As I mentioned in the last post, I am working my way through one of my life lessons.
This means I am on crutches, again. I'm bringing up the crutches thing only because it directly relates to a realization I had today
Being on crutches forces you to slow down. At a base level, it is simply not as effective of a ground covering method as a pair of running sneakers. In addition, crutches imply an inherent instability within the lower limb region. So while you are literally moving slower, you are increasingly aware of your surrounds: footing changes, elevation changes, loose gravel, wet spots (dog spills), darting cats (ninjas-in-training) and such.
They force you to slow down and pay attention to everything along the way. Those moto-quotes we are inundated with such as, "It's the journey, not the destination" or "Take time to smell the roses"... well, grab yourself a pair of crutches and those immediately become part of your world. Everything becomes a journey. Laundry becomes a journey.
I hate doing laundry. Yes, hate is a strong word. Let's just say it has not my favorite thing to do. My current living arrangement has a lovely set of bamboo stairs. My washer is down those lovely stairs and my living space is up those lovely stairs. My usual disdain for doing laundry was replaced with an actual laugh out loud moment. I realized I needed to do laundry but was definitely not going to be able to carry a laundry basket down the stairs while on crutches.
In the past, I would have gotten a little forlorn at not being "able" to do what I thought I "should" be able to do. Or worse, I would have to ask for help! Type-A all the way here, kiddos. This was different. I literally looked down at the stairs and back at my bedroom and started laughing. I was laughing because I realized the easiest way to get the laundry down there was obviously to throw it down the stairs. Obviously. Piece by piece.
I felt like a 12 year old giggling at the ridiculousness and simplicity of this. Can I tell you how liberating it is to stand at the top of a set of stairs defiantly flinging your laundry down them? Seriously, you should try it. Somehow it brings to the surface all these feelings of breaking some forbidden rule about domestication... I don't know how to explain it. Just try it.
So there I was, laughing and throwing laundry down the stairs...
Also, shout out to the brilliant Rebecca Borrelli for that awesome piece of art at the bottom of the stairs. Check her out here.
Simple joys, folks. It is all about simple joys. Those moto-quotes are right. The even better part of this, as I was standing (balancing) at the top of the stairs, I realized I had inadvertently booby-trapped myself. Now, my path was littered with laundry that I had to navigate through to get to the bottom of the bamboo stairs.
Thus, I started laughing again.
You want to take life on step at a time? This here was a easy way to do that. Remember those metal extenda-arm things that your grandparents had to pick up stuff off the floor? The metal- grippy robo handle thing? Well, that's the image I had in my mind as I hobbled down the stairs (still giggling). Take one step, use crutches like metal chopsticks to pick up and fling laundry further down stairs, laugh at how ridiculous this process has become, and repeat. There. Now you are in the moment. Thanks, Zen Master.
Seriously though, for that period of time I was fully aware and focused on what I was doing. A task that was so meaningless and a "necessary mundane experience" became a completely engrossing experience. It really is the little things.
We run through life adding more and more to our schedule to find a sense of accomplishment and progress. We tack up faster to get another horse ridden, others rush the walk to get into the trot. Find the hole, fix the hole. We pride ourselves on being multi-tasking masters of equine education. The damn German Training Scale gets us again. Rhythm and Relaxation.
Take a breathe. Feel your horse's breathe. Laugh at the absurdity of what we ask these animals to do.
Throw the laundry down the stairs every now and then.