Website, Reboot

General ramblings about web coding, life and other stuff

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When Bad Things Happen

I lost my watch this weekend.

Normally, this wouldn’t be a big deal, and in the past it hasn’t been, but this watch was special watch. It was given to me by my wife on our wedding day. I’d worn it on my wrist for seven years and the day I lost it, it was in my pocket. Why it was in my pocket is not important, but my pocket is usually a very safe place for my watch. Tonight it wasn’t.

Over the years, I’ve become really good at backtracking and following my steps and I did that when I realized my watch was missing. I remember it being in my pocket. I remember moving my keys from one pocket to another because I didn’t want to scratch the watch. One cab ride, one dinner and two or so hours later, as I left the restaurant I realized the watch was not in my pocket. And I do not know how this happened.

I was optimistic. It must be in my work bag. Maybe it fell out of my pocket in the booth at dinner? Or the cab? Neither reported having found a watch. I called both two times, spoke to some very helpful people (thank you, St Louis for your kind and friendly residents)

But at this point, two days later, the watch is gone. I have little hope of recovering it and now the upset and sadness sets in. There are few times where I didn’t wear the watch and I now realize how often it is that I look to my wrist to check the time.

To say that this is an exercise in acceptance is an understatement. I had to tell my wife that I lost her wedding present. I think that was harder than anything. It’s insured and I could theoretically get another, but it won’t be the same, will it? It won’t have that little dent in the metal where I once knocked it against a shelf. And I’ll be terrified of losing it again. Of going through this again.

I’ve lost things before and it’s sort of become annoying in their regularity. There’s a particular kind of water bottle that we like. Flat when empty, no bad chemicals. I’ve lost three of these while traveling. I’m tired of losing things.

I have to keep telling myself that I’ve done all I can and that it’s just a thing, but the thing had meaning to me and now that’s gone. Deep down inside I feel a sense of loss and disappointment that will continue until I accept this new aspect to my world.

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Transformations

Tunnel This weekend I attended a conference and it was arguably the best conference I’ve attended. And not really because of the content of the sessions, which was excellent And also not really due to the people I met there, who were wonderful. I think it was me.

Let’s back up a bit first. Lately, I’ve been working on working on, for lack of a better description, changing my view of and how I interact with the world. To ignore all the mental distractions, the constant chatter in my brain, the automatic negative reaction to things. To achieve a focus on the moment, the now, but also be aware of that focus and what I am thinking and feeling. This is right in line with mindfulness. Mindfulness. It’s amazing. Tell your friends.

Do you ever find yourself in a conversation with someone, maybe discussing some heated topic, and you’re so anxious to get your words out and respond that you don’t even hear (or listen to, for that matter) what the person is saying?

Yeah. That. I was that person.

I’ve come to realize that when I shut the hell up (in my chattering brain) and listen to what the person says, look them in the eye, given the 100% of my attention and truly appreciate what they are saying, that I seem to come out of it enjoying it more.

Oh, and it’s not easy to look someone in the eye. Really. Go through your day and see how often you really look at someone. And I’m not talking about all creepy stare at them and never look away. And I’m also not talking about glancing at their eye every now and then, but when they are talking to use it to show that you are paying attention.

That is a powerful thing. It shows respect and understanding. Even if you dont agree with the person, you can do this. I do this now. I found that with some effort that I can do it, with men or women, people who annoy me or people I honestly love. Doesn’t matter. And it’s amazing.

One evening, I met someone and we started talking, just chatting at the bar. We found we had something in common, something had happened to both of us that changed our lives. And I was able to listen and connect with this person. Setting aside all the distractions in the restaurant (and there were quite a few) and I truly and honestly enjoyed talking to this person and it really set the night off well.

Obviously this didn’t happen to everyone I met over the course of the weekend, but I found myself open to it and I like to think that I made some very good friends this weekend.

All through the conference, I was walking around with this stupid smile on my face. Walking up and talking to total strangers. This may sound like I’m making it out as being so easy, but it’s taken me a long time to get here. Years. Decades, maybe.

So that’s it.  This is what life is all about. You want the meaning of life. This is it. Honest connections with people. Bringing us closer using the things that we have in common rather than how we are different. Finally, there was this tweet that came across last week. It’s relevant. :)

[tweet //twitter.com/jergason/status/254641697328336897 align=’center’]