A simple routine

Good Morning,

I guess this is my first blog entry for 2012. Maybe it goes to show how much blogs have become irrelevant in 2012. I don't know! I have no idea what's in store for this crazy cyber world of ours. But I felt the urge to write today. So here we are.

My grandfather turned 85 on Saturday. I had a little conversation with him and sang to him on the phone. He said he had heard that I've been stressed at work through the grapevine. He suggested breathing with the abdomen. slowly. throughout the day. That is what he was learning at this mind/body/spirit clinic. Pa is 85 and he's still a seeker! Still looking for a way to live life with meaning and serenity. I tried his suggestion and it worked. We also talked about the importance of health and routine. My grandparents know a lot about this.

For what seems to be about 50 years they have woke up early - around 5:30 or 6:00 am, eaten the same breakfast (I think it's some sort of fiber cereal), and then exercised. My Grandfather has walked to work for 25 years, and he's still doing it, even though he's fallen many times. They are creatures of some wonderful habits. And I can see how it has grounded them. They know about routine, commitment, loyalty, and unconditional love. They are in their 80s and they're probably healthier than I am.

So I woke up on the earlier side this morning, (after pushing snooze 3 times), warmed up the espresso machine, and rolled out the yoga mat. I did about 45 minutes of yoga and weights and abs. It felt amazing. Then I meditated for 10 minutes. Drank my espresso. Ate a leftover bread stick from Nicki D's (cold). Took a shower. And started writing this. I feel ... grounded this morning. Happy. !!

But the second I try to tell myself that I should do this every morning - my entire body recoils in horror. What about sleeping in? Weekends? What if I'm tired? What about an earthquake? I do not warm easily to the idea of routine and commitment. The very meaning of my name, Frances, is "Free one." I'm like a freaking hippie who wants to be able to run with the breeze and pick effing wild flowers every day - pick up and move in a heartbeat - follow an attractive drum beat to the source, blah blah blah. At least this is how I like to think I am.

But the funny thing of it is, that kind of living doesn't actually make me happy. It makes me feel rootless, uncertain and shallow. My need to protect my freedom and unattachment to the world - actually makes me feel alone and directionless.

I once read on a Starbucks coffee cup of all places, that the irony of commitment is that it makes you free. I feel like I'm learning that slowly but surely in my adult life. More and more and more choices do not a happy human make. Knowing where home is, grounding your material self with commitments I think actually gives your soul the freedom to LOVE & BE LOVED. Learning how to care for things and people though the good, bad, and the ugly only comes with commitment and routine. You think my grandparents were completely stoked every single day of their 60 something years together to wake up at 6 am and do it all over again?

Probably not. But they are content with the choices they have made. Because they committed to them - and the debating society in their head was silenced. That ever chattering doubting brain - got to shut up for a while. And they were able to enjoy. At least, that's how I see it.

I've made a few commitments in my adult life that I'm very happy about. They don't exactly make me happy every day of my life, but they ground me. They give me the freedom to explore my heart and soul in a safe place. I end up finding that being myself is good enough when I give places and people enough time to know me. The joy of living isn't necessarily found in the heightened experiences - the holidays, life changing moments, adventures, etc. Sure, I've found it there before. But that inner stillness, that quiet joy that makes you smile from your insides out - comes during the mundane moments. The simplistic beauty of just life. That is where I have found the most joy!

I've found it today. Sitting quietly, taking a shower, showing up for life. I guess I could do whatever I wanted today. I could drive to Vegas and blow it all, if I chose to. But I choose my life today. Because I know that there is an amazing freedom in the structure I've built for myself. And I'm all in!


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