Monday, October 31, 2011

"You think I´m mad, don´t you?" - NO, not really :)

Dublin Airport.
I´m sitting and waiting for the plane to land and looking the people around me. Most of them so very happy while impatiently walking back and forward ...
It is funny to see all the different ways how people celebrate their "get together" moments. There are some of them literally running into their loved ones, hugging and kissing and openly expressing their feelings while others are obviously everything else but comfortable while doing so.
There are shy hand-shakes, there are hugs shared for the sake of hugging, there are timid "How have you been doing?" kind of things, there are pretty much all sorts of ways how to express various feelings.
A man with bunch of flowers is nervously checking his mobile after each minute or so. Another man standing next to him seems to be extremely satisfied with himself. Well, why shouldn´t he, because while he has both of his hands in pockets, there is a woman, literally leaning on him, both arms tightly around his waist. I can´t help myself thinking: "If the man would leave, this woman would fall over!"
It is Thursday, the 27th of November.
For me the word "airport" represents many things, including speed, success, excitement, variety etc. Still, today here is something shaking my belief-system because suddenly I see a familiar figure walking around in the waiting area.
While airport is full of people with suitcases, this "suitcase" is completely different kind and easy to notice and this figure I´ve seen too many times not to recognize it.
It is the bum from Malahide. I mean, obviously I have no idea where he comes from but Malahide is the place I´ve seen him walking around and waiting for the bus. The same way how airport is the place you wouldn´t expect to run into a homeless guy, it is not a common picture in Malahide either.
Therefore his relatively short figure, hunched posture, brownish clothes and his special "suitcase" are something I remember clearly enough.
It was approximately 2 months ago when we were both waiting in the bus stop. Well, of course there were some other people as well but as usually in these kind of cases, there is one weird looking bum and then there is a big distance between him and the rest of the people.
This time was no exception and of course, I, like all the others, was standing on the other side.
When I entered the bus, because the bus was quite full, funnily enough I decided to sit downstairs. Why funnily enough? Because this is something I never do!
Like really, unless some special occasions when I have a suitcase or I am not entirely sure where I need to go or I have just jumped on a bus to get few stops further ...but other than that I am ALWAYS sitting on the second floor, no exceptions !!!

But there I was, sitting on the first one and a last person who came to the bus was the man I have been talking about for a while now and he sat down to the place only 2 seats from me.
After 10 seconds I already started to regret my decision to sit where I had (in whatever reason?) sat. The smell coming from him was so strong and disgusting that it made me feel dizzy. For me it was another day after work, I was bit hungry and tired and wanted to get home fast, wishing I lived closer to Malahide. And then I was looking at him ...he was trying to get some sleep, obviously having no home to go to whatsoever ?!
... something inside of me cracked and suddenly I felt so ashamed of my thoughts about "too long traveling" and of my behaviour when I had tried to cover my face with the scarf that I wouldn´t have to breathe in the strong smell which was coming from his unwashed body and clothes?
And then there were all those other the middle of their evening. Texting with their friends, listening to music, a couple cuddling on the back seat, some teenagers going crazy etc. "Why is it necessary to have such a big contrasts in life? How do we attract our life situations? What has he done to deserve this kind of life? How could we help him? Maybe he even doesn´t mind this kind of life? He sure seems very centered and peaceful? He actually seems to pay no attention whatsoever what is going on around him?" were only few of many questions rushing through my mind while I was sitting there, staring his back and weird looking hood which covered his head.
I felt I should do something and once again, even though I am ashamed to admit it but most probably, if there were no other people on the bus, I would have gone to him and offer him at least some food from my bag but I felt it might seem strange because I had no idea how he would react?
Even though I am sure I was much more afraid of the way how other people around would have been reacting or what they might have thought of me ?! ... and therefore I did nothing.

