Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Sloshing with the Cluff's

I hate to say it folks, but Summer is officially coming to an end. This last weekend was Labor Day. Which meant it was the last "Pool Day" of the year. Maybe its the cost of keeping a pool open, or the possibility of a sudden freak snow storm that has caused what I call a premature-pool-closing. There are bound to be several more days of 80 plus degree weather, cloudless skies, and lazy afternoons with nothing to do. But there will be no more Pool Days to be had until next year.

In an effort to prove our sincere dedication and love to the summer, Jason and I hung out with his family at his mothers pool. The sun was bright, not a cloud in the sky. Only a very faint hint of fall in the air. And although the crisp air was lofting around us, no one let it stop our day of frolicking by the pool.

Hanging with Jason's family, the Cluff's, can sometimes be such a breath of fresh air in it's self. The family as a whole is very young. And they are all still very much about having fun and laughing with each other. Never a dull moment with the Cluff's. So there's this thing we do when we all get together in a pool. Everyone jumps as hard and fast as possible causing huge waves in the pool. No one stops until the water is sploshing out of the pool. Yes, it's dumb fun! But hey! That's what the Cluff's are about right!?!

So this last weekend, while "Sloshing with the Cluff's". I got to thinking about my own life and how I have been striving for more peace and stillness. The pool had become a lot like my life. I spend all day moving and doing and sloshing the water. I think I cause more waves in my pool than anyone. Yet, at the end of the day I wonder why I can't find stillness. I want so much to float on the glass surface, yet the waves are still pounding and swirling around me. My pool is still sloshing at the end of the day. And it doesn't stop just because I want it too. It takes patience. And I think that it means that during my day to day interactions and working that I try not sloshing as much as possible.

Sloshing. This can mean causing drama. Talking behind someones back. Not getting everything done that you need too. Procrastinating! Negative thinking. Eating unhealthy. Not working out. There are a lot of ways one can slosh in one's own pool. And I think we should try not sloshing someone else pool either.

I've recently started a Tai Chi class Monday nights at the red Lotus Center in Salt Lake. I first saw the website for the class about a month ago. More than anything, the one word I kept seeing repeated on the website that seemed so attractive to me was the word Stillness. This is exactly what my pool needs. I've had only 2 classes and already I can feel a calming within. Very subtle, but I know it's there. The breathing techniques and the movements seem to calm my mind and excite it at the same time. Tai Chi to my mind is like telling a dog, "Do you want a treat?" The dog knows its going to be nourished and it gets so excited it can hardly contain itself. My mind knows the serenity and peace in store and it is jumping at the bit to experience it.

Side note. If you haven't seen the movie, "Eat Pray Love", then you need to see it. Yes it's a chick flick. And yes, the book is better than the movie. But there are a lot of great things to be learned from the movie. In one scene, Liz, the main character is in Italy with new found friends. They are discussing using only one word to describe different places in the world. For example, London's word would be Stuffy. Rome's word was Sex. Then the friends ask Liz what her personal word is. Basically, that's what the movie becomes about is Liz finding her own personal word. And for right now in my life, my word is Stillness.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Been to long!

Its been way to long since the last post. Since the last post I've traveled to New Orleans for work. Had the Flu of the century and dropped 8 lbs. And I've been squeezing the last out of the last days of summer.

This coming weekend is Labor Day Weekend, three days off, not much planned. So I immediately begin making my own personal honey-do lists. Right now the list consist of chores, duties and organizing. But here's the really pathetic part. I find myself also planning times to enjoy time. Like reminding yourself to breathe.

8:30 am, Wake up, straighten house
9:30 am, Finish laundry
10:00 am, Sit on porch and relax
10:01 am, Finish painting living room

Do you find yourself doing that too? Or are you the kind of person I want so much to be like? Just dealing with what comes your way. Enjoying life all the time, not when scheduled.Able to relax when not in motion. I can't seem to not be in motion. There is always something that needs to be done. And yet, I know in the back of my mind that fi something doesn't get done. It will be there for me tomorrow. I guess I fear that tomorrow my honey-do list gets longer and longer. And reality is that my lists do get longer and longer. Where is the stillness? 

Tonight I start a new class, T'ai Chi. In addition to being healthy for mind and body, I am taking T'ai Chi to learn the Art of Stillness. I can hardly wait. I plan sharing the experience in the next entry.

Last night, after work, I attempted stillness. I pulled out the hammock and grabbed the dog. Ellie, my little Lahso Apso quietly laid upon my chest as I drifted in and out of sleep, while we swayed in the hammock. After a quick nap, I found myself very content watching and studying Ellie. She was so still, head up and alert, but had remained still on my chest for over an hour. Her ears would perk up with the sounds from the neighborhood, but she remained perched and watching. Content and quiet. No to-do lists. No agendas. Just the moment. There is something to be learned from the contentment of a dog.