Friday, January 12, 2007

Staying Alive: How to Maintain a Pulse Amid Laundry, Work, and Childrearing

I am pleased to present the first, of what I hope will be many, special guest posters here in gunfighter world.

Please give a warm welcome to Rachael from CrankMama

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Many people spend a great deal of time just getting by each day:
paying the bills, cleaning (or not cleaning) the house, managing
grocery lists and children and soccer games and work. We may
reminisce about our earlier less encumbered days (child-free, sexually
free) but at some point we have to make peace with the fact that this,
whether we like it or not, is our life.

So what of happiness? Energy? Lust for life? How do we keep those alive?

There are clearly many approaches (kabbalah, yoga, vegetarianism,
adultery, television, food, drug and alcohol addiction), some healthy
and some unhealthy, but I think the key to the whole thing is
determination to keep our candles burning.

If we surrender to the onslaught of middle-age (not the physical but
the spiritual malaise) we've already lost the battle. We have to
remain alive and determined to live a passionate life. In this sense,
I think it's a matter of will.

The will to stay alive and keep kicking, despite hardship and weighty
responsibility. We talk and share our real selves with the people we meet, and drop
the pretense and the fakery, the "I have children so all I can discuss
is Billy's potty-training," we bring up sex at a dinner party, we talk
about politics and religion and personal growth.

We refuse to settle. In this way, we stay alive.


Gunfighter's Note: Many thanks, Rachael, for being the first volunteer. I really appreciate that you did this, and did it so fast!



Kelley said...

Loved the guest post!

I've been thinking a lot about some of these things, as I look into the not-too-distant future and think about starting a family. There is a careful balance to maintain as you struggle with accepting that the stability that comes with getting older and making big commitments (to spouses, to children, to mortgages...) can leave you searching for ways to keep life fresh and exciting. I enjoyed this thoughtful post.

Grimm said...

Very good post.

Even though my body seems to wearing out in an exponential rate, I feel my soul is as immature as ever.

Some people say that being young at heart is the way to go, so I will probably take that to the extreme and stay 14 forever.

Leslie said...

It is really important (and very challenging) to keep a sense of yourself outside of parenthood. Great post.