Guest post from Christi

I’m not sure what I want but it’s not what I’m doing.  Don’t get me  wrong…I’m grateful for my life.  My whole family lives in health, loves  each other, we have a nice house, we travel, we buy and do much of what we want,  a great dog, a few good friends, and steady well-paying jobs.  Sounds ideal, I  know.  But something’s missing.  That something that billionaires  still go to bed feeling empty about.  Is it PURPOSE?  Is it MAKING A  DIFFERENCE?  It’s that “Void in my heart” that John Mellencamp sang  about.  So when I start to feel guilty for wanting more…no, not more:  Something else…no, not something other than what I’ve got…see?  I can’t  pinpoint what it is. FULFILLMENT?  Shouldn’t I have fulfillment from all those  things I listed above?  Religious people might say I need more God.   Maybe they’re right, but what I don’t want is more religion.  More sitting  in a seat on Sundays facing forward, greeting when I’m told to greet, reciting  meaningful things so many times they become meaningless, doing things this way because that’s just what we do, saying words I don’t feel or sometimes mean,  singing the same songs over and over…  Acting a very specific way that’s been  deemed “right;” cookie cutter behavior.  You do this and don’t do that and  have these opinions and feelings about these issues or people who act like that.  I know there’s a right and wrong, but I also think there may be more shades of  gray than people think.  I think it’s more about love than anything, but  I’ve still got some holes in my thinking.  It’s tiring and  monotonous.  I don’t want it.  The God who created the whole universe  and each individual person with all their differences, all of those crazy  animals, and space…has got to be more interesting, adventurous and engaging  than this!  Maybe what I need is a taste of the REAL God.  But that  would require stepping away from what I’ve been ingrained as the right way to  live and do things.  It sounds dangerous, and what if I’m wrong and I  wander down some weird path that’s all messed up and I can’t find my way  back?  I do believe that at the root of my unrest is this acceptance of the  way things are and should be.  Something about it feels wrong or at  minimum, not enough.  I love the books that tell me to live the adventurous  life, and how much joy it brings along with risk and mistakes, with people who  won’t like what you’re doing because it rocks THEIR world too much.  I come  away from books like that and think, “That’s it!  I’m going to be more  adventurous!  Change things up a bit.  This is going to be  great!”  And then, I stand up and realize I need to fold towels before I go  to work and after work I have this or that errand to run.  By the time I get  home I’m pretty tired and burned out, and just want to have a drink and go to  bed.  I don’t know HOW to be adventurous.  That’s what it boils down  to.  Then the mind games start, like in Bryan Duncan’s song “Yes I  Will”, where I realize just how boring I am, and I start kicking myself around  for being like that…how the fact that I don’t even know how to be adventurous  shows what a loser I am.
One thing I read today, though, was called, I think, the 5% rule, from some  Oriental thinker guy in the early 1900’s.  The idea is that you do something  new for 5% of your day, every day.  The next day you could even do 5% more  of what you did 5% of the day before.  The idea is to tap into something  new every day without overwhelming yourself.  Then, those experiences could  lead to other things that are meaningful and/or that you really love.   Let’s see, 5% of a 24 hour day would be…72 minutes.  Um, wait.  I  don’t have an hour and 12 minutes to spare each day!  Maybe I do, but I’m  not currently willing to give up that much time.  So, how about 5% of  waking time, say 16 hours.  That would be…48 minutes.  Still a  stretch.  I feel a little pressured.  Ok, well, this Oriental guy  doesn’t know everything.  What if I did 3% of waking time…that’s 29ish  minutes.  Round out to half an hour.  I think I could do that.   As a matter of fact, this writing is something new.  Remember…this  is an idea.  No pressure if I don’t accomplish it every day, like tomorrow  when I work 10 hours.
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One comment

  1. Christi – I don’t live in good health, and neither does my husband. I won’t comment on god and religion, as that is a whole book in and of itself, as it pertains to my life. We struggle to make ends meet from day to day. I hated school, 1-12, because I was teased on and off all through all 12 grades. Pretty much it’s just me and my husband, and he’s on disability. We struggle to make ends meet now from month to month. I’m not close to and am barely on speaking terms with my family, and that’s a story too. I’ve developed a pretty good bullshit detector, because I’ve been lied to a lot in my lifetime. All throughout my life has been sprinkled with episodes of bad luck. We live in a house that we rent, and have a landlord who doesn’t want to make repairs. We drive a 25 plus year old car, and can’t afford anything else. We have debts from my husband’s bout with cancer in 2011, and have already filed bankruptcy several years ago due to some of that bad luck. Hubby and I would take your nice house, and being able to buy what you want, and being able to travel, and good friends – and not feel like a thing is missing. We know what’s missing in our life, but we can’t dwell on them, for they are all either things we can’t change or can’t do anything about. Wake up and smell the roses Christie! You’ve got it good! Appreciate what you have, especially in a time when most people struggle for enough money for the basics.

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