I was going to write about ikigai, but I found an exercise related to it and I’d like to plow through it a time or two and see what comes up first. So instead, I shall mention that this is the anniversary of my first day at a job where I had spent not quite half my life, based on when that company outsourced my department and we started working for someone else.
My first year at Burning Man, I convinced myself I’d keep a journal, or at least make notes, and then write up a blog post or three about my experiences.
Didn’t happen. When I thought about it, I tended to be in the middle of something else, and when I wasn’t actually doing something/going somewhere, it never occurred to me that hey! Now would be a good time to make some notes! So of course I planned to make up for lost time last year and absolutely take loads of photos and get out my journal and…
That didn’t happen either.
But today, you get a Burning Man post about a small thing from the outside that meant a whole lot more on the inside.
Namely and to wit, as one of my friends called it when I told her about it at Thanksgiving, the P2K Project. P2K standing for Permission to Kiss. 😉
So there’s this author named Neil Gaiman. I don’t know how I found him; it may have been by way of Wil Wheaton, or possibly John Scalzi. Don’t remember anymore. 🙂 What I do remember is being intrigued enough by Mr. G’s blog to start looking up his published works (Neverwhere — there’s a London Below the London we know… — and American Gods — What if all the gods humans have ever worshiped are real? And what happens when the humans bring their gods with them to America? — are two of my favorite books ever).
Today is the fourth anniversary of the day I left my house for the last time. The link goes to a post I wrote on 1/1/2014 about that point in my life. I’m not going to rehash it — I’m not sure I have the strength to, honestly. If you’re interested, feel free to check it out, and if not, no worries. 😉
I’d like to concentrate in this post on what I think I learned from an experience I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.
We met in my senior year of high school, at his high school. Short set-up: my senior year, there were six of us (four seniors, two juniors; four guys, two gals) who needed another year of lab science. My high school offered physical science, which I’d already taken, and biology…and I was not about to dissect a fetal pig, thank you very much. So my high school’s administrators went to his high school’s administrators and proposed that my schoolmates and I attend their chemistry class in exchange for the loan of our band teacher.
Strangely enough, they took the deal. Never did get a band going, though.
Many moons ago, Steve’s dad got this bee in his bonnet about moving. This was long after Steve and I had stopped being a couple, after coming out to his folks, after the end of his second (only other) long-term relationship — but before he’d slid too far down the path into the dark.
Anyway, J (Steve’s dad) was forever on about moving. Different city, different state, didn’t seem to much matter to him, as long as it was different and far away from his current life. Steve’s mom, B, was still working the first few times the subject came up — and she was NOwhere near ready to “retire” to a place she’d never been, with no job and no friends, just to spend 24/7 with J, the retired law enforcement sergeant and recovering alcoholic who, once he stopped drinking, didn’t really have any other hobbies…except maybe having become the next-best thing to a born-again Christian during his recovery. That was…fun.
I mean, they loved each other, J and B did, but Steve and I could watch them, did watch them more times than I could count, go from amity to acrimony in less than ten minutes because neither of them seemed able to stop pushing the other’s buttons. Hell, I’m not sure they ever figured out they even HAD buttons, let alone knew what they were doing to set each other off, which pretty much made them clueless about how to stop.
What, you think Steve should have said something? He may have, to his mom, anyway. But his dad was an angry, nasty drunk with a hair-trigger temper, and that’s something that didn’t change after J kicked alcohol.
Sat down this morning to have breakfast. I’ve been working my way through a stack of recent, and not-so-recent, issues of my landlady’s TIME magazines, because my books are in storage and I haven’t gotten new subscriptions to my favorite mags yet, although if I get any more cheap offers I will. 🙂 Anyway, I enjoy reading while I eat, so TIME it is for the mo’.
In the 9/17/12 issue is an article by Dr. Mehmet Oz called “Goal Power”. In the last column of that article, I read this sentence:
The National Institute of Mental Health published a revealing article in 2010 on the phenomenon known as emotional inertia — a sort of fixed state of depression, low self-esteem, anxiety or other condition that rarely seems to change even in the face of circumstances that warrant change.