I’ve been sitting here staring out the window to my backyard for about 3 minutes with my hands resting on the keyboard.
“I don’t have a clue…” I think to myself as the sun shines through the trampoline screen that is now a semi-permanent fixture right outside my bedroom window. Dog hair litters the floor, the sun highlights the fact that I haven’t had the energy or inclination to vacuum lately, among other things.
I don’t have a clue. There is so much noise right now. Many valid points, but it’s as if everyone is screaming at everyone else with their hands over their ears, no one hearing anything but the sound of their own anger. Not my president, get over it, pro-life, pro choice, anti-this, anti-that…..I feel like the kid in the middle of a horrendous divorce. The issues are plenty and every participant wildly passionate.
I find myself pushing. Pushing away.
When the anxiety gets to the point of overwhelm, I have found that I have to resist.
Resist the idea that there is only a this or a that. The black and white thinking that there is only a right or a wrong, an option A. or a B. You are either pro or anti. No. Not with everything. Many things are multifaceted and require investigation into grey areas.
Resist the inclination to know everything, to be certain. I love having a plan and executing it. That’s where I’m comfortable. Whether it’s a recipe to follow, food plan and prep, an exercise regimen, a life philosophy, faith, or anything else – I am wary of people so certain that their thoughts are right and everyone else is wrong. The older I get, the more uncertain I feel about so many things I thought were long ago nailed down. To be certain feels a lot like a mind closed.
Resist the temptation to sit down, be quiet and not think critically. Despite the appeal of sticking one’s head in the sand, that’s not a solution for anyone.
Resist responding with anger. Anger is draining. I have to respond with curiosity, love and a genuine desire to learn. The alternative is to join the deafening chaos of the crowd and I won’t do that.
I look at the trampoline outside my window once more and visualize my laughing, screaming minions bouncing around, as they will no doubt do again this evening, just like they did yesterday and the day before.
Resist doing nothing because everything feels overwhelming. Glennon Doyle Melton said something that struck a chord with me. “Do not discount the work that you do at home with your children.” I may only be able to show two little people what love and kindness looks like, but eventually they will grow up to be big people and they will in turn show love and kindness in their school, in their work, and in their communities.
“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”
“Love begins by taking care of the closest ones – the ones at home.”