It’s amazing how in the span of a year so much can change. At this time last year, I was separating from my partner, the pandemic kicked into gear, and all of life came to a grinding halt. I felt the energy of spring stronger than ever. I honored my creative urges, set and pursued new goals, and sunk deeply into each moment. Life had a direction. It also had its own distinct energy.
This year life has direction and its own distinct energy, too. Distinct being the keyword. It’s very different from before. I have plans but I’m not yet super excited even though the plans feel right. My expected excitement and actual excitement are in conflict with one another.
On top of that, I’m uncomfortable. I’m uncomfortable in my job. I’m uncomfortable in my home (because I’m in transition not because of the home or the people themselves). I’m uncomfortable in my long-distance relationship (since reuniting with my partner); long-distance is hard and awkward at times. None of this is ideal. It all rubs a little bit the wrong way – even though I know I’m right where I’m supposed to be.
Perhaps it’s just me. Or, maybe it’s because it’s not quite time for any of my plans to come to fruition yet, and things are still percolating. I hope that as time draws near feelings of excitement will build and my discomfort will subside. These difficult and adverse feelings give the energy of this time an odd and unique feeling. A feeling that makes it incredibly difficult to remain present.
I look back to last year and I see how willing I was to be so available to each moment. I didn’t want to skip ahead to any future moment, no matter how difficult or painful my experiences were. I wanted to soak up as much time as possible with my partner. I also wanted to harvest as much wisdom and insight as I could. I was there fully most of the time.
I can’t say the same for now. But I wonder deeply about how I can bring that presence to this moment now, to these days, to this annual spring, and to this winter of my life. Even though I feel completely at odds with this practice. And that’s just it… I feel at odds.
It’s this feeling of “being at odds” that I’m having difficulty coming to terms with. I keep thinking that at some point I’ll resolve this issue. If I have the right insight, wisdom, or learning, then I can free myself from the bondage of adversity that’s so tangible for me. But nothing sustains. A little help at the moment, sure, but nothing lasting. But perhaps this is just it.
Perhaps coming to terms with this feeling as the dominant energy of this year is the work. While my mind wants to fix and find a solution, my heart is whispering about another way forward. A dance with this rhythm at hand rather than the obliteration of it. Or even better yet, a lowering of standards. A great idea, thanks to a dear friend.
The discomfort and difficulty of these days isn’t over. I don’t know when it will be over. I don’t know when I’ll feel like life is finally moving forward. What I know for sure is that I don’t want to wait until then to be okay. I want to be okay now even while I remain uncomfortable. I want to come to terms with my discomfort. I want to dance a new dance. And for now, I’m making it okay to just be okay. Nothing more. If I can get through a day, a week, a month and say, “Yea, that was okay.” Then that’s good enough for me. No need to be a superhero today.
What makes it hard to lower my standards and come to terms with my discomfort is this overarching feeling that I’m not getting the most out of my life if I settle for less. It’s as though I’m giving up on my life. I’m acutely aware that days, months, and years are passing, and how I spend them matters. A part of me wonders if I’m really doing what I can for myself and my life if I’m settling for just being okay right now.
But, really, when I’m honest, it’s all I’ve got right now. So I’ll slide into acceptance today, right now, in this moment. Acceptance feels like a fine vibration. I’ll take this vibe. I’ll take my discomfort. I’ll take some time to contemplate. What if I could be okay with being not okay? What if I could harness the parts of me who are ready for more into new outlets despite my discomfort? What if I could be okay with minimal levels of excitement? What if I could be okay with life as it is this year, this time around the sun, in all its odd idiosyncrasies?
I don’t know. We’ll see.