The truth be told, most days I just wander around. I read and think and connect the dots of different ideas that come my way and before I know it I’ve missed lunch and forgotten to make a snack for pick up, I haven’t planned dinner, gone to the grocery store, paid the bills or filled the car up with gas. I’ve likely read a few articles, parts of books, joined in on a few conversations about positive psychology, read some snarky FB posts written by some supremely sardonic and sarcastic “friends” who’s humor I adore but could never muster myself and if I am lucky I’ve written down a few fleeting thoughts about what I find interesting, what I’ve discovered in my daily life as a 7am to 3:00pm isolate, and what I have learned as a “Kitchen Counter Academic.”
All of this would be just fine if it were not for the fact that I have a family that I love and adore. A difficult, intense, intelligent, amazing, active and exhausting family. In my whole life I am not sure I have ever fully understood what having a family means. There are even some days when I hear the word mom being directed at me and I realize that in fact I am the one being addressed. I am taken aback, beautiful children, mine, calling me “mom” with affection or irritation, anger or curiosity. It reminds me of the lines in a Talking Heads song….
“And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
And you may ask yourself
Well…How did I get here?”
And so I begin to think that this must not be the expected experience, this dismissive and preoccupied attachment… this must be unusual.
Is it unusual? I don’t know… Is it a particularly unhealthy experience? I don’t know…. Is it familiar and comfortable? damn straight. Is it good for my family? maybe not…. so now what?
When I was a kid I used to have a recurring dream that the house was on fire, the dream always took place in the middle of the night. I’d go to my parents bed and try over and over again with all of my might to wake my parents… to warn them that the house was burning… but I could never get more than just a groan in response. It was terrifying and I woke unheard, unnerved and exhausted.
The last thing I want for myself and my family is to feel that I am unavailable, inattentive, and that the people I love are not heard or honored, valued or loved. Both spiritually and intellectually what I know is that the only way for that not to happen is to set my intention to be present, act in that intention and reflect on whether or not I have kept my word by living out that intention. So all of this crazy rambling is to do just that… call attention to this intention, to understand the experience of having an attached family and of building relationships who’s foundations are built on listening, being honored and valued, and loved… truly, deeply, consciously and mindfully loved.
That’s the plan, no surprise!