hanging out

by Elouise

morning sun
hangs out behind a curtain
of glowing fog

Yesterday was glorious. Foggy and gray at first, before turning into a bright sunshiny day that included tea with a friend in the afternoon.

Hanging out doesn’t come naturally to me. From very early, my parents programmed me to keep my little hands busy because the devil might find work for idle hands to do. In addition, my later commitment to running away on the inside discouraged me from doing ‘nothing.’ The enemy was always just one step or one breath behind me.

So race on I did. One step after the other. With time out only when forced to take it.

The year after I left the dean’s office I had a full year sabbatical. Glorious! I decided early that I wanted to write more. So I began working through Julia Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. Fortunately, most of her assignments required that I write.

Unfortunately, one did not. It stuck its ugly neck up at the end of the first chapter, in a list of tasks to accomplish.

Task #1 was to write morning pages first thing every morning. Stream-of-consciousness. No problem. I was like a duck playing in water. Next came

Task #2.
Take yourself on an artist date.
You will do this every week for the duration of the course.

Fortunately, Cameron lists several sample ‘dates’ for the socially challenged who prefer to stay in our little dens. All these ‘dates’ will be fun, silly or even outrageous. If we had to learn how to do this, so be it! I felt awkward and more than silly at first. But then I got into it—for a while.

Big sigh. So yesterday morning I decided to resume weekly artist dates with myself. I inaugurated this by spending the entire day with no agenda except fun things I wanted to do strictly for myself. Which included tea in the afternoon with my friend.

The day was beyond wonderful. I know the sun won’t come out every day. Yet the freedom my body and spirit felt was remarkable.

Finally, for those out there who don’t quite see what the problem is, I’m positive you’ll read this and feel nothing but good-will for the rest of us. If not more understanding or empathy. For which we are grateful.


© Elouise Renich Fraser, 21 February 2018
Image found at trekearth.com – a park in Poland