Apocalyptic Homesteading (Day 628)
Restful sleep, The stranger factor, A question of stewardship & The allure of a new environment!
These deep restful sleeps are kind of spooky considering just how much upheaval to my life that I have been facing but hey no complaints there! To be clear I have slept super well the last few days and although the dreams were intense the rest itself has been mostly uninterrupted and like I said... very deep.
All things considered I will take it as a sign of my mental well-being and leave it at that because usually when I am highly stressed 'getting rest' can be a challenging affair. As much as I would like to think the good rest alone is enough to keep me on an even keel I know that there are other factors at play.
Like my determination to bolster my own morale, continuing to stay in my daily routines and of course all the communication that I have been engaging in with others. The communication has been super tricky to navigate especially since my mind is grappling with so many factors and/or stressors at the moment that I find some of my more quirky personality traits rising to the surface when I least expect them to.
In regards to all that I guess that all I can do is navigate it all the best that I can and not overthink things too much along the way when those quirks shine through. Of course my friends and family are all too familiar with said quirkiness but when it comes to absolute strangers... it kind of goes to show why I engage with new people so little!
What I am getting at there is that 'proving' myself to others is just not really appealing to me at this juncture in my life and I know that the moment that I open my mouth and start talking about my skills, views, capabilities, experiences and knowledge folks eyes probably glaze over. Not so much because they may not believe me but it just seems too fantastical for one person to have gained in such a short span of life.
The other thing that I am well aware of is that by and large most folks do not care for land the way that I do and have a very difficult time understanding that yeah some folks can put aside their myopic worldview that life revolves around them... or just humans in general... to grasp a larger picture and make whatever sacrifices that are necessary (whether its labor, time or money) to 'do the right thing' in regards to the environment.
It is after all a 'tough row to hoe' when it comes to setting our personal needs/wants aside for a larger good but like I told someone the other day: The land will kill the people... and the people will kill the land. What I did not say is that more often than not folks own selfishness, shortsightedness, pettiness and being blatantly irresponsible is usually the cause of either (or both) of those things occurring.
Believe me anyone can be a poor steward to themselves, the land and other critters around them and never realize the path they have chosen will never lead them anywhere good... all while telling themselves that they are: Getting what they want from life. The thing that I have to ask (and often do) is at what cost are they doing so at!
Anyway, I obviously find it really annoying trying to explain my life and what motivates me to live the way that I do to others and let me tell you it is not like living this lifestyle is not met with an incredible amount of misunderstanding to start with! I mean if you live anything slightly different than any of the socially acceptable 'cookie-cutter lifestyles' you are already considered to be fucking mental!
All of which is why I tend not to even delve into it all that stuff aside from doing so in these entries. I say that because unless it is the rare chance that I am talking with someone who has lived the way they want to (regardless of the social pressures to do otherwise) there is very little chance they will even begin to understand.
As odd as it all is one of the reasons that I first began making content some two-thousand and thirty-two days ago... not that I am counting... was because I had reached a point where I felt completely alienated and isolated with no one actually understanding what my life was like or my motivations for living it the way that I do.
Of course my 'target audience' (ugh I dislike that phrase) was just a few friends and my big goal was to: To simply share my life. It has obviously morphed from that a good bit and become something else entirely larger. Hell, I am still not where I want to be with it all (in regards to the content creation) but if nothing else my friends absolutely get it at this point and are probably tired of me droning on about it each day!
All humor aside. A lot of that stuff is bubbling to the surface because I keep engaging with strangers and am having to attempt to explain my life, what I do in the world and way too much about myself for my own comfort. All of which is not all that big of a deal to me once I overcome my initial caginess but trying to do it whilst grappling with housing insecurity and of course all the upheaval that entails... is superbly challenging!
I mean generally none of it that I find myself explaining even matters to me because I know I can keep my shit together when it comes to stressful situations, am not a violent wingnut, do not give a damn about other folks insecurities, anger or instigation... and can count on myself to always do the right thing. Those are just givens with me as long as I have my own little bubble to retreat to where everything is and always will be very calm and peaceful.
It all makes me think back to having worked for someone before who just expected those working for them to take some sort of 'advantage' of them, fudge their work hours and generally do a shit (half-ass) job at things to boot. Once I got over my initial feelings of being deeply offended over being misjudged (not that I give a damn about folks judgment but its offensive at times) I looked them in the eye and said: Your money will never have more value than my personal integrity.
To be clear here, it is worth noting: Yeah his asshole puckered at that but he never said another fucking word about it! When it comes down to it I think what I am getting at here is that folks often expect the worst from others and do them (and themselves) a great disservice by never entertaining that yes the 'best' of people not only exists... but is probably the thing that should be looked upon first... instead of being overlooked entirely.