It is bit similar to the situation at schools when there are always some students who are being bullied and even though there are others who actually find it unfair and who would feel like doing something, they never will because it is so much safer to stay into their own comfort zone. Otherwise, who knows, maybe by helping the fellow student, they can get themselves into trouble.
But isn´t this what life is actually about? Reaching out from our own comfort zone? Reaching out to other people, being there and helping each other, doesn´t matter if we know them or not? And of course, reaching out daily from the our own routine to be there for ourselves when we need it the most. I mean, if I am not willing to commit to love and support myself, no matter what, who else would?
Look at me, here I am, talking about all those things but in that moment all I decided to do was to wait. To wait and to see what is going to happen and part of me was so much waiting that he will stay on the bus until the last stop. Doesn´t matter that just few minutes ago I had covered my nose that his dreadful smell wouldn´t make me feel dizzy and really wished that he´d get off from this bus as soon as possible.
..."Your Wish is My Command" the classic fairytale sentence from Alladin and my wish that he would get off as soon as possible became true. He stood up and walked out from that bus in Swords. There was fresh air coming from the windows when the bus continued its route and after several minutes it was no evidence of this man being on that bus at all.
BUT here he is again, in the Dublin Airport. Obviously capsuled into his own mind and world, paying no attention to this helter skelter which is going on around him. I am looking with the same feeling as I had on a bus "I should do something!"
"Yeah, like what?"
I can hear a voice in my head replying "Like meeting your friends in the airport and introducing them your new buddy. The same way how the guy in the "Pay it Forward" movie?"
So, once again I just sit back and watch and wait what happens next? He is slowly walking across the floor, clarly heading towards the toilets. He carefully places his "suitcase" next to the toilet and disappears from my sight.
I just keep looking at his bags which are somehow tied together and connected with a weird looking frame which has wheels "It is probably all his life in these bags? I wonder how he got to this point? How it may feel if I had no place to go to?" etc etc.
After 10-15 minutes is the last time when I am curiously looking into the direction where he left his things and they are still there "It must feel pretty good to use such nice toilets and warm water. I´m sure there must be options for people like him to get some help. If he needs or wants to be helped of course?"
With the question "Hi there, sorry you know if these are the only gates for arrival flights?" it´s time for me to get back from that bum-related day-dreaming.
"In this terminal yes, even though there is the number 2 terminal as well. Which flight are you waiting for?"
- "The Lisbon one"
"It´s Ryanair´s flight, isn´t it?"
- "Yes"

"Then no worries, you are waiting in the right place" is my last reply to her while already rushing to hug the people I had been waiting for last half an hour...
In the evening of the same day, after the basketball training, on my way home by bus, sitting in the very back of the 2nd floor I am staring out from the window, noticing few bright signs which catch my eye.
"LET GO OF EVERYTHING WHICH HOLDS YOU BACK" and few minutes later there is another one which seems to be part of the protest they have in Temple Bar "ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. TEAR DOWN THE WALL"

Bus is almost empty, so, it is really peaceful until there is a man in his fifties, completley drunk, coming to my direction.
"You gotta be kidding me. I´ve already had so many strange encounters during this week. Don´t you think it is already enough?" are the only thoughts I am able to think before he chooses to sit right next to me.
By that time I have reached to my notebook to mark down few of my thoughts and the messages of those signs.
"You think I´m mad, don´t you?" is his first sentence when he is approaching me. "I could be drinking until the morning, I could do that but I don´t want to!" he continues without waiting for my answer.
Now, instead of the signs I' ve started to write down his statements because even though it seems like lot of information, he is talking slowly enough and pays no attention what I am doing but is rather in kind of a trans or something like that!?
Even though not the great fan of alcohol because I´ve seen way too much damage it can cause, I have some weird but deep respect towards drunk people.
Just, the thing is that part of me believes the theory that they are so much closer to God than rest of us as the decent amount of alcohol has helped them to quiet their mind and to get rid of the "mask" they are wearing when being sober...and helped them to get in touch with their Higher Self or something like that.
"The reason I want to go home is that ... I am who I am..... It is not about getting another drink .... it is about being who you are!"
His very strong Irish accent and the fact that he is more than just a little bit drunk, makes it very hard for me to understand what exactly he is saying but I really do my very best to pay attention.
In a way he seems to be talking not with me but with himself. But because he is sitting side to side with me and looking into my direction, gives me a reason to believe he is talking to me.
"Real .... not real.... it is what you believe as a person. Real people love real people...I find that lots of people have this day in, day out´s silly! You think I´m mad, don´t you?" and suddenly he stops, is looking at me, waiting for an answer.
"No, not really. Go on!" is all what comes out from my mouth.
"People try to make the situation ...can you is probably hard. It doesn´t happen only with Irish people, it happens with every one. Someone else´s way of thinking, the whole world is gonna end up anyway from life.
Fight, there is no is really sad. We are who we are. We did what we did in Ireland. We love people, lot of foreigners. Many of them think we are not alright with them but they are hanging around among themselves, many of them are very wrong towards Irish people. They can´t understand ....the correct ... they can even be bitch. They don´t go with the flow. The greatest thing about being an Irish is that we love the crack....sometimes we are not the greatest guys either.

