b : junior 1a
c : of an early, tender, or desirable age for use as food or drink <fresh young lamb> <a young wine>
Young…its a state of mind to me. Yes, there are the young, those of earlier age, but when I think of young as applied to a person, I think of someone who has not forgotten what it is like to think about, experience, and enjoy life with the open-minded inhibition of a child. I admire these people. No matter what they have experienced in life, they are capable of keeping the responsibilities of being an adult from corrupting their world view. Fun is all about them, they strive to include it in all that they do, and it shows in their faces and posture.
I have always wanted to be this type of person, and I believe I was, to some extent. When I got clean in 2005, started to learn what responsibility looked and felt like, I started to lose some of that young-ness. I didn’t know how to balance being a responsible adult with staying young. Then, when we lost everything when the economy crashed at the end of 2008 and moved into our first RV, life demanded a higher level of responsibility. This event, and the 5+ years since then, also changed me a lot. I was devastated. This is where the left foot, right foot, repeat began for me. I lost what it meant to just be, period.
It wasn’t until around 2 or so years ago that I started to realize that I was no longer fun. I wasn’t having fun. I had narrowed my vision to see only what was needed to keep moving forward and stay alive. I made the mistake of not including staying young in the mix for what was needed for the forward progression. I’m working on it. I still haven’t figured out the balance between being responsible and staying young, but I’m trying to make myself just stop and remember what staying young feels like and incorporating it into my life, again.
My camera helps me do that, some. When I’m out with my camera, I am removed from the daily responsibilities, looking at the world around me with open eyes and an open mind. I’m remembering what the excitement of finding a flower that has just barely started to open for the first time feels like, the thrill of having a bunny show up in some place I find unexpected…I’m taking the time to smell the roses.
This blog is helping with this, as well. It gives me the chance to hear where I’m at, mentally, because I don’t always know. Part of the beginning of left foot, right foot, repeat was putting aside my emotions. I am having to get back in touch with them in a more intimate way. I am finding the pieces of the map that lead me to the path back to the parts of me that I miss.
Another thing I have started doing is listening to comedy. It can be really hard to find comedy that makes me laugh like a child. I know that part of that is because I’m still in the healing process, but another part of it is the fact that there are a lot of comedians out there now that have a sense of humor that doesn’t tickle my funny bone. It’s not that they are bad comedians, it’s just that their humor and mine don’t mesh. I’m determined in my desire to find my young, again, though, so I continue to search to find the comedy that brings the giggles and belly laughs that take away the stresses that come along, if even for just that moment. It is said that laughter is the best medicine and I am doing whatever I can to bring more of it into my life.