Sometimes I get sucked into dissatisfaction. It’s not a pleasant place. I get taken there unconsciously and unceremoniously. And, often via a medium (facebook) that paradoxically brings me great pleasure and connection. It’s those photos that suck me in – the beautiful people, fairy lights, boho-chic, rustic alters, dancing in the moonlight sparkly unicorn-ness. I love all that you know. I love knowing people who embody this. And sometimes I just enjoy the beauty of it all. And then, sometimes I contrast my life and end up in that suck-filled pit of dissatisfaction I alluded to in my first sentence. And that does suck.
When I get in this place, I compare my life and find it lacking. I think of the lonely solo string of fairy lights in the house that rarely gets switched on. I can’t recall the last time I wandered in the woods in a long floaty dress, barefoot with a unicorn horn on my head (okay that has never happened). I think of my life, a busy life, filled with a corporate job, family, commutes, work travel, juggling childcare, kids sport practices, kids sports games, my overwhelming “to read” pile, the mountain of clean washing awaiting sorting, grocery shopping, paying bills, cleaning toilets, a smidgen of creating art and a splattering of a yoga and meditation practice. And when you think of that as an Instagram image, it doesn’t really look all that magical. In fact it kind of looks mundane.
The thing is, once I haul myself out of this pit, is that I like my life. I actually love my corporate job – I get to do interesting work that provides intellectual stimulation and emotional satisfaction. I see fantastic people daily that I get paid to hang out with and work with. I get paid to go travel to interesting countries! If I won the lottery tomorrow, I wouldn’t resign. And while working full-time means my kids go to after-school care and we don’t wander the hills every afternoon picking daisies and learning herb lore, we have damn good quality time together. There is magic in the lullaby that my 7 and 8 year old still want to be sung each night in bed. In fact if they are offered the choice to stay up later but forego the lullaby, they will choose bed and lullaby every time.
Fresh sheets on the bed, especially when they have been dried by the sun, there isn’t much of a greater pleasure that that. Except perhaps in winter when it is soft flannelette sheets and the electric blanket warms my feet so I can sleep well and deep. Tell me there is no magic in that? And those sheets don’t care if they came straight from the washing mountain instead of being folded nicely in the linen cupboard.
The voicemail I listen to after missing a call from a friend when she tells me that she nailed a presentation that she was worried about and thanked me for the small part I somehow held in helping her prep for this. That this awesome talented woman owned her awesome-ness and delivered – that is pretty damn magical.
That I have friends that I can truly count as the “move the body friends” (the ones that you know you could call at any time of day or night and they would be there, no problem). That I get to be one of those friends too! And while I don’t spend as much time painting and creating art as I’d like, I still make art, and happily potter in my studio space in the weekends. That I have a studio space – with great natural light – now that is damn magical. That I still call my husband my bestest friend. And that he is the person that I can comfortably fart, burp and cry in front of. I think that is pretty magical too.
So while my house may get frantically tidied just before visitors are due to arrive (but not for those that are in “move the body” status – I figure they don’t care), and the washing is all folded about once a year, and the lonely string of fairy lights stays lonely (and switched off), I’m pretty okay with all of that. And next time I start stepping down that staircase of contrast and comparison, I’m going to try catch myself and remember, that while my life isn’t perfect, that this is the path I’ve chosen and I see magic if I look.Read More