Bad day, cartwheels, Daniel Powter, drought, humidity, island continent, Keystone Cops Circus Extravaganza, natural disaster, personality disorders, Queensland floods, Rain, Sunshine State, super-Herculean effort, Warren Buffett, Yoga
Quite working out for you, right? What is that when the general prognosis is good and all omens indicate that things are looking up, and yet there’s tension? Blergh.
I mean, sure your job isn’t causing you to do cartwheels of joy and the folks there are just… well, imagine a solid 60% as the least productive and highly interruptive folks possible, an unusually high percentage of whom probably get by with a bunch of untreated personality disorders. And only 15% of the tools you need to do your job. That is, when you aren’t being interrupted by endless inanities and people who’ve never learnt to use Google to figure out how to spell a word or peruse an online thesaurus. But they’re all harmless enough, really.
Took this job because I thought it’d be a lower-stress option (ha!) than my previous attempts to integrate with the 9-5 and in doing so, went for a lower pay day than I’ve been accustomed to. It’s only money, right? That’s true, until you realise that it’s about the same amount of shit (or more) for less pay and daily admission to the Keystone Cops Circus Extravaganza.
So, it all feels like a struggle. And one that I pretty much do alone. No partner, not heaps of close friends nearby and just not enough encouragement or support. Sure, I get that it cuts both ways and I’m GLAD I’ve been strong enough to get even this far on my own. But it gets tiring, you know?
Fuck. So I have all these plans and goals and I’m working my ass off to make ’em happen. Lots of scheming and writing of lists on post-its, or in my iPhone or on this notebook I’ve been dying to use for ages but hadn’t really gotten around to yet…
This enormous idea I’m trying to manifest and wow, it’s that daunting view you get there at the base of the mountain: I’m going up there?! Yes. Yes, you are.
Mostly I’m on-course. Got the right equipment and some maps and stuff. And I KNOW you can’t stare too long at the apex – you gotta just get going and work on making it to your first marker. I get it.
Then the world goes mad again. Thousands of birds fall out of the sky simultaneously on different continents. Fires, blizzards and earthquakes ravage one hemisphere while in the land down-under our Sunshine State is desperately flood afflicted and there’s not enough money in my bank account to pay the rent, the bills, buy food and donate anywhere near enough cash to make a difference.
And there’s no sun. Well, maybe for a couple of days at a time but frack, it’s MEANT to be mid-Summer according to my calendar and the generally accepted concepts of time around here. Since 1st December, we’ve had two or three days of Summer-like weather in a row at most.
I am trying to keep my chin up, I promise. I do all the right things. I make a super-Herculean effort to eat well…
I keep my mind turned to all things yoga as much as possible. Yoga books, DVDs, practicing at home and in the studio, teaching, writing and talking about it. It’s pretty much the glue that keeps my world together.
But I’m still a long way from home, y’know? I know where I’m going, but will I survive the road trip?
And NOW the “m” on my keyboard is playing up. How many commonly used words include the letter “m” anyway? A lot, so I’m finding.
The reason I’m not at work today however isn’t because of my crappy keyboard, but instead because I woke up and it freakin’ looked like Winter out there – as if we don’t get enough of it in the middle of the year and for the month or two each side of it!!
Holidays – when you really aren’t digging the space, time and people where you spend forty hours a week staring at a screen – are painful. You have them, then their absence once done, is jarring.
Then there’s the unrelenting greyness and almost endless rains that are a cruel joke on a large island continent that’s limped along for years in drought. Farmers lovingly trying to encourage their crops to prosper and salvaging parched farm animals, often failing. Big strong farm folk breaking down and crying and you never knew they could before.
But now the weather has turned almost vengefully, having listened to thousands of entreaties over the years for moisture and only just gotten around to responding – all at once though, which isn’t exactly helpful. People and animals are being left homeless and/or dying. Crops are dying, too.
And the rest of the country weeps for Queensland. New South Wales and Victoria cop the fall-out from those floods – the rain never lets up. Even when it does, it’s only temporary and we’re now dealing with that sort of extreme humidity normally found only in tropical countries. Even here in almost-as-far-south-as-it-gets-Melbourne. Nothing stays dry, and my entire body is covered in sweat from even the most passive walk to the corner shop.
So when I woke up this morning and saw the skies, my inclination was to draw inwards. To stay out of the mad weather that’s been wreaking so much havoc. It’s a thing. Part of my winter’s malaise, perhaps? Or tuning into the environment and just for today, finding it hard to cope with pretty much everything.
And that’s not even considering all of the other natural and man-made disasters, wars and human rights abuses going on even as I sit here typing. I don’t have enough money to support them all, but I give what I can. Is money what they even need, though? Just money? How else can I help? Do these people need yoga or do they need food and shelter?
Clearly, yoga doesn’t solve all of the world’s problems. But the heart, mind and body openings are what everyone needs, and they’d go a long way towards just that. Imagine if everyone donated part of their income to people who have nothing? Imagine if all of the world’s super-rich were as generous and giving as people like Warren Buffett? If everyone felt empowered to join together and build a high school? Or if lending a hand in large and small ways to anyone, was not viewed with suspicion but gratitude and inspiring similar acts in kind?
If you’ve got a few spare dollars and you feel so inclined, please donate to Queensland’s Flood Relief fund. It doesn’t matter how much or how little, it’s all about participating in the act of giving to other human beings in need.
Because what you’re really giving is love. And we all need more of that.