It was supposed to be a little bit sunny today, and maybe it will be….but right now, the heavy sky is looming low and grey over the city, and although there is no rain, a chill breeze is shifting the remaining leaves on the trees like a contemplative predator.

There are a couple of ‘outside’ things on my list, which I am resistant to doing.  The remaining bulbs must be put in the front flower beds, and my patient dog really does deserve a walk.

But, as the DoubleClicks sing in ‘Cats and Netflix’:

“tis the season now of grey and brown/ of giving up and sitting down
and layering and wooly socks
I’m celebrating solitude and eating soup instead of food
and never walking more than seven blocks”

It really is the perfect Portland Oregon autumn anthem.  Check it out if you haven’t heard it.  I’m actually thinking of buying it and putting it as a ring tone on my phone.  Not that anyone ever calls me.  I guess I could put it as a text alert.

A spattering of rain just hit the dining room window.  That pretty much lets me off the hook for planting the bulbs – must plant them soon, really – but the dog deserves a walk.

With Charm having broken her arm, our carefully choreographed morning routine (she waits in the car while I run the dog around the block in the dark before we go to work at gawd-awful-o’dark-thirty) has been a little broken.  OK, a lot broken.  I’ve been commuting solo, and having to walk from the parking garage, and and and.  Plus, it’s been raining…and blowing…and I know that’s no excuse for penning a living creature up in the house and never letting her out to do more than pee in the pouring rain but Charm has been home and teleworking all day every day and that’s a good excuse right?

I’m not even convincing myself, here, so it wouldn’t surprise me if I haven’t convinced you.  In my defense, when I have taken her out for walks recently (which has been a couple of times, I swear!) they have been good, long, luscious walks with lots of different streets and smells and whatnot.

So, what else.

After an odd spell of exhaustion and emotional malaise which lasted most of October, I’m coming out on the other side of it, a bit mystified with its appearance, but not so mystified as really needing to go get therapized or something.  Not that therapy isn’t good – it’s really good.  Mostly what I’ve done is sit and stare at stuff, try (and kind of fail) to not spend money, eat things that are bad for me, or drink to excess (ok, I haven’t been drinking to excess).  Oh, also, I express my concerns, exhaustion, and weird emotions to Charm and Drummer, seeking explanations outside of myself.

Let’s see….what on earth could it be? How about the presidential election?  The Standing Rock protest?  Seasonal Affective Disorder?  Finite resources, and the constant push-me-pull-you of how to balance finances and energy and now/future?

I feel like I’m standing in a multi-dimensional doorway, with hallways stretching in all directions.  So many options, and so many of them negate the option of other options. Which is kind of hard on this Scorpio Sun/Libra Moon manifestor person.   And the hell of it is, I’ve been on approach to this junction, and standing in this doorway, for awhile now.  And I’m also finding that what I thought was the Big Life Thing (rip up roots!  Move to a completely unknown place!) is indeed a Big Life Thing….but it’s not the ‘3rd movie wrap up  in a trilogy’ thing.  Looks like there’s another movie coming.  I guess it shouldn’t surprise me that this life seems to be a mini-series, rather than a trilogy.  And it doesn’t surprise me, really…

One of the things I have noticed as I move more confidently into my cronehood is that I am doing more and more judicious curating of my time and energy.  I am checking things out as they present themselves and catch my eye, and as my carefully metered energy allows.

I think I’ll talk about this for a bit.

I’ve spent a lot of time (a LOT OF TIME) in my adult life trying to join stuff and belong.  Churches, clubs, movements, cultures, activities, coffee klatches, neighborhood associations… name it.  Sometimes I’ve managed to belong….often (so often) I am pleasantly received, but can never….quite…

This reality of my current life has been painful for me.  As a human, it is natural to want to belong.  We are social primates, and the desire to ‘belong’ is hardwired into our DNA.  Yes, we can survive alone….but we will not thrive.

I definitely have that desire.  But the things that seem so easy for others (you know…the ones who, 2 weeks after starting a new job, are going to lunch with groups of work friends and standing in the hallways chatting)…that hasn’t come so easy for me.

Anyway….recently, I have noticed that I am curating my time more and more.  I have given lots of thought and introspection as to what is absolutely necessary – home, health, security, transportation, and family – and those things are fairly stable for me right now.  I have a finite amount of time and energy left to invest…and I am carefully and slowly exploring how to invest that.  Clearly, for me, the remaining necessities are self-development, and community/friends.  So, I’m responding, carefully, to opportunities for those things which cross the river in front of me. I meet people for coffee….I went to a local shamanic lodge…I’m going to check out a few palatable churches…I’m signed up for a couple of meet ups.

