Where your spirit is
It’s been quite sometime since I added some new thoughts here. Last night, I was finishing a Netflix series called ‘The Gift’. It’s set in Istanbul and is better with subtitles than it is with the voice over in English. (The acting connects more in the original language, even if you do not speak it.)
There’s a scene where a character is guided to focus on their pain…
People say where you hurt the most is where your spirit is.The Gift ~ Netflix TV series.
Much of my writing on this particular blog captures my spirit when it is hurting. This is an obvious double edged sword as I personally do not want to hurt and yet savor being in touch with my spirit.
Numb and Move
Pain is not the only conduit to our spirit. Throughout much of the last year, I’ve worked to numb and move despite the pain that I felt.
I started 2019 recovering from a failed relationship, struggling to make ends meet trying to keep my nose above water in a home I was challenged to afford alone. I dove into some new opportunities, in parallel as I had no option to abandon the work that was paying something, even though not enough.
Just as the new opportunities were getting a little traction, my father passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. I took on even more in the aftermath of his passing, working with my family to hold things together for all of us.
The seeds of very old web development opportunities started sprouting and by mid summer I was engaged in 3 different businesses, business development for my father’s former business, web development for my old business and systems integrations between ERP / CRM / Automation tools in the new business.
I’m a web developer by profession mostly these days. I haven’t written professionally since the financial crisis started in 2008.
I numbed myself in staying busy. I started to contain and get caught up on some of my financial problems. A new relationship rekindled out of the ashes of the previously failed relationship. I enjoyed summer a bit. I encountered a couple odd injuries during yoga, and my practice of the same faltered.
Life was generally going in positive directions. I was not living in balance. However, I was correcting some deficiencies from times when I was mentally/physically/spiritually more in tune.
My Aunt passed away in the fall after a rapid fight with cancer. The onset of cancer was sudden and the fight lasted a few months and she was gone.
Again my family and I were dealing with another loss. At the same time, one of my large web development projects came to an end soon after. It had been a chaotic project with biweekly changes in direction from the client, their team and a series of 3 different CEO’s. The chaos of this project had driven me nutty and at the same time, the money had helped me fix a lot of things.
I did a lot of good work, but was not allowed to do my best work. It conflicted me when it arrived, as it happened and since it ended.
The rest of the year saw a mad dash to wrap up other projects ranging in size from large to medium to small. Without the anchor of the large project that had ended, every week and month felt like a struggle to make ends meet.
Christmas felt like it would be my undoing trying to make ends meet let alone make a holiday for my children and family and make a trip to bring them all together come off.
With non stop work, and help from my mother and family, I made it happen. It was not easy to get into any kind of holiday spirit.
Just Surviving with a bit of Life re-Building
December of 2019 was a month where I just tried to survive. I kept telling myself, I don’t think I can get through another holiday like this. I don’t think I want to try anything like this again.
And yet, I also remembered my Father’s ability to pull out all the stops to bring Christmas together. He loved Christmas. The rest of the year might be great or it might be terrible. He might have behaved poorly or well, but during Christmas, he’d try to atone for everything.
In so doing, it could make christmas awesome and sometimes very stressful too.
He saved my Christmas a few years back at a time soon after my divorce when I was in a place that seemed like yet another rock bottom.
The weird thing about rock bottom, is that this is often where we find our spirit, where that pain allows us to connect. Its the place where the seeds get planted and from which the roots nestle in and we grow out of the ground again.
So in the current holiday, I told my departed Father that I loved him everyday and did my best to make due. I accepted some of the gifts offered and this helped as well.
I made it all the way to January 4th, where I sit now on my yoga mat looking out on a gray day with the sun not quite breaking through the clouds.
I came home from the holidays with a coughing chest cold that had me wiped out for a good 2 days. I survived through the beginning of the month and can pay most of my bills. This was an important accomplishment as none of this was certain 4, 3 or 2 weeks ago.
It wasn’t even certain 48 hours ago.
I have entered 2020 with many of the same conditional driven anxiety that I brought into 2019.
Things are very different Now
I came into 2019 fighting to survive. I made new opportunities and opened up to new options. I said yes to almost everything that was thrown at me.
I used wisdom to say no to a few things.
Staying busy and taking on more helped fuel me through the year. This is and had long been one of my super powers. The more I have to do, the more I am able to get done.
Too few things to do is my kryptonite and the source of procrastination and ADHD or whatever.
Things are different now, because I was able to get caught up on a lot of things in 2019. I got caught up on many debts (not all, but many). I took a big financial hit to help buy my youngest daughter braces, completing a trilogy and I’m still paying off half of this.
I invested a lot of time and money in a new aspect of business. Its a new area of work for me that allows me to wed my experience and skills and education in finance and accounting with my web development and business development skills.
I’m in the midst of taking my new systems integration and automation medicine.
A few years back I put together a vision board or two that put me on a path to automating more of my business. I can not personally scale. I needed better systems and processes to bring the magic out of my head and into an actual business. I had operated like an artist for many years. I needed to systematize the art, so that it could scale and help more people.
I needed it to scale such that I could earn enough to move beyond surviving.
I’m making that happen now. In November, I started consolidating and merging my former systems into a single integrated unit.
In a business sense, I’m aligning the mind body and soul of my essence in business in a way that I can manage it and grow it with others in the future.
A 2020 plan emerging
I do not have my resolutions or plan for 2020 ready yet. I am still finishing up some important action items from the end of 2019. These are some problem areas that need attention.
Finances – I am working on a fast track plan to clean up the rest of my finances this coming year. There have been several problem areas in my life that I simply had no way of addressing in a few of the last years. I’m getting other things sorted and can tackle these soon.
Health – For several years, I have started to envision a future where I might leave meat behind. It started just after my separation years ago. Back then I ran like crazy and then lost a lot more fluff when I took up yoga 6 days a week. A few months later, I met my girlfriend who introduced me to some amazing foods. She is not a vegetarian and yet through choice and necessity looks at foods as part of her medicine. The long and short of it is, she helped me experience that healthy food can be prepared in ways that taste amazing. In 2020, I may or may not go meatless. I’m going to approach my food differently. I’m renewing my focus to emphasize a lot more plant based foods. I may even go vegan someday. Not ready for a commitment, but definitely headed in that direction.
Business Growth – I have lots of work to do here. Again, I need to finish my 2019 work and develop this more.
Travel – This has not been easy over the recent years. Its been several years since I traveled on a regular basis for work and personal reasons. This year I am changing this. I am long overdue to make travel a central part of my life.
Writing – And finally I get to what I am doing in this current moment. I need to make space and time to connect with my writing spirit. I know how to connect with my spirit even without having to focus on the pain. I can also do this through nature, through dance, through beauty, through food, music, story, art. The thing is that I’m alone mostly. There’s a part of my (fun to observe) ego that needs to be witnessed. If I don’t open up and share my spirit, then its just a tree falling in the woods unobserved, unheard. If I don’t write it, its as if I wasn’t there at all in too many ways.
So I will make more time… I will allow more time to write again and share the connection with my spirit with you. Whether you are just one person or many, alone or in the lonely company of others, I’m hear. I’m trying to shine and hope to witness your shine on as well. I am not the tree alone in the woods waiting to fall alone and unobserved and neither are you
We are the rays shining and radiating out.
Happy New Year!