A Rare Sunday.

I slept in this morning. I think my body knows that weekends without long training rides and runs are coming to an end. I slept and then, for about half an hour, hung out in that place between sleep and waking where dreams happen. Even when I woke, I spent the better part of the day in my flannels. First, I wrote. Then I read a book I’m editing for a client. On both counts, I was productive in the best way, doing work that doesn’t feel like work.

This afternoon I did a workout and spent some time on the phone with a friend. Then I cleaned up and was amazed to find that I still had an entire evening ahead of me. Thankful for that time, I did what I often do. I picked up a book.

Tonight, I picked up The Wisdom of the Enneagram, a book a career coach friend recommended to me. It’s a personality profile system. I find the type descriptions to be sometimes disturbingly accurate about me and others. The last person I dated and I did the self-assessments and read through the descriptions and agreed that they are on point and helpful. I go to the book sometimes when I need help figuring out what to do in a particular situation. It helps me assess what I want and where I think the other person involved is coming from. It’s not a solution, but it’s a tool, often a handy one.

Within the Enneagram system, I’m categorized as Type 9, The Peacemaker. The Peacemaker’s basic fear is loss and separation. The basic desire is inner stability and peace of mind. Yes and yes. The book talks about how Peacemakers ignore the disturbing aspects of life and seek peace and comfort by numbing out. “They respond to pain and suffering by attempting to live in a state of premature peacefulness, whether it is in a state of false spiritual attainment or in more gross denial.” The book’s advice? “They must remember that the only way out is through.” This reminder is helpful to me.

Here’s to a lovely day at home and the determination to feel my way through the hard stuff.

Bright and Early.

It’s 6:30 in the morning on Whidbey Island, and I’ve been up since 5:00.  I spent the morning in my room, but after making coffee a few minutes ago, I moved into the common area of the house – the dining and living area I share with three others.

I’ve only been here since Tuesday, but this very much feels like home.

Last night, after dinner, we spent the evening working on collages. We sifted through piles of magazines, photographs, calendars and other paper containing all kinds of images. We pulled the ones that spoke to us, and then we put them together however we wanted to. I’m a fan of the collage process. I did it more than a year ago, in Round Top, Texas, at another workshop with Christina Baldwin.  I built that collage in my journal and have referred to it often, so I’ve become a believer in the process.  In fact, I recently learned about SoulCollage and ordered some materials from that site, intending to spend part of the holidays building a set of cards for myself.

So last night, I built my collage in my journal, as I’ve done in the past, and I love it. I thought about putting a picture up here for you to see, but I think it’s too close to me right now to be shared in that way. Maybe soon.

After the collage process, I came back to my room and continued reading Ann Linnea’s Deep Water Passage. I had started the book in the afternoon, which is always dangerous when I’m trying to be productive. The best of books can disrupt all activity, and this one pretty much has. It’s about her effort to kayak Lake Superior in her early forties. My sense is that something profound happens on the trip, but I’m not far enough yet into the book to know what that is. I love her language though, and I appreciate the exhaustion she describes of one hard day of kayaking. I’m ready for more.

In fact, since I’ve been up since 5:00 and have done writing of my own and even managed to write up a post, I’m going to give myself time to read before the rest of the house wakes up.

Happy Thursday, everyone. Make it count.