Anonymity & being Anonymous

I woke this morning with a heart full of gratitude for so many things. Today I feel gratitude for having the time at my job to take off and enjoy this beautiful summer weather we have been experiencing.

I woke this morning ready to start my day.

I was aware yesterday the NYS Office of Mental Health would be in the office today to review our program. Been there and done that. It doesn’t mean what it did in my career 20-years ago. It’s important, don’t get me wrong but I’m not in that top position anymore and I have to say, I enjoy not being in that position.

They came they saw and they reviewed. Today they’re in the office during which I spend the majority of my time and I’m off today. My boss is more than capable of managing what needs to be done, so the little bit of guilt which I have has been pushed to the side.

I was watching the Tour de France last night and I received a call from my dad asking if I was off Friday. I lied and said I wasn’t and he asked, “I thought you said you were off the next three Fridays?” I knew what was coming and I was right. I’ll be heading there sometime Saturday to “fix the computer.” Unfortunately, my dad is 79 and he often touches things he should never touch. I asked him what was wrong with his computer and he said: “there was a paper jam and when I tried to fix it a spring popped out.” Now we all know there aren’t any springs in a computer. Did I forget to mention my dad’s memory is beginning to fade and I am watching him become more and more confused. It’s sad. There are three kids and I am the only one who is ever called on for assistance. It’s not that I mind but there’s that anonymous thing again.

I thought about being anonymous. What a joy I think that would be. Not that guy in the mask anonymous but anonymous as in no one knows I’m there. No one knows I’m around. No one knows I exist. I want to do the job I enjoy and fade away into the quiet solitude of the night. My friend Henry Thoreau had quite a bit to say about solitude as did his counterparts John Muir and Ralph Waldo Emerson. One of the things I really enjoy about going on vacation is the fact that for all intents and purposes I am anonymous; at least for a short while. U2 wrote the song “Where the streets have no name.”


I’m done. I’m going to cut the grass with my headphone listening to some Pearl Jam and enjoying the solitude of my relative anonymity. I’m hoping you enjoy your day.




I lost it!

I lost it this week. I lost my balance, my mojo…Whatever you’d like to call it…I lost it. Somewhere between driving to the office Monday morning and the end of the day Friday, I lost it!

I drove to the office Monday morning, the sky still dark. My head heavy, tired. I caught myself daydreaming at a couple of red lights wishing I had the day or the entire week off. It wasn’t a full moon but there was a sense of dread. I thought, “I have to get myself out of this funk.” The looming shutdown of the Federal government. Patients telling me they’re depressed or anxious. We explore their issues and I can only think, “You’ve got to be kidding me!” The pinched nerve in my shoulder began screaming at me. I fidgeted in my chair trying to get comfortable. The days of the week counting down in my head. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday… the days not dragging but not seeming to move any faster than I had hoped they would move.

I sought solace on my meditation cushion, behind the lens of my camera and while out for my solitary morning runs. All three provided me with the energy to keep going, to keep moving, one foot in front of the other, one step at a time.

I blame no one and nothing. Sometimes things just seem to happen out of nowhere like walking around a blind corner directly into a door. Wham!! We burn the candle at both ends and either deny the actions which contribute to our imbalance or we simply become so consumed with ourselves, with our activities that we completely miss the ever present signs. For me, it was a combination of both. I have the ability to put on a smile and unless you look ever so closely, you’ll never see the seams. You’ll never see the cracks as they begin to appear around the edges.

I returned from the office Friday evening ate dinner and retreated to my meditation cushion, this time taking it outside. The natural sounds of the world my only company. The thoughts which previously raced around my head like a rubber ball, gaining momentum with each impact now began to slow until the only sound present was that of my breathing.

Balance is being restored. I do not say it “is restored” because balance is one of those things which with the slightest breeze can  push us off course. If we fail to pay attention to the signs, we can find ourselves, as I did far off course as I found myself.

Know your signs. Know when to say “Enough.” know when to ask for help or for guidance. Practice these things and balance becomes your friend. It becomes something which can be easily tamed and not something which tames us.