Saturday, October 27, 2012

Don't Buy the Dark Stuff

I was in my car today stopped at a stop light where my attention was drawn to the closing of a road that crosses the railroad tracks in town, so when the light turned green I didn’t move out instantly. The vehicle behind me gave an annoying beep of its horn a few times, even after I had started going and my delay was not THAT long. Caught up by the annoyance of being beeped at in excess of the situation I felt my own anger rising and was tempted to drive really, really slow or maybe even sort of tap my brakes a few times – you know, the get back thing but it was a passing thought – not an action. I realized that to do anything negative (getting back) was taking on that person’s annoyance or anger and buying into it which was really pretty stupid. If s/he wanted to feel that way, that was his/her problem but I didn’t have to buy into it or accept it. I felt a sort of weight lift, and continued my drive home lighter and free of the dark stuff.

I wonder if this process – of not “buying” into negativity that another was expressing can stay with me and be in effect for all kinds of things that upset me – anger me - scare me – to go through the rest of my life just not buying this dark stuff.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

What is "life"?

I wonder when/if we will figure out what “life” is? I had the thought the other day that everything is trying to be. The thing of it is, it is trying to be what it is. We humans try to figure out what we will be, i.e., “what do you want to be when you grow up?” This “being” is usually referring to an occupation, “I want to be a doctor or a fireman or a mom or a pilot.” The list is endless. The little bunny in my yard doesn’t think that way – it is too busy just being. Sometimes I think my pet birds try to be people, like when they want me to walk with them, deliberately not going under the kitchen table so they can walk around it with me so maybe they can conceive of “being” in a way similar to how we humans see it. But if you take it down to the microscopic level, the bacteria, germs and viruses – they too are trying to just be. It’s too bad their “being” means making us sick but they are not trying to do that – they just are “being”. And even the more inanimate things in the world we can perceive, the trees are just being trees, rocks being rocks. So life is not what we are being. Life is that we be. Can it ever be absent? Gone? If our body dies, there are still all the cells and chemicals it is composed of continuing to be, though they transform. Hmm – come to think of it, when they do transform (decay), they become more an individual being, separate. Together they are part of a body. If one plays with that idea, all the myriad life forms of just planet earth, is this one molecule of something so big we can’t really grasp it? Could the galaxy be one small part of some vast and huge “being”? 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Goodbye Ginger

This is Ginger Bird. Despite the name, Ginger is very much a he. He died on August 23, 2012. Arrived here in June of 2007. Only 5 years for a very big presence. Some things words just don’t quite hold – words could never hold a bird. They can be about a bird. There is something magical about living with birds in a situation where they are free to fly and join you or not. Ginger liked to sit on my head. Especially when I was working – sitting here transcribing medical reports. Don’t know if he did it to be “top bird” or he liked me or it kept his feet warm – whatever, the effect was precious.

When he came I had 3 other birds, all cockatiels, Billy, Jockey and Tori. We lost Billy Bird in August of 2010. Seems August is a tough month for birdies! Turns out it takes 3 birds at least to be a flock – 2 birds are just a pair – so much less than 3.

When Ginger came, Tori had never whistled a note in his life – and he learned from Ginger. Now he jabbers in bird jabber and whistles like a human – memories of Ginger lingering on. Ginger also taught Tori and Jock how to be good birdies and go in their cages each night because he insisted on it and insisted on being covered up too.

One of the cutest things they would do is walk. Here are these creatures who can fly beautifully and instead would choose to walk the length of the house – all 3 of them. Ginger always wanted me to walk with him in the afternoon when I would be sitting and knitting – he’d come stand by my chair, head cocked looking up at me – totally irresistible – so I’d get up and follow behind him, into the kitchen with him making sure he went around the kitchen table because he knew I could not go under. I often wondered if he was being a “person” when he did this. 

We really miss him, Tori, Jockey and me.  But more than missing, we remember Ginger – we remember everything about him, how special he was and always will be in our hearts and memories.