Saturday, February 5, 2011

Heart to Heart

The past week the South has seen some crazy weather.  Tuesday we were hit with an ice storm that lingered around due to freezing temps and then came several inches of snow to make life more interesting.  As a result, I found myself stuck inside for three days, home from work, trying to figure out how to occupy my "free" time.

I think it's interesting that I don't know what to do with myself when I don't have to go to work.  Work fills up my time so naturally, so easily.  When I'm not working, I feel like I'm not being productive.  I've forgotten how to just sit back, relax, sip on some tea, and pick up a book "just for fun."  I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that I am not comfortable with silence.  With stillness.  I think too much when it's quiet.  I find myself contemplating life, wondering if I'm doing everything I can be doing...doing everything I should be.

It's what I do best.

My family jokes with me all the time about that "quality."  And, to make it worse, I now have a Ph.D. in analyzing and critical thinking.  So, now I'm Dr. Analyze Everything and have made a living out of it.

Last night I found myself watching about hour 100 of TV (I needed the noise this week).  There was a Barbara Walters special on heart disease (yesterday was "Go Red" day in case you missed it).  She interviewed about five celebrities from Robin Williams to Bill Clinton, talking and sharing stories about their common experiences about open heart surgery.  All of them were somewhere in their 50's when this happened.  And, of course, I am reminded of my own father who never made it out of his 50's because of a heart attack. 

My mind immediately kicked into gear.

I'm now 14 years removed from his death, and the wounds have pretty much healed.  But what I continue to work on and struggle with is the ability to just go with life and enjoy it.  I've lost enough people in my life to know that life is only temporary.  I know that.  I know that friends can (and have) died, that people won't die in "chronological order," that I could very well not be here tomorrow.  So with that said, why then do I still find myself unable to just sit back, relax, and find peace in silence?  Just listen to the snow melting off of the rooftops.  Just listen to my breathing and be thankful that I am. 

Just listen.

Maybe I'll work on doing that today...right after I turn off the radio and stop looking over papers I need to finish up for school on Monday.

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