Friday, December 30, 2011

Everything is Just Right Now

Like everyone else, I’ve been busy these past few weeks tending to Everything. Recently I got a call which made me think about Everything Else. The timing was perfect. I didn’t want to come back empty-handed and now I have gifts.

The call came from one of the few people who knew my husband and me before we were married. He has stayed in touch with my husband. This call was to catch up with me. It was like running under water to compose my thoughts after hearing his voice but while I did that, he filled me in.

In the two years that have just passed, he was diagnosed with, and treated for, a type of cancer that could have killed him in months. After he completed treatment, his wife asked him for a divorce.

Fate can be a python.

Instead of allowing himself to be swallowed whole, my friend decided to prepare for the ironman competition – a quest that would require of him, the very things jeopardized by his illness: strength, focus, heart and spirit ++++. He only wanted to participate, he said, maybe finish. A week before the competition, he moved out of his house.

“There were trials and tribulations,” he said, “but that’s what life is.”

If I was troubled about anything before that call, I can’t remember what it was.

Later, I went to my vault of Everything Life Is to add my friend’s observation. While I was in there, I poked through my other Everythings and realized – my stash is damn impressive, even if it didn't come free.

And then I thought about Everyone on my list who I love, for whom I would do anything, and to whom I might offer something I’ve learned the hard way. Something that might fit perfectly, might last, and which, Someday, might be passed on to someone else.

Here are your gifts.

It’s just right now.
No matter what you feel or experience, no matter how wonderful or awful, it’s just right now. Sooner or later, what you feel or have experienced will be eclipsed by something else. Wait out the bad days, savor the good ones. Neither will last, they are just right now.  And, of course, be glad you’re not an Eeyore who can’t tell the difference between 
a good day and a bad one.

Respect trying times.
We become the things we should be when we cope with what we didn’t ask for. Sometimes there’s no other way. Appreciate your occasional trials, and unwrap them gently.They come with rewards in the middle.

Regrets are useless. 
If you get mired in guilt and regret from time to time, remember that vision improves with time, while reasons and motives disappear with age. You’ve made mistakes, you’ve learned from them, and probably you’ve become a more understanding person, parent, friend, sibling or spouse because of them. Now imagine your regrets are big colorful balloons. Open your imaginary window, open your imaginary hand and let them go into the imaginary sky.  The world needs you the way you are.

Banish jealousy.
Allow yourself to be happy for someone who accomplishes something that you can’t, haven’t, won’t, or just won’t right now.  Your own moment will come. It might not look like you thought it would, but it will be worth showing off, and the timing will make sense.  Beautiful, brilliant people often get the things you wish you could have yourself, but not necessarily the things that would make them complete. Be happy for them.

Be the Neighbor.
This is part two of  "Never miss an opportunity to shut up." Don't factor your own feelings into things which have nothing to do with you. If you feel affected  - disappointed, or surprised, or frustrated or worried – by something your husband, child, friend, parent, sibling or co-worker did (but didn’t do to you) think about how you would react if you were a neighbor, with nothing at stake emotionally.  It might make your brain tired to accept without approving, but it's worth it if it keeps you from being a person around whom others edit themselves. Don't personalize. Be the neighbor.

Take on something bigger.
Kick the crap out of your little problems by solving a bigger one. Like This.

Dream, don’t escape.
Some people want things and get them and that’s good. Some people need to want things and that’s bad. Station-changing is a way to keep moving until it prevents attachment. You brought yourself to where you are. Give something to it, take something from it and when you need something else, know what it is and slowly, but with determination, make it happen.

My friend did participate in the competition, and did finish. And then he fell in love. From what I can glean after scrutinizing his Facebook photos (stop it, you do it too) she is a ridiculously beautiful woman who, from his description, is equally accomplished, kind, wise and savvy. And while I think its wonderful that she speaks five languages, has travelled the world, and wants for little, mostly, I am grateful that she appears to be gentle.  He’s flown high and deserves a soft landing.

A happy, peaceful New Year to all. May you have Everything for which you have mustered the heart and courage to ask, may you know you deserve that and more, and may you appreciate your time on this planet and make it count +++.  It is just right now.

Love, Susan

1 comment:

  1. Beautifully written.
    Art... Is very loved and one of the kindest people I have ever met.