Life is about living in the real world. It´s good to have a big crack. People don´t understand what life is all about. It´s about being yourself. ...and you need to understand what other people are about. Once you know who you really are, you understand others as well and you understand the situations...even if somebody dies in your family... I know, you think I am mad, don´t you?"
I look at him, smile and repeat the sentence I had used few minutes earlier "No, not really" but this time I will also add "Actually I think you are absolutely right but do you know where do you need to get off?"
And the man who seemed to be so very drunk only 10-15 minutes ago that I wasn´t even entirely sure if he was talking to himself or with me, is like a new person.
"Yes, I have 3 more stops to go, I know exactly where I am going!" he says.
"Alright, it is good then," is my next comment and my tone of voice is softening as if I was a talking to a child.
"What´s you name?" he is asking as if we had just met a second ago and is reaching out his hand to shake mine to say hello.
I am giving him my hand "I´m Kristi" . So, we shake hands like old buddies and I have a feeling as if I had just met 2 different people. One who got on in Temple Bar and another who "appeared" few minutes ago right before Phisboro.
"It was nice to meet you Christina, my name is ..." he is saying when already walking towards the stairs to start getting off the bus.
I never catch his name but when I look at him walking away from me, one step after another, moving not straight at all, the last thing I say to him is "Safe home!" - by the way, I really mean it and gone he is, into the night of Dublin.
If I want it or not, I need to admit that I do suspect that the Marianne Williamson´s book which is based on a "A Course of Miracles" is playing a big part in this "something" which continues to turn everything upside down. Including the way I see myself, others and things around me?

...most of the time in the best possible way even though occasionally making me anxious?
Also, I am so aware that actually I really need to stop labeling everything. I mean, it is completely obvious that the good is not good and bad is not always bad, what we label as "good" one day, may easily turn into "bad" another and vice versa.
So, there´s no point really to waste my time nor energy for all those judgments which I am so generously throwing into my right and left. Not out loud but only in my mind even though there´s no big difference really, the idea and intention is still the same.

ME, the super chatty and bubbly person, who finds it easy to start talking with pretty much anybody. ME, who can move from one place or country into another without any problems, because I truly think that the world is full of friends who we just haven´t met yet.
This ME has now been forced to face the fact that beneath the surface there is a big part of me which has locked itself in order to protect me from the Real world and from the Real feelings. Being sociable and chatty doesn´t mean anything.
Of course, in certain circumstances it is wonderful and works as a great advantage but it doesn´t necessarily mean the same as being open to people and to the world deep in my heart.
I am slowly starting to feel how much I have been isolating myself emotionally...building walls between myself and other people, between myself and the world around me.
I haven´t really even participated in the life I´ve been living. Just saw the movie another day with all the views over the New York City. I was watching it and thinking to myself "I can´t really recall almost anything from my time over there as a real life experience of mine?" And the same goes to pretty much about any country or city I´ve been or anything I´ve been involved with - either for longer or shorter period of time.
I have been too occupied with all the "monkeys" in my mind, making up story-lines, their own theories, building up "protective" walls that I would be able to continue living according to my belief-system (which has never served me very well to be honest:), to see world and life and people from the perspective of mine. So much so that I´ve missed out so many places and people on my way because even though my physical body has been there, in way too many cases, my real self, the ME, the I part, haven´t....not sure if it makes any sense though :)

" Someone somewhere didn´t listen to your heart, and as a consequence you stopped listening to it, too."
- M. Williamson-

