Tuesday, June 29, 2010

gravity sucks

Just a thought here, guys -

After I decided to turn my life upside down and change the way I was doing everything and how I was conducting my relationships, I floated for a good ten days on a pure, exhilarated air of confidence and joy. Then it ended, as it always does, and I was left shaking the dust off my boots and trying to get back to where I once belonged, upset and confused. Did the fact that I was no longer cruising in fifth gear mean that the changes weren't real? Or that they weren't big enough?

It only occurred to me a few days ago that what I experienced is what I like to refer to as a runner's high. If you're a runner, which I am not, (and never will be unless I'm being chased by zombies, or a Tyrannosaurus Rex, or I have a bucket of chili cheese fries being dangled in front of me), you know what I'm talking about. It's this burst of energy that hits at some point in the middle or two thirds of the way through your run and it propels you forward and gives you additional momentum. What it does NOT do is finish the race for you. And it doesn't make the fact that you're running much easier either.

It took me a while to be okay with the fact that I was no longer soaring above and beyond my problems but was instead back down on earth where there was still a crap-load of work to do. I tend to get inspired easily, and, like most artists and Gemini's, feel the weight of what uninspires me pulling me down just as easily. Maintaining that runner's high is difficult because it requires me to keep running in the first place - whereas whenever I have a success I convince myself that the race is over and now I can go home and sleep.

Um, it doesn't work that way.

So if you're going through some hard stuff right now, and honestly, who isn't, and you've just hit a milestone or had a major breakthrough and thought, whew, now the hard work is over, and found yourself slightly crushed when you looked up and noticed that there are still 14 more miles to go...

Well, this post is for you. Because we are all running a hard race and doing the best we can, and the times when we are floating on air because we just did something awesome are definitely worth celebrating. But when you find yourself back on the ground and a little tired and wishing you could be above it all like you used to be...

Just remember that you're doing exactly what you need to do. The only way out is through, and no matter how rad we are (yes, I just used the word rad) we don't get to cruise through life. It takes hard work and guts and showing up and discipline and consistency and patience to get back up from a fall, or come back down from a cloud, and just keep going. You don't need to hang on to those victories and successes because I promise you, there will be more of them.

The only way out is through. And you're exactly where you need to be.

36 comments:

Kate said...

I think of it more as being a marathon runner when they hit the dreaded wall. When I get to that stage, I force myself keep on going, as eventually you do feel stronger and you do end up crossing that finish line. Sometimes stopping and having a rest is as good as keeping going, but I find that if I rest, I usually can't get motivated to get myself going again. We all have our different ways.

Kate said...

(Oh dear God, I just reread my comment. That might have to be deleted!!)

Phoenix said...

Silly girl! I thought your comment was fine! I'll delete it if you want me to, but I think it makes perfect sense :)

Kate said...

I think it's a ''I knew what I was trying to say, but it came out all wrong!'' comment. It's fine to leave it, honestly!

Taylor K said...

Thanks for the pep talk. Much love. :)

Scarlet-O said...

I am a runner... I don't know why... I've always been an athlete type but more a dancer, skier, surfer, hiker... something where the thrill comes from FORM and not just yeah preparing for the zombies to come. But I do like 7ish mi run. And you're right about that high. It happens like 4 miles in. And I feel like I could go forever... but once I realize it's the end, I'm WRECKED.

But lifemetaphorwise- yes- wherever we're at, whatever sucky point, we have to remember that its a path. Not a point.

xo

s-o

Marion said...

Wise words and so Zen, dear Phoenix. Although, being female, I think we have a leg up on most males in the moonstorm/mood swing department thanks to our lunar connections. (Would that be lunatic? NOT! Ha-Ha.) What goes up, must come down, alas. But I find that I learn as much as, or more about life in the valleys as on the mountain top. I've never done 'static' ever, not even on antidepressants, even after MENopause I'm up & down like the stock market.

I have a book called, "After the Ecstasy, the Laundry" by Jack Kornfield---isn't that a rad title? ;-) And your post brought it to mind. Early on in the book he says that if you put the highest, most enlightened Zen Master in America and give him/her a job, a spouse, a few kids, a mortgage, dog, and a car, that he'd very likely totally lose his Zen cool within a matter of hours. That's in my words because I can't find my book. LOL! (Note to myself: Get that one on my Kindle!)

I love it when I get those highs and take advantage of them. But the lows make for some great songs and poetry. Sorry for my prolixity. Too much caffeine today. What I meant to say was, "Great Post!" Love & Blessings! xo

Ashley Yazzie said...

Truer words have never been written. This vida loca we live is really hard. But, we must go forward knowing that the easier moments and the happy moments will come.

lakeviewer said...

Wise words! Life is made up of these marathons, the highs and the lows butting against each other. I say, stop and celebrate your milestones, take a break as often as you can because another race is awaiting.

Lydia Kang said...

I so needed to hear this post. I'm in the thick of the writing marathon and I need a boost, the kind that will see me through many good and bad days ahead.
THANK YOU!!!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

That's an insightful post. I think the fact that you recognize the stages the way you do is what really matters. Every time we make a breakthrough we climb higher, but we're still climbing.

drollgirl said...

THANK YOU FOR THIS!

lately i have been feeling great (after feeling like shit for nearly a year). it was so exciting to wake up every morning and think: I FEEL GREAT! so fabulous! but somebody said something to me on sunday that really hurt me and set me back. and all i could think was that they were belittling me and my best efforts. it just felt like they kicked me while i was slowly rising up and finally gaining some peace and some confidence. then i worried that i was back to square one. but i figured i could have a good cry about it and that was ok. and i had to remember that i can be super sensitive, and some folks can be SUPER INSENSITIVE. after my bawlfest (or two, or three) i figured i would try and recapture that super feeling, and just keep trying to do my best, even though i might falter from time to time. onward and upward, with the occasional dip. life isn't always easy, but one must keep trying. :)

SORRY FOR THE LONG COMMENT! this girl can go LONG! :)

Robin said...

