Work on a weekend.
Posts not published on time.
Errands squeezed in between.
Lack of sleep.
Tough weekend indeed.
Normally a little discomfort or unwelcomed interruption would annoy me but not today. Not lately.
No, I didn’t take a magic pill. I haven’t found one and I think none exists.
You see not all days are the same. And not every day do we feel great or at least conscious and willful enough to do the right thing even if we don’t feel like it.
A friend of mine and I had this conversation lately. Before I tell you about it, I’d like to say I’m blessed to have the kind of friends with whom I can be vulnerable. Being around them need not require anyone to filter through words or thoughts. You get to say what’s on your mind and what you feel inside even if it’s not at all pretty. Of course, it goes through layers as well. I mean, as trust and respect evolved between and among us, the level of real-time authenticity also deepened. Over time, the roots grew bigger. Big enough to allow any feeling of anger, shame, guilt, fear, inadequacy, or unforgiveness to express itself without the fear of judgment and blame. Talk about being in a safe place.
So there I was with all the baggage I’ve been holding on to for weeks suddenly bursting heavily, like a hesitant thunderstorm finally giving in on a rainy day. Some may find it hard to believe but yes, even the best of us can lose it sometimes.
I poured out all my frustrations and cited all those times I held back from doing what my negative impulse was raging to do. It’s hard to try to keep things together for a long time. I just wanted to shout to the ends of the earth and finally release all these negative charges. Fortunately, I didn’t have to.
Then my friend asked. “So what stopped you from giving in to your frustrations”?
It takes a lot of will power and heavenly grace to say no to your negative impulses. I tried hard. I held on to the idea of doing the right thing even if it’s not easy or something that I like to do. Doing so wasn’t even a commitment. It was just a conscious, willful choice as I traverse from one moment to another. Some say, “Fake it till you make it”, I say, “Fake it, till you be it”.
Eventually, I don’t want to reach the end of the road and only say “I’ve done all I’ve set out to do”. Rather I want to get there and sigh, “Yes, I’ve made it. I’ve become what I’ve been called to be”. This leads to me to another point.
Every day we’re not just choosing and making decisions. We’re trading consequences.
Sometimes one choice isn’t necessarily better than the other but we get to size ourselves up and see which consequence would we rather have.
Taking care of an ailing parent, for somebody might mean, postponing Board exams and working on a dream job. Everybody gets to outrun him. While the other boys and girls are chasing his/her dreams, he stays at home taking care of laundry, medical appointments, cleaning after mess, and running errands. At that point, he may not be happy at all or ecstatic about doing his tasks. But a deep sense of meaning and purpose came first. It beat all the odds and trump all desire for excitement and happy encounters for a young guy his age. That was my brother by the way,
So what am I saying?
I have searched for happiness and found how fleeting it is. Sometimes we depend on other people or outside circumstances for it, ‘till eventually, we learn how to create it for ourselves. But as I said, happiness doesn’t get smitten by you or me every single day. So I stopped chasing. Right now I’m in a space where I’m looking out for meaning.
unrequited love, respect, or attention
even regular bouts with frustrations.
If something doesn’t make sense to you and you don’t believe in it, why bother? Why should you hold on to it? Why don’t you change course?
But if something does make sense to you, and you believe in it, you do what you need to do. No questions asked. No explanation required. You detach yourself from the outcome and just DO. I have found a sense of peace in this. Hope you do too.