In his book, The Four-Hour Work Week, Timothy Ferris asks, "If you could only do two hours of work this week, what would you do?" Without hesitation, I said that I'd devote one hour to Community Breath and one hour to writing. Community Breath is a one-hour, monthly shamanic breath session, community-style event I created and have offered since last April.
Imagine my own surprise, then, when I cancelled the Community Breath series just two days after uttering those words. Last Friday, I went to the studio, excited and happy to facilitate this month's Community Breath, only to discover that none of the people who had RSVPd showed up. It was just as well, since, as it turns out, I had forgotten to reserve the studio, and it was occupied. "Sorry," the studio owner said, "let me know when you want to reschedule." I nodded and trudged, heavy-hearted, back out to my car.
I slept on it, and in the morning, I knew that it was time to give it a rest. William Faulkner said, "In writing, you must kill all your darlings." That quote has always haunted me. Being a fairly verbose blogger, I exceed the 400-600 word recommended maximum on a regular basis. Even so, I do my best to edit, believe it or not, often cutting whole paragraphs before posting. Still, I know my posts tend to be the length and of the variety that only a mother (or someone else related to me) could love.
That Faukner quote came to me today as I reflected on my other offerings. I was red-hot on fire to create new events at the first of this year. 44 Earth Blessings. One-for-One weekly meditations. Monday Morning Marketing Express. Holy Universe virtual book club. Each one, my darling. Although most of them consisted of meetings with me, myself, and I, I'm cool with that. I've never been one to shy away from a good convo with myself. And I bless those of you who did show up, tune in and shared these events.
Considering Faulkner's quote, however, convinced me to shutter them all, along with my beloved Community Breath. Perhaps I've scattered myself too thin and failed to give any of my darlings sufficient Love and Intention to allow them to grow. Still, I felt a bit sad about it, even if I told myself that I wasn't "killing" my darlings, so much as sending them off to college.
Later that day, I reviewed the transit sent to me by my astrologer friend which said because Saturn is square to my Uranus, I may encounter frustrations that throw a wet blanket on my enthusiasm," and suggested that I may have to "abandon my approach to an activity." This hit me squarely between the chakras. Is my decision to cancel events related to something in the stars? Is this like trying to negotiate a contract during a mercury retrograde ~ simply a matter of timing?
I recalled a prior convo with Christy Bell who had asked me "why 44 Earth Blessings?" I had explained that 4 is the number of Earth and this being 2014, it came to me to offer Earth blessings the first 44 days of the year. She considered my answer and then offered, "Why not initiate a round every four months then?"
It all locked into place. Honor the stars. Honor the four seasons. Honor the cycle of ebb and Flow. Honor the inspiration to give, as well as the inspiration to rest and receive.
I have been saying for awhile now that winter in L.A. is surprisingly exhausting. While I am delighted in every other way to be enjoying a more temperate clime than the winters of my Midwestern upbringing, I regret that there's rarely a reason to do nothing. There are no blizzards and no officials urging people to just stay home. My years in the Midwest have trained me to believe that no sunny day should ever be "wasted." If the sun shines brightly when I wake up, I feel duty-bound to Enjoy this Day. Make it Count. Get out there and go, go, go.
The Rain is due to arrive tonight. After months of brutal drought, it has been much heralded and is well-anticipated. My friends back home in Missouri may scoff at the notion that a little rain offers any reason to stay home ~ even if the forecasters are predicting A Big Storm. For me, however, this feels like Opportunity. I am ready to curl up on the couch with a book, a purring cat and a cup of hot tea. Saturn is square my Uranus, the rain is on its way, and the fourth new moon this year isn't until March 30. It doesn't quite constitute a blizzard, and it's good enough for me. I'm giving myself permission to take one of those long winter's naps and allow myself to rest, recoup and regroup. Catch y'all on the sunny side.
For anyone who is wondering, this post is exactly 851 words, including this final paragraph. Thanks for hanging in with me until the bitter end. You are a patient soul.