Dear Self

Splitting wood.

Dear Self,

I enjoy learning new skills.

When I split wood, which is something I have been slowly learning how to do over several years, I’ve noticed some things.

One moment it’s like magic. A clean split. Neat. Destiny.

Another moment it’s like a person awkwardly riding a horse. Thudding, jolting, jarring. An out of rhythm ricochet.

I watch what I’m doing and try to and work it out.

I can blame the wood, its shape and texture and temperature and age and…

It’s not the wood.

And there’s nothing wrong with my wood splitter.

As I go about this little experiment, I uncover small clues.

Today I found two things of interest.

When I swing the log splitter behind my back and then go to pull it forwards up and over my head I have been trying to use my left hand too much to get the axe moving. It caused my left wrist to get sore (which is why I was noticing it)…so I tried getting the forward swing going with my right hand. The extra force and strength I felt was incredible. Whole body powerful.

If the magic happens, that extra force is incredible…if not then the ricochet is almost comical. I often look around to see if the birds are laughing at me.

The other thing I noticed is that I find it very hard to hit the wood exactly where I intend to hit the wood. Sometimes I am close, sometimes I am ridiculously nowhere near my intended aim.

My theory is that you hit where you are looking, that when the visual relationship with the impact point is clear that the body does all this amazing calculation to make connection with that point. If this is correct I don’t have to try harder to hit the spot, I just have to more clearly pay attention to my target.

What I noticed is that I am paying very careful attention to this spot when I get ready and swing the axe. And that it feels like I am watching this spot for as long as I possibly can…but then, as I repeated and repeated the action, I began to notice that as the log splitter hit the wood (or was about to) I let my attention (not just my vision, my intention) drift away from that spot I had chosen.

I tried holding my attention to that spot (even if I couldn’t see it) until the axe had finished moving.

Incredible. Like a laser. Not always exactly on the spot. So much closer and the hit was so much cleaner.

I find all this fascinating.

I don’t know why.

I just do.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,354

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I’m good at some things.

Dear Self,

I’m good at some things.

I can feel it when I do those things.

People appreciate what I do, they get joy, or clarity, or feel moved, or are able to move forward, or deepen their understanding, or…

It’s good to know this. Good to acknowledge it.

I can spend a lot of time reflecting on how I could be better at things I’m not good at.

Ok. Sure. That’s fine.

But it can’t be the whole story…that would be just exhausting.

So, there are some things that I’m good at.

Great.

Let’s build from there.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,353

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Fix the damn thing.

Dear Self,

Technology is totally amazing until it is totally shite.

Thing is, it has seduced me, you know.

It’s taken years…but inch by inch I have given over my autonomy to it.

So now, if it suddenly fails me, without explanation warning…well I’m totally stuffed.

And everything is set up now, so you buy it and pay every month for it…and there is literally no one on the other side of that transaction to help you sort out what the hell just happened.

No one.

At all.

How did we get here?

Shouldn’t someone be there to fix the damn thing when it stops working?

I mean, please!

Low level grumble about small, but significant inconvenience, over.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,352

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A break through.

Dear Self,

Things held for too long.

No movement.

Stagnant.

Waiting.

Waiting for something to change.

Watching.

For signs that progress will be made.

Watching.

Giving up.

Discouraged.

Until the crack appears, just a little.

Then the change.

The flood.

A breakthrough.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,351

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An anxious butterfly.

Dear Self,

There is an anxious, butterfly pressure on my solar plexus.

Choices? Options? Pressure?

Busyness? Change?

What is it I wonder?

Too much rich food?

Not enough water?

Trying to solve other people’s problems?

Yes. Probably.

All of that.

Yes. Ok.

Ok.

It will be ok.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,350

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Our Hugh Jackman

Dear Self,

As the result of a random gift from someone we had never met (via a very generous Aunty Rosemary) we just had the pleasure of spending an evening being entertained by Hugh Jackman.

It was all kinds of fabulous.

But my absolute favourite part of the evening was the memory of my Aunty Loris proudly displaying a newspaper cut out of ‘our Hugh’ on her fridge…telling me incredulously of her niece (my cousin) who could have married Hugh.

She liked Hugh for the same reason we like Hugh. He’s so damn nice, talented, hard working, entertaining and generous.

I loved the show. And I loved having Aunty with me again for an evening.

Thanks Hugh.

Love

Luke.

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Day 1,349

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Arrival.

Arrival. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Arrival. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

Scatter, scatter.

I ping pong my thoughts from rapid place to rapid place.

Solving small parts of many different problems in quick succession.

Never arriving, never landing, never seeing something through to the.

End.

I crave that long slow time.

I crave that place I get to where I am breathing into this thing I am doing.

I crave arrival.

Where does that live?

It lives in how I approach the thing I am doing.

It lives with me.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,348

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Visiting myself daily.

Visiting myself daily. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Visiting myself daily. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

Visiting myself daily.

A cup of tea.

A privilege.

Warm kindness.

Harsh reality.

Looking through a window, taking a breath.

Owning my bag of stuff.

Self-respect, discovery, uncertainty.

Messy.

A ritual made from…

A cup of tea

Visiting myself daily.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,347

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.

Older.

Older. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Older. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I’m noticing myself getting older.

I keep seeing a metaphor of an old chipped tea pot.

Well loved, functional, stained full of memories, comforting.

There is no getting around time.

I’m not sure if I ever thought there was.

As I get older it becomes clearer that enjoying the spoils of lived life…well what other choice do I have?

To fight is futile. Isn’t it?

The risk of all this “acceptance” is that I subconsciously begin to accept other people’s ideas about what getting older means.

The world has a lot of ideas about all of this that hold no interest for me. But it is easy to start thinking in those frames when they are communicated so clearly and with such strength.

(I know I’m not ‘old’, I know I’m ‘in the middle’, I’m saying older…we all get older every day)

The remedy to all of this is being in this moment.

I am this being, right here, right now.

I can do and say and think the things I can do and say and think right now.

That’s it.

That’s all of it.

Love

Luke

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Day 1,346

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Beautiful but damaged.

Beautiful but damaged. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Beautiful but damaged. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I had a bad dream last night.

A house that was haunted, but beautiful, but damaged.

We wanted to live in it.

Reimagine it.

Reinvent.

Restore it.

I felt frightened that the house was too damaged to regenerate.

But moved into it anyway.

When I woke up, I could feel the house was me.

That the haunted, damaged past was part of the beauty.

I could see that ghosts of events that happened through me are not me.

A kind piano to play,

in the corner,

sings the darkness away.

Love

Luke

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Day 1,345

Show your support for Dear Self by becoming a monthly supporter of my work or by buying some stamp money. Your support means I can keep doing the things I do to make the world a better place.