We must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves, otherwise we harden.
I recently moved from a smaller apartment to a larger one. Everything I own was packed in suitcases, bags and a score or so of cardboard boxes. I moved in here on a Friday evening. Then and the entire weekend I spent unpacking. Thinking I was going to move sooner than I did most of the boxes and suitcases had been packed and waiting in my former apartment. for a couple of weeks Thus when I got to unpacking here opening every box was a discovery. Nothing was labeled. So was it books, clothes, paintings, letters, artifacts of my life in the theatre, important papers, my published writings, kitchen stuff, art supplies, my telephone, parts to my computer or something I had almost forgotten about? Almost every opening was a surprise.
I am still on the treadmill of figuring out where to put certain things. Since it's a larger apartment I can spread out more. Ah, but the other apartment being small and more compact I am used to having things within easy reach. Here I can spread things around more. But do I want to?
There's a question to ponder. Goethe says I must change. All right. As I look around at the empty spaces in my new home I wonder what's going to fill them up. I don't want to just go out and acquire "stuff" as George Carlin put it. There must be real personal meaning to the stuff that occupies the now empty places. My life has changed to provide me with a new perspective on things. Am I ready to change with it? Am I going to continue to think of myself as a cramped attic dweller or can I spread out my arms and greet my new home with a different energy?
Goethe says I must renew. I'm reminded that there are things I've kept packed away because I didn't have room to display and enjoy them. My paintings for one. I have undecorated walls all over this place, perfect for hinging art works. And that brings me to the realization that painting is one of the things I do that I enjoy. It is one of the activities that makes me who I am, but in the former abode it was a difficult, almost tragic, exercise in futility to set up the easel, paints and brushes. So I generally ignored it.
My friend Linda came by to day. looked at some of my pieces, gave me some advice and said "You should paint more." She's right. It was such an important part of my life when I first started it's time to renew that interest and excitement I originally had.
Goethe said I should rejuvenate: "to make young or youthful again : give new vigor to, to restore to an original or new state." (Merriam-Webster)
To make myself young again. I'm all for that. But at 72, 73 in a few days, I'll settle for "youthful." But then there's "give new vigor to.' With the spreading around and filling out of space I can do, the uncovering of pieces of my life that have been hidden away and appreciating again what I have accomplished it is an awakening, the gathering up of positive energies that have been dormant and letting them play again like children. Not only can I restore my life to it's original state of productivity and fascination with ideas, old and new, it is an opportunity to expand my life into new directions, filling out the spaces of my existence with brand new, interesting "stuff," the stuff of a creative mind, youthful, renewed, rejuvenated.
Dana Bate - The Vagabond
Never Give Up