The Greeks are said to have inscribed “Know Thyself” on their ancient temples as a way to invite the people of those times to take a moment with the presences of mind necessary to question their motivations and their actions as they occurred.
The pursuit of self-knowledge and presences of mind is at the heart of most religions and philosophical pursuits across the world. It seems that an unfortunate side effect of the brain’s marvelous ability to question everything is the brain’s ability to question itself.
“Who am I? Why do I do the things I do? Can I change?”
These types of questions inevitably plague us all in one form or another. And, while I don’t believe there’s ever a permanent answer to any of them, I believe that we can become better at investigating ourselves.
(That sounded kind of dirty.)
It turns out that psychology has uncovered numerous ways in which our beliefs about ourselves affect not only our behaviors but, also, our successes in this world. People who believe they are smarter, actually do better on tests, even though they aren’t smarter or haven’t studied any more. People who believe they are given an energy drink are able to lift more weight than normal, even though the drink they were given contained nothing that would enhance their abilities. People who believe they need less sleep actually do perform better under less sleep than those who do not.
Beliefs are powerful.
Because beliefs are so powerful, we must learn to train our mind to observe them and question them in the moment that they occur in an effort to preserve the ability to question things about ourselves at all. At least, that idea is *this* man’s perception on the matter at present, as an after-thought, of course. (See what I did there?)
It was on a rare occasion this past weekend that I had
the chance a few amazing opportunities to introspectively look at a situation where it was important to push the boundaries of vulnerability (one definition of “terrifying” from my personal lexicon) while also finding a balance in not being too “heady” at the same moment in time. Of course, having another perspective shared in that moment made it much easier to accept as life went on as it did.
Sadly, in retrospect, the headiness won out on occasion, causing an otherwise never seen before physical reaction to something like this before in my history; but, not necessarily in a way that would otherwise force me to consider the entire situation a loss at all. In fact, to the contrary.
Now, I can see the event(s) as something that allowed me to learn more about myself which I had never really had the full opportunity to consider- from a perspective that was wholly grasped from a new way of experiencing something that I look forward to once again attempt to discover in the near future.
You see, there was some knowledge gained in those moments. Knowledge pertaining to how the mind and body experience is connected and that with some practice there is the idea within my own head that the mind can knowingly identify the reasons behind an event with a subconscious block to protect the… say… heart, or perhaps make hands tingle where there wasn’t actually any blood being blocked in its delivery, things like that.
At this point, however, I can’t really seem to grasp the best way describe the situation outside of one that I hope I can sometime soon revisit. The opportunity to explore further depths of the observed can only allow for new paths to be forged in thought, action and lead by belief. That to me, my friends, is one way of looking at how it is best to constantly challenge oneself to becoming a better person. Mind you, it isn’t necessarily the end-all be all to what it takes to be a great person, but until I find that path, I’m willing to accept the above as a great way of getting there.
Here is an Article that spawned these ramblings of thought:
Sometimes, in the middle of the day, there is a moment that my mind will wander and winds up thinking about you. While it is very easy for me to understand why this is, it is a happy thought and I welcome it when it happens.
Without attempting to be cryptic in any way, there is a sense of urgency surrounding matters where my budding family is involved. Not any emergency that would cause alarm, not anything that can’t be solved by practicing the simple rule of “all things in moderation” or “one day at a time” but.. it is an undeniable lingering thought that keeps appearing with a certain frequency, that I find to be very restful, in a way and completely unnerving in the same right…. but not negative in any way at all.
That all said- this is the first post that I’ve created in this new year, 2015.
The last day of last year (2014 and totally NOT 2013) was spent in the company of a few dear friends, rehashing the past, remembering small things about a childhood long gone by, and cause for thinking about what types of memories are in store for my son of that level, and for myself as well. In fact, I was a bit embarrassed that some details I didn’t recall entirely- and truthfully, recalled inaccurately altogether. But… those times were 30 years ago, and I’m only human. What remains though, is that the memory of what happened was held in my friends memories, and from their recollection, the pieces were put back together- whole.
Yet, the process of that thought has given cause for me to ask the question:
What does the future hold for us this year?
From past life experiences, it is my observation that this is something that can not be told by anyone with any certainty at all. Of course, there are a few things that are without a doubt going to happen- rent will be paid, bikes will be ridden, charity dollars will be raised, Arlo will grow and continue to become a young boy in an environment that I know is healthy when he is with me.
But, who will be a part of the memories that make up this new year for us? Do these people know that they will be a part of my future memories, my son’s future memories? Will we be a part of thiers?
Will there be a marked point in time that I might have the opportunity to sit on the porch and hash through our backgrounds together, through conversation, and think back to those moments that we build together right now, today?
I certainly hope so.
Yet the fact remains that these things, really have no answer.
They have no certainty for their existence in the future historical recollection of our past. At least, they have no certainty if there isn’t at least a little bit of effort in attempting to make those memories together- you and me and anyone else who chooses to be a participant in this adventure that we’re on, together.
