Just Because…

21

July 23, 2108, Prescott-

Of course, my accounts of my travels will continue, later today.  My mind was roiling, earlier this morning, with a feeling that someone was silently accusing me of prejudice, for not settling into another relationship, for not ending my widowhood.  Penny appeared to me afterward, in my mind’s eye, and told me:

“You love, intensely.

Just because you have no romantic feelings for anyone in your present Baha’i community does not make you callous, unfeeling, prejudiced.

You are there for each person, helping each as needed.

That does not require you to fit into a niche.

You love, intensely

Just because you have a strong friendship with a woman who is of entirely different mindset, in terms of Faith, does not mean you are disloyal to Baha’u’llah.

Conversely, as I’ve told you before, you and she are steadfast friends, no more, no less. You would gladly see her find someone who will cherish her, forever.

You love, intensely.

You see your younger co-workers as if they were your own daughters.  Their struggles are your own and you help them where they need help, taking nothing from their dignity.

You love, intensely.

Each day, whether on the road or at what you call Home Base, the needs, large and small, of women, men and children who cross your path have as much urgency as your own.

Just because some are, occasionally, put off by what they see as your shortcomings or errors, does not mean you are unworthy of respect.  They have their own burdens.

Carry on, my love.  As time continues, your true destiny will keep on unfolding.  You have miles to go.”

With that, my angst subsided.

 

Dancing With Reality

5

December 19, 2017, Prescott-

My comments, of a few days ago,

regarding relationships seemed stark to some.

They do have a flip side.

It was not my intention to pigeonhole women in any age group,

nor to automatically “friend-zone” anyone. ( I hate that term, anyway.)

Reality for me, at the edge of 2018,

has several very positive aspects.

On my present job,

I face the possibility of violent outbursts,

on any day or at any given moment.

These are never personal, and our team is well-equipped to handle them.

The positive aspect of this is that we are well-supported,

internally and system-wide.

We also know what the triggers are,

and can be proactive.

Outside of work,

I have my Faith group,

several friends from

the wider Prescott community

and so many,

across the nation

and the planet.

Revamping my blog,

as I will mention again,

in my year-end recap,

has brought hundreds of new

friends- and a few critics,

to my world.

There are those,

towards whom I feel close,

who are quite skittish,

and dancing with reality

requires that I approach

them, with carefully-chosen

words and actions.

This dance is complicated,

but it is breathtakingly

joyful!

 

Purposeful

20

December 17, 2017, Prescott-

I stayed close to home today.  My spirit guides told me it’d be a good idea.  I spent some time with friends at a local restaurant, then visited another friend’s family Christmas display.

One week is left of school, before we break for two weeks.  This week will have two regular days and three shorter ones.  My purpose remains the same, though:  Impart as much, in the way of social skills reinforcement, to our five students, and maintain a consistent routine.  This last means everything to autistic people.

I have signed on for business training, with another travel blogger, albeit in more essential business practices of TODAY’S environment- both digital and physical.  It’s legitimate- I have checked.  It may even help me with other interests of mine, like teaching about essential oils.

Another subject, that keeps coming up among my fellow bloggers, is relationships.  Well, duh!  I was asked, yesterday, by a much-older friend, as to when I was going to get married again.  I have no idea-especially since:  To women over 70, I’m a younger brother; to women in their 40’s and 50’s, I’m too old; to women in their 60’s, I am also like a sibling.  Anyone under the age of 40 is like a daughter or niece.  In short, I am quite happy with all of the above.  It’s nice to have reliable friends in my life, and not have to complicate matters with romance. Penny was one of a kind.  If there is another such person, well, I will know.  If not, I am in a good place.

I have become better at living  purposefully. 2018 may well be one of the best years of this life.

Sixty Six, for Sixty-Six, Part XXXVI: So Fleeting, It Is

17

May 23, 2017, Prescott-

I have felt a lot, welling in my heart, today. Sitting on the floor, after hours, keeping a little boy out of harm’s way, whilst waiting for his guardian to arrive and take him home, two of us encountered his simplistic view of things:  If he were only allowed to, he would run after the bus, in stocking feet.  Somehow, he knew the bus would be late, and it was; but guardian was already en route.

This is our clairvoyant child, who warned me not to think of a new friend of mine in a romantic way.  I would not have done so, anyway, but he had no way of knowing my heart- or maybe he did see a hidden danger lurking.

It has been a tempestuous month:  Two deaths of friends, one expected; the other, a bombshell.  Both brought communities together.  An aged mentor, to many of us in my Faith community, went back to God, last Wednesday.    Then, this week, a colleague in the Red Cross passed on, after a serious illness.

Now comes Manchester.  A young lady of considerable, as yet unrealized, talent, sought to bring the joy of her dance hall style of music to another generation of youth.  A crazed and puritanical misfit set out to destroy her efforts.  The resulting carnage will live in my heart, for a long time.

Some in my circle have taken to responding to me, of late, with curt, businesslike replies.  Others, are acting as if we’ve never met, in the first place.  Life is fleeting, so why not friendship and connection?

It’s often said, that if you love something, set it free, and if it comes back, it is yours.  If not, it never was.  So, my friends and family are always free to come and go.  The spot they have in my heart will still be there, should they come back.  This is life, and it goes on.

Inward, Outward and Onward

9

SAM_8722

 

We are each on a journey of some sort.

 

I’ve had a lot of thoughts and a few conversations, over the past month or so, as to what sort of person always seems to be on the move, and what exactly is it that such a person is seeking.  I can only speak for myself.  I have been peripatetic from Day 1, it seems, and not just in the sense of exploring new physical locations or different scenes.  My nose has been in a book, far more often than my feet have been moving forward.  Ironically, though I love to be walking here and there, when the occasion requires, I can sit still for hours on end, patiently reading, watching the most inane TV shows or just letting my mind wander.  This last characteristic served me well during my Penny’s final year- much of which I spent at her bedside- because there was no place I wanted to be more.

Whether one is engaged in a building project, sitting at dockside with a fishing pole in hand, coaching a soccer team, designing jewelry, doing one’s taxes or climbing Sagarmatha, a journey is a journey.  There may be miscalculations and setbacks along the way, and re-dos are the task of the lucky.  The rest end up in one abyss or another.

This brings me to relationships.  I was more fortunate than I can ever express outwardly, that I had the companionship of a blithe spirit and keen intellect for thirty years.  I will have a spiritual bond with Penny for all eternity, and there will never be a time when I don’t feel her presence.  I am fortunate to be surrounded by family, in an ever-distant outward ring, which is nevertheless always pulsating.  I am fortunate, too, to have friends both near and far- those who understand me, and still refrain from judging.

Some ask, why do you not want another companion?  The quick answer is, I am a self-contained unit, and always have been.  Penny drew me out and aided me to build on what my parents instilled in each of us- to be urgently aware of our surroundings, and BE HELPFUL.   I’m far from dead, emotionally, and see women I consider attractive, in one way or another, every day.  The most important thing, though, is that I have finally learned that it is the friendship, not the attraction, that sets us free.  I would rather have a hundred good friends, or a thousand, than be in any relationship where one of us is feeling like “Damn it, I can do better.”

So, I am happy to have the friends in my life, female and male, young and old, on whom I can count and who can count on me, with no ulterior motives.  We are each on a journey, every minute of every day, and it is a fine thing to see a traveler smile along the way.