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Adventures in Mindfulness

Katie Estes is a freelance designer, art director, photographer and stylist. She sometimes writes too. 


Katie Estes

The past couple of years I've been living a life similar to a monk or hitman, depending on how you look at it. Or as I noticed when camping and only had two pots — it's just like at home! I have two pots, three really, because I ordered the wrong size and couldn't return it, so sometimes the tea pot has popcorn in it. Or vice versa. My washer is a dryer, and as we often joke, a urinal.

"I thought you had to pee?"
"I did, you were in the bathroom, so I used the urinal. Never seen one with a door!"

Everything has its purpose, preferably many. Little by little I've been adding luxuries like juicers and blankets and plants. I move so often I was looking at things in volume and weight and simply skipping the present. That's going to be a pain in the future so don't even bother now! This compounded by the stuff-packed apartments of the dog owner's I sit for. Stuff in place of substance. Stuff instead of feeling.

This is the first year in a few where I'm not planning on fleeing. I like the idea of my bed with the very heavy frame staying right where it is. My books at arm reach, seem happy to remain where they are too. Saves me the trouble of giving them away and then buying them again, another odd habit I've adopted. 

The latest coincidence coursing through my life right now, as there are happily many, is one of "both." As in you don't have to give up ________ to have _________. I've always been a wholehearted believer in pick one, as noted in the rigid lifestyle. An argument between Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs in the movie Steve Jobs, says it well:

Wozniak: "It's not binary. You can be decent and gifted at the same time." 

You don't have to be an asshole to win. I don't have to live immobile in one spot and sacrifice living. There's many things I'm skipping over here like frugality, budgets, and proper planning, but ultimately, I can have all the elements of a home AND a space to keep them in. I can wander and not sacrifice the security of knowing I have an apartment to come home to. 

Maybe I'm behind and this doesn't resonate, but it's what I needed to learn. It's easy to overlook the lubrication that commonly makes these things flow: dual incomes, a dominant partner, (a partner for that matter,) wedding registrations, roommates. I had (some) of that and lost it all, twice. It was deathly important for me to know I had my own back; that I could survive, comfortably, through full leases in apartments I searched for, paid for, furnished and loved, completely on my own. I'm proud of myself for that whether I should be somewhere further in mindset or status. 


 And here's a picture of nature to soften that declaration a little bit. 

And here's a picture of nature to soften that declaration a little bit.