Here I sit outside, learning how to breathe in this sticky air of South Miami. Today was a good day. It is still a good day.
My life is totally unplugged. Even if it seems like we have zero structure and complete freedom to do whatever, it isn’t easy. What does one do when the mind is idle and time is long?
The thought process goes into an insane amount of speed plus an influx of past, present and if’s. Basically, it is a vomitville of creative boredom, anxiety and complete calm.
I blame it on our way of life prior to this journey. Even if we are “unplugged,” are we really? I envy people who are able to be fine with the 9-5 jobs. My envy doesn’t mean I wish I could, it simply means, it isn’t who I am.
I loved to teach, I was good at it, but I resented waking up in the morning for them, not at my own time. It seems like a trivial complaint, waking up in the wee hours and relying on a lot of coffee to get through just the mornings alone. It isn’t. My body was not physically able to tolerate that shit, believe me. I remember waking up every morning and thinking of 1,00,000,000 possible excuses to not come to work on time.
And then the commute to my workplace, which was usually 40 mins tops, was full of a doom and gloom cloud hovering above my car, raining different scenarios on why I shouldn’t go to work that day. I remember low points where I wished I was in a car accident so I didn’t have to show up. It was THAT BAD.
Don’t get me wrong, I really loved my job, I loved my students and coworkers. I just did not love the lack of freedom in time it came with. I was drowning and during the process of my suffocating underwater, I was basically told to breathe.
It didn’t matter if I was gulping water into my lungs, it didn’t matter if I looked frantic, bulged eyeballs and all, as long as I could stay afloat, somewhat. All because it was what “life” asked me to do.
This brings me to a childhood tale my dad used to tell me. One day, it rained heavily and a man, who was quite a devoted believer of God, refused help from anyone but God only. It rained all day to the point where flooding happened. That man stayed in his house because he had faith in God to help him. The water kept rising, forcing him to flee higher, up onto his roof. Different rescuers came by with a boat and offered him help and that man said, “no thanks, I’ll wait for God.”
He waited and waited until he drowned.
He died. He met God and asked God, “why didn’t you help?” God said he did, he sent all those rescuers his way. That story sticks with me, the very concept on principle of life is in that tale. I am not going to wait until it is too late [retirement] to enjoy life to the fullest. No. I will take whatever opportunity is thrown into my path. If it leads me to my demise, so be it, at least I didn’t sit on that roof and said no to everything and still met death. Because, you know, whatever paths we take, it leads to one same end story: your last dying breath.
My son just politely informed me that he was bored, as the golden hour light hit his face, I told him, “good. Find a stick and make something out of it with your new knife.” Sorta of a homeschooling approach to the Art of Boredom.
My telling him this is one of many life rings I am going to toss his way. I just hope that he will grab onto whatever floatations [opportunities] is given, rather than wait and succumb to drowning.
just a mother who fled from society's constraints and is super excited to wake up to the outdoors, remain braless daily and teach her boys the art of boredom and discovery.