Writers Write

Well hello little blog, I’ve missed you. I’m back.

A lot has changed in the month that I took off from writing. At the end of August, something happened. Something life changing (not in the fun way), something that required me to move back to California. Something that I really don’t feel like sharing with the virtual world. I’ve made it a point to be very honest in this blog, but some things I like to keep to myself. This is one of those things.

So I went from wondering when I should move home, to getting my answer thrown in my face on a hot Saturday morning after teaching a yoga class. Within three days I packed up my entire room, put all of my belongings in my van and parked it in Alex’s drive way. I flew home with only a backpack full of clothes and my yoga mat.

Now, here I am. A little shaken up, tender and tired, but I’m breathing.

People know this about me: I’m a yogi. I’m a searcher. I’m a curious soul. So of course, when something happens, I wonder why. Ever since I was young, I have viewed the things that happen to me not as random chance or coincidence, but as messages and guides. Things happen and come into our lives to teach us something about ourselves or what we need to be doing. Especially the big, messy, life-changing stuff.

Life-changing events do to our lives what the equivalent of ten years of yoga would do, except you don’t have to wear spandex, get sweaty, or do any Sun Salutations.

I went through a phase where I questioned this idea. I would think, come on George…if I spill a cup of coffee while I’m driving can that really be some huge symbol for how my life is going at the moment? Can’t it be that some days you just spill the damn coffee and that’s the end of it?

I don’t know the answer to that, and neither does anyone else. We have a choice: either believe that things happen to guide us, or not.

Believe, or don’t believe.

I’ve come to realize that it’s simply more fun to live life believing. When we view everything as a message, in essence we are believing in magic, and that’s always fun. And yeah, it’s more than just magic we’re believing in. One day I remember thinking…

Holy shit, this means I believe in God.

Yep. It’s true. I didn’t know, for a long time, if I believed in God or not. My life wasn’t some horrible, depressing mess (like some people say it is) when I wasn’t believing. But it got a lot more fun and lively when I chose to believe.

Of course, sometimes, I’ll write something off as chance–things do just seem to happen. Sometimes we just get stuck in traffic, drop a contact lens in the sink, run out of milk. But more times than not, I try to search for the message. It’s always more fun that way. It’s always an adventure.

I get to play detective for a little while.

Needless to say, I’ve been searching a lot lately. It’s always more fun to do the searching when it’s something positive that’s happened, but the negative deserves to be examined too, even though it’s harder work to do. It’s important.

Whenever I do my searching, it’s not like I come to some definitive answer: You stepped in dog shit because you haven’t been watching out for negative things trying to come into your life. No, it’s never like that. The situation I’m going through now is no different. I don’t know for sure why it happened but it has awakened me to many things. And to be honest I don’t really care exactly why it happened, just seeing the world in a new way is good enough for me.

It’s been a major reality check. Most “bad” situations are. Well, more like a reality SLAP. The truth, what’s important and what’s not important, and reality itself gets laid out right in front of us, whether we want to see it or not. And I guess that a reality check is what I needed. So I thank this situation for giving me that.

Reality for me was that in Savannah, even though I was content and loving life, there were some things missing. I wanted to be writing, so badly, not just in this blog but I wanted a job writing. I wanted to be outside more, I wanted to be adventuring. I wanted to be climbing. I wanted to be closer to my family. I wanted to be falling more in love with my boyfriend, and as much as this hurts to write, we were drifting apart. I wanted all of these things. But I wasn’t doing a damn thing to make all of this reality.

So, the universe did it for me.

I wasn’t writing, going outside, working on my relationships, or making the effort to organize weekend climbing trips. I was just…sitting there, thinking, well…life is pretty good so whatever.

One of my writing professors in college would tell us, writers write. He said it all the time. Writers write. If you want to be something, you have to do it. You have to practice it. Daily. In Savannah, I wasn’t doing most of the things I love. I was still happy, but not being the best version of Georgie Abel.

And now, I quite literally have every single one of those things that I listed. Every last one. I got them in a not so fun way, but my life has changed nonetheless.

Yoga tradition tells us not to “want” and not to desire. The only thing acceptable (but only sometimes) to desire is enlightenment. What a bunch of bullshit. Loving and desiring and dreaming are what gives us life, drive, a pulse. It feels good to be ambitious and passionate about attaining something, about being something. Yes, suffering may occur if we fail, but who the hell cares. If failing is the worst thing that happens, oh well. You’ll get over it, I promise.

Loving the things we love and wanting the thing we want are what makes us who we are.

Whatever you love, you are. -Rumi

Doing what you love is the best gift you can give yourself.

This situation woke me up to a lot things, and it reminded me of the kind of person I want to be. I want to be loving, strong, creative, adventurous. I want to be a thankful daughter and inspiring sister, a passionate girlfriend, a supportive friend, a writer, a yogi, a lover of the outdoors. Sometimes it’s extremely easy to forget who we want to be, how we want to spend our days, how to do the things and be around the people that make us happy. Instead we fall into a routine of being some way that doesn’t make us feel good–stressed, angry, irritable, jealous, unhappy. We adopt these traits simply because it’s what we’re used to doing. Call it a funk, a slump, whatever–we all know that this doesn’t feel good.

So maybe you choose to hold your tongue when all of your friends are gossiping. Or maybe you say something positive to yourself every time you think something negative. Eat something healthy, go for a run, start writing a book, forgive the person you haven’t yet, paint like you used to when you were younger, do the things you love. Think in your mind of the best, most awesome, most rock-star like version of yourself. Hold on to that person, and think about what you can do to be that way.

The truth is, you’re already that person, you just have to start acting like it.