That Funny Horrible Feeling In Your Thirties

I know I’m not supposed to write this- I’ve been on an extreme fast from negative information that’ll get me down lately. The negativity has been hard to avoid, but I’ve fastidiously stayed away from news sources and Facebook for the last 3 days. So I don’t really want to contribute to the negative information. I don’t really want to rant here. And I definitely don’t want to fight with anyone. But I’m writing. Something about it.

The other night was awful. Tuesday night. November 8th. It was a shocker that filled me with dread and terror. And disbelief. It’s hard to forget that moment of total disbelief.  I couldn’t really sleep Wednesday night, even though I went through my stages of grief during the day- anger, denial, bargaining, acceptance?- and felt on and off better and talked to good people and went for a nice run and meditated for a lot of the day and listened to some of my favorite positive sources like Esther Hicks talks. I read wonderful, helpful articles like It’s Going To Be Okay by Tim Urban of Wait But Why. I attempted to understand the almost 50 percent of Americans who don’t see things the way I do- well, don’t see this outcome the way I do. In reality, there are definitely way more than 50 percent of Americans who don’t see things the way I do. But I’d always felt like that was okay because it didn’t affect me. This does.

What can I do? I don’t know exactly. I attempt even harder to have compassion for everyone. To find anything I can that is good. I continue to seek goodness where it may be- which I know, deep down, is all over. And to do this, right now I know I must stay centered. Even if I have to close my eyes to do so. Right now, anyway.

I read an article once by Danielle LaPorte, where she was writing about how she went to India to meet the Dalai Lama. Right before she got some monks were brutally murdered…by other monks. It was just an awful tragedy- horrible. She was shaken by it and offered the Dalai Lama her condolences when she got there. What she wrote about his reply and how she felt about it still sticks with me. I think of it now:

“Ah, yes, thank you for your thoughts,” he said. “This is why we practice, for times like these when compassion is so necessary.” He didn’t nod in mutual disdain. He didn’t show any drama. He was soft and…practical.

This is why we practice.

For times like these.

You don’t need to forgive until you need to forgive. You don’t need nerves of steel until you need nerves of steel. You don’t need to call on your reserves of compassion, or fortitude, or faith until you’ve used up everything else.

When we’re healthy and happy we make sure to dance, we hit the court, we pick up the phone to check