I have finally come up with a New Year’s resolution which fits across the span of many purposes. It is my wish to build memories with you- for my son, for myself, and for our future-and-completely-unwritten history… Starting. Right. Now.
Well, okay, I guess that you’ll have to read this first and then we’ll have to actually make time for one another and all of that good stuff, but… that is my wish and I’m sticking to it.
After all- what good is a personal history if it isn’t acknowledged, recorded or thought about in the moment that it is happening?
In the mean time- you are in my thoughts, and I welcome you there in my memories as the moments in time slip forward towards a marked history of the past- shared between us in a moment that no longer exists entirely as either of us remember it.
So, here’s to the future of our past recollections of one another.
I suppose that there’s always something that can be done with a child, given that you aren’t a person who has a job during normal working hours. For those of you fortunate enough to have that luxury, I would encourage you to attend anything that the Houston Public Library has to offer- for free.
Not only are there many different kid-centered readings and fun times that center around socialization of a child in a public space, but also it is preparing them for success in a positive learning environment- with other children.
In addition to that, there are many other unmentioned resources and classes offered at the Houston Public Library that most likely go unused- to the detriment of the library system.
So, please- make sure that you use the library system tot he fullest. Put down the laptop/iPad/Tablet/computer/iPhone/Android and get out there and explore what your library has to offer today!
In an effort to keep an idle mind busy, it isn’t all that uncommon for me to take ins project that might span the course of many months.
New (to me) Alfine DynoHub, new (to me) spokes to fit the DynoHub, supernova riding light (powered by DynoHub), Black hammered steel fenders, schwalbe marathon plus tires, metropolis bars from another project, ergo grips from another project, brake pads, used (but new to me) campagnolo triple crank in the mail and on the way (that’s a ten minute swap-out) tune-up, chain cleaning.
Ready to ride… Just as soon as it stops raining…
Guess I’ll finish up bike number 2…
With all of the crazy involved with packing a house and moving to another house on the exact opposite side of town, while also attempting to maintain a visitation schedule, do a job and remain professional, find time for exercise, find time for counseling appointments, find time to sleep, keep up with people and still keep your head above water when you’re visiting with your kid…. I can say that the move is completed, and there are only a few more boxes of stuff that I need to go through before I will consider the new house a success and have time for starting back on some projects that need my attention.
The first order of business has been to get a tree up and ready for the holidays. Second- get a few cards made to mail out to people, and to make sure that everything goes as smoothly as possible during the limited time that I’ll have the little one with me over the course of the holidays.
So, in an effort to get done what it is that I’ve intended to do from the onset of all of this…
I’m now ready to move forward with my life, but not before extending a sincere expression of gratitude to each and every person out there who has been so incredibly supportive of me over the last few months.
I’m not sure that I could have made it without you all jumping in with the assist, but I am truly thankful for you being in my life.
Signing off until soon.
Not necessarily the promising start of a blog about family, but more appropriate than it could ever really be given that this site is about life, family and the observations made therein.
Lucy Robles (of Gene and Lucy Robles fame) passed away yesterday.
She was the grandmother to my childhood best friend, Craig and his sister Carly.
What I remember of Lucy is that she always smiled so largely that it seemed as though her eyes were going to shut. She was a very sweet woman, very outspoken, and I will always cherish my memories of spending time with Craig as my brother under her roof. She was always so incredibly upbeat cheerful and fun to be around.
You will be missed, but thought of dearly Abuelita Robles.
Arlo and I will be with your family to see you off and return you back to your love- Gene.
Here is a warm hug to thoughts of you being so kind to me as a kid. I loved you as one of my own family members, from afar.
Caught a glimpse of this today and imagined myself as part of an active role in a day-dream about spending time with my son: Boys to Men : Texas. To me, the idea of taking the boy on a right-of-passage trip when he gets a little bit older is really something that I’d like to do with/for him.
In my opinion, it is far too often that young men don’t have quality time with their fathers on an adventure where learning about how to deal with day-to-day situations is completely dependent on the immediate need for food, shelter, water and general survival. In reality, most boys don’t get to spend enough time with their fathers in general, especially when they are not in a family that has been through the ringer known that the court-system. But, I digress.
This dream to spend time with my little man doesn’t necessarily mean that it won’t happen in the event that this blog goes down- but I did once dream of walking the AP Trail with the wife and son when he was old enough. That particular adventure is certainly a dream at this point, as 7 months is a bit young to do anything more than enjoy stories, listening to and banging on an old acoustic guitar while singing funny sounds and smiling. He’s an awesome kid.
Now that little man and I are going to move forward on our own- there is no way that I can say that this with 100% certainty that this happen in the future. It would, however, be quite nice if we could do at least a part of the AP Trail during some summer vacation in the far-off future. So… I’m not going to write that part of my dream off. In fact- I very well might start a fund on the side to make sure that it CAN happen.
Regardless. This is just a thought, and I wanted to make note of the boystomentexas.org organization so that I didn’t lose sight of it when the time becomes appropriate to consider.