As J and I continue pondering whether or not to have children together, I have to look at my personal history of focus.
In the 21-day meditation challenge I’m working through now, The Energy of Attraction, they return repeatedly to the idea that in order to manifest anything in our lives, we must be focused on it. We must maintain that focus.
I feel like some of my 6th graders! SQUIRREL!
My attention muscle is extremely weak. Rather, my attention on myself muscle is weak; I have a voracious capacity to focus on you!
And it would be easy for me to give up; to say, “You know, clearly it’s easier for me to focus on the needs or goals of others, and it’s sooo freakin’ hard to focus on myself, and besides, I’m totally bomb at “helping” other people(!), so I should just do that!! I should dedicate myself to what others—including my partner, potential children, students, their parents—may need.”
It’s so much easier that way! It’s ingrained! It’s hella focused!
But, truly, I know that’s not the path I really want to or am meant to follow.
My path, clearly, includes the consideration of others, but I know that I need copious strengthening of the muscle of Coming Back to Myself first.
I have so many disparate interests that part of the lure toward “helping” others is that I don’t have to decide. It’s the curse of the “Master of None.” I don’t want to be a master of none; it doesn’t help my self-esteem to say that, Yes, I play several instruments, but none of them competently. Yes, I’ve been a community theater actress, but I don’t do that anymore. Yes, I’ve worked in bands, but those collaborations fell off.
In fact, I increasingly notice that my friendships often suffer the same “fall by the wayside” fate if I’m not attending to them.
I want to study physics, fly a Piper plane, visit Rome, own rental property, do Shakespeare, play the piano…
But more than any of these things, I want to write a regular column in an online or paper publication. I want to use my voice and my ability to condense disparate pieces of information into a coherent whole to inspire others to ask important questions of themselves, to illustrate progress, and to share vulnerably that I may help others to do the same.
I want to be a writer. A published one. And I don’t want to waver from that goal.
And yet, EVEN AS I TYPE THAT, I feel emotions, something like resistance, or fear, or hopelessness, rise up in me.
And so I know that THIS is the place to “focus” my attention. I will never be able to move wholly into a realm if I feel terrified of it; if I feel ashamed putting my attention on myself; if I hide what I want for myself.
In a word, I must own my voice.
Honing my focus in on this one goal feels internally like my trying to benchpress … any number of pounds!!
But, I have been going to the gym lately, and I do notice that I can hold that plank a few seconds longer. Make my mind like that plank: just a few seconds of awareness on bringing my vision into reality, just merely hold my attention on that goal, and see, just see, what movement can happen.