I’m also a lot more willing to walk away from things that don’t seem nourishing or responsive.  I’ve had more than a lifetime’s supply of people who are just amazingly lovey-dovey-so-glad-to-see you…but who don’t ever have the time to engage in actual friendship. Same with the ones who are plenty available…for me to meet with them and provide free therapy for an hour or so.  Nope.  Done with that. And the joy of it is that I no longer feel so strong a need to be externally validated that I put up with it!  I just walk away.  Keep ya as friends on Facebook?  Sure.  But I’m not investing any emotional energy – you’re just electrons that sometimes ‘like’ my posts.  Doesn’t mean you’re not a lovely person – chances are you’re delightful.  But not available, and I’m too old to chase people, and I have other things to do anyway.

Then there is another genre….the things/situations/options that I have to weigh carefully each time on the ‘What’s in it for me?’ scale. It’s taken me a loooooong time to become comfortable with that scale.   It sounds callous.  But it’s not.  It’s realistic.  For those of us who are healers and empaths and HSPs and especially for those of us who have been taught that putting others’ needs before our own is the right thing to do…well, using the WIIFM scale can feel very cold.  But in this early autumn of my life, I have found this tool to be not only useful….but essential.  I can no longer afford to squander my energy.  I have finally learned to fine tune my filter, and choose only that which will nourish and sustain me in fair exchange for me lending my love and energy to it.  Be that people, activities, causes, groups, or even ideas.

It’s been a hard lesson to learn.  I’ve flunked the quizzes, tests, and yes – the whole damned class – more times than I care to let on.  But I’m a stubborn student in more ways than one, and I have become a somewhat discerning buyer of the plethora of what this world has to offer.  I have a lot to offer, myself….and I refuse to chase the wind.  What is meant to be in my life will appear…and I will be present to taste and consider…and pick it up and carry it with me if it’s the right thing to do.

And so…the veil.  I went to a gathering yesterday (and I was embarrassingly late….to my credit, it really was billed as something a little different than what it actually was).  It was an interesting presentation by a spiritual group.  I don’t think it is entirely to my taste (and also far too spendy to really get heavily involved with), but one of the most interesting things that happened was some unseen spirit/being/critter jiggling my elbow persistently while I sat and listened to the second half of the presentation.  I mean, this critter was _persistent_.  I would move my arm…shift position….rub my elbow a bit….then a few moments later….*jiggle jiggle*    Of course, this was in the middle of the day, in a bright room, with about 12 other people…and some spirit is jiggling my elbow to get my attention.  Or maybe it was just playing with me.  I don’t know.  But it was funny!  I just wanted to say out loud “ok! ok! you have my attention!  What do you want??”…..but I think, given the setting, it would have been completely misconstrued, and I would have come across as a bit of a nut, which would have most likely embarrassed the friend who had invited me there.  But it was a fun story to share with the family over dinner.

One of things I noticed upon moving to the PNW is that my psychic net seemed to power down for quite awhile.  One of my first understandings of this was that it took awhile to recalibrate my sensors to compensate for the heavily saturated biomass here.   That made a lot of sense, especially as things  s…..l….o…w…l…y started coming back online.  But I have also noticed a markedly lower level of activity.  I know the stuff is out there….so what’s the deal?  My recent realization is that the human energy fields are just too dense here. The city is packed full of people, and even sitting on the porch during quiet times in the neighborhood..I can feel the people.  People in houses.  People in cars.  People stacked 10 floors high in buildings.  I have realized that I have pulled my sensory array in on a semi-permanent basis, habitually now, so as not to have it overwhelmed and potentially damaged.

I like Portland – a lot.  I thought it was going to be the place where I put down permanent roots. I have a good job, a nice house that I really like (and that I’ve invested a huge amount of resources in), my family, my dog, the cat…a few friendships that I am carefully nurturing…but I think the next phase (the 4th Phoenix) will be in a different place.   I need a very small city…or a medium-sized town.  Someplace where the energy isn’t so chaotic and crazed, and the noise – all kinds of noise – isn’t so dense and overwhelming.  Right now, that is looking like the Olympic peninsula.  Not anytime soon….I have much life to live here (God willing!) and a lot to explore.  My heart is open to the kaleidoscope of things manifesting.  I have the ability to extend and withdraw my psychic array, and it will be interesting to learn how to use it in this environment, now that I understand what is happening.  There is a smorgasbord of people, activities, causes, opportunities, and exploration here.  There are gems, jewels, and magic devices all freaking over the place here.  I understand that now.  I can curate that now.

And once the veil falls off….it’s very difficult to put it back on and peer through it, as through a glass dimly.

And why would I want to, anyway?