In the life of a relationship, there are periods of pulling together and pushing apart. We seek closeness with others, yet are also afraid of it. Sometimes two people push away too hard and their connection is irreparably broken. Sometimes people pull together too tightly and smother one another.
It is a delicate dance, to stay connected and intimate with another and still provide space for the individuals involved to breath and to grow. The dance of a relationship takes practice, attention, and hard work. But there is learning in the missteps and joy when the moves are flowing freely from one to the next. It is a dance that can never be perfected, but one that rewards every effort we put into it.
Based on a journal entry from 5.30.14
Many years ago I attended a ten-day silent meditation retreat. At the beginning of every meditation period, the teacher would instruct us with his hypnotic Indian accent to “start again, start again, start again”. His further advice when feeling distracted during meditation was to “start again”.
My teacher’s advice to start again is once more resonating in my consciousness. I made a commitment to myself to post a piece of my writing once a week during 2017 and last week I failed to do so. I once wrote about maintaining healthy habits while traveling, but during my current trip, I have found it difficult to follow my own advice, at least where writing is concerned. I am a person who thrives on routine, which is ironic since I don’t like to be in one place for too many months at at time.
It would be easy enough at this point to just forget about my commitment to post once a week and save myself the trouble. This is the way good habits die: you miss one day and decide you have failed, so why bother. But progress comes from not letting ourselves off the hook so easily.
Fall down nine times,
Get up ten.
And so here I sit, with keyboard in front of me, wanting to be doing something less difficult but ultimately less rewarding. In my mind, I hear a familiar voice slowly repeating:
“Start Again. Start Again. Start Again”.