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“If you want to know your past life, look into your present condition; if you want to know your future life, look at your present actions.” – Sogyal Rinpoche

I didn’t go to see the Broadway musical “Beautiful” with the guy that I mentioned a couple of posts ago.  He is recovering from alcohol and drug abuse. He had also just quit cigarettes when I met him.  He has issues.  We all have them, but he has more issues than I am willing to deal with.

I thought we could be friends, as I often think of everyone I meet.  He said he was okay with just friendship.  We exchanged texts and phone calls and in the first couple of days all was fine.  Then it got weird.  He started texting and calling at odd hours, sometimes after midnight.  At other times in the middle of a conversation he would say he needed to call me back and never would.  At times some of the conversations didn’t make much sense.  I sensed something was off, but I kept trying to be a friend.

It was becoming both painful and annoying.  I realized I couldn’t be the friend he needed.  He needed a supportive, understanding, sponsor-type of a friend.  I stopped picking up the phone late at night and started calling him out on the behavior that I thought was not ok.  He then just stopped calling all together.

What I learned from that experience is that sometimes you have to be selfish and think of yourself first.  Something is off with him and I am not going to stick around to find out what that is.

Be a friend but do not lose yourself in the process.  Do not think that it is your job to save everyone. Respect yourself first.

I haven’t had cable/internet/phone for the past several days due to the heavy windstorm we had starting last Friday.  The windstorm was scary. I have to walk 3 blocks from the train station to my apartment and the wind was so strong that I actually had to stop and hold on to lampposts not to be blown away and I am not a small creature.

Nature is powerful. It is beautiful. It is a wonder, but it can also be scary at times.  Nature needs to be respected.  At times such as this I am reminded of the need to respect nature and its force.

What am I doing to respect nature? The best way I know how to show respect it is through conservation. Growing up in Brazil I was reminded daily by my parents that water and electricity are expensive so I grew up with the mindset of using only what is necessary.  I also believe in reusing, re-purposing and cleaning my surroundings.

I decided to pay even more attention to my efforts of showing respect for Mother Earth.  Every little action builds up and promotes change.  It starts with me.

On those evenings without cable I joked with friends that I actually had to talk to my sister.  It is amazing how much TV is part of my life.  Even though I rarely sit down and watch something, the TV is always on in the background, especially now that my sister is using it to help her with fine tuning her English listening skills.

We normally don’t realize how much we appreciate something until it is gone.  We also normally don’t realize how much we depend on something until it is gone.  In this case it is minor, it is just cable and internet, but I can see how much I depend on so many other things and how I take those things and people for granted. Realizing that people and things that are part of my everyday can just one day disappear forces me to take another look at them and me.

Do I really need all that is around me? Am I choosing to surround myself with only people and things that add to my life or am I wasting time on things that are actually detrimental to me?

Be grateful for all you have.  Show people and things gratitude.  Get rid of the old and unused things.  Get rid of the negative and painful people and relationships.