Three Epiphanies and a New Mantra
...continuation from Livin Large with LoLo in which I was struck by epiphanies during my 2022 trip to Costa Rica.
I'm a giver, always have been. Being a giver is a form of sharing - time, resources, and wisdom. For example, grabbing a shovel and lending a hand in the neighbor's garden, holding space for someone, throwing a surprise party, or paying for lunch.
When it comes to giving, there are two areas I need to learn: boundaries and appropriate giving. For instance, if giving is like sharing your toys and sweets, it could be detrimental to share a bag of candy or a loaf of fresh bread with someone who has diabetes. So after letting go of my always-sharing propensity, I started by splitting the bill at restaurants to teach myself boundaries. It may not necessarily be appropriate with close family members, but hey, gotta start someplace. It felt awkward initially, but now it's a piece of cake.
Growing up in the '50s, I heard, "You need to eat everything on your plate; don't you know there are starving kids in China?" Consequently, my empty plate told me when eating was done, not any feeling of fullness from my stomach. I realized that while slowly eating, I would take a few deep breaths and stop eating for a while. I'd then start up again when the '50s tape began to play and clean that plate.
I had to let go of the tape; shredded that sucker. Then I had to release the guilt of leaving food on the plate. It took about three days. I spent quite a few months learning my body's hungry and full signals. I'm still working on it, but those deep breaths are a better cue of fullness; yawning and headaches are better hunger cues. Perhaps after 66 years of not listening to my stomach, it has decided to no longer speak to me directly.
For two years, COVID put a clamp on my adventurous nature. Going to Costa Rica this past August made me realize how much my spirit and body benefit from curiosity and adventure. I see through the eyes of a child and become aware of the multiple layers of a moment. It's more being, less doing. I'm a different person, and I like her!
One can be just as curious and adventurous here and now as in far-off places. When I returned from Costa Rica, I let go of the notion that it had to be to some far-off place and recognize "being" is my happy place. I vowed to continue to travel backroads, seek out the historic and the modern, and experience the wild and wacky - no matter where I am in the world. My plans for the next few weekends are all unique, close to home, and extremely cheap. Later this year, on the cheap, France will find me on its backroads, and then I vagabond northern Morocco, wandering the medinas and spending a week in the desert with Bedouins - camel optional. What we don't know is what makes the world go round. And "being" makes it all possible.
New Mantra: Now Thyself. (not misspelled)
Does any of this resonate with you? Any epiphanies you'd like to share?