This has NOTHING to do with MS, and everything to do with everything else in my life…
Life is nothing but a series of choices. Some of us make the choices and blame everyone else around when the choices have consequences that we don’t want to face. Some of us are aware that every choice comes with consequences and are able to face the music, learn and move on as necessary.
I have made choices. Some good, like finishing school, some nearly disastrous, like most everything from the moment to move to Washington that would have cost me my life if not for my friends and family. It cost me my boy cat’s life—which to me was far worse—but today I am home, today I am with my family, today I am alive, today my girl cat is with me, today 10 puppies [3.5 of them I have adopted] are a refreshing addition to my life, today I still have my job and today I found a card that my friend Teri gave me last year at work. She wrote me this quote by Benjamin Franklin, “If a man empties his purse into his head, no one can take it from him”. In the same box that I had stored her card I found another quote, this one by Cervantes, “Believe there are no limits but the sky”. And another, by Emma Jameson, “When we do face the difficult times we need to remember that circumstances don’t make a person they reveal a person”. Enter the Law of Diminishing Returns. Personal Excellence gives an excellent explanation of what it is, as it relates to business. But it applies to life in general as well… Think of relationships when you read this next bit:
“If you continue adding more input despite diminishing returns, you will reach a stage where not only do you not get a positive return for every extra input, but you decrease your overall output!”
The last four years may be considered by some—especially me—to have been THE difficult times. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t all bad. There was just enough bright sprinkled in to keep hope alive…for the most part. I did get my job, and met some truly wonderful people. I developed an affinity for nature walks, I rediscovered my green thumb. But I lived in the 20th Circle of Hell, if Dante’s Inferno (Divine Comedy, Poem by Dante Alighieri) had gone that far down, and if it wasn’t a circle of my own making. When all was said and done, the message to me was “reboot”.
I could have rebooted at any point in the last 3 months, but I didn’t want to reboot, I wanted to crash and reformat, and completely eradicate the Crap Fest that started June 5, 2011 from my life. But that would mean I would reject the dear friends that came into my life during that time. It would mean that any personal or spiritual progress that I have made during that time would also be erased. So then I decided to take the good, to take the bad, to take them both, learn from the facts of life, grow and avoid the same pitfalls in the future. Like my mother said before I made that disastrous move, “you cannot save everyone.” Shit, I can barely save myself! And in the end, my only responsibility IS to save myself. Having said that…
Living in the past is extremely counterproductive. So is false hope. This is how The Chopra Center defines the Law of Detachment: “In detachment lies the wisdom of uncertainty . . . in the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom from our past, from the known, which is the prison of past conditioning. And in our willingness to step into the unknown, the field of all possibilities, we surrender ourselves to the creative mind that orchestrates the dance of the universe.”
I haven’t been all that willing. So the last three months have been an exercise in futility. Hoping against hope that I could recover “things”. Once my Mind accepted the impossibility of that thought, I was able to start accepting that maybe, just maybe, the Universe was just opening the door for new and better things to come.
I have gone back and forth trying to decide if I want to completely give up on graphic design. I haven’t decided yet, but it’s weighing heavily on my mind. Heavily enough that I have unpublished my Facebook page. The only designs that I never got to finish were a poster I wanted to design for my mother and a set of books inspired by my grandfather. It makes me sad because those designs were near and dear to my heart. What the hell, they ARE. But some things are not meant to be.
I can travel. I dusted off my old bucket list and remembered that I’ve dreamed of going to Norway, Scotland and Ireland, and Italy. I’ve recently added India to the list.
I have thought of taking up French again, even though I really want to try Italian now, and maybe Greek.
I want to go kayaking.
I want to re-awaken my tropical green thumb.
I want to take my dogs to the beach.
I want to experience so many things that I couldn’t before! I can live up to the idea that my life is unlimited, I AM a goddess in training. And so it is.