or directly into the work-a-day world. Finding a husband, or a wife … or a baby on the way.

Then we began the cycle for the next generation of crayon crunchers. All good for whatever filled the time routine offered us up until the “now”. All during our individual s’pans of time on this big blue marble, right? All of these things are good, right? Remarkable reflections when we take time to think about them and not the s’pots that dot our past.

Our lives glide from one experience to another … seamlessly, yet we remain the same. Just like the reflections on the lids – each experience different in size, one on top of another, day after day.

These lids do serve to cover up s’pots at times that happen in our s’pans – and that’s o.k.. We’re given the wonderful opportunity to be human; thus, the magic of a full kahlua bottle, available vessel, and soft music at times, I guess.

In the end, it is only four beautifully round, very functional pieces of stainless steel teaching one simple lesson to us all: We’re doing the best we can. Period.

Reflect upon that next time you see a lid with your beautifulness staring back at you. It’s quite remarkable.