Sunday, May 06, 2007

{Checking In} Week 11 of Finding Water

Oh, to be sitting here right now typing feels like such a luxury. I know I probably sound like the crazy dog-lady (and, it's true, I am), but my world has been totally consumed by the new four-legged bundle of piss and joy that has entered our lives. I am completely love-struck. I am smitten for all 15 pounds of fur that follows me around everywhere that I go. Needless to say, even making coffee has become difficult. I mean, if he's sleeping I don't want to wake him up with the loud sound of the coffee grinder. And if he's awake then, well, I'm usually occupied. It hasn't even been a week and, already, he has me wrapped around his little puppy finger.

At the moment Daddy-O (aka Vinny) has relieved me from my duties and has replaced me on the couch where the two of them are curled up together and sleeping. There was never a more luscious site.

Oh yeah...but this is supposed to be my Finding Water check-in isn't it! Sorry. I fear that every word out of my mouth (or my fingertips) is going to be about dogs. It is ALL I have been thinking about lately!

I set out on Week 11 with great intentions of being a DISCIPLINED WRITER. Things started out well. I sat down at the computer every day and was actually accomplishing something. But then Louis the puppy happened and my self-discipline went straight down the tubes. I look forward to someday NOT being a student (if I can even call myself a student) and being able to live my life with just a little less guilt. Or maybe that guilt has already been too deeply ingrained into my brain. Maybe there's no going back. But, I'll tell you, I am sorely tired of always (ALWAYS!) having something hanging over my head. Thesis, thesis, thesis. I know--you must be tired of me writing about it. The thing is that I just can't seem to get it out of my thoughts until I get it out of the way. So why haven't I finished the damn thing yet you're wondering? Well, let's not even bother going there today. The important thing is that--despite my beautiful, time-consuming puppy--I still feel the need to move forward and finish this thing.

I feel torn between hanging out with this chapter, "Week 11: Uncovering a Sense of Discipline," for another week, and moving on so that I can finish the book with the group. I feel like there are some things that I could gain from doing that I haven't yet had time to do. I still want to spend some time with the Divining Rods including the one on page 233-234: considering some of the ways in which my writing (and my art) can be of service to others. Finishing my thesis has been about ME, ME, ME. I'm sick of doing things for me.

Ever since starting the Finding Water journey, I've been using a fortune from a fortune cookie as my bookmark. It reads:
"Use your talents.
That's what they are intended for."

Over the course of the past 11 weeks I have noticed a transformation in my approach to art and writing. Before, I spent a lot of energy trying to perfect my work (both in writing and painting). I wanted to do well in my endeavors. It was also important to me that I be able to express or convey my thoughts and emotions in a way that the world outside of myself could understand. These things are still important to me, but asking myself how my work can be of service to others makes me think of things in a whole new way. Let's face it, the world can be a very selfish place. But I am so tired of always thinking about me. And I'm tired of people who are so consumed with "succeeding" in life that it is the only thing they think about. Sure, I want to succeed--but more importantly, I want to do something that changes the world for the better. If even in some tiny, small way.

I know, I know...I'm starting to sound rather idealistic, aren't I.

Well, the thing is that I keep seeing artwork and reading books that CHANGE ME FOR THE BETTER. And I won't lie: This puppy has had a profound effect in softening the rough edges of my heart. He makes me want to do less for myself and more for others. I want my art and my writing to make others feel the gigantic potential for love that is within each of us. The world can be so endlessly discouraging at times. But then there are those tiny moments that, for one reason or another, we are able to tap into the something-larger-than-us and feel an absolute connection, a seemlessness between our Self and the universe. Even if it only lasts a nano-second--it is enough. I am grateful for the things that make me feel that way. And I've been feeling that way a lot lately. It makes me care less and less about the funky issues attached to the ego, and a lot more about the world outside of my brambling little brain.

This week:
  • I only did my morning pages 3 out of 7 days.
  • I took an extra long walk with wolfie yesterday. It was cloudy, windy and dusk, and it felt good to spend some quality alone time with my "old dog."
  • I didn't go on an artist's date (Instead I spent time with visiting family--my grandparents and my mom came down for the weekend).
The rest of the week was swallowed up by puppy and work. I wasn't disciplined this week in any of the usual ways (although getting up with a puppy a half a dozen times a night to potty IS its own sort of discipline!), but I know that I need to get back to things. I need to train little Louis to give me time to write. He's getting spoiled, but there is something good coming out of all this--and that is a sense of purposefulness. I am learning purposefulness from a puppy. Oh, the universe works in strange ways!


And on a sidenote:
Please forgive me that I've been absent from your blogs. I think about so many of you all of the time! I will return to reading and commenting soon. In the meantime, just know that I am sending supportive energy your way--whatever your current endeavor may be!


Anonymous said...

Thanking you again, as you are such a wonderful source of inspiration...and fun!
It sounds like Louis is bringing you guys a great deal of joy...and work!
I'll tell you one thing. I had a lab puppy and I had a baby. (Not at the same, I'd be mental!)
AND...there's not really that much difference! Hang in there and have fun and take lots of pics!
They grow up SO fast!!

Maddie said...

Oh! I want to meet your new baby-
and your old baby toooo!
I have been really absent as well -
not in my heart - just in time
management with things...
I love how you seem to be able
to centre yourself
and write about your week with such
joyful reflection.
I need to try this in my morning
pages - they are so inconherent...


The Dream said...

If you're this good to your dog and new baby puppy, I KNOW that you will be an amazing mom someday!!!!

kristen said...

I'm glad to know there is someone else who finds herself in this position, so close to the end. I've written less, stretched my artist dates into chores and walks that aren't really such. But, it's been wonderful and enlightening and inspiring. And I've 'met' you and Leah, our hosts.