Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Common threads...

It seems that my brain has been busy, busy, busy, analyzing, organizing, making connections. That's what it's there to do, after all. Making sense of all the random events that happen day to day, trying to make order from chaos, playing games with statistics.

Went to the dance last night and overall I had a good time enjoying the dances, feeling good about my dancing. Maybe 45 minutes into it, I consciously noted how well things seemed to be going, in fact, how inordinately well they were going and how good I was feeling. Dancing on air, one might say. (iew, did I just say that?!) I was digging the tunes, feeling the music, dancing well and having fun. And the followers seemed to be having fun, too.

And with it, there was, just maybe, the ever-so-slightest bit of fear that it could instantly all come crashing down around me. (I wonder whether I should just cut and run. Leave the party while it's still fun, as the SOOTTAD has sometimes said.) But no, silly thoughts. Just let go of the negativity and self-doubt, be present in the moment. Appreciate it. Let everything else go.

I'm there to dance, so I dance.

And just a few short minutes later... I'm being self-conscious, I feel like my leads suck, my dancing is boring, and the followers don't like dancing with me.

I am always amazed at how quickly the feelings turn. In a moment, and the moment is gone. And I know that I just had these amazing dances, and yet I can no longer recall the feelings of elation, of joy, of happiness. The high is so fleeting. This is what it must feel like when the drugs wear off.

After the fall, I have a few dances that are pretty good, but nothing like the ones at the start of the evening. It's like some magic has been lost. I'm feeling a little sad as I head for my car after the dance. I know it'll pass, and I try not to dwell too much on it, but: whoop, there it is. Life is all about ups and downs, and I recognize that it's not that I'm supposed to try to stop feeling bad, just that I shouldn't get stuck there, mired in the lows. Don't dwell.

So anyway, I've had this book on meditation and being mindful (a birthday gift from a few years ago) that I've finally picked up again. It has a lot about what I've just been saying, and what I've been thinking about recently. Over the last few nights I've been reading a short section or two before going to bed. And what do I read last night?

... Just feel what you are feeling, all the while cultivating moment-to-moment awareness, riding the waves of "up" and "down," "good" and "bad," "weak" and "strong," until you see that they are all inadequate to fully describe your experience. Be with the experience itself. Trust in your deepest strength of all: to be present, to be wakeful.
Sometimes it's good to get a little reinforcement. A bit of corroborating evidence that I might be on the right track.

And maybe it's yet another manifestation of the connectedness of all things, a positive feedback loop keeping me on the right path. And then again, maybe it's nothing. Just randomness and statistics. The meaning of it all being the meaning that you yourself give it. Which, oddly enough, happens to be one of the themes in Watchmen, a graphic novel by Alan Moore, which I recently reread for a book club. Which I suppose is another thread, tying it all back together again.


Leah said...

yep, sometimes a little positive reinforcement is just what we need. i'm glad you found some of that in this particular book, which i seem to pick up and put down a lot...at this rate, i'll have finished it in five years or so. :-)

i've been thinking a lot on connections lately, wondering if there's any meaning there or if i'd like there to be meaning...makes me think of that book "man's search for meaning" which i haven't read. food for thought i suppose, but is it a waste of my time? oh whatever, i like to find connections and ties and patterns...makes me smile.

tallasiandude said...

If it makes you smile, that sure sounds meaningful to me.