Opening, closing, swinging.......

I can't believe it. I moved my blog. I mean... who DOES that?

I guess me.

And here's why. I was discussing in my last post that sometimes it's hard for me to write. And I realized after much thought (really this has been swirling around in my brain for months) that while I have A LOT to say about autism... it's not ALL I have to say. And yet I find that when the title of my blog is, "April walks with autism," well then by golly, I better be talking about autism.

And make NO MISTAKE. I will never, EVER stop talking about autism. But for those of you who have met me... you know I have so much more to say.

So here starts a new relationship with my blog. One in which I will....

open some new doors.

It was easy for me to figure out the new name of my blog. Let me give you a tiny bit of background.

Earlier this year, I reluctantly joined the Eat, Pray, Love craze. I say reluctantly because I picked up the book several times throughout the course of a year and could NOT gut my way through it. Sorry Liz Gilbert but we don't all have it like you have it, just "pick up and go" and find ourselves and sort through the emotional hot mess that is our lives. It would be nice but...not so much a reality for 99.99999% of the women out there. But..... all I can say is...the book kind of starting haunting me from my bookshelf. I started to find myself thinking about some of the passages I had read. And I picked it up again. And here's what I realized. I started focusing LESS on the story itself and more on the passages individually and Liz Gilbert's underlying MESSAGES and........OK ALRIGHT I'LL ADMIT IT ALREADY! The book changed my life.

Damnit! I HATE when I succumb to pop culture!

So what does this have to do with the title of my blog? Well, throughout the book, Liz is trying to find "her word." The word that represents her life or at least the part of the life she is at now. It's kind of a "theme" of the book if you will. Not one I payed much attention to because, I mean who has a WORD for their life? Not me.

Well, not at the time anyway.

So I've mentioned in previous posts about Temple Grandin. And if you've watched her movie, you know she has a thing about doorways. And she talks about doorways a lot. I like how Temple makes it SO SIMPLE. "I saw a doorway and I walked through it." Seems like nothing, but to Temple, it was so something. Over the last several months I have been replaying those scenes from the movie in my head...where she talks about the doorways and what they lead to and what they represent...the fear, conquering that fear - - opening up the possibility of a new life, new challenges, new beginnings. I could write a whole post about my thoughts on this topic but...I'll save that for later.

Then lately I've been re-reading this daily mediation book that has been sitting on my shelf for literally 20 years. I haven't touched it but for some reason, I've kept it all these years. (Editors note: I am *NOT* a book "keeper." I read 'em and get rid of 'em) And on a particularly dark day, this was the passage. "The circumstances of our lives seldom live up to our expectations or desires. However, in each circumstance we are offered an opportunity for growth or change, a chance for a greater understanding of life's heights and pitfalls. Each time we choose to lament for what isn't, we close the door to the invitation of a better existence." **

And then back to Eat, Pray, Love. There's this particular passage in the book that I read every single day of my life. It just......speaks to me. And one day, I kept reading...beyond the typical paragraph that I find myself studying. I turned the page and kept going. Of course I had read it before, but you know how it is when you read. Sometimes you're reading and sometimes you're just....scanning words. Liz is talking to her enlightened friend Richard about getting over a lost love.....

"Here's what you gotta understand, Groceries (he calls her Groceries, I love that!). If you clear out all that space in your mind that you're using right now to obsess about this guy, you'll have a vacuum there, an open spot -- a doorway. And guess what the universe will do with that doorway? It will rush in. God will rush in--and fill you with more love than you ever dreamed. So stop using David to block that door. Let it go."

And at that moment, that INSTANT. I realized that, I -- April Schmidt -- mother of 2, wife of 1, friend to many, daughter, chauffeur, chef, volunteer, artist, creator, sometimes writer, cleaning lady, therapist, autism advocate, band-aid applyer, etc etc etc etc etc -- I HAVE A WORD. I'm not even an uber famous author that Julia Roberts is starring in the movie adaptation of my book! I'm just....well, ME and -- I HAVE A WORD!!!!!!!!!!!!

Doorway.

Here's the thing about my word. It's been a really hard year for me. I've loved, I've lost. A few times. This year. It's been hard. I lost a best friend. I lost a family member. I lost another best friend. Some literally left this world and some just left me. It's been hard to grapple with no matter how you slice it. I have seen darker moments this year than I have seen in all 38 of them put together.

Sometimes, that door has been slammed shut.
Sometimes, that door has been swinging wildly and I've been hit in the face with it.
Sometimes, that door has been swinging wildly and I've rushed right through during an open moment and made it through to the other side. Sometimes I haven't.
Sometimes, more recently, I have learned that the ONLY way to get through... is to kick that goshdamned door DOWN and get it the f#$k out of my way.
And sometimes, ok - - most of the time - - I've realized that the "doorway" is me.

I'm the only one standing in my own way.

So here we start a new journey. Of learning to open doors, kick them down, rush through while they are slightly cracked, or sometimes even just find a way to peek through the window. But the lesson I've learned this year, is that -- it's all about -- how you -- how *I* look at the door and what *I* am going to do with it. Open it, close it, kick it down -- it's all up to me.

And for me, the hardest lesson to learn is that sometimes it's ok, no no, you MUST close one door in order to be able to open another.


I hope you'll join me on a new journey. One that will certainly INCLUDE autism but open the door to so many other topics as well.




**Give credit where credit is due! The book is called "Each Day a New Beginning" and is a book of 365 daily meditations for women. I cherish every word!

Comments

  1. LOOOOOOOOOOOOVE it!!!! And you! Excellent and well said. Proud of you.

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  2. and also very reflective...loved the post

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  3. D.A.N.G. It's been up for 3 minutes and... I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH.

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  4. great post April!
    I've got a door that needs closing. :)

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  5. Awesome Post April~You are an amazing Lady!!! <3

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  6. You are such an artist with your words. I, as well live thru metaphors. I love your exuberance and can't wait to see what other things will come of this blog! Will you move to Vegas, please?

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  7. JF- If I do, can I live with you? Will you craft me an amazing room? I want a JT theme please. Thank you for your lovely comments y'all!

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  8. I am a proud mother, for the daughter has taught me so much this year not just about the daughter, about the choices. I love this blog as much as I loved the other.

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  9. April, I do not know you but I love you. :) First for being such a good friend to Michelle and Second, for your touching posts. I'm closing doors left and right AND EPL changed my life..

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  10. Thank you Jennifer! I heart you too! When are you coming to Nash???? We must have an EPL fest!

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