Things always get crazy
When I don’t know what to do next
And feel empty or useless
I remember the answer may be love
Or removing obstacles to love
Not about accomplishing something.
Things can get so crazy
That I will forget about those who,
So similar to me,
Might not have a clue about what to do
Or how to do it either
I’m committing to a path of power
I’m seeing the world as a canvas, sunlight’s prism as my medium
I’m watching the story unfold as a masterpiece
I’m hearing the cheers of those who have overcome
I’m laughing with the joy of triumph
I’m wrapped in the arms of the Universe who whispers, “Well done.”
I’m remembering who I am
Now, I’m ready
Time well spent.
We humans have the audacity to look back at photos from the past and swoon with nostalgia after completely underappreciating what we had at the time! I guess that is better than not appreciating it at all…but…
Nostalgia will not recover lost people, opportunities, places, our youth (or the body we had), and we will have missed the gifts that were ours for the taking, if we had only known how lucky we were at the time!
It’s too late to fix my ingratitude for how skinny I was in the past (when I thought I was fat), but, I can change the future by what I do now. When tempted to complain about…
- a relationship that irritates me,
- something that isn’t exactly right, or
- my appearance
I will stop myself in mid-sentence by saying, “Appreciate it!” and give now it’s just respect before it is gone.
Some people say that we have “summoned” whatever has come into our lives. And that made me so angry.
But, while passing the last aid station in a half-marathon, a volunteer asked if I needed anything. Because of pain from Plantar Facsiitis, I answered, “A new foot.” Two weeks later I broke my left tibia and fibula at the ankle. When I saw my foot hanging loose, I thought of that comment. It was the foot that I had disowned.
As my “new foot” (with two plates and ten screws) was healing, I was cautious to treat both feet with utmost respect.
Whether I “summoned” the break or not, I definitely have new appreciation for every bit of my body that I have often taken for granted.
Appreciation summons abundance.
“The words you speak become the house you live in.” -Hafiz
In the past, when I wasn’t pleased with my situation, I thought that I had been a victim of a cruel fate, injustices, and others’ misjudgments. And, I seldom missed a chance to let everyone know about it. Now I realize:
- my words were defining my experience.
- many “injustices” I thought I suffered were self-inflicted. I was just clueless.
- uncomfortable “accommodations” were part of the journey to appreciating the better ones to come.
- happiness was always an inside job.
In the beginning was the word.
My words are the architect, the interior designer, and the realtor for the place I want to live.
Acceptance of one’s life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes, and injustices. – Paul Tournier
That’s a heck of a lot to accept.
Who wants to accept hereditary handicaps, suffering, psychological baggage, topped off with injustices?
Not me. Not anyone. That’s awful!
Yet, nature teaches that there will be a transformation and a payoff…when I decide to submit to the mysterious usefulness of all the awful stuff that I wanted to be angry about.
Or I can stay angry, miss the blossoming, and make a lot of people miserable in the process.
“Not loneliness, but solitude. Not suffering, but endurance, the discovery of grim kinship with the rocks and sky. And the finding here of a harsh peace that would transcend bodily discomfort, a healing instead of the wounds of the soul.”
– Diana Gabaldon (referring to Jamie Frazer from the Outlander series)
It’s fiction, although, through the character of Jamie Frazer, author Diana Gabaldon challenges us to strength, resilience, and patience in difficult circumstances.
I am not lonely. I am learning solitude.
I am not suffering. I am learning endurance and kinship with creation.
I am not wounded. I am learning a harsh peace that transcends pain and discomfort.
We can label this as way too unreal or romantic, or we can look and learn from countless men and women throughout history who have raised the bar by conquering their circumstances.
Do I need to list their names?
Spouting simple answers has always come natural to me. I am on a remedial path now.
Journalist and self-described, “Industrious Optimist,” Lara Setrakian used this cartoon illustration in her TedTalk about improving the “adult education” that comes from news reporting, away from fear and simplicity toward the wholeness (or integrity) of complex truths.
Following the road less traveled, entering the narrow gate, education of the heart, enlightenment, and truth all depend upon the gravitas of love not dogma; giving the benefit of the doubt and resisting fiery indictments, ethnocentrism, and condemnations long enough to grasp the deep kinship we share with fellow residents at this very temporary, planetary address.
We all must decide. Go with the herd on the easy path, eventually terminating at the cliff, or take the longer, lonelier path and brave the uphill climb?
If you want to find out where everything went wrong
If you want to figure out how all the chaos got started
If you want to discover when the loving stopped
Or the joy vanished
And the easy became hard
If you want to track down the villain in the story
And punish him
Then do it quickly
Track down the fear in your own heart and disown it now
Because it is faster than cancer
And more destructive than the impact and shrapnel from a thousand bombs
It has tutored your ego into malice
And baited your intellect into stupidity
It has sucked your blood until you were the real vampire, the real boogie, the scariest zombie
From the most gruesome nightmare ever dreamed
And it was you all along
You! who gave fear the key
Beware of the illusion on those days when…
- you feel too high or too low
- it seems like you’ve finally got it all together
- everything falls apart
- you feel just a tad superior or inferior
- it seems you never get a break
- you’ve decided life is too much or not challenging enough
You have just bought into the illusion that life is conquerable and understandable, instead of a confounding mystery that defies your explanations. You have been taken to the cleaners by a life that will bring you what you need and not necessarily what you want. You have been duped by the illusion that life is about what you do and have, instead of about what you will learn and become inside.