Zen I Am Not

The world is full of people and articles and memes and cute rugs and inspirational posters and sassy bumper stickers that all tell us that we should live in the moment. They proclaim that we should focus on what we are doing and not dwell on the past or dream of the future so that we can enjoy the present fully. I’m here to be argumentative and contradictory and say that’s an absolute horseshit way to live your life.9c0dcd10f1c79da228208860590c6c75

I feel that I have some authority to say that because, despite my best efforts not to follow this advice, my concussion and resulting long recovery has forced me to “live in the moment.” All. The. Time.  Sadly this is not because I’m cherishing the fact that I am still alive or that I’m savoring every moment of my children’s bickering because one day they will be grown and the house will be quiet and I will miss them. No, instead it’s that for many months it has been extremely hard for me to think of anything beyond what I am doing.

Being forced to live in the moment is hard.

If you live fully in the moment you must set time aside to think about the future. As in, stop and think what will be for dinner and how it’s going to be made because you are not capable of thinking of what is for dinner while you change the laundry.  There are many moments that I have been happy to be fully present for. Laundry, however, should be for multi-tasking, wool gathering, dreaming, scheming and planning dinner.  In fact as opposed to living in the present, I want to be more like Anne of Green Gables who dived into beautiful moments with her whole heart and dreamed away all the mundane ones.

“I don’t like picking fowls.” She told Marilla, “but isn’t it fortunate we don’t have to put our souls into what our hands may be doing? I’ve been picking chickens with my hands but in my imagination I’ve been roaming the Milky Way.”

Anne of Avonlea by Lucy Maud Montgomery

I continue to recover but as I do I still find multi-tasking extraordinarily challenging.  And yes, many would say that’s a good thing. But please people, I am a mother, I run best on a steady diet of caffeine and multitasking. Now I have minimal amounts of both and I’m making do, but this is not how the world was meant to be. Above and beyond the daily challenges this “living in the moment” brings, I find it terribly hard to write.

B.C. (before cow) an idea would float by while I was walking the dogs. I would let it roll in the back of my mind while I fed the chickens. The idea might percolate back to the surface while making lunch and start arranging itself into paragraphs while I drove to pick up the kids. By the time I found myself in front of the computer, sentences, already lined up in my head from a day of dreaming and multitasking, would flow from my finger tips.

No longer.

I’m living in the moment and that’s a horseshit place to be when you are a dreamer at heart.

Luckily my dreams have been swimming tantalizingly close these days. Stories form in my head only to skitter away when the kids ask a question. Blog posts try to write themselves in the half awake moments of the night. Snippets of phrases pass through and fade away. Trying to catch the idea is like finding a dragon in the clouds only to watch it change and blow away. But I can see the dragon again and that’s a very good sign.

14 comments on “Zen I Am Not

  1. I loved the honesty of this. Thanks for writing it. I am glad that you are continuing to get better even if the process has been slow.

  2. jenanita01 says:

    I am glad you are recovering, albeit slowly. But your post made me stop and think. I don’t have or had any form of concussion, but what you describe happens to me all the time these days.
    Is this purely to do with my advancing rapidly old age (75) or is something else going on?

  3. queadrian says:

    You are a very busy mother, full of activities and you still very excited when you come to the computer working very hard like this, hat off to you my friend!🌹😁

  4. kirizar says:

    While I can’t blame a cow (WC—without cow) I have had struggles to do anything that tackles my most urgent needs. I need to get up, get showered, get going, get a job that pays something. And I try to use tricks to get myself active—like eat the frog. This is a phrase based on the idea that, if you know you are going to have to eat a frog today, do it first thing so you don’t have it hanging over you. So you don’t dread it all day. Instead, I tend to find myself pretending the frog isn’t there, avoiding the frog, and covering my ears, saying “La la la what frog? I don’t hear any frogs!” There’s no upside to this and I know it. Maybe I just want to say, I share your frustration at slow progress toward desired or necessary goals.

  5. Sorry to hear you are struggling yet with the neuro problems caused by the severe concussion. It will get better. Your brain’s ability to multi-task (dream while you do mundane tasks) will return. But I know that it’s scream-at-the-sky frustrating while the sloooowww recovery creeps along. I hope you are able to set aside a couple hours each week to focus, think, dream, write, and post a blog. Good therapy. Take care.

    • Jessie says:

      I should schedule “blog therapy” into my week it would be good for me. ❤ But the best news is creeping recovery is still recovery and I'm still going in the right direction. Many things in life are close to back to normal, just not the multitasking one. Thanks for still showing up to read even when my posts are months apart.

  6. Widdershins says:

    Congratulations on your dragon sightings!!! 😀 … do you have notebooks everywhere? … doesn’t matter if you never use some of the stuff you write down, maybe just practice capturing the dragon scales as they fall. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.