Should have had pen in hand when my ideas started to flow, as I savored a robust morning cup of coffee, Ethiopian from Trader Joe’s. Thoughts of life’s constraints and irritations tumbled about my mind, and a bit of frustration too. I had hoped to kick myself out the door for a long skipped pre-breakfast, multi-mile walk in the fresh air; but it was raining, and I decided not to walk in the rain because it would ruin my mascara and drench the clothes I intended to wear to my dad’s physical therapy session. Today, we practice transferring in and out of the car, and I am the “lifter.” This assignment fortified my commitment to lifting weights at the gym, as I’d fallen off track when my schedule changed after my father’s fall in mid-May.
Seeing the rain, the varied shades of green under pale blue-gray skies, gave me the cloak of security and peace. My property is enveloped in trees, so much so that Google Earth only shows a canopy of them from above. The grounds are carpeted with grass, shrubs of many varieties, and of course weeds. It is a haven for beautiful birds, colorful squirrels, and even a few ground hogs and raccoons. The inconvenience of rain actually provides the other living things in my yard their life. This balance I respect, for the world does not revolve around me. However, I can appreciate it through observation.
Another school year ends today; we hope to celebrate a couple graduations this weekend with Dad able to come out of the rehabilitation facility, and already we find ourselves planning for the fall term with three kids in college, two of them still living at home. Readying for the cycle of change to come, knowing a struggle to afford it awaits, I will relish my coffee, my ability to take care for my health, fitness, and family. The pleasure of choosing what time I will engage in work activities and graduation preparation bring me some sense of liberty and autonomy, because ultimately these all come under the domain of Choice.
We choose our perception, our attitude, our actions. It is the bane that we often succumb to habits and specifically habits of mind. Therein lies the constraints we perceive. Maybe when we sense this, it is useful to shake things up and rebel from monotony by doing things differently, freely, creatively. Life, even with constraints can offer us options. We should break free and use them.
I’ll start with breakfast!