I know just what you mean. And where you are. You did this thing that was emotionally liberating and it felt incredible. Having faced that, everything feels possible. And then reality sets in and you realize that your life really isn't any different. Yes, it's somewhat different in that you made a stand, dared to do the thing that scared you, and became stronger as a person. However, your life ~ overall ~ still has most of the same problems/issues that it had before. *sigh* Great post. I am struggling with this very thing. You said it much better. And now I don't have to...

Anthony Duce said...

I think it's all just chance. Sometimes it's all going good, sometimes not. I do think the good times come though, when you're pushing against the gravity a little more. I enjoyed the your words though..

Bathwater said...

I'm done with the ups and downs. I've decided I'm going to become Kate's gardener and I'll live in a little shack in the back yard of her mansion and she will bring tea and crumpets once a year on my birthday.

I'll save you space if you move in to we could probably get her to bring us tea and crumpets twice a year.

krista said...

i have a lot of respect for gravity. it's heights i'm not a big fan of.

i never trust my highs.

Dawn Simon said...

Nice post! Very inspiring!

I followed your comment from Lydia's blog and, while checking out your blog, saw your cat recently wrote a post. My dog posted Sunday, so I think it's a sign that I should follow you. :)

Kristin Quinn said...

That you for that inspiring post. It was RAD!!!!!

Miss Anne said...

.... please go listen to

"Exactly" by Amy Steinberg

Gwen said...

I think we all hit those dreaded walls every once in a while. I know I have lately but your post just reminds me that I have to keep pushing through. Break through that wall girl!!! I know you can do it!! XOXO

Dionne said...

Such a great post, Tracy. I soooo agree with you that all we can so is push through. Ugh. Not fun, but it's the only way. Thanks for always being so open and transparent with us!

Joker_SATX said...

I could not agree more with this post.

How many times has this Joker tried taking over Gotham. And How many times have I run into the brick wall known as the BatFink?

Keep on keeping on...that's my motto!

Eric W. Trant said...

My brother and I had a similar conversation a while back, only he was (and still is) in the middle of a good part of his life.

"You ever feel like things are ~too~ good?" he said.

"Don't worry. Things'll get worse, I promise. Do your best with the good and your best with the bad, that's all you can do."

Things get better. Then worse. Then better. Then worse. Then, just when you think they can't get any worse, they do, and then later, it gets better again, so much better that you thought you'd never be so great.

Gads, huh. This is why God blessed us with beer, opposable thumbs, and the ability to self-medicate.

- Eric

g. fox said...

Thank you. I needed to hear that. Chin up, girl. We're all in this boat together...

Ed Pilolla said...

never heard of runner's high, but now i know about it:) life has a cruel sense of balance to it, and it's wonderful too. as you say, we come down from those clouds, and we rise up from getting knocked down. it's not even enough to know that the subsequent rise or fall is coming, it's always surprising and always takes my breath away. but that's getting in tune with our life energy and that of the universe. we just do the best we can, and keep on surfing those waves. for the record, i don't run or surf:)

there are always forks in the path, always developments, always opportunities to continue to become who we are and are becoming. a lot of it is painful. a lot amazingly beautiful. going through it, you say. i like that. i'll take that with me as i journey on.

Dave said...

You ever see a car commercial filmed on I-70 in Kansas? Me either. Flat is kinda boring. Lifes ups and downs and occasional curves keep us engaged. Having said that, gravity can definately suck.

Lydia said...

This was the perfect post for me to read as July 1 officially begins, marking my second attempt this year to do yoga every day for 90 days. The idea is to repeat once done, but I need to stay focused on the first round because last time I made it to 76 days and then...oh, I have no idea what happened.

I really enjoyed your website that you linked to in your previous post. You have what it takes! You might be interested in reading a bit about the acting career of my cousin's son, Kelly AuCoin.

Molly said...

I love this post. I really enjoyed the humor this line brought to the post: "Um, it doesn't work that way."

Everyone is going through something hard all the time. And a majority of people get through it some way or another. I definitely get that feeling of "Can I just go home and sleep now?" all the time.

I'd love it if you could check out my blog sometime! withmonsters.blogspot.com

Heather Taylor said...

Great post Tracy. I actually haven't been blogging for a few days because I've felt very much disinterested in doing so. It's been a rough month for me, but I know it will get better soon.

The Kid In The Front Row said...

Delve into life - that's where the magic grows from.

Barbara said...

A super post, Phoenix! Words for all of us to remember. Especially when times are GOOD.
Your continued motivation is impressive and I love it when you post things like this. I forwarded it right on to my daughter who is fighting the good fight in NYC.

Okie said...

Great post...well thought out and very insightful.

It's difficult to make the hard choices...and even harder to see them through to the end, but pushing through and succeeding makes it all worth it.

Misery said...

"the only way out is through", that's something I often force myself to forget in a fear of failure. And, believe me, there's nothing easier to force yourself to forget such things,

And, yes, Charles Bukowski IS (I can use present tense can't I)absolutely the best. As well as vampires (when they do not sparkle!).

:)

suzy said...

thank you for the pep talk.
nice web log.
have a nice day.

littlemissjuicy said...

I totally needed this post! "The only way out is through". I need to remember this more often. :)

Maggie May said...

amen!

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