I am constantly amazed by my relationship with day to day life. Like many people I make a list of “to dos” and structure my life and time around the tasks that represent this reality. Beginning my day this keeps me on track, but it only represents a small part of life itself. It is a framework, but not necessarily what needs to happen.
Exploring the Outer World
Life changes dramatically with a huge physical move, the winding down of a business and the building of a new life in a community I know little about, other than my feeling to be here. What I think will occur once life is settled in this new home, may be different than the actuality.
Explore, explore and explore more is the general theme of life at the moment. I am beginning to venture out into the local world so I can make Sarasota my home.
For the past five evenings I have participated in a wide selection of activities that brought me into life in an unfamiliar city. I have uncovered social groups, the cultural side of Sarasota, a political action group and a country club social. I feel as if life is being laid out before me in directions where I can crawl before walking. After each opportunity I take time to see how my personality has responded to the variety of situations. The people I meet, the way I feel as we interact, the setting, my attitudes and perspective all give me information about my own comfort level, the confidence I feel, the ability to attract different situations and most of all, facing the unknown with poise and reflection. Each venue has provided me with a different scenario and opened the doors to “find my place” in this new area.
Each have taken me out of my set of life expectations.
A gathering of local business people reflected my instant feeling of ease. This is a circle I have worked in all of my adult life. The familiarity reflected my feeling of lightness, contentment or security. I had nothing to prove, because I was so comfortable with who I am.
The next evening was my first exposure to a cultural setting, the symphony. While I did not meet new people, I felt transported by the beautiful music played by the orchestra. During the performance I noted I was so relaxed that time passed by swiftly. At intermission I went outside for some fresh air. I felt as if I were standing alone witnessing everyone around me but not feeling a part of the audience. As soon as I embraced the incredibly beautiful evening along Sarasota Bay I was immersed in the calm of nature. Returning to my seat, the concert moved me as the music embraced me for the evening.
Art as Life
I love fine arts and the next morning I ventured out with friends to enjoy an art festival. Attending a fine arts festival is much like being a garage sale hunter. I become a prospector, looking for art which embraces me and evokes appreciation for the artist within me. Meeting the artist and having a brief connection is often as important as selecting a piece of art! My own life has allowed me to explore my talents in music, voice, painting and writing. This opportunity fills me with my connection to art, music and culture. I appreciate others displaying their talents. It reminds me that we are all multi-dimensional and multi-talented beings.
Intimacy and Connection
When I attended a dinner dance that evening I found a different picture of life. I spent the evening with a group of people who were similar in background, attitudes and life experiences. It was as if I were in a closed room instead of out in the open world of more unexpected activity. The evening at “the country club” was tame, more controlled and more limited in its appearance yet each of the members had their own story to tell.
My opportunity to connect with new people and share time with friends became more intimate and more predictable until the person I was seated next to began telling me about their life experience of the past year. There were so many aspects revealed that I did not expect.
I marveled in how life changes as it reveals itself over time.
Shifting to the next evening experience, I went to a political fund raiser. The focus was on Equality and Diversity. As I arrived, I began questioning whether I was at the right place, at the right time. I felt like a stranger in a strange land! Nonetheless, within a short time, I spoke to a woman who was very sociable. Knowing I was new to the area, she made it a point to introduce me to others and I truly felt welcome. I was startled when this woman stood up at the podium to speak. It turned out she was the President of the organization without a name tag! Here I was, new in town and meeting some of the more influential people in Florida.
Doubt Has No Place
I realized that doubting what I know I need to do has no place in my life. It detracts from the experience of unexplored territory!
As I reflect on my new life I see that so much has occurred in a short time. All of this occurred just three weeks into my move to Florida. These adventures out into the world have reinforced my perspective.
Life offers much more than I expect especially when I am willing to walk out the door and experience the unexpected. Life happens when I am out in the world!
What about you? Where does life happen for you?