I often share overly personal information about my family on Mostly Teachable, but neglect to share some of the honest to goodness details of my happy life here in the wilds of Southern Michigan. This year I plan to post my photo collection from each Week That Was. To kick off 2013, I thought I’d go back into my vault and share some of what turned out be a really nice 2012. Here are some of the pictures from the last 12 months:
I can’t wrap my brain around the idea of being reincarnated. Earth is a nice place to visit, but returning to it repeatedly in various forms seems like a buzzkill. To be reincarnated is like watching a rerun of a show you were mildly amused by over and over again. Sure, you might notice little details that were missed the first time around (“Ooh! Colors!), but essentially the show will always be a repeat. Heaven is a much simpler concept, which is imperative for the feeble-minded man such as myself. I love God and accept His gift of Grace for all of eternity. He will then allow me to live in his home forever. The streets are gold, the music is soothing and I’ll have forgotten the things about all of my loved ones that were so annoying. To be reincarnated is to work. Work is nice, at least in theory. Having to do it over many lifetimes is a hard road. I’m not a really good person. Certainly not good enough to be reincarnated as anyone cool. More than likely, I’ll come back as Alex Rodriguez’ left butt cheek and will be repeatedly stabbed with a hypodermic needle for years. With any luck, I won’t return as some sort of infected monkey, Lindsey Lohan, a doorknob , or some combination of the three. Yep, that will be me. A body carrying the spirit of monkeypox Lohanknob.
We are born. We die. Then we aren’t. At least not on earth. Part of the joy of living is knowing that one day we won’t have to exist amongst the problems of earth. No more worrying about money, laundry, or money laundering. Our spirits won’t be crushed any longer by bad relationships, or left to wonder when the bottom is going to fall out of good ones. I believe my spirit will go on in the heavenly realm. My body won’t be a concern any longer, though. The addled brain that inhabits my repeatedly cracked skull will no longer plague me with stupid questions. I’ll be one with God and His universe. Though there will no longer be a need to, I’ll kick back and enjoy shaky jokes and way too many Cokes. Heaven is real and I can’t wait to be united with God there.
Michelle W. of The Daily Post At WordPress.com posed a daily prompt question today regarding the ways in which we as writers make changes in each of our lives. The question asked was whether we make changes in tiny increments, or in a blinding flash of thrown down cold turkey. Having recently made some major life changes while desperately trying to get healthy, I thought that I’d take on today’s daily prompt.
My December 28th addition to this blog was, for all intents and purposes, a lie. In that post, titled Ownership, I set about reassuring myself that my bout with depression was under control. The disease was tamped down, put to rest. I owned my depression. So the story went, anyway. Within a month, I was being hammered by the deepest, most intensely pervasive funk that it has ever been my misfortune to wade through. The mind I’d grown accustomed to, the one that has produced from its rich, organic soil years upon years of laughable word pictures, was beset with confusing masses of thorns. After a year of trying to deny that anything was wrong in my skull, there was no way of avoiding the truth: I was no longer functional. Yes, I could get out of bed each day. A wonderful start, but…then what? The routine was simply to keep the appearance of routine. When a person is in denial about depression, managing the lie is the easy part. Get dressed, go to work, drive home, stare. Then you start all over the next day. A stranger to my family and friends, a walking clothes hanger to myself. I’d always been the preacher of hope, the man who survived depression and lived to help others. My first words to anyone when the subject of depression came up were always “Go and get help.” Could I live by those words in practice, as well as preaching? I had a choice. Get help or become completely lost.
I finally gave up and gave in. What I was reminded of during treatment was a very simple, yet profound truth:
The lie that has filled my mind, and told me for a lifetime that I wasn’t good enough and wouldn’t amount to anything was just that. A lie.
I gave up and gave in, changing in the process. The advice was taken, the medications gratefully accepted. Change is nearly impossible, especially when it’s wholesale and from the outside inward toward the mind. The change is doing me good, though. The soil in my mind is slowly being tilled for Spring. I may not yet own my depression, but at this bright moment of change, it doesn’t own me either.
Where will today’s inspiration come from? Do I have enough ideas in the tank to put together something enjoyable?
The thing that I do each day is let life act as its own source of inspiration. Each and every situation in life becomes material for this blog and the novel I’m working on. I keep scraps of paper within reach all of the time. Most of them would appear incomprehensible to anyone else. Papers filled with nonsense words, circled phrases unrelated to anything outside of my own mind. Most days there is a single word that relates to everything I’m writing. Today the word was inspiration. What kind of things inspire and fire my imagination? I wondered this throughout the day, as I have over the past few days. Many times, especially during the 15° days of January, inspiration seems in short supply. The rhetoric of shortsightedness fills the airwaves and it’s hard to find that one act of altruistic goodness that inspires and enlightens. Each day I live with good humor and optimism and look at life for things to write about. I live the long-sighted life. Writing is my aspiration today. A hobby, but one I can look forward to growing in for many years. Instant success has eluded me, but long-term bliss is captured and contained in my pocket as I walk along the road of life. Inspiration for writing is always a conversation away. One moment I have nothing to write about, and the next the events of the day have made me laugh until I can’t help but pour the words out onto paper. I may not have anything in the tank today, but I know that with enough faith and cheer the words will come naturally. They always do.