Zen and the art of being on Maintenance

Whenever Vega is in hospital I read a lot. I have a Kindle which allows me to take plenty of books without having to carry their weight. Vega often sleeps or plays on the iPad, or watches TV and so I find myself breezing through book after book.

Upon our admission last week I was reading World War Z, this was followed by Me talk pretty one Day and today I have started Zen and the art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

I am not very far in but I am finding the read slightly awkward and engrossing at the same time. The genius of the book surely lies in the unlimited applications and that it really is not about motorcycles or Zen in particular. I am finding myself pondering dimensions and reality, truth and being. The endless roads the narrator is travelling on are not so unlike the road I am finding myself on. Views change, from awe inspiring and mind clearing to overcast and rained on.

All of it depends greatly on perspective, and even more on the awareness that there is more than one perspective to choose from. I find that thought somewhat disturbing; it takes from me the position of the victim in all this. I think we all find comfort in “our” own truths, even if they don’t sit comfortable with us, but they are ours regardless, having been accepted for one reason or another.

But it also feels illuminating to look at people around me, just looking and seeing what it is they are, without my truth creating a character for them. It is like a game I played today to pass the time. It has been helpful and I have felt less anxious. The cogs in this machine, the hospital, the treatment, the reality of it is much bigger than my ability to control it. The timing of chemos and health of Vega’s body, my beliefs of what is good and what is bad is just one dimension of all this.

I am not going all zen on you- the bit that struck me most, after all was this- “I’m not sure of what it all means yet… I’m not sure of much of anything these days. Maybe that’s why I talk so much.”


3 thoughts on “Zen and the art of being on Maintenance

  1. Well Kathi chat on!! i have to smile as i have and continue to ponder many things – through my illness, wellness and whatever else there is – many times things seem so absurd and i have no books (not a reader in general) to pour over. But the many to-ing and fro-ing of hospital life (love your freudian slip by the way of ‘many cocks’!! lol) and the landscapes around and TV progs provide similar fodder for ramblings and ponderings. I was watching ben Fogle’s series tonight on people who have traded their lives for a different one – a businessman guy who lost over 6 million in a day and went to live on a desert island and be self sufficient. So many times Uni life feels irrelevant to me. I had an occupational health review today – a new woman – and was pretty anxious after having the same guy for 3 years, but she was great and we both laughed at the absurdity of a ‘4 week’ re-entry to work after 3 years off!!!

    anyway (have you noticed i am rambling here – but hope it will distract you from the hum drum of the beeps of chemo machines) – but I was watching the birds again on my bird feeders in the garden – I do this every morning on the 5 days I don’t work, and was thinking how soothing it was to watch them just take their fill – no stress, just gobble n go – to fly off full, satisfied – and what a simple pleasure it gives me. Anyway it occurred to me, as a title for a paper (lol) ‘who/what fills your bird feeder?’ – so that thought comes and goes as i go about this new phase of working again and wondering about the people and things that bring me such simple pleasures amidst the craziness of MA and PhD studies.

    So may yours and Vega’s bird feeders be full to brimming tonight over there at Kings and the mysteries of meaning drift through the chemo beeps.

    much love to you always Sue xxxxxxx

    • Sue, my wise woman. I think the who/ what fills your bird feeder should be another chapter in your book, along with happiness is a clean fishtank. I had to edit my Freudian slip though 😉 thanks for pointing that out! There are plenty of cocks here, of both kinds actually- the assy and the prancy ones!

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