Living in present tense

by rosedeniz

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There are no short cuts home. There are planes and airports and car trips and lots of waiting. There’s planning in advance and hoping to make it in time before the blizzard. There’s packing light on the way and coming back with cargo. Now that I’m back in Turkey after my trip to Wisconsin, I don’t feel ready to follow in the footsteps of the amazing guest posters that filled up my blog for three weeks.

Judith van Praag wrote about creative inspiration in The Year of the Golden Tiger Draws to an End. Sezin Koehler talked about kindred spirits in the creative journey on Dreamcatchers. Tara Agacayak probed deep into the idea of malleable time and emerged counting minutes vertically rather than horizontally.

Since I’ve returned to Turkey, Tara’s questions about time have stuck with me as I try to right myself up again in present tense instead of lingering in my thoughts back to where I was just a few weeks ago, snug with an electric blanket while wind and snow howled outside my window.

If it is possible to have a radically different view of time, then what other views of it can we create that aren’t precise and discreetly measurable? If time is not fixed, but malleable, how can we shape it to our advantage? How do we formulate an alternative way to perceive time’s passing? Can we slow it down? Speed it up?

Moving toward or away from something at a great speed alters our sense of time and our body clocks. It tugs and reshapes time.

That’s what jet lag feels like to me, being tugged downward into slumber.

I’m over the toughest early days of jet lag, but what hasn’t changed is that sense of drag, that I’m pulling all of Wisconsin and Minnesota and the Midwest back with me over the ocean.

Have you ever lugged more than a suitcase back with you?

For a while, I’ll be living in both places, teetering between the place I call home and the place where I’ve created a home. Instead of mourning the distance, I’m ready to be un-torn in two, un-divided by it. Mindfulness has something to do with it. Small rituals like tea at night and meditation. Thinking back to snow out the window and sleds and coffee in the morning, but not getting stuck there at the window forever. Shifting out of auto pilot. Living in present tense.

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