Growth Spurt  

Seriously_Real 49M
1458 posts
8/2/2006 9:16 am

Last Read:
8/4/2006 1:23 pm

Growth Spurt

This is a prefatory post. I have a post that I've been trying to get out of my head for about a week now, and it is not like me to have writer's block. The block broke yesterday, though, with a realization of why the post is hard to write. It was hard to write because I had to write this one first. This is an important post to me, but I'll understand if you skim. I hope you don't, but that's your call. I'm just pleased you stopped by again. Thanks.

I have a four-year old and a 19 month old. Watching my girls grow is the greatest pleasure I've had, and it got me thinking.

When they're little (I mean like tiny babies), the growth is almost imperceptible, but very real. Then they hit a period when they're making sense of their world, beginning to try to walk, try to talk, and figure out how to get into things they keep having a curiosity about. That is fun to watch.

But when it gets really fun is when they really hit their stride, like my four-year old did about a year and a half ago. She could talk up a storm (properly, too -- the kid cares about grammar, go figure), but then she began to learn how to use language to get things she wanted, to express emotions, or to entertain herself (and others) with stories and imagination and the like. The growth was so obvious and so much fun, even when her newfound linguistic and expressive skills also equipped her to become a (SHOCK!) drama princess. Still, it's quite a show.

Watching my girls last night I realized that there is "growth," and then there's growth. There are "growth spurts," too, when it is so intense that you cannot do anything but sit back and watch it unfold. Then, when it has subsided, you take stock of where you were, where you are, and what's next. Sometimes it happens so fast you can't even know it occurs until it is over. But growth spurts are critical to our development, and they are not always physical.

Spiritually speaking, I went through the biggest growth spurt of my life here from January to July. It was like going through puberty, if you really want to make the analogy complete, because it was not simply growth but a fundamental change in my makeup. I finally feel like an adult, and for the first time in my life I am not scared or bothered by that concept.

It is one thing to change an attitude, for example, like Mel Gibson might say "I resolve that henceforth I will not utter anti-Semitic comments to police officers while I'm stinking drunk." It is another thing altogether to change a philosophy, and, for example, stop being anti-Semitic. I kept trying over the past six months or so to address my attitudes and approaches, to recognize and break patterns of behavior that were inimical to my well being, and to strive for a more peaceful and balanced existence. Somewhere along the way, I think I might have not just changed my attitude, but my character, as well.

For example, you may notice that I am posting less and less. There are reasons for this, and they all have to do with who I have become lately. For one thing, I am learning that the non-online world is still a hell of a lot of fun at times, and is sometimes even more important than writing the blog and responding to comments. That sounds sarcastic, but the gospel truth of it is that for the longest time, this blog was my life first, and everything else filled in around it. The opposite is now true, and I am more than pleased with how this little blog o'mine complements my life rather than supplants it.

I also no longer feel a need to subdue my emotions with words. My emotions are what they are, and capturing them, dressing them up in the garb of romantic poetry or aggrandized prose, and parading them to an unsuspecting world now seems kind of unnecessary and a bit immature at times. That does not mean that I have lost the heart of a romantic, or that my love of words has waned; it merely means that I do not feel a need to post so frequently or so powerfully every single time my heart stirs. From time to time you will see the same-old stuff from me. But that's because I WANT to, not because I feel some NEED to do so.

And that is a nice segue into the biggest insight I have had of all to my change in character of late. I do not feel the same passion that I felt before. Longtime readers of this blog know that I have written more than once on the nature of "passion." (See Passion and Suffering). The root of the word "passion" means "suffering," and anyone who has ever lost themselves in love knows what suffering that can bring. So why do we do it? Well, to quote from an earlier post,

We do so because we are human, and we are not gods. Without the suffering we do not see the glory of love. Without the yang, we cannot appreciate the beauty of the yin. We are not gods, comprised of love; we require a reference point. Passion comes with a price, and it is a price we gladly pay.

The problem in my life has been that I have been addicted to passion, and, by extension, suffering. I have spent far too much of my life yielding to the drama, the adrenaline and the excitement, and then morose-ing my way through the pain and the agony of the hangover.

On those occasions when I have managed to get out of the cycle of passion and pain, I have gone too far to the other side, as well. I have denied myself the creative liberty that sets passion ablaze, and limited myself to that which is concrete, factual, and logical. If passion is too hot, linearity is too cold.

And now? Now I am neither hot nor cold, it seems. I get to exercise my brain and my soul even so, but I am not lost. I love with all of my heart without losing it. (Hold that thought, my friends, for the post to come.) I have grown to a point now where things that matter, matter, and things that don't, don't.

I suppose what I'm saying is that this freak of a man who has been writing less and less may end up writing less and less, still. But that's okay. Because I am happy. I am at peace. And for the first time possibly ever, I am actually pleased that I feel like a grownup.

Thanks for listening, for being there, and for not grounding my ass as a teenager.


p.s. -- None of this means that I'll be writing shorter posts on those occasions when I do write.

rm_1hotwahine 64F
21091 posts
8/2/2006 9:39 am

I have to digest this and come back. I think it's excellent, btw. Just have to think about some things cause there are so many good discussion-worthy comments. It really got the ol' neurons firing.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

fantasylover_05 63M

8/2/2006 10:03 am

People have long said about me....

