Days are difficult, all centered on trying to earn money and not earning. Then taking care of Jay. Not much time for anything else, like art or myself or us. Or friends. Or just ... being. Except when I will it.
“But it is only what happens, when they die, to all mortals. The sinews no longer hold the flesh and the bones together, and once the spirit has let the white bones, all the rest of the body is made subject to the fire's strong fury, but the soul flitters out like a dream and flies away.” ― Homer, The Odyssey
“These nights are endless, and a man can sleep through them, or he can enjoy listening to stories, and you have no need to go to bed before it is time. Too much sleep is only a bore. And of the others, any one whose heart and spirit urge him can go outside and sleep, and then, when the dawn shows, breakfast first, then go out to tend the swine of our master. But we two, sitting here in the shelter, eating and drinking, shall entertain each other remembering and retelling our sad sorrows. For afterwards a man who has suffered much and wandered much has pleasure out of his sorrows.”
“Yea, and if some god shall wreck me in the wine-dark deep, even so I will endure… For already have I suffered full much, and much have I toiled in perils of waves and war. Let this be added to the tale of those.” ― Homer, The Odyssey
“Perhaps your hunger to belong is always active and intense because you belonged so totally before you came here. This hunger to belong is the echo and reverberation of your invisible heritage. You are from somewhere else, where you were known, embraced and sheltered. This is also the secret root from which all longing grows. Something in you knows, perhaps remembers, that eternal belonging liberates longing into its surest and most potent creativity. This is why your longing is often wiser than your conventional sense of appropriateness, safety and truth... Your longing desires to take you towards the absolute realization of all the possibilities that sleep in the clay of your heart; it knows your eternal potential, and it will not rest until it is awakened.” ― John O'Donohue, Eternal Echoes: Celtic Reflections on Our Yearning to Belong
"So to me the creative process, the writing of the story or book, is the fun part, the part I desire. I love the process. So I want to do more of it and thus I end up being very productive. I play one story at a time, story after story after story. People like me are writers. Writers are people who write. People who say they hate writing but love having written are authors, not writers. And they tend to vanish after a few years." - Dean Wesley Smith
“The mockingbird took a single step into the air and dropped. His wings were still folded against his sides as though he were singing from a limb and not falling, accelerating thirty-two feet per second per second, through empty air. Just a breath before he would have been dashed to the ground, he unfurled his wings with exact, deliberate care, revealing the broad bars of white, spread his elegant, white-banded tail, and so floated onto the grass. I had just rounded a corner when his incouciant step caught my eye; there was no one else in sight. The fact of his free fall was like the old philosophical conundrum about the tree that falls in the forest. The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” - Annie Dillard
But back to the other point: Do affirmations conflict with the ideal to stay mindful in the present, what I call to build "The Experience"? It depends, I guess. If you do affirmations formulated like the one above ("is xxx") I don't think so. But the manner in which you do them is also important. If you do them in the way you would use one of those de-stress balls you can squeeze, I don't think they will hurt your experience of the present. Depending on what the affirmations are about, they will more likely tend to keep out stressful thoughts about, say, money - which would otherwise conflict with your attempts to enjoy the present! But of course if you use a different set of words, and if you struggle and strain while saying the affirmations ... then all bets are off.
There is a belief that says that you can attract anything you think long enough about in a positive, affirmative way. Even if you discard the metaphysical component of that belief, I find again and again that the action of focusing on what you want, positively, affirmatively ... is good. It can spur you to action. It can spur your subconsciousness to release new ideas to you. It can make you look for opportunities, you hitherto would not have looked for - or discovered even when you ran into them head-on. And at the very least, it can make you feel hopeful if you are clear that this is a hope you entertain and not some bogey way of trying to convince yourself that reality right now is otherwise. And that exercise is actually not so useless at all ...
We all have to choose again, if we get burned the first time but want what we want enough.
These customers, for whom I have built websites, seem to be a good fit for a product - and then again ... One guy is the younger man who buys domain names, advertisement campaigns and new sites and plugins, and doesn't use all of them by half. He might be a good fit for this product. At the very least he would buy it and shelf it like many of his other purchases ... :-} Another is the middle-aged female lifestyle blogger, who had a lot of trouble getting started on WordPress but who is determined to do everything herself (and has to, because of a small budget). That includes marketing and business in general. In fact, I think she might be a better fit, if we all agree that it is the highest goal for people to actually use this product after purchase. I am tempted to say it is not the highest goal, because I sorely need money now. And I can't take responsibility for people's use and non-use of what I sell them. OTOH again: If I am not aspiring to my highest goals on The Blog, then there is nowhere else to do it. I have to keep myself accountable here.
Tomorrow it'll be Jay's 1st birthday and thus almost a year ago that we had a really hard experience getting him here. But I am heartened that despite the lingering pain of that memory, everyday new wonderful memories are added in the other stack - of his life, what it is, what it can be, what it will be. I guess that is called healing.
That is the core of The Experience. And even if your work, your purpose, your everything else fails in this life, you will be redeemed if you work everyday to have the best Experience - to value everything there is to value as much as possible. Then you can't really lose. You can only be fulfilled.
There are a lot of odd events, big or small, from the 70s that I feel some kind of resonance with, even though I don't remember them. The shouldn't mean anything to me but they do. Just as time periods in which I never lived, like World War 1. What does that mean? I will probably never know, but what I do know is that it means lots of stuff for stories.