Wednesday, October 20, 2010

"It’s good to have an open mind, but not so open that your brain falls out."

I decided to take a 3.5 week break of my life. I thought it was for my husbands sake. But now I see it was ultimately for me. It took 1.5 weeks to totally disengage from my "normal" state of being. As I sat in the lazy boy in another persons home watching other people live there lives in full I had to remind myself that I was just a visiter in their home. That meant that none of the drama was mine or needed to be mine. I had to remind myself that I didn't have to say anything or do anything to better or worsen any situation. I had to totally disengage from myself to fully allow the environment to be in it's "normal" state, as much as could, with me in it. As I lay in bed even, I would disengage: Dogs barking, a falling sliding door and I would think to myself "not my problem" and I would smile and cozy into the sleeping bag even deeper. It also helped that there has been nonstop Cannabis smoke filling the air and a cup full with cider, beer and/or wine. I don't smoke at all and I typically drink on average once, maybe twice, a week at most, so this fog of characters and chemicals put me into a freedom daze that I hadn't felt since before college.

Now I am on week 2.  I have an entrepreneur's mind, so I have already thought of countless ways for everyone here to make more money (however they seem to giggle them off as petty silly ways to an ego). I watch these ideas float through, only putting my attachment to a few that seem solid and stick. So far 2 have stuck. One is to interview a local shop owner. The other is to email one specific sentence to a soon to be close friend. For me that is a HUGE deal! For someone who jots down every idea and tries to chase after them like they are money trees or dark chocolate covered salted almonds ( YUM), it is very hard to let ideas go and only pay attention to the ones that seem most important to my wellbeing.( I'll try to keep this attribute with me when I return to my daily life. It is very freeing. )

The place I am staying in reminds me of a hostel in another county. And I mean that in the best way possible! it is clean in the important areas, but dusty and well…the toilets stink. We had to replace the shower curtain on day one! There are four people sharing the house with my husband and I and 2 more coming this week. There is one guy camping outside under the gazebo. Each day 2-6 other people drop in to work. And between that so many characters call and stop by adding their own spin to the intense drama.  The food we are making is amazing! (GREAT recipes coming soon!) I love all the people we have with us! Everyone is such a character. Through the shit talking and bouts of frustration , you can tell there is a sense of loving family and security. We are about 8 miles from town, then down a dirt road for about 1 mile into the forest. One of our neighbors is an ex-con who is the sweetest, most talkative, cheery person (and precise pencil and pointillism artists) I have ever met. The other neighbor lives with his wife is a beautiful house he built, filled with wood and glass work he creates ( plIus he is a film actor and straight shooter).  No phone. Spotty internet. fresh, sunny outdoors…ahhh!

Anyhow, so now I have 1.5 weeks left on this non-adventure adventure and I am loving every minute of it. I am now engaged partially, although i'm still trying to keep my personality at bay. My personality, or should I say personalities, so needed a rest!

I use to do this all the time growing up. By 'this' I mean allowing my ego/personality to sit on the side lines as I totally explore another being's life and lifestyle. In fact in middle school I even traded lives with a friend for a week for a science project. I was Julie for one whole week and she was Leila. I lived at her house, went to her classes, took her exams, and she did the same for me. People called me Julie ( even her sister, brother and parents). Her life was filled with school, cleaning and boardgames. The life she had taken over for me was filled with school, piano lessons, hebrew school, and karate. When we traded back lives she told me "I had no ideas you had a crazy life!" To me her life was simple and easy. It was nice for a week but I do love the craziness of excitement in the mind and adventure of learning and traveling into other realms of experiencing.

As one gets older it seems the only way to truly get out of the self is by mind altering substances that force the self/ personality/ego to step aside. But for me it is necessary to keep that flexibility of the self naturally. My motto is a flexible mind is a flexible body.  But as Karl Jansen M.D., Ph.D. wrote "It’s good to have an open mind, but not so open that your brain falls out."

… until next time. Dreams and Realities

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