"he does not talk much... but when he does he says something important"

(yeah yeah I know.. you are wondering about the "not talk much part"... but it is true!! I have been told the very first words anyone heard from me were in full sentences.. guess I just didn't have anything important to say before that... LOL and okay... so I don't always have ANYTHING important to say any more.. okay.. go to the next paragraph already because that is my point anyway not about myself!! LOL LOL LOL )

This is an excellent post Seriously.. and you have said many important things here.... you have given me many things to consider and ponder in my own life!!

(and I did not skim at all!!)

SingleNLooking72 107F

8/2/2006 11:43 am

"The problem in my life has been that I have been addicted to passion, and, by extension, suffering. I have spent far too much of my life yielding to the drama, the adrenaline and the excitement, and then morose-ing my way through the pain and the agony of the hangover."

Never has a bigger truth about me been found in another's posts. My divorce was final 3 days before my 14th anniversary. My marriage was exactly what you see above, addiciton to the adrelaline, followed by the hangover. So much of your post is so true. I wish I could get to that place. Contentment with who you are, and acceptance of it is the key. Maybe one of these days....

rm_1hotwahine 64F
21091 posts
8/2/2006 11:44 am

OK, I'm back.

Instead of commenting on the specifics, which I'll probably do here and there cause I like them, this is the next place it took me:

For awhile now I've been trying to form a blog metaphor post in my head, but haven't quite gotten it out there. The kernel of thought that it's based on is finding a way to humorously set up these blogs as a sort of orphanage (emotional? life? something missing? can't quite find "it") and when we get adopted, we kinda leave, at least on some levels.

Help me with this one...

I'm thinking fun, but poignant. Rings true, but in a positive way.

I think the "something's missing" might be the universal key.

Whatcha think?

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

Seriously_Real replies on 8/2/2006 6:34 pm:
okay, so you won't be surprised that I've been pondering this same thought you've expressed. My view of it is more of a --- you'll see where I got this -- "reincarnation" metaphor, where we go back, and back, and back, until we've learned that which we were required to learn but didn't. Once we have "got it" we get to move on.

Another approach is a "purgatory" concept, though it does not explain why we traverse the same ground.

Another analogy that occurred to me is the "in-patient rehab" like Betty Ford. That's not too far from where we are, and we still have to walk the walk once we leave. (Then again, some of us might stay around as counselors.)

I'm still going with reincarnation, though.

The orphanage works but is laden with "parental" overtones that don't quite work for me. The "family" concept is there, but...sigh.

Yeah. Reincarnation.


rm_1hotwahine 64F
21091 posts
8/2/2006 11:45 am

That wasn't supposed to be a but if I delete, you'll have two huge things on the 'where I'm quoted' page.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

sexyariesgirl 58F

8/2/2006 4:53 pm I can identify with so much you've written here.....THANK YOU for this post!

Power To FOK

OboesHonedIambs 63F

8/2/2006 5:46 pm

what a great post! you've clued into something I see people in their 60s and 70s have missed out out. good catch!

Instant Human -- Just Add Coffee

rm_1hotwahine 64F
21091 posts
8/2/2006 8:09 pm

The problem with reincarnation is that it doesn't leave room for sticking around a bit. I kinda liked rehab, in that respect.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

Sailor376 64M
2288 posts
8/2/2006 9:05 pm

To my very skippy Seriously,

Some weeks ago I began reading works here, great and small. An author that I found I liked would invariably lead me on to another author I liked. Either directly pointed out by the author, or by the common readers of those writers.

There came a time of sameness. When what was read was some part of what was read before. Some of it from blind stinking tiredness some from tracks left in the stone.

We, and I see it in myself as well now, evolve. We talk and write and reveal ourselves and we evolve. So very many writers start with angst and questions and onto more questions and they make friends and they resolve or find their "Natalie (?)" an they write less as the real world comes back to claim them. And then less again. and then a salutation.

Of the subset of intelligent and sensitive or too sensitives, fully half run some similar course. I have not read the millions, but I have now read the thousands and I am confident that the trend will hold.

Evolution is good. Static is boredom and failure. I have said it before, you are a fortunate among fortunates. You evolve.


rm_gerson42 53M
2419 posts
8/3/2006 2:49 am

What would you like for a graduation gift? Great Post. Where's my apron?

rm_corezon 54F
3376 posts
8/3/2006 6:30 am

Glad for you, truly...yanno I am waiting for the next post, though, now that you set me up (pressure, pressure)

Addy19742 44F

8/3/2006 7:40 am

I myself am a late bloomer, having growth spurts as I get older. Now of course they are not near as wonderful as the ones you are having. The pieces to your puzzle come together everyday. I am so envious and happy for you. This is definitely one of my favorite posts. I totally relate. I am in the passion addiction mode. LOL Now if I could just love without losing it. sigh So happy for ya!

MoonRise9 59M

8/4/2006 10:54 am

OK, weird to say here given the venue, but "I love you, man."

Our life journeys are similar, though distinctly different in ways. Your careful and thoughtful documentation is an inspiration. .
Again, thanks.

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