Sure it is human nature to see the dangers first but personally I lean towards the notion that folks find it cozy to project their fears and insecurities all over other folks because... wait for it... they assume the same is being done to them. In the face of anything else (like genuine kindness) folks shy away because it is undoubtedly a scary thing to encounter folks who put 'kindness' first and 'fear' second.
Well, I am going to break away from that line of thought here because I think it is important to clearly point out that my last few entries have been really difficult to put to words. The uncertainty of things had assuredly overwhelmed me and yeah for the first time in a long time I got my cage rattled by life in such a way that I found myself at a real crossroads.
Somewhere deep down inside I am sure that I am still slightly rattled by it all but I think that is more just the wisdom of recognizing the times I am in and the factors at play in the world as a whole and recognizing the direct correlations. Not to harp on that too much but yeah personally I think we should all be feeling a sense of urgency and already be 'in motion' doing what we see best to be doing to insulate ourselves against leaner times ahead.
Overall though I have come through the initial 'upheaval' rather intact and although I am not 'fighting mad' or any horseshit like that... I do have a renewed sense of purpose. Basically I am feeling like I am making choices that will put my hermiting aside not just to help myself... because the hermiting does that very well thank you very much... but to help others... and what I am seeing is perhaps my greatest role is to help others to help themselves. But hey lets just avoid entering that rabbit warren for now!
Alright, the day is dragging on here and I have spent much of the morning writing and processing where I am at and what I am doing but... I should note that I once again awoke feeling incredibly calm and simply 'certain' that no matter what direction I take in life it will be the right direction. Undoubtedly it is still a 'big unknown' to me at this point and honestly... I like the idea of that!
In short, I want to learn about a different region of the country, I am interested in having to adapt and I really want to see which facets of my character rise to meet the occasion when the time comes to do so. I mean hell perhaps staying in my 'comfy zone' environment of the southeast for all these decades has limited my potential and I just never saw it as such.
To be fair there I have also been an absolute sponge and grown and learned new things this entire time and while of course I am not so asinine to think I know all there is to know... if you dropped me in any other environment I would have an incredibly steep learning curve ahead of me and perhaps be unprepared to face the parts of me that would necessitate that I thrive (and/or just survive) in such a scenario.
Of course I would never have considered uprooting myself into an entirely different region for the sake of a 'learning challenge' alone and many factors have been at play for a while now that all lead me to stop 'tossing the idea around' and begin to actually 'playing ball' with it. I must say that had I known my closest friends and family would have been so emphatic about encouraging me to do it... I would have frigging been 'playing ball' with it years ago!
To be fair there I also never asked them... so go figure. For the folks that know me it goes without explanation as to why I am the way I am with folks being close to me... and me reaching out to them for advice is probably alarming as hell! I get it and yeah life is pretty intense at the moment but I am damn sure glad that there are folks in my life worth turning to!
It seems like sometimes we are just here to steady each other's course and do what we can to not get in other folks way in life but whether we like it or not... we are in these times together... and we desperately need to make it all work if we are to stand even a modicum of a chance at making it through.
Of late I keep getting stuck on the phrase 'the world is on fire' but I think I should expand that to: The world is on fire and it is up to all of us to manage what that fire is capable of doing... because it can scorch... or it can make fertile... but it cannot do both without our intervention... and yeah we have a fucking responsibility to do so considering our own hand in things.
Like I have said before it is in the simplest of daily choices being made by folks that will turn the tide and yeah it will require ingenuity, it will require thinking well outside any box and continually adapting to an ever changing situation... and whether we have the will to do it or not is I think what will be most telling when history is writ.
When you strip away the narratives, the beliefs, the political persuasions, the ideas, the spiritual inclinations... all there are... are people trying to live their lives and the vast majority in as secure and peaceful way as they can manage.
Crazed behavior among a group of any humans is always the abnormality and while sure it gets a heck of a lot of attention... no one wants to put up with that shit for long... and yup groups break down when they cannot deal with it responsibly... in an effort to prolong security and peacefulness. I mean really who wants to be a part of a group that harms itself or other groups?
I try my best to not have questions in these entries (thus avoiding intellectual quagmires in the comments) but I think it is a good question to ask not just ourselves but also those around us. Also there are just too damn many folks looking for arguments these days and most of them fail to see the sign that: They must be 'tall enough to get on the ride' to start with and it is just not worth it to engage failing to see that.
Of course a lot of folks also tend to indulge in being verbally combative instead of actually seeking true dialogue, debate or understanding but I just have to digress before I get way off in the weeds here and lose the thread of thought I have been trying to hold onto which is: There is no time for all that confrontational horseshit in life and it is assuredly 'the times' that we will either learn to work together or we will face dying alone.
I do not know how I can more bluntly convey that sentiment and how important I think it is that folks set the things that do not truly matter aside and rise to the occasion at hand. To do less would be a massive failure on our part to secure a world worth living in for those that come after us. I know that phrase gets over used but really: Are we so selfish as to do otherwise?
I hope that everyone is doing well and has a nice day/night.