Social media has been invading my space lately. My close circle of friends and family have been telling of things heard and seen, and blog-o-sphere is passing around “awards” that are really just new renditions of chain-mails which used to pass via Facebook and email. I seem to be being inundated, and on top of all the continued Covid stuff, it leaves me with a much stronger desire for life itself.
You see, these social media games are not life. They are merely feel good tidbits masquerading as social interaction. None of these moments will last and many will be forgotten by next week. They will simply become an old blip in some server that time forgets.
I need things that are more tangible. Memories that are remembered fondly for years to come. I have a whole host of memories already, and I have people I genuinely care about in my here and now, with which to create new memories continuously.
I have a loving husband, whom I told over lunch that I wish to give him an overdue massage tomorrow. I enjoy physical contact and the focus it brings and all too often we allow kids and pets and electronics to be a distraction. So out of love, I requested he make plans to set aside a couple of hours tomorrow for us to have focused time with each other. I will give him a massage just like my clients get every other day of the month. We might take just a little more time for conversation or cuddling- we are spouses after all, but I knew it was time for something very tangible and very focused, and I took the initiative to make a solid plan.
It is not our only attempt, we have date nights frequently. However, date nights involve food and atmosphere and other types of distraction, so I simply wanted a more focused moment for this week.
Those public interactions like date night are still part of my interactive life, and still vital to my experience. They are also fond moments and memory makers. They let me feel connected to this world and like I am a part of it.
It may seem silly, but I’ve actually become fond of people giving me the look that I know is based in judgement. That look that conveys “what is that woman wearing” or “why doesn’t she shave”. Those moments validate my existence in this world, and tell me I am leaving some sort of mark. I have caused a ripple that who knows where it will lead. Sometimes I wonder if I am leaving the positive ripple I hope to, but I know I frequently challenge people’s ideas and paradigms. Even if that is the totality, just the challenge I present, I still feel like it at least helps others examine their own self. Perhaps in that moment I contribute to minds becoming more open, and more possibilities manifesting. I like that feeling.
I also enjoy watching others interact and trying to figure out how people might be connected. Are they co-workers or on a date, are they friends or family? It lets me see that my little life is merely one of very many in this world. A world full of people that God loves and wants the best for. A world full of people sperated by just a few degrees of acquaintances.
But LIFE is soooo much more.
Life is smiles and hugs. Life is seeing your children be born and learning new splendid things. Life is being there for the grumpy old man that has made sure you can’t get him to drop the grumpy and find any shred of happy; and even with him doing his best to drag you down with him. Life is helping your mom when she’d rather hide. Life is helping a friend try to decided if a lump is scary or harmless. Life is getting drunk with a friend because she was dumped and needs a shoulder to cry on. Life is parties and birthdays and anniversaries. Life is shopping and errands and finding fun ways to flow money. Life is going to the zoo and taking walks in parks. Life is watching the birds and smelling the flowers.
Life is everything around us and there are so many good splendid things that if you hide in fear of anything you will miss them all.
That is what I need more than ever. I need the interactions, the dates, the destinations, the real people in front of me for better or worse. I need the birds and the bees and the flowers and trees. I need exercise and sun and rain. I need to breathe fresh air, even at risk of breathing pollen, mold or viruses. I would rather live a good enjoyable life at risk than hide in fear and miss everything. I might die younger from the risks, but will have enjoyed more of my time here on this planet.
There are so many things I wish to do with my life. Even beyond my dreams of building my community and business Atira.
I wish to travel and see more of this world. Talking to my client this morning reminded me of that. He had seen Western United States, and I’ve seen the Eastern half, so we were telling each other of memorable enjoyable things we’d done. It reminded how much of this world I have not seen, but which I very much want to. I can not do that if I’m busy hiding in fear.
I personally do not do well stuck at home looking at the same walls day in and day out. Even when my children were born and my midwife told me I needed to rest and recuperate, my body simply would hit a wall where I needed sun, fresh air and movement. I simply had to go be part of the world even though I was not strong enough to work or do any strenuous activity. I needed to know there was a reason for my existence in the world.
You see if you don’t interact with the world God can not experience the world through your perspective. Even monks in monasteries participate in the world and interact with life, even if it is just a butterfly in a garden or other monks. Trying to hide from the world closes you off, affects your senses and slows the connection to God.
I know for certain that I am not alone in this perspective or paradigm. It may not be completely accurate for everyone, but it is accurate for many. I see it in my residents. Those that have found a way to get out and continue to experience at least part of this world are far less affected than those that have been sequestered in permanent quarantine. Permanently quarantined people are declining at alarming rates, while those that found a way to stay active have mostly managed to maintain their health.
There is a part of our being that needs to go and do, it is part of the human experience of this 3D physical perspective. If you deny that part of the self in a long term or permanent sort of way it literally degrades your physical health because you disconnect from that which you are.
Be in your self and honor every bit of yourself; from food to sunlight to movement to social atmosphere and friends and family. It’s a big puzzle, and sometimes it can be a little overwhelming to try and keep it all together, but if you reach for the fun of it, every moment becomes worth it. Your memories will remind you of all of the good you experienced for doing so, and even the risks become worth it.
May you see all of life as valuable. May you overcome your fears. May you know the risks are worth it. May you know it’s not your time because you have too many things you still wish to do and experience. May you know your days give God much needed input. May you know you are here for a reason and your perspective matters. May you enjoy life mostly. May you know you are loved and supported and that there are many around you whom you wish to interact and make memories with. May you feel your place in this world and enjoy your life mostly.
Siva Hir Su