Saturday, August 07, 2010

Languished Moments

Languished moments fall  overboard to become part of my wake.  They float with the seafoam churned up by my oars catching crabs.  My gumption and drive sputter then die, leaving me dead in the water.  Without the necessary backup or another shouder to lean into the oars, I will try to gladly but lately it seems, more sadly, waste a few ticks of the clock.

Frustrating obligations gather dust in the hold and other unfulfilled promises stand tapping their toes impatiently on future shores while I take time to just sit.  Sometimes I just need to sit.  Sometimes I need a space of time that passes without my involvement other than drawing that next breath.  These moments will often return some clarity, some focus on the next bend in the river, the next compass point to aim for.  And even if these slacker instants don't reel me back in, taking a time out  seems to allow me to re-locate again saner speeds and safer trajectories.

For Life can become quite choppy as it moves downstream.  Inconvenient boulders, rude branches, and small snags hide in the frenzied tide.  Navigating through the jumbled chop tossed up by others passing by upstream or down makes for a tough boat to row. 

I sometimes wish I had a motor.  Sometimes the notion of Hi octane four barrel carbs forcing my engine to redline has some appeal........................................Until of course I run out of gas.

Then I sit whether I want to or not.

Over the years I have found, discovered more than a few things about myself.  This tendency of mine to shut down completely began years ago but went unoticed.  Actually I am sure I noticed I had become somewhat detached.  It was not until my beard had gone white and my chest had sunk to my belly that I took the time to really analyze these growing periods of just sitting.

I retraced my steps that led me to this emotional couch and realized  the contrast from where I am now becalmed and without hope of a freshening breeze, is only because my previous efforts had pushed me out of the prevailing winds my life's sail was meant to travel on.  I had gotten ahead of myself.  I was too far in front of the situations and interactions and had to wait for the rest of the world to catch up.

What I did not expect was that in reality my efforts to paint the prettier picture was only hiding the truth.  My languished moments were more often than not, dark moments experienced because I was sure the World had passed me by.  And catching up with no fuel in the tank was not going to happen.

So I sit.  And sit.  Until finally some kind stranger or fed up friend floats up and restocks my fuel supplies so that I can once again join the human race. 


This post started with me in a good mood.  I dropped it unfinished when I felt the need to "sit" and then finished it once I found my legs again.


Image from the Porter Family site


David Barber said...

Mike - I loved that. It's almost poetic. You should give it a bit more of your time (a few typos) and send it off somewhere. Yes, I really enjoyed that one. Well done, mate.

PENolan said...

I typically take a day or two per week to stay in my pajamas and reflect. I usually take a shower and change pajamas. Lately, I've started to be mindful of breathing.
So - I'm saying, "I hear you," and also that sometimes those obstacles provide time for necessary reflection. How else would you know you got ahead of yourself, or see that somebody has caught up?

Demeur said...

I feel your pain Mike. Wasn't it just yesterday that we were running around doing stupid things that we warn our children not to do? Now it's "what'd you say?" and "I can't read this fine print". I guess it's part of the nature of aging. It sneaks up on you like a pickpocket.

BBC said...

Oars catch crabs?

I liked my little rowboat but lets face it, I like the 16 footer and 40 HP motor I recently got better.

Not that I care to go fast in a boat anymore but I do want more space and speed than I can get in a rowboat.

As for gas, I don't see any end to it, they'll drill more wells for me. But with propane being almost a buck cheaper a gallon now I wish I could run the boat motor on it.

Anyway, I'm putting up a boating post in the morning.

BBC said...

I guess it's part of the nature of aging. It sneaks up on you like a pickpocket.

Not without me beating the shit out of it every step of the way.

El Cerdo Ignatius said...

Sometimes I just need to sit, too. My problem is that inertia kicks in too quickly, and I find it hard to get going again after a spell of inactivity.

It's a funny thing. I've worked with or spent time with various people over the years who seem to have an inexhaustible supply of energy. They just go all the time. But while some have the ability to re-stock my fuel supplies, to borrow your phrase, others seem to suck the life out of everyone they meet.

Given my experience with the latter group, I tend to mistrust, at least initially, those who seem to have no need to slow down for a rest.