DEEPLY AWAKE COFFEE TALKS By Kathy Vik
“Choosing Worlds” 11-21-15
I feel, in a way, like I have been refreshed, rebooted, within my old reality. I have gone far this morning, and I want to describe what I am aware of.
I went to sleep frustrated, and just so angry. Like a low boil, something to be aware of, a threat, but a nearly empty one, a nuisance, a task. There was something I needed to fix, know, address, and it had to do with feeling so discontented, and knowing I really had no right to the feeling.
At its base, I think that was my discomfort. Self pity is like that, all its variants, they come with an odor, a knowing, that it is not correct to be taking things this way, and yet, and yet…
I realized this morning that there are two places I have been choosing from, two bases of operations, two different homes, realities.
One place is best described as the agreement field of should. It was nice to get so clear a handle on the place. Do you react like I do, to should and should not? I think it is a pervasive agreement field, one we are urged to leap into, every time we hear an ad or watch TV or even interact with others, who are deep, deep, deep within it.
The land of should and should not. He should. She should. They should. I should.
Running parallel to this is the back beat of “If they _________ then they would ______________”, and this is usually a lament, best said chin on hands, sitting forlorn on a cement stoop.
In the land of should and should not, my vehicle is maintained, my bills are paid early, my taxes are prepared professionally, and I only eat organic. I have a boyfriend who sends me flowers. I have three hundreds in my secret wallet compartment, but I never have to use them. Everyone respects me at work. My family shows me love. The litter box always could be emptied in a couple days.
And that world only exists if everything goes as it should.
What happens when it doesn’t?
See, I think the problem is not with problems. Not at all. I think the problem is with the attitude.
Because what is should? Should is fear itself. It is arrogance. It is insecurity. It is self importance. It is a toddler, red faced and screaming in the middle of a grocery aisle.
So, I am making coffee this morning, aware now that the turmoil I felt in my chest last night is now somehow externalized and glittering in front of me as I measure the coffee and get out the creamer. Huh. Should. Well, what else is there?
You see, I think the way to solve internal processing issues is to go beyond the duality being presented.
Is the opposite to should, should not? Of course not, I laughed, as I hit the button and walked to my bed. Should not is the epicenter of pain, anger, frustration, and interpersonal violence. Should not.
So, if should and should not, if this land of constriction and direction and morality and edicts is just one stage from which to say my lines, what else is available? Perhaps there is no opposite at all. Perhaps, instead, this land of should/should not is being extended to me in the cupped hands of a consciousness that can contain more than one reality.
And so, I thought about it, and I puzzled on it.
I think I like the land of sure.
Not the land of yes, because I think that implies a lack of discernment. But, the land of sure, that is a land of permission, of acknowledgment, of agreement, and of relaxation.
The land of sure. It’s the land of The Dude, of my burner friends, of the poly community, of the arts, of expression. Sure. Ok, come on in, set a spell. That kind of energy. The kind that does not expect company, but revels in it.
Now, I want you to know a little something about me. There is a person inside of me who needs to settle down. And this person loves the land of should and should not. It’s that person who needs for others to behave, to act in ways I like, to attend to me. And she is loud, and she likes attention. It is she who I have been having ongoing negotiations. And I showed her around this new place, the place of sure, this morning, and, you know what? She likes it. A lot more than she expected to.
After all, what does your body do, when you steep it in the thoughts generated from the simple word “should?” I mean, really. Just close your eyes and feel it through. It’s tight, isn’t it? Narrow in places, and dark. Unforgiving. Needy. And frustrated.
And this place of sure, of that sounds interesting, of ok, of trying new things, it seems its biggest feature, at the moment, to me, is its solitude. But, I think really, that is just a trick of the light.
I mean, if I am surrounded by a bunch of people neck high in should and should not, then I will be dealing with judgments, not discernments, and I will be dealing with rules, expectations, goals, probably, and outcomes, right?
And an artist, with a dripping brush and good lighting doesn’t look at her stretched, white canvas and say I should. She smiles, whispers sure, and she begins. She alone holds the brush. And she touches brush to canvas, in a spasm of sure, of ok, of I’ll try, and, only then, when she begins do canvas, color, light, conspire to delight and illuminate.
With a simple sure.
I’m verbose. And a cumulative thinker. A beautiful thinker, but slow, because I am so thorough. I like that I have quite possibly winnowed this down to something I can use moment to moment in my reality, as a litmus test, to know where I am at inside. I am finding this alone is the best way to know if I am happy.
I like that this is simple, and the these words, for me, contain worlds. I like that the worlds are different, and I like knowing that I do not have to travel in that land of restriction and constriction and repression, if I don’t care to. No longer something I somehow fall into, it is now, and forever more can be a choice, a simple choice, between should and sure.