And That's a Great Thing
Photo by Robert Lukeman https://bit.ly/40vQeZb
I’m pretty damn bored today.
I have an ankle injury, and I’m housebound. It’s been going on for a while.
I keep myself busy, and boredom rarely hits me.
It hit me today.
I note this because being OK with the occasional bout of boredom is antithetical to how I used to live.
I craved excitement and movement and distraction. I was a whirling dervish at times.
I can remember being in my apartment in the East Village in the ‘80s, with my roommate and getting wound up as we prepared to go out for a night.
I would often have a cigarette burning in an ashtray in two rooms, lines on a table in one room and a joint going in the other, and multiple drinks and beers around the place. We each had stereos and we’d both have music playing. I would bounce around - kitchen for another beer, bathroom for another piss, his room to hear a track and smoke the joint, my room to sit for a minute and snort up a few lines, up and around and about, never still.
I thought it was fun.
This type of excitement, however, was induced, temporary, and unfulfilling. I didn’t know it until retrospect came when I got clean and sober.
I found some peace once I stopped racing from room to room, bar to bar, club to club, and party to party.
I put down alcohol and drugs in July of ’89, and cigarettes that August.
When my roommate - the leaseholder - pulled the plug on the apartment, not renewing his lease, I wound up in a sublet, a small place, where the air felt thick. I was surrounded by…me.
That’s where I got clean and sober.
After racing and running and hiding from myself, I sat down and got quiet.
It was not exciting.
There was a day a year or so later when I was living by myself in a different apartment with a lease of my own when I had the most remarkable sense of calm, connectedness, and peace come over me.
What was I doing?
The dishes. I was washing and drying dishes. It was quiet as I had no music going, a routine afternoon.
An extraordinarily beautiful feeling came over me. I felt that I was in the right place, and that not only was I a part of this vast sphere and this boundless universe, but that I fit into it in just the right way.
It was a feeling of connection, a natural feeling. I’d been doing a lot of work to root out the worst parts of my behaviors, and I’d been doing a lot of spiritual exploration, including meditation.
Much of that work was restless as my mind and body adjusted to my new reality.
And then…a strong feeling of peace. Connection. And acceptance.
That lasted a good while. It was a way of feeling that I’d never experienced in my life. It meant a lot to me.
So, today I feel rather bored. I also feel no real need to change that. It’s ok. Life will throw me a curveball soon, things will get stirred up achanges will come. I know that.
I don’t need to force anything.
There’s nothing like feeling at peace.