How comforting it is to do things in the same way, time after time. We’re all, after all, creatures of habit even though we don’t always acknowledge it.
My comfortable world was upended when Angela passed and several major decisions later, I’m still missing my comfort zone.
Growing older only seems to exacerbate the dilemma; how can you continue to maintain the status quo when everything around you is changing? Your body, is evolving, with changes large and small appearing on a regular basis. Things that were easily accomplished now require more time and or effort. Climbing, turning, sitting and standing may all require some thoughtful preparation before attempting.
Sometimes just looking at your own home and recognizing that its physical characteristics, the things that you always loved about it, may now offer new challenges.
I find that even my daily routines are pretty much now embedded into my genetic make up. Even though I just like to keep a routine, I do find myself thinking of how things might change.
That even carries over to pastimes I enjoy. Social media has opened new windows for me to peer into and observe how others function in the world.
I find it fascinating and amusing to watch new music videos or dramatic performances that are presented by the new generation of post millennials.
I take it in and think, “how open am I to experiencing these different forms of artistic expression?” Am I willing to give up some of my long-held ideas of what entertainment is, in order to move forward with the changing times?
A recent experience has taught me a few lessons on how to approach a new opportunity with an open mind. I enjoy opera, and all of its attributes create, for me, a completely enjoyable experience. The combination of music, singing, drama and theatricality are the makings of a wonderfully pleasant time spent in the theater.
Over time, I have selected a kind of playlist of operas that I know I will enjoy seeing, most of which come from the classic repertory of Italian and French masters.
Recently, the Met offered a new production of a Philip Glass opera called “Akhenaten.” Even though I was prepared to ignore it as another one of those modern intrusions into the opera cannon, I began to become more and more interested in all the hype from the reviewers.
They were calling it a triumph, a total experience of opera in a new modern concept. Glass is a minimalist musician and prone to composing in a sometimes difficult musical genre, and this opera is written for a countertenor, an almost obsolete vocal category.
Why would I want to see it? Yet, this piece was picking up more and more hype from the aficionados all over the place.
So I decided to go to the televised live performance here at the local cinema and beforehand, I learned as much as I could about the character and the production, which was filled with symbolism.
The performance was mesmerizing and beautiful in so many ways, and I felt really good about having made the effort to step out if my comfort zone for a new experience.
I don’t know how representative this is of any significant change in my willingness to accept new opportunities to rethink how I do things.
It was promising though and left me feeling optimistic about being more willing to not say no as quickly.