in the black hole of work

the past year and especially the last 6 months has been the most challenging for orange in a long time. i am sure the external forces has some bearing but i can’t help but feel the bulk of the failure. undoubtedly, this great failure while I am trying to take the business/myself to the next level has been a great learning experience. even though i feel like i am working smarter and focusing on the ‘right’ things, it’s still an awkward phase as i plant new seeds. it’s been a long time since i’ve felt so financially stretch with the company and although i am not too worry about it, it still sits in the back of my mind. taking out such a significant loan because i believe in what i am doing is ‘right’. like i said, it’s been long time since i had to my money where my believe is. for the last 5-7 years, we’ve coasted and although never really profitable, we weren’t so financially stretch. even with a smaller team and less overhead, the mountain of credit card debt and loans is hitting the upper end of my comfort zone. i keep telling myself that it will all turnaround 18 months to 2 years as the team grows to the next level. sadly, i am not sure i anyone else quite believes. it’s been a lonely experience to say the least as i chugged along in my mixed lighting studio space. my man cave isn’t quite as comfortable as i would like but i quite enjoy having the space to myself. yes, alot of alone time these days as i am half ass about the whole dating thing. i need to figure out some greater mission to fill my heart with. as much as i enjoy working on orange, it’s been too lonely for me to commit my heart into it. without a greater pull, orange becomes the default habit that i fall into. as i toil away on these lonesome nights, i can’t help by question to what end. who will really care? i would like to believe that ‘my’ employees care but that’s not the vibe that i am getting at all. yes, i need some serious deep thought into the nature of my frustration.

the why making the difference

in the past few months there has been a lightness that i have forgotten. there has been a notable shift internally and it feels really good and right. it’s easy to covet this feeling at a younger age but the sweetness in the the old age. like millionaires from the dot com days where you live the sweet life after 5 years of intensity and being at the right place. it’s actually nothing like that because the journey to this moment is filled with so many set backs. all those failures scar your being and then they rip up in ripeness when the time finally comes and then you start all over.

i’v been definitely getting doing the ground hog day experience of late. routines and pattens that melt the days together. the monotony of daily life. of course the irony of it is that i live such a glided life. the golden handcuffs are no worse or better, i just need to work through it.

shift in awareness

i was sharing my experience on a date a few days ago and i was slightly surprise to hear the positive feedback around my state of being. she had asked what i thought i could attribute it to and the gut response was my state of being is highly correlated to my consistent meditation practice. even more so ever, the insight from vision quest continues to help me see relationships more clearly on what i want to cultivate with each person. really grateful for all these wisdom practices coming to some fruition on some level . meanwhile, i am back on the saddle of online dating and even though i’ve met a few interesting people of late, my desire to start a relationship has wane in the past year. i still believe that i want to develop a few deeper and more intimate relationships but the sense of urgency and the desire for finding a more suitable fit has left me with pretty slim pickings. which is to say, it’s another marathon of a project for me. just have to be open to the possibility and trying without being attached to outcome.

my time in the desert

it’s been more than a year and half since i’ve participated in my first vision quest. undoubtedly, one of the more brave things i did not because it physically scare me to go into the desert whilst on a fast and without any shelter or distractions. i’ve done enough meditation retreats where solitude and silent was cherished by my soul. only in hindsight did i understand why it was a brave thing to stare into my original wound and coms to terms with it in very visceral and conscious manner. meanwhile, 10 other strangers came to share their stories. the stories stirred my well of compassion violently. It was such a precious week to witness the power of vulnerability to connect our lost souls. even now, the pain and joy of this experience remains fresh in my heart and soul. even though i have lost connection with most of these people, i am grateful for the chance to have done a portrait of them in the desert. it’s such a rare privilege to photograph humans in these states of vulnerability and intimacy.

drupchen retreat

it’s been 7 days since i’ve entered my first hard core mantra/visualization retreat at pema osel ling. for the most part, it is a bit over my head and in my typical style, i created my own schedule and work the format of the retreat as much as i can handle. in hindsight, the learning experience is i should take a few shorter mantra style retreats here and next time, do a shorter duration of the drupchen retreat. still, at least uma is having a wonderful time and it’s really nice to be around other parents that have a pretty strong practice. undoubtedly, i know from this experience that i want to continue to deepen the meditation practice as i complete my first year of consistent daily mediation practice. what that deepening on a regular basis is not clear except the obvious of more time on a daily basis to the practice. potentially, next year it will continue to be about consistently and total hours meditate through the next year. anyway, i going to try to make this summer retreat a tradition with uma. meanwhile, i hope the romantic seeds i planted here grow but i have been better at realizing the shortcomings of my romantic patterns. the free spirited artist with a spiritual under current. I just haven’t found a way for me to reconcile that free spirit with my own rigid desire for a ‘equal’ partnership. in some regard, there is a strong desire to let go of that romantic attachment naturally and just focus on service but even in that framework, i am struggling with finding my strength/time for the service aspect. without growing the spiritual/service framework, the romantic habits will continue to haunt me.