the binder


Somewhere along the line, I started to keep a slim binder with a select few items in it. On the front of the binder, it says, “you are entirely up to you.”

I look at this binder fairly frequently. Sometimes, if I am feeling down or lacking focus, just leafing through it somehow centers me. It gives me a little positive push.

On the first page on the inside, there is a bunch of scribbling on some somewhat wrinkled paper. Buried in all that are the words, “If you feel like something’s missing, it’s probably you.” I believe the quote is attributable to Robert Holden. At some point in time, my scribbled page mattered enough to me that it became the anchoring of my binder.

Indeed, that is what the binder is about – reminding me who I am.

Following that are a few pages holding small pieces of creative work that I made, and the occasional doodled remark, like, “MAKE. Make anything.” These pages are very important to me. When I need to remind myself who I am, they help me in a calm, happy way.

The binder also holds the personal mission statement I carefully crafted some years ago.

Last, but not least, I have just a few pages with quotes or text that serve to remind me who I am and inspire me to be all that.

Periodically, things get taken out of this binder, when they are no longer really useful. Occasionally, things get added.

Utsav Raj shared his poem, “Travel Bird,” yesterday on his site, My Spirals. I knew when I read it that I just wanted it around.

Reading it reminded me of how to be alive: to soak life in, to be awake for it, to see it, to feel it, to be it.

It’s so easy for me to be focused on the minutiae, distracted by this or that thread of meaningless occupation, obligation, routine, troubles – stuff that literally just takes up time. I’d rather be alive for my life.

Feeling, doing, seeing, breathing not just to exist, I want to be the pulse in the universe that in my heart of hearts I know I am. I want to explore the edges, stretch them further out, find out what’s out there and in there, and feel it all. I think we all do.

Anyway, rather than me just rambling on, perhaps read “Travel Bird,” which says it better than I can.

And now that it’s in my special binder, I’ll read it from time to time, and be reminded. Thank you, Utsav.