Tuesday, January 10, 2012

"Just Keep Swimming."

2012 is kicking the crap outta me.
My only saving grace?
It is day 10.
There are only 355 more to go, before I can start all over again.
Well, 345, if you believe the end of days are upon us.
(Really? Must I also add this mass delusion to my long list of worries?)

“The only thing I can’t stand is discomfort.” 
~ Gloria Steinem

I have plans.
I have lists of plans.
I have lists of lists of plans.
I have no time for giving up or giving in. 
(Even IF all life as we know it will cease to exist... someday.
Of course it will, my friends. Someday. But NOT Today.)
This is the ultimate irony that is Life, after all.

TODAY I do, however, have pajamas at noon.

“Let’s go.”
“Yes, let’s go.”
They do not move.
~ Last Lines of Waiting For Godot ~

Well, it’s not quite noon yet, but if yesterday was any indication of how my Today is going to go, I am almost certain that I will still be wearing my pajamas at noon. Though, I do still have hope. I do have that.

I am now making lists (in my head) of the most mundane variety, such as:

#1 Crawl out of bed. Drag self to kitchen. Pour self a stiff drink to greet the day. Put something, anything other than those three week old cookies you’re staring at, into pie hole.

#2 Prepare thyself for No Writing Today (without the aid of that most beloved four letter word).

#3 And Remember: YOU are the Master of Your Universe. Begin.

“Nothing is so much to be feared as fear.” 
~ Henry David Thoreau

Sometimes, I just wish I wasn’t. Oh, acting as the master of my universe *sounds* great and all. But, if I am the master of all that I see, think and do, then who the hell am I supposed to blame when it all goes to shit when life gets hard?

I guess there is no mystery, as to why I am still sitting here at this keyboard, contemplating this swill, in my pajamas at this hour. This is what it must feel like to give up. Who are you kidding, Miss, you have been here before. You are no novice in the art of denial. You did spend the better part of your thirties trying to wipe that slate clean, after all. And you can wipe that smirk off your brow. You know you’re right.

As I sit here, I realize, shamefully, that I am simply looking for someone else to make the big decisions, the little tiny and seemingly insignificant decisions, and everything in between. I want someone, anyone, to run my life for me.  That’s funny. Not sounding quite so freeing now that I see my dimwitted plan in writing.

“If you want to win anything
        a race, your self, your life –
you have to go a little berserk.”
~ George Sheehan

See, here’s the thing about lists. They do serve a function outside of providing a, somewhat, true account of both my accomplishments and my failures. By the time I got to #3 this morning, it hit me. Like that three week old cookie stuck to the bottom of my gullet. What I must do is, Just DO IT! Get Off My Buts.

Years ago I read a book. *small grin* It was a simple Guide To Living Your Dreams. I have thumbed through it many times over the last twenty-something years, folding down corners, breathing in the smell of its yellowing pages, searching for the important messages inside that seem to be speaking just to me. I have laughed. I have cried. I have thought to myself, “Right. Now begin.”

“DO IT! Let’s Get Off Our Buts” by Peter McWilliams is my go-to place for that all important, albeit in-my-face ironic, reminder that I AM THE MASTER OF MY UNIVERSE.   

So, I ask myself Here, Now, Today, why is this so hard? And the only answer I can come up with is the age old answer: If Life was meant to be easy, Michelangelo would have painted the floor instead of the ceiling.

I can only hope that my choice of brush, color and composition are complementary of one another, creating one magnificent canvas! I just need to remind my sometimes tired, needy self to get up off my back and Buts every once in a while, stretch my legs, my mind, and my voice, and then begin again.

                           "Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming."
                            "Just keep swim-ming, swim-ming, swim-ing."

When Life gets hard, as it inevitably will, you can start by getting dressed. That's always a very good place to start. Take a deep breath. In. Out. And when you feel alone, simply look in the mirror. There in front of you, peering into your eyes, is You. 

One-Of-A-Kind, Amazing, YOU! 

There is no other human being in this universe, or any other, who knows you better than you know yourself. Not your mother. Not your father. Not your brother, sister or best friend. Just You. Learn to Love Who You Are. No small feat, I know. But, accomplish this and you can accomplish anything. 

Now go make your list! 
Be generous with your dreams, your goals and your strikethroughs!


“Life moves on, whether we act as cowards or heroes. Life has no other discipline to impose, if we would but realize it, than to accept life unquestioningly. Everything we shut our eyes to, everything we run away from, everything we deny, denigrate or despise, serves to defeat us in the end. What seems nasty, painful, evil, can become a source of beauty, joy and strength, if faced with an open mind. Every moment is a golden one for he (or she) who has the vision to recognize it as such.”
~ Henry Miller


  1. Swimming is entirely overrated and I don't enjoy it. The sharks bite my toes and the water turns my eyes red and my skin gets all wrinkly and pale like a really, REALLY old person...I would prefer to cross the water in a very expensive yacht.

  2. Scarlett, you inspire me. Just SWIM!

  3. A very expensive yacht, a patched inner tube, or a stick floating past.

    Peace comes in the form of oxygen to the brain, once we land lovers realize we can sink... or swim.