Everyone and everything dies.

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Cheery, huh? Actually, it is. Stick with me on this one, folks.

Endings and death have been on my mind a whole lot lately.

First off, two days from now will be the one year anniversary of Andrea’s passing.

Secondly, about two months ago, Squee and I broke up, after about four years together. It’s okay, really. I still love and care about her. But things change.

Third, my new job is demanding, and causing me in many ways to re-evaluate myself as a person, in all sorts of ways. I go to bed early, get up early to drive a long way to do a job I’m sort of teaching myself to do as I do it. It can be exhausting.

Last night I came home from work fully intending to work on my side business, do some podcast related work, and attend to a nagging bill related chore too. Instead I sat on the couch, lost at Overwatch for about 2 hours, and put myself to bed early, feeling low of spirit.

This morning though, I feel great. I had plans to get out the door by 6:15, an hour ago. But those plans died on the vine as I realized some other things I had to do. I made breakfast, packed my lunch, changed the cat litter, and realized I don’t have to push myself to do everything and anything all at once.

This is something Andrea knew and knew well. Don’t mistake me, she wasn’t some sanctified guru who floated an inch off the ground, and whom nothing ever bothered. So many of the phone calls and visits we had with one another started off with one of us engaging in a good old fashioned bitching session about something.

But the thing she knew, and which I also know but keep forgetting which is also, by the way perfectly human, is that everything and everyone dies. Every moment dies. Every plan dies. And when they do, they leave the ground where I’m standing fertile and ready to receive this very next moment.

Take this morning. As I made my breakfast, and checked my watch, I thought I might have enough time to change the cat litter this morning. When I went to check it, it was in a terrible state (Sorry kitties!) and I knew that I had to change it. So I did. If that means my commute will bloom up to 90 minutes today (which is very likely), well so be it. That’s okay. I will witness the death of the old plan and welcome the new one.

I know that because of my abandonment issues I have a tendency to want things to last. When I see that long arc of persistence grow around me, I lean into it and get comfort from it. It’s not an entirely bad thing either. It’s immature to divide the world into simple, absolute binaries. Yin contains Yang, and vice versa.

No matter how much energy I pour into anyone or anything in my life, it will eventually die. That’s tragic, yes. But it’s also comforting. Love and pleasure come to a fold, yes. But so does pain and suffering. That’s why it’s so import to just keep swimming, like Andrea always used to say.

The fact that the swim ends is what gives it beauty.

As I write this, i’m getting ready to go to the gym to go swimming. For Christmas this year Missy got me an Apple Watch. I’ve been using one of its applications, that tracks movement, standing, and exercise as rings.

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Each day the rings start out empty and you fill them as you go. Workouts are an implicit thing, You tell the watch what you’re about to do and it tracks it with extra detail.

This really works for me. For one thing, the data gets shared with another application I use, Lose It. It makes it so easy to really see the benefit and interrelated nature of my choices. It’s also a sort of gamification of being healthy. I know that the swim I do a few days ago can allow me to eat an ice cream sandwich a few days later. Or conversely, see how I feel and how my weight fluctuates based on the amount of exercise I get. It makes me able to stand back a few feet from individual choices and see how they knit together.

All of which combined, help me be more fully present in both what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. I’m really excited to grab a quick shower, get dressed, & get to my gym. I like those closed green rings. I like what they do to and for me.

Posted
AuthorMako Allen
CategoriesgratitudeNow

Yesterday was a big day for all mankind.

Elon Musk's SpaceX successfully launched a test flight of the Falcon Heavy rocket, sending the whimsical payload of his personal Tesla roadster into space, on its way to a heliocentric orbit around Mars.

I've been a Musk fan for a long time now.  I think that this launch is the beginning of a whole lot of change.  There are a series of technologies Musk has created which compliment one another in improving how we live and get around.

His solar roof tiles will provide cheap, plentiful power, which will come in handy, to power your self-driving electric car.

Speaking of your car, his boring machine will create a vast tunnel and tram system to eliminate surface road traffic.

Plus, surface travel without a car is going to be boosted by the near-vacuum-tube based pod hyperloop system.

Roads are going to get a whole lot less congested with this stuff.  This will be further enabled by the Tesla Semi, which is not only electric but soon to be completely autonomous, self-driving.

But let's get back to that space thing for a moment.  The Falcon 9 rocket isn't just stronger, bigger, reusable, and thus cheaper to run.  It's not just going to get us out to the stars.  It's also going to make our planet a much smaller place, by making it possible to go almost anywhere on earth in about an hour.

When I sit and ponder the potential social changes this sort of technology will bring, it astounds me.  It'll lower borders, create jobs, make medicine more reliable, enlarge humanity's reach out to the stars, improve our life on earth in countless ways.

Yes, the world is filled with social ills.  Yes, there's poverty, racism, sexism, misogyny, bigotry, and hatred rampant in it.

But there's also this, and I'm thrilled to be a witness to it.

This is all really happening.

 

Posted
AuthorMako Allen

So Missy is still sore, still in pain.

But she's become a getting-around-on-crutches ninja.  She's really damn good at it.  She goes up and down the stairs, gets all over the house, no problem.

And her knee's become bendy enough that she even feels safe enough to go out, and drive herself.

Now before you get all up in our grill about it:

  • The knee she had surgery on was her left knee, not the right.  So she doesn't need it for driving, except the part where she has to bring both knees with her, because, attached.
  • Missy, in case you hadn't noticed, is a tough customer.  She doesn't do languishing.  She tends to attack life with vigor.
  • Her getting out-and-about is really an essential part of her recovery.

We shared a lovely slow morning, I made us both breakfast (my custom made egg sandwiches for the win!), and I helped her get some stuff she needed out to the car.

She assured me she was gonna be just fine, and got on her way.

And then I got a lovely little check-in from her:

I told her how her being able to do this would be my gratitude today.  And look, it is!

Posted
AuthorMako Allen
Categories365 Gratitude