Still, I suppose there is a right time and place for everything and I will probably never get tired of the saying "When the Student is ready, the Teacher arrives" and Oooooo My, I´ve been fortunate to have many teachers along the way.
From this year, there´s one particular encounter which has helped me to want to reach over this "wall". Thanks to this person and to the fact that I have been allowing myself (after a very long time) to feel whatever I really felt deep inside, I´ve been able to connect with my own heart again and for that I am so deeply grateful!
Yes, through this "opening up" process I´ve been kind a throwing myself out there, making myself much more vulnerable than I normally would ever be but I am alright...or at least will be soon enough :)
Despite of all this emotional roller-coaster which have been going on within me, I do consider myself a Lucky One because I definitely am so much more alive and alert.
Also, it seems to be so true that once I open my heart to one person, the door of my heart is open to others as well.
Therefore I´m glad that I´ve been "put into" the position where I feel the need and also the ability to start getting rid of this emotional wall which has been surrounding me already way too long.
....but you know ... when to believe that there are always "signs" everywhere and God (or Life or Higher Power or however I call it or Him:) is actually "talking" to each one of us through those signs, then all I should do is just to pay attention and then surrender simple as that.
Even though the tricky part is that my mind is able to "pay attention" whatever it chooses. Lol.
There was a scene in the movie I was watching this morning
"But I miss him"
"So, allow yourself to miss him ....send him love and light each and every time you think about him and then drop it!"

Even though from the other point of view, it was only yesterday when one of my friend had written - in completely different context though - but it was impossible for me not to notice his comment
"When you can't remember some things, it means that maybe they don't matter anymore; but when you can't forget things... maybe they do"

"People come into our life for a Reason
for a Season
or for a Lifetime"

The last one is the message written on the information board in our house because it seems to be true :) The only problem is that it is impossible to say in advance which people "came" just for a Season and which ones for the Lifetime. Lol.
Heh, suppose there really are no neutral thoughts and there really is no reality - all there is, is the meaning I am giving to the circumstances around me in the certain point of time and place!
From one side, it can make me really upset because when understanding the power of my own mind and thoughts and how I am creating my own life-experiences in daily basis, I feel how much I have misused and keep misusing all of it.
However, from the other side I feel really excited and anxious to find out how all of it could work when there won´t be only climpses of clarity as so far but when I am at peace with myself most of the time - taking myself as I am and everything around me as it is, with all its ups and downs, without making such a great deal out of it know, as some kind of drama queen or something. Lol.
I know, it may seem that I keep referring to Marianne Williamson as if she was my guru or something but at the moment she really is my greatest teacher and it is easy for me to relate with the things she has written. Not only because they make so much sense but feel so damn right and consciously applying those principles seems to make a huge difference for me.

"Learning to live with the common disappointments and failures of the human experience - particularly with how the fear-mind interprets them - is part of your spiritual mastery. Mastery doesn´t mean you get to the point where nothing goes wrong; it means you get to the point where you can endure and transform what´s wrong.
Mastery means you rise up more often than you sink in life; not because in you there is no undertow, but because you´ve learned to swim well. You´re spiritually strong and in shape.
Master is not superhuman, but deeply human; embracing rather than resisting the realization that on certain days you´ll feel like master of nothing and slave to lots of things."

Me and my perfectionism keeps pushing me into the edge - so much so that it is very hard, almost impossible, to accept myself with all my weaknesses when at the same time I am aware that I know so much better.
So, as a result I tend to very hard with myself....much harder than I would be with any of my loved ones?! And occasionally I find it very difficult to forgive myself for not knowing any better already before.
It is as if I refused to believe that it really takes some rain as well to see the rainbow - the sunshine itself is nice but not enough.
So, yes, surprise surprise, it takes both - the Rain and the Sunshine - to experience the Life´s Rainbows :)

"All of us are made of love, yet all of us make mistakes. As you reach across the wall of separateness - and there is no wall thicker than the wall of judgement - then the wall comes down. That is the miracle of forgiveness."

Also, for me, it is much of a control and the belief issue. Even though doing my best to believe, I really think I am not actually believing and trusting the Divine, not believing in God as such and therefore still kind of feeling that I need to get all those things "sorted by myself", at the same time knowing and feeling with every cell of my body that I am just not able.
"If you feel you must control everything by yourself - if you don´t feel you can ask for God´s help with the details - then no wonder you feel absolutely overwhelmed. You can´t exactly hold up the stars in the sky, but obviously someone does. So couldn´t that someone hold and harmonize the circumstances of your life?"

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