A kaleidoscope is an optical instrument with two or more reflecting surfaces tilted to each other at an angle, so that one or more objects on one end of the mirrors are seen as a regular symmetrical pattern when viewed from the other end, due to repeated reflection.    [Wikipedia]

I had one as a child - who didn't. I was mesmerized by the colors, interactions and merges that bled from one view to another. It is said that a kaleidoscope produces actually 4 different color patterns based off the convergence of two mirrors. That's as far as my science-y lesson goes. 

Some patterns were most definitely more profoundly complex and vivid. Others seemed clear and simple. Both types were beautiful in different ways. My child brain knew enough to see that the next pattern actually needed the previous pattern to morph into itself. I just didn't quite know how much that paralleled real life . . . yet.

There is a lot of shit in life. Heaviness, pain, destruction, loss, conflicts, violence, apathy. It's all around us from annoying pestering to massive intrusive and devastating life-altering shit. There is also a lot of beauty in varying intensities interdependent on shit and independent of it. I have experienced both.

I see big inside my head and feel everything that beats around me - people and things. To be honest, it's taken me to my middle age to understand that not everyone is like that.  We all can only know what we know. We draw conclusions on our knows without consciously thinking through them many times. - like breathing happens automatically.

It's a good thing I didn't understand that fully as a kid or I might have felt stranger inside about myself than I did. Quite possibly maybe there's a psychological syndrome with a name for that. If so, I probably have it. Its unnamed diagnosis aside, it is just simply hardwired in me.

Seeing big is awesome. It's high def brain and emotion living. The wash of both of those things can be exhilarating and fuel a sort of relentlessness. It's a sponge way of life - absorbing all things around you, visually, emotionally, spiritually, atmospherically. 

Emotions are just that, emotions. They are not necessarily always truth and mostly transient to the next one. I remind myself of that a lot. It's another thing I wish we all could grasp in clearer windows when we are younger. Stupid youth is wasted on the young. It takes diminishing cells to be re-focused to understand what was always there just below the surface in our youth. Blessings of age. And, it's a great one! Enlightenment doesn't typically come without shit decisions and/or life experience. Age creates a collective pool of both.

When painting the exterior of my house recently, my neighbor commented, "All of us neighbors have never seen anyone like you. You are crazy and relentlessly driven." I laughed and assured her crazy comes in all different forms and we all have a bit of it in us. What she didn't really know is that because I absorb what is around me, I need to make beautiful anything that is presently in an un-beautiful state. My life has been a lot of houses and lots of people. I have always wanted to leave both more beautiful than I found them. Want is the key word.

I hate gray days. From my kaleidoscope they are not the most beautiful pattern. They drain my spirit and put a ceiling on everything. I hate being a sponge sometimes. I use music on those days to combat the gray I absorb. Music is liquid that can saturate. In fact its power is a sensory touch for most of us.

Some things are not always possible to make beautiful. That too took me more than 25 years to figure out. "Hope is a thing with feathers,"  the poet Emily Dickinson says. Two hands up and exuberantly waving, I believe that too. It is an inner mantra of mine - that good and beauty can be found/created/fostered in anything or anyone. Hope is the mechanism that keeps me in the game to seeing beauty come to life around me.

God writes through King Solomon, "there is a time and season for everything under heaven." I hold that belief as well. Its bigger umbrella is we are not necessarily always in direct control of everything. We like to think we are. That's actually a burdening belief to hold that all things are held in our control. We are containers, us humans are - finite thoughts, lives and see-it-think-it ways. God is outside of that. Thank God!

I have personally made some shit decisions in my years of living. Ones that had lasting effects. Some that changed the course of my life. They have though, been part of what has made up my life. Inside those shits were none-the-less some vivid colors of beauty. Isn't it strange how that happens. I'm quite confident that God is involved in the beautiful things whittled out of shit. Quite.

Shit decision number one was probably getting out of the car when the man I loved chose to marry another. I didn't articulate the bigness of what I felt for him, rather just opened the door and walked away. I didn't fight, pursue, argue he was making a mistake. With still to this day, the deepest seated tears streaming down my face, with no other response, I just exited the car. No one wants to expose their love further or beg to be loved to someone that obviously didn't have that same love or was probably too scared to do what he really deep down wanted to do. He made his own shit decision that day, I'm fairly confident anyway.

That shit decision led to pure internal agony for many years. What I didn't fully get back then was that it was grief I was drowning in. Grief is powerfully unrelenting until it isn't. It's agonizing to be left with love that big with no where to rest it. Ever. It directly led to my next big shit decision as well. They usually do until we get some understanding of how shit colors our thoughts and narrates our rationales, and then drives our decisions. Deadly combo. Deadly,

Damn it my kaleidoscope was in angry swirling patterns. The gray day came and stayed for a long, long time.

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