Have you ever read The Tao of Pooh?
In high school, way back when, I was given this book by a friend. Pretty much I think everyone I have talked to about this book got it the same way – from a friend. I think I still have it tucked away in another dimension. 🙂
The book explores how basic Taoist concepts can be translated to a children’s classic – the loveable bear and his friends. Woven through real stories from A.A. Milne’s books and Taoist examples, shows a case study of philosophy. Each of the characters, according to the author, show a different side to human nature.Pooh, the main character, essentially exudes the concept of Wu Wei, of “effortless doing” and P’u (The Uncarved Block) and is model of Taoist behavior. Meanwhile, others, such as Owl are shown over analytical, Eyeore who is pessimistic, and Tigger who doesn’t know his limitations.
While reading the book back then I was instantly drawn to one character in particular: Rabbit. Oh, Rabbit. The chapter in particular is “Bisy Backson” (Chapter 6 I think). In it, Rabbit goes looking for Christopher Robin, but comes to find this note:
Bisy Backson means “Busy, Back Soon” by the way (misspellings of course are common in Milne’s books). Well, the note send Rabbit off on a wild goose chase, cornering his friends into telling him where Christopher Robin went. No one seems to be able to give Rabbit the answer he wants, and he darts off to keep looking for it. The chapter also tells other stories (like “Old Man and his Shadow” and “The Teahouse vs The Hamburger Stand“) to further illustrate the Bisy Backsons and why it is not always good to feel IMPORTANT and BUSY.
A “Bisy Backson” cannot seem to stay in one place for a short time. They are constantly on the move, trying to get ahead. They rush here and there, with little time to enjoy the simple things. All that hustle and bustle can indeed cause some unneeded stress in one’s life.
It’s a valuable lesson that I keep contemplating but yet keep forgetting. That I am, indeed, a “Bisy Backson”. Being BUSY, I believe, makes me feel IMPORTANT. And being IMPORTANT makes me HAPPY.
Recently, there have been many days that I sit back and reflect on where my life is going. I’m always in a hurry. Going here, going there, but going WHERE? And for WHAT? And WHY?
The day seems over before it gets start. You get the kids to school, slog to work and back home. Then dinner, bedtime, and like Groundhog Day, it starts again the next morning. Weekends fly by between mundane laundry, an activity or two, and errands before Monday sneaks up on ya like a little brat.
I feel like in an effort to save time, I end up wasting more of it.
I feel that not having a full calendar, or not being involved “enough”, makes me less worthy. I stretch pretty far, and realize that I haven’t carved time out to just…be. I don’t enjoy enough moments of just existing. I rarely slow down – I always have to look ahead and prepare for the next battle.
As an autism mom, I feel that I’m always playing catch up. Whether is fine motor, socialization or behavioral – I’m always hovering, waiting for the shoe to fall, a battle to start, and how to beat it. My mind races to catch an perceivable slight or flaw.
For example, I have been guilty of asking B what the appropriate way to sit in a chair is. Instead, why can’t I just let him sit upside-down in a chair because that’s what makes him happy? He KNOWS how to sit in a chair at school properly, why can’t he do it the way he feels like it at home?
I look at B who I worry is adopting my anxious tendencies. He dawdles; I tell him to focus. I don’t want to be late, and then I have to calm him down if begins to fuss about being late. It’s a neverending cycle. I don’t want him to worry like me. I don’t want him to be rushing all around, thinking he is going to miss out.
In short – I don’t want him to become a “Bisy Backson”. Hell, I don’t want to stay a “Bisy Backson” but I need to figure out to reverse course.
Maybe a little bit of honey will help me out.
With credit to: Hoff, Benjamin. The Tao of Pooh. Penguin Group. New York, New York. 1982.