Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Busy Hands

This morning I have made up my mind to buy gloves, the kind without fingertips on them.

My fingers are like slivers of ice, and typing on my keyboard is akin to typing with a pencil, deliberate and slow. It's 45 degrees in here.

My office is a glass-enclosed room, which faces east into a park of old oak trees. To keep the cost down, we got a building permit that didn't allow us to run the duct work of heating and air conditioning into the room. I could keep the sliding glass door open and let in the house's warmth or coolness, but I smoke as I write, and the house is a smoke-free zone.

So in the chill of the morning my fingers freeze, and today I think of the solution rather than sit in the problem. Hail, gloves!

Yesterday I also got into the solution instead of dwelling on the problem, the problem being me and the solution being a newcomer. The death of summer's garden has depressed me, so yesterday I asked K to come home with me and help me prune the dying plants. When I asked her, she hugged me and cried.

We found two praying mantids as we worked. It's the end of their season too; the females have grown large with eggs waiting to be laid. There was a praying mantis in the dying rudbeckia, eating a butterfly, and I left her alone and worked around her with my newcomer.

As K and I worked, we talked about drugs and death and God and husbands: most of the things that matter in our small worlds. She's beautiful to look at and beautiful within, and she struggles to stay clean and sober but she keeps coming back. So we talked, and I loved her up, and the program of Alcoholics Anonymous worked in our lives.

In an AA meeting Sunday, someone said: "As alcoholics, we treat our loneliness with isolation."

It might be good to ask why we do that. It might be helpful to know the reason. But for me it's better if I just hear that truth, then take the action that will set me free from the bondage of myself.

K and I smiled a lot as we chopped down the dying plants. Had she not come home with me, I would have curled up in a ball on my bed, alone in my head. Instead, my soul was fed as the work was done.

There is an old saying that busy hands are happy hands.

My hands are warming up as the sun warms my room, and in my chest a warmth glows like the embers of a fire.


Syd said...

I sometimes wish I understood why I also isolate when it's the last thing that I need to do. I suppose it goes back to childhood--I learned not to ask for much. I kept myself company in my head.

I'm glad that you are warming up. You may have cold hands but definitely you have a warm heart.

Gin said...

This was beautiful. K was just what you needed and you were just what she needed! Isn't that wonderful???

lakeviewer said...

That human touch of a friend keeps us going. Put a space heater in your office. 45 is too cold!

Dulce said...

I love it when I open your blog and see this enchanted oak of yours... Thsi post is so beautiful... keep warm... ;)

Madison said...

What a beautiful place to write. You are most certainly blessed.

Monkey Man said...

Ah, the beauty of service work. It goes both ways. We get so much in return when working with others. You set a great example.

Steve E. said...

Love your post today--talk of AA, sponsorship, feeling "down" climbing "up", and "Working feeds my soul"...Sure all sounds good to me.


enchantedoak said...

Hi, my blogger friends. If you read my Monday post, you know I am battling depression.
I'm going to be gone for a while to a medical facility where hopefully the professionals will help sort out the medication problems I've been having. Don't give up on me. I'll be gone for four or five days without my laptop, but I'll be back. I will miss you all.
And blessed days to you in the interim. Love, Chris

Shadow said...

i love how you found warmth and light and even shared it with another, on whom it rubbed of... way to go! and thank you for your kinds words. they mean a lot to me.

the walking man said...

Home Depot sells just what you are looking for, gloves with no fingers. BUT I suggest you just get some regular cotton ones and cut the fingers off, you look more like a fighter that way and not something store bought.

Dave King said...

Sounds like you really need electrically heated gloves - with fingers?

enchantedoak said...

Your advice is great, and I will get out the space heater, buy the gloves, cut off the fingers, keep working with newcomers, work the steps of the program, and keep working, working, working. Never give in, never give up, never leave before the miracle happens.
So many beautiful tools in that spiritual kit of tools!