A Little Bit Dead

Unbeing dead isn’t being alive. — E. E. Cummings

My son was once telling me an elaborate story about a bug that was “a little bit dead”.  I thought to myself:  It is either dead or alive, no in between.  But is there?

Aren’t many of us walking around a little bit dead?

We stay busy.  We get distracted.  We tune out.
Subverting our needs.  Denying our desires.  Ignoring our longing.

How are you a little bit dead?  Isn’t it frightening to think how much of our lives are spent asleep?  Will we remain unconscious about what is really important?

Stop.  Tune in.
Look with curiosity and kindness.
Pay attention to how you keep parts of yourself dead.

It’s perfectly normal to want to stay a little bit dead.  To want to shield ourselves from some discomfort or dissatisfaction.  I can think of the number of ways I prefer not to be present with reality.  I distract myself with not-so-quality television programming or my iPhone.  But what is the cost?

Now is the perfect season to contemplate these questions.
What is dying and needs to be cleared?
How can I be more present and awake in my everyday life?
What needs to come alive?

Make room for something new.  Commit to being more fully present and awake.  Move from simply being undead to being more alive.

Remind yourself of your desire to live with more passion and purpose by trying one of these:

Wear a vibrant color.  Red lipstick.  An orange dress.  A green sweater.

Beautify your surroundings.  Get fresh flowers.  Nurture a house plant.  Rearrange your art.

Nourish yourself.  Cook some spicy food.  Make a hearty stew.  Bake with ingredients that are in season and local.

Spend time outdoors.  Walk in the park.  Sit in the sun.  Visit with nature.

Pay attention to how you’re a little bit dead.  What does being more alive mean for you?  Please share!


6 thoughts on “A Little Bit Dead

  1. Love this post. I try my best to live in the now. I can be so consumed with work, paying bills, or getting more of things that I don’t need. Being alive for me means peace of mind and being one w/ the Creator.

    1. Thank you for sharing what being alive means for you and how being present keeps you connecting to a higher power/purpose. Much love to you. Eloiza

  2. I’ve been struggling with this for a while. Not being in the classroom ripped away a major part of my identity at the same time that a new identity (mama) began. I was secure, confident, sure (prideful) in my role as teacher, and being Mama is a constant state of insecurity and doubt…with joy thrown in.

    I’ve been hanging on to a “half-fallen branch” with the pretense that I’m going to return to the classroom – hoping it will sprout green leaves. Reading this has reminded me of the reasons that have kept me from making the leap – and it’s reminded me how lucky I am to even have the choice. (Even though having the choice is a back-handed hardship in that I have to make it!)

    1. I’m grateful for your courage and honesty. I love the metaphor of the “half-fallen branch.” It can be so difficult to let things fall away. I am working on pruning and mourning my own “branches”. xoxo

  3. Yes! Are we busy living or busy dying? Or, as they chanted every day at the retreat I just returned from:

    Let me respectfully remind you,
    Life and death are of supreme importance.
    Time swiftly passes by and opportunity is lost.
    Each of us should strive to awaken. . .
    . . . awaken,
    Take heed. Do not squander your life.

    Always coming back to presence. Or to that beautiful sweater. Thank you Elo! I carry you with me through every step. Stay safe and only slightly windblown through this Sandy!

  4. I carry you and your passion with me too! Others, like you my friend, who are walking this path are beautiful reminders of the profundity of this work. The devastation this storm has wreaked reminds me how both vulnerable and resilient we humans are. Life continues to provide opportunities for healing and awakening. xoxoxo

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