Thursday, January 17, 2013

Forced Surrendering

I do this every year when I get time off at the Holidays.  I make plans for how I'm going to spend my time, knowing full well it's never going to go as planned.  The knowledge that I will get some great "Me Time" out of it, regardless, keeps me focused on things, even as I watch them disintegrate.   This year, after dealing with  the stresses of Sandy Hook and the "Apocalypse" on my mentally ill students,  I was ready to escape to Armistead Maupin's, 28 Barbary Lane, having had the foresight to request all three "Tales of the City" mini-series from my public library, the second week in December.

Photo courtesy of TheVibes.Me

Armistead Maupin's books and  DVDs are my favorite "get away", when I can't get away. Having them available for free at my local public library, makes it all that much sweeter.  I was looking forward to spending the first weekend of my break, decadently laying about, watching all three mini-series, while I decompressed and healed from the unbelievable stresses of my day job.

The night before my last day of work, an older, wiser co-worker from my past, showed up in a dream.  She was the first person at this job to tell me, "Don't make plans, honey.  Break never goes the way you want it to."  I had missed wishing her a Happy Birthday on Facebook.  My dream was very chaotic.  She popped in and I told her "Happy Birthday".  Too funny, and very prophetic.

When I arrived at the library, to pick up my discs, the middle disc from the first series was missing.  I clarified everything with the librarian and another request was put in for the middle disc.  I was also missing the last series, as someone else had it checked out.

A day into my break, I decided to watch the second series, after attempting to fill in the gaps of the first series on  It was not as I had planned, but at least I could watch the second series all the way through, without being interrupted, or waiting for scenes to download, since it was all in one case.  When I opened the case, there was only one disc.  I just laughed.  Really?  The middle disc from the first series is missing.  The first disc from the second series is now missing.  The third series is still out and overdue.

I had also checked out the three middle books from the series, so I settled in and did some reading.  I ended up doing quite a bit of writing that first weekend and then, the day after Christmas, I came down with a wicked stomach flu.  I haven't been sick like this in years.  This is when my other plans for break fell through.  I was going to photograph the last few recipes for the cookbook and do it while spending time with my niece.  It became very clear, very quickly, that this was not going to happen.

There was only one thing to do.  I decided to engage my Self in the lessons.

1.  Sometimes, you ARE supposed to own things that, in your eyes, initially seem frivolous.
2.  Let's practice surrendering!
3.  It's time to engage in something even bigger than I can imagine.

So, instead of laying around, decadently watching all three series, immersing my Self in one of my favorite spiritual spaces and mental places, I was REPEATEDLY given one opportunity after another to let go and surrender.  Forcing me to slow down and disengage from the crazy mental stress of work more emphatically.  Forcing my body to purge impurities.  Encouraging me in a direction I would never have been able to see on my own.

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