Lent I: Giving Up, Giving In

I need to write. I need to write. I need to write.

I guess that because I grew up within the Western Christian liturgical calendar, I tend to hit Lent with the feeling that I need to do something. The giving up, the taking on, goodness knows I’ve done both–though I left the institution long ago at this point. But my head still finds its way to that cycle.

Advent is the beginning. Lent is, among others, preparation (as is Advent, in truth). And it is often associated with (or practiced as, celebrated (?) as…) fasting. Giving up.

It is inevitably a period when I do, in fact, give up. Often on whatever it was I gave up or took on, but I often do give up. The same is true of whatever New Year resolution I think I’ve made, but Lent is particularly noteworthy for this.  Possibly obscenely.

Wow, this sounds ridiculously serious. It shouldn’t be. There is something freeing about the giving up. And the taking on. Again. What the hell.

Avenged Sevenfold guitarist smiling

Syn, Honolulu, Jan. 2015.

So, how about a happy-guitarist picture to set the Lenten mood. Looks pleased, doesn’t he? (aside: happy to see him smiling on stage–very different from the mood during the Nightmare tour. Wherein he, of course, was trying to recover from a nightmare and wore the grief so completely.) So, different mood here as well. Happy-guitarist-playing-solo mood. I feel that I have a particularly intimate acquaintance with moods so as to be able to provide a more nuanced accounting than “happy.” So, happy-guitarist-playing-solo it is. Difference? That man is onstage, in the place and space he clearly loves, playing a song of his own making, existing within his passion. And, yes, getting attention for it.

Having said that, I am wondering if I could manage to use my live photos of this band each post to represent a mood…This is probably a terrible idea. I have sufficient photos to never repeat during that time, but I’m pretty sure I’ll come up short on facial expressions.

So, I’ll give up and give in for Lent. Give up, if not the coffee I should give up, then the traditional meat.* I’ll give in and write. I’ve mentioned that I need to write, yes? I’ve resisted this space for months. Written in my journal each morning, but not here. And I like this space. I like that I have–in the past–been able to spread out my thoughts. Turn them over and stare into the connections. Write in some vaguely academic way about the things that excite my head. And I’ve put aside that part of my brain in learning all this new of late in this life I have been granted.

So, give up the easy, give in to the need. The good needs. Some of those needs that saved my life: writing, researching, and meditating. Creatively. Playfully. Because that’s what I have and that’s what keeps me sane. And in the aforementioned mood.

After all, I like sanity. It’s kind of cool.

*Funny–my worst enemy in these efforts is inattention. For instance, the day was all of 12 hours old when I walked into a lunch meeting at which there were chicken wings that smelled really, really good. While I ate none, it was not until I left that I realized that I’d not thought once about the Lenten commitment. I just happened to not get any because I’d brought my lunch with me. *headdesk*



2 responses to “Lent I: Giving Up, Giving In

  1. lovely. but how messed up is it that reading about you committing to doing your soul work makes me feel guilty for ignoring mine???

  2. Ha–given that I feel guilty over almost everything? Not at all messed up (though–do it!). Maybe a shared birthday thing?

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