holding my heart above my head

So, I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. My mind is turning, turning turning, always turning...wide open invitation for new concepts and ideas to be born into my life. There is a general eagerness to create more LIFE in my little realm of the world. I have been reading...flipping pages and scrolling down blogs...reading about an array of topics and filling up my mind with more information than it can realistically hold. I have been doodling words like "purpose" and "action" and "habit". It seems there is a constant inner pull towards evolving myself into more than what exists at the moment. There have been some all together AMAZING little pieces of connection tying up the individual fabrics of my life...sewing together a complete pictures, one stroke at a time. Some of them very personal and dear to my heart at the moment. Still, I drift in and out of contentment. Some days it feels like I have too much, other days it feels as if there is not enough in my heart. I speak in terms of experience, not material "things". Rather, the height and depth of my little occupation on this planet. I think about the truth that money and travel and fame would never change the human condition of always wanting something else. More of this or less of that. Somehow the connective experiences have left me aching for more and at the same time acutely at ease with what "is". I am not sure if that makes sense. It doesn't always make sense to me. The other day I lay on our bed with Josh and Asher and we were having a tickle torture session. The laughter that filled up the room did so as well in my whole being...but it was accompanied by this grief...a truth that drifting into each story of happiness is also one of sadness. This might sound morbid or depressing but it truly is what IS...and I have come to know that without one, we can not know the other. And so, somehow, I am beginning to understand it all in a way where the constant duality doesn't distract from the complete experience of one or the other. As long as I allow myself to laugh when I am tickled and to cry when I am hurt...I can make room for what each has to offer. Sometimes though, when I am in a moment of bliss with my children...I do notice that I feel piercingly ALIVE to a point where it aches...and then I hold myself back. Is that because of the fear in feeling loss? I'm not sure...but I do know that it moves me to want to appreciate what I do have and also to WORK towards what it is that speaks to my own growth. I want to understand the complete picture. With the light that surrounds that perspective, I have seen habits that I want to change and I have seen habits that I am doing well and wish to maintain and grow. I'm committing myself to new goals...all the while continuously bringing myself back to the present and to what is available to me if I just accept what is around me. It is a delicate balance, I am discovering...to be available to the moment while reaching for my own stars. The key component in that balance has something to do with bringing the idea of my dreams into the reality of my NOW...aka...taking steps. Some of these commitments have to do with my own discipline and how I use my time...ie, getting up earlier to go somewhere and write each morning...setting aside one night each week to practice learning guitar, etc... And, a LOT of it has to do with altering patterns of living. Namely, really shifting my ecological footprint to a lighter, more gentle step. I recently stumbled upon the story of No Impact Man (I seem to be perpetually late with these things)...and became immediately enticed by his effort and cause. He is an all or nothing kind of human, and I can totally relate to that. I really dig the experiment and it has stirred me to construct my own "minimal impact" goals of living. For one, I find that when I come to realizations of the sort that the human experience is always inhabited by an array of juxtaposing sensation and "feeling"...I have an urge to bridge the gab from duality into connection and "oneness". For this, it means bridging the gap existing between my values and my state of living until they are indeed ONE. On a whole different level...it means I am working towards the realization that we truly are all in this together, and I happen to be someone who is tired of not contributing in the ways I wish to contribute.
After reading this post from No Impact Man...I certainly walked away with enough conviction to start acting on the things that I know NEED to be acted upon in my life. There is always something calling me...moving me beyond what IS into the realm of what can be...all the while gently encouraging me to make friends with my reality.
I am schlepping my way through a list of commitments I am making towards myself for the next year. I tend to love to be hard core about things, and I am trying to also make my goals plausible...without losing any effectiveness. I will be sharing my intentions very soon!


Nonnie said...

"it is a delicate balance...." and i too, "happen to be someone who is tired of not contributing in the ways I wish to contribute."....
i think for most of us, life is always having to find that delicate balance....because there is always something that captures "this very moment" we are in. but having commitments and plausible goals is a wonderful way to begin! good lesson for me....and i will definitely read your links....looks very interesting.
loved your sharing, as always, sass.

Nonnie said...

.....by the way.....your photos are absolutely amazing! you go girl!

Jme said...

I need to soak all of your words in for a while, but in the meantime I wanted to comment on your beautiful photos!! Great job Jess! I'm trying to figure out whose hand that is...it's not yours. Beautiful ~ I LOVE them!

Debbie said...

I love your pictures and your words. You are such an incredible woman. You provoke such keep thought for me. I love how you describe the delicate balance in life. It is so true, without loss and pain it is hard to know the real depth of love and joy. You motivate me to accept what I am feeling and embrace it for what it is. Thanks for opening yourself up. It was great to see you this weekend, hope to see you again soon!

Elizabeth said...

Amazing photos Jessamyn. I love the No Impact Man story. I've been thinking along similar lines recently about treading lightly on our planet, and I'm really excited to hear your ideas!

Kirsten Michelle said...

i love everything about this post...from the title and beautiful photos through every heartfelt word.

"...it means bridging the gap existing between my values and my state of living until they are indeed ONE." this particular passage struck a real chord within me, i am struggling in my own life to bridge a similar gap.

goodness, we have much to chat about.

sending love and hugs,