I am now 60 plus 6. It’s messy but comfortable.
When I began my sixth decade, I had an inkling of awareness so I put it in a box, all wrapped up with corners taped neatly. Its bow not yet pulled. Not a strand of ribbon out of place. Unopenly adorned.
On any day, an inkling is as good as a mile with awareness, from a rosy-fingered dawn to the ebony of starlight.
Hours grow to the middle, to even ground. That’s the moment I aim for, “feeling myself without inventory,” as Mark Nepo says, “living energy.”
So, less luggage these days.
Turning 60 proved to be a watershed moment, in retrospect. As I say, I had an inkling and wrote a post about starting a new decade in which I hoped to eliminate refined sugar from my diet.
Only one of many items in my inventory of “fixing” both mind and body rather than living as the energy I am. How that lightens the load, life as experience rather than inventory, a “traveling professor” as Glennon Doyle Melton calls it.
Awareness is access to life in its true colors, with the constant chatter of the ego in the background, but since it seems sure of its place, it settles more easily. Okay, not all days but some.
So, what comes next? That seems to be the question I ask most often, and every day is a different response. I keep my load light. I look to the color of the day.
Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.
‘Keeping the load light’ is excellent advice — that I will remember this December, when I turn 75. What I notice is a sense that as my stamina diminishes (slightly), that I have renewed appreciation for the skills, strength, and relationships that sustain me. Sounds like we are on a similar path, though I’ve only cut down on sugar. My motto? Cherish each day. Say ‘no’ when saying ‘yes’ leads away from what is closest to my heart. Persevere with good spirit.
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“Renewed appreciation” for what is–I experience that time and again. I am not as quick to say “yes” or “no” these days. In the pause, sometimes the path clears. Sometimes…. 😉
this post is about as good of a description of zen as I’ve seen.
I also get inklings of awareness occasionally when I meditate. typically they are brief. I think of the famous zen story about the 10 bulls, and wish I could ride that bull for longer increments. but I can’t. however, just knowing that the light is there, that the window of awareness is there, somewhere, waiting for me, gives me great peace and reassurance.
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Yes, Craig, just knowing it’s there keeps me coming back. As always, thanks so much.