Hacienda Heights, Ca 5:18pm

As I put aside my own historial discourses for writing this post, through the glass door of my home office I can spot my 76 year old grandma beckoning the finger of the day, to my 9 year old son that is home sick with fever, which by the look on his face he clearly disagrees.

But I am not getting up, I got started, and it wasn’t easy. For some dose of inspiration I hit “play” to Donna Summer’s song “She works hard for the money”, because smoking half a joint in the bathroom or masturbating to horse porn is way too radical for me {this seem to be true aids for Highly Effective writers}. But I am not a writer, so the pressure is off! Tempting, but off.

And though I experienced hours of blindness, at last everything came together for me to write this post. My older son reading “A raisin in the sun”, Donna Summer dies last night, and one of my most real and precious clients writes me this story:

Vivian White

May 15 2012

A Much Needed Vacation

I can remember the co-pastor making an announcement on behalf of the pastor.

“Bishop will be off on a much needed vacation” or “Bishop is taking a much needed sabbatical”.

I attended this church for over two decades and in all times I cannot remember when I also took a much needed vacation. It has not been because it is not needed or deserved, but rather because I have been consumed with trying to make sure I do not get evicted from my home, or that a job gets completed, or the light or phone bills is paid.

It seems that my goals have become to not fall off the edge of the earth.

In comes my life coach, she asked what does a break or vacation look life for me. She caused me to think, am I using the word break when I mean vacation.

And even more, my life coach helps me to see that it is possible, and that I deserve it as much as anyone.

If not, then I have to explain why not.

Here Vivian dares to liberate from history and write her dream vacation:

“What I am looking for is more of a spiritual retreat. I am a creative person, but I find being creative is difficult when I am exhausted. It turns more into just getting things done.

I am about to obtain a Bachelor’s degree and embark in a new career.

The retreat I am looking forward to, takes place after a productive summer internship where I have had the opportunity to learn a lot and gain confidence through implementing some of the skills I have learned.

Perhaps I will be returning to that job or will have a new job to return to afterward. 

But before I do I would take a spiritual retreat. Perhaps taking the train and travelling out west where I can relax, read, write and stop along the way to go sightseeing. With that said, the vacation would be at least two or three weeks. 

I have my portable easel, sketch book, pencils, and a camera. 

I would stop on Sandia Park, New Mexico and final destination may be the Petrified Forest National Park Arizona.

I am not sure of all the exact sights to see along the route, but I know when the retreats ends I am totally relaxed, rested, and fired up with creative energy.

The biggest part of this vacation is that when I return home there are no worries about finances because expenses have been covered in advance.

My career awaits me and they love the value I am able to provide

and are looking forward to our future endeavors.”

I shared this story with Vivian’s permission, because as Jen Lee said today in a tweet

“No matter how alone we feel, the minute one person shares her story all the separateness falls away and we remember…”

With us we carry history, every time we speak and act, history speaks through us. This is not only Vivian’s truth. This is our truth, many of us fight history every day to gain a dream. Sometimes we don’t even dare to plan a vacation.

If you are stuck in an old story, keeping you from making a brighter future. Here is a practical excercise for you:

 

Take some time off this week with a journal, preferably near nature, alone with no distractions (really, when was the time you did that?). Before you start, take a deep breath in and take all in, all the beauty of the place, feel the temperature in your skin, the wind, the smells, be present. Take 5 minutes to land and connect to the moment. After you feel fully present write down your vision, and your goals, things you wish to achieve a year from now (you’ve done that already, right?), here is the challenge, leave all work related goals out. This is your time to plan your vacation, your week off, your trip back home, a retreat away from all.

Watch how it comes true. Sometimes we fail to put a break on our calendar, because we fear we won’t have time, we will miss out, or we can’t afford it, and instead we choose to put more work on the agenda, because that makes us feel safe. If you think about it, that’s not what life is for.

What the heck, I’ll end with Langston Hughes poem (just to over do it). I am already stretching myself daring to write.

What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up

like a raisin in the sun?

Or fester like a sore–

And then run

Does it stink like a rotten meat?

Or crust and sugar over–

like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

Picture by: camdiluv