it smelled like warm cinnamon rolls. the day was beginnings and endings knit together. starting and ending. over and over again. little pieces of life, slices of emotion. it had been an odd day. a good day.
the evening lulled into a comfortable, languid, happiness.
she cleaned the cutting board, wiped it off with a blue fuzzy towel.
a small portion of bubbles crawled under the cutting board, where she couldn’t see it.
i didn’t say anything. just watched as they traveled beneath, preparing to drip onto the floor. stubbornly, they held on for quite a while before she swiped once more, the towel falling over the edge of the cutting board just enough to wipe away the escapees.
and i got to wondering.
what don’t we see? what goes on beneath? under? into the places where we don’t typically peer inside. what don’t we know is just below us, out of sight?
My dog’s big brown eyes staring up at me as I tell him I love him.
Truth is getting lost in a song I can feel.
Stories are true.
Stories are truth even if they’re wrapped up in some lies.
Make believe. Fairy tales for the soul. Grotesque and painful but beautiful and pure. Painful dredges through the muck so you can build a home and lay on the living room floor like a child again, safe, comfortable, content, and happy to just be there.
Truth is the stories we tell.
The stories we get lost in. The stories we survive inside.
The ones that break us. The ones that build us.
The ones that allow us to find the ugliness behind the bright lights. The beauty in the deepest holes filled with the heaviest atmosphere.
Truth is getting lost and finding yourself.
Truth is truth.
It can be hidden, denied, disguised, discarded.
But truth can never be broken.
This is post #3 in Rara’s #Somethingist challenge. For my original post (which explains things), click here. And then join the challenge!
It amazes me how much I’ve changed. That post was messy in so many ways. But the basis of the post – those three reasons – hold true. So if you want the answer (or for this post to make sense), go read it. Don’t worry, its short. And if you want to scroll down and just read the three reasons, that’s all you need.
But there’s more to it than that. It’s deeper. Even messier – just, in a different way. More complicated.
If there’s one thing therapy is showing me, it’s how I’ve hidden myself… from myself. It’s kind of like waking up. I’m finding out more about myself moment to moment.
One of the things I’ve learned is how I belittle and cheapen myself to keep truth from feeling so real. I laughed and used humor and made sure nothing really reached my heart – or anyone else’s.
Causes me to come off as air-headed and clueless. Basically, superficial and naive.
It’s a misrepresentation of who I am. For one, I’m a lot darker than I let on. Yes, I’m also the opposite – I watch Scooby-Doo reruns and get giddy over donuts. 😉
I’m happy but I struggle with depression. No one exists in singularity.
My tendency to gloss things over is fake. Happiness and strangeness is not. So that part’s not been fake, I assure you. I just don’t show the darkness or ugliness.
And let’s get something straight. Darkness and depression are two different things. I suppose I’ve been hiding both.
Darkness is balanced by light, and when I stop trying to suppress a certain part of myself, I remember that.
It’s strange to be around so many people and to feel unknown. Stranger yet to feel unknown by myself.
But I’m working on it. I’m finding the more I find, the more joy creeps into my life. Being whole tends to do that.
Any who – back to the question.
How did I decide to be a writer?
I don’t really have a precise answer. I remember being upset and watching the roof of the car, the stars of the early morning sky, and curling up on my side, wishing I was somewhere else. I’d detach and *poof* I’d imagine the most ridiculously amazing things. I was always in my head, somewhere existing beyond reason and rules.
I painted reality with my own overlay of life and vibrancy, beauty and thrills.
I grew up this way. I got upset, felt uncomfortable, got bored, wanted more – I went somewhere else in my head. As a result, I don’t ever remember actually being bored.
I think it simply grew within me as I grew. I remember wanting to be a writer in kindergarten. I don’t really remember much before then at all, except for times I’d imagine myself away.
So it makes the most sense to me, for me to say, I decided to become a writer before I even knew I’d decided. I was really young. That’s all I know. There wasn’t a precise day where I said, “I want to be a writer” and the decision was made and my life was forever changed. No one person or situation inspired me. Nothing suddenly triggered it.
Instead, it just always was. I don’t think I ever really stopped and went, ‘huh, I want to be a writer’.
I just knew I did and I wrote.
When did you become aware of who you were and what you wanted to become?
Do you hide parts of who you are from yourself or others?
I’ve failed to see how anything good can come of chaos, or how anything good can happen during chaos. How can you keep your cool, your wits about you? How can you think? Breathe? Figure out what is going on inside you? How can you live when life is a mess and things are falling apart around you?
Pretty naïve, right?
Well, I’m figuring it out.
I am learning that resistance brings persistence.
So yeah, my life is a mess. I am a mess. I admit it. I’m aware of it. (I don’t know that I accept it yet, but I’m working on it. Awareness, then acceptance.)
And the mess is only getting more and more painful, more out of control.
I’m not going to explode, starve, cause World War 3, or get hit by a flying saucer.
I’m not a horrible, bad person because my life is a mess.
Life is messy.
I’m trying to deny what is by writing myself as at fault, as the cause of all this horrible.
I can’t change life or the messiness that comes along with it. I can’t control the universe, the Creator of the Universe, outcomes to situations, or any of the creatures in the universe. Except me.
I can control me and how I am.
Yet, I’m trying to deny that life is messy simply because it is and blame it on myself.
I know this is repetitive, but bear with me. Thinking properly is a circular process. And us humans we have to throw a brick at our head twelve times before we realize – “hey look! A brick! Maybe I should duck….”
Chaos doesn’t mean I have to be panicked. Doesn’t mean my only options are to survive or die. Chaos doesn’t mean anything actually – except “chaos”.
Chaos is chaos.
Chaos has not attacked me because I’m living life incorrectly or because I’m stupid or unworthy of happiness.
Chaos: “complete disorder and confusion”
Mess: “a situation or state of affairs that is confused or full of difficulties”
Now, someone tell me please, where in there does it say “because Daphne woke up this morning”?
Didn’t think so.
Finding serenity, peace, calmness – whatever you want to call it. It’s possible.
Even in times of chaos.
Even when your life and your health are such a mess that you’re wondering what on earth you did to deserve this. When is it going to end? When can I find happiness?
Happiness, serenity, peace, it’s all possible to have in times of pain, chaos, and mess.
Life has with it all the challenges and difficulties it does.
Don’t take it personally.
Take the challenge and learn from it. Grow stronger. Grow wiser. Get better at something. The pains of life usually carry with them a wisdom or ability you’ll use to bring yourself or another happiness in the future.
Every “mess” can have its silver lining.
Know that. Know that it’s okay to feel like a mess. To feel just pure “ugh”. But that doesn’t mean that’s all you’re allowed to feel.
Find your serenity.
But it’s worth the work.
Resistance only brings persistence of whatever it is that you want to stop.
Stop resisting. Accept that it’s happening.
Then get to work on getting safe, healthy, and serene.
You can’t move out of the way of a brick if you’re telling yourself it’s not there or that you can just ignore it or wish it away.
You have to see it before you can take action.
And stop blaming yourself!
What if instead of yourself or someone else throwing it at you – the brick just fell off a really old building? That doesn’t mean you need to beat yourself up over it.
You’re not supposed to take responsibility for a building growing old and falling apart. That happens all on its own. Its called the rules of the universe.
You guys already know I’m grateful for my family, the food, clothing, and hotel room we have. So what to post about?
I’ve been thinking a lot lately on what we focus on and it boils down to two words.
I feel like that’s all we focus on. We don’t have enough this, we aren’t enough that. We haven’t done enough of this, we haven’t fixed all of that, or upgraded our new this.
What’s wrong with that you may ask? Well, it’s a snowball. This way of thinking is a spider web. A crack in the glass doors, spiraling out and deeper until the entire door shatters. Leaving us with a mess and a lot to fix.
If only fixing people was as easy as fixing a glass door. But we’re not. We’re much more complicated and there are many more details and sticky strings involved in a single human being than in a million glass doors.
So we should probably try not to brake ourselves too badly if we can at all avoid it.
Instead of complaining, being upset over what we don’t have, don’t have enough of, or haven’t accomplished, fixed, or finished, why don’t we focus on what we do have. On what we have accomplished, what we have fixed, what we have finished.
Even issues can be a blessing. Every problem can bring something positive. Every issue can stem from a blessing. Everything can be taken multiple ways. It’s all how you look at it.
I’m not saying to take a look at the corpse you left lying around in your basement and decide that because it’s given you soil workable for a high end garden, that it’s a good thing you murdered someone.
I’ve been thinking about this for the past couple of months but I haven’t written anything up on or it even talked about it with anyone. Yesterday I clicked into wordpress and (miracle of all miracles) it loaded! The first blog that popped up on my reader was one by Kristen Lamb. And guess what it was on? Being thankful instead of complaining. I think she sums up pretty well what I’m trying to say here. For example, she says:
“I am thankful for the dishes that need washing, because it means I didn’t go hungry.”
“I am thankful that I sometimes have doubts and confusion about my future and my purpose when I think of the lives cut short before they ever had a future.”
Exactly what I mean. Take your complaints and find the blessing in them.
I’m not saying there aren’t things to complain about. I am living in a hotel and wearing the same clothes over and over again, here. I’m not saying suck it up and get on with your moping self. I’m just saying that focusing on the negative, on all the failings and shortcomings will do nothing positive for us.
Focusing on the good in your life, the blessings, the small things in your life that make it better can only make you happier.
CRISIS = DANGER + OPPORTUNITY
I listened to a few authors talk and answer questions on writing and publishing for free a few months ago, and something the last author touched on really stuck with me. Being the avid note taker I am, I found my notes, as it was on a Chinese character. And I definitely don’t know Chinese. Hence, needed to find the notes.
The Chinese character for “crisis” is made up of two words. “Danger” and “Opportunity”.
Every crisis can be dangerous. But every crisis has the opportunity to bless you, to give you something beneficial to your specific self and circumstance. If you let it help you, if you seize that opportunity. Pretty big “IF”, don’t ya think?
So there it is. That’s what my Thanksgiving post is on. Focusing on the blessings. On the positive. On what makes you happy. Trust me, it will help you to be happier overall. I’m not saying ignore whatever is wrong in your life. No, of course you should work on it. But be happy about whatever is going right in your life. Focus on the good. It could always be worse. And once it does get worse, most of the time we’re stuck wishing we wouldn’t have taken our past circumstances for granted.
Smile for a good reason. It’s there. You just have to allow it in.
What little things are you thankful for? Are there things you complain about that you could probably count as a blessing?
The opposite of suffering is thriving. Is happiness. Something so elusive yet so convoluted, misused, and hated via jealousy.
Happiness is something harder to describe than “suffer well”, I’m afraid. Again – to me.
No one will always be happy. Times will never be perfect. Things in your life will happen that make you hate, cry, fear, loathe, cry out, miss times passed, wish for something more – something better, something happy.
But we cannot all have it go our way all the time. And life is a messy mash-up of, simply put, everything.