Walked my dog a bit today… thought some thoughts, realized some of the saying hello is saying goodbye.
On my religious blog (HHH) I talk often about the difference between what our cultural standards of “good” are and the will of God for our life – and when they conflict, that we have to choose the latter. I talk about this because this is something I’ve wrestled with constantly. At this point in life, I’m fairly well convinced that I’d have been a serious brat of a Pharisee if God hadn’t choke-chained me. I’m grateful, intellectually, for the discipline, but that doesn’t mean that my heart doesn’t mourn the road I’d rather have traveled.
The people with whom I choose to surround myself online are crunchy folk who value big families, country living, homeschooling, and spiritual rewards. I live in SoCal, in a city where I’m living on water restrictions and clay soil better suited to home building than gardening. I don’t have *room* to can, and now I’m sensitive to wheat (as is my husband) so there’s little sense in baking… a country life isn’t my life.
I’ve been considering this for a while, or why I have spent more time at the beach this year… it’s part of the “good stuff” that one gets from living in SoCal. I’ve been trying to embrace the things that people in other parts of the country envy about my life, instead of sitting on my behind envying their lives.
I mentally shop quite a bit. I’d figured out a couple of years ago what the “ideal dog” would look like. Today I sucked it up and admitted that while I enjoy big dogs, I don’t enjoy having a dog *here*. I like my dog, but I don’t like walking him on a leash. There’s no joy in that for him, or for me. (He does like a walk, but it’s not joy). So, when he passes on, I probably won’t get another dog unless my husband takes up travelling for work.
The big dog goes with the country house and the acre of garden, the pantry bigger than my current bedroom, the quilting rack in the sunroom, an orchard and neighbors with a dairy and chickens. That person is what my people hold up as “living right”. If you can’t get there, you should try hard to get as close as possible. -sigh-
I have confused serving God with living that life, ignoring how very many more people there are here to serve. And then I get myself into another knot, thinking I should serve more officially at church. Do you have any idea how many doors I’ve had closed in my face with church service? It’s not even funny.
Authenticity is important. When I know I’m being a brat, I can lock myself down tight, being sensible and stomping off very deliberately in the “right” direction. I’ve found myself using mannerisms rather than manners and I know it’s time to find my own path. How can I teach others to let their inner selves show if I can’t do it for myself, if I feel a need to put on a mask?
Saying goodbye to one stage in life and being open to not just the stage, but discovering joy-bits along the way. And yes, some of it is just me being scared, wondering if I’ll find people who will allow me the joy of playing with them, chiseling them out of the marble and releasing them to the world…
My practical side is important, it’s the side of me that’s going to get swatches sewn this afternoon… but my squishy heart is important too. One must join them.
I know this was more than slightly wandery, but I do type to think… did it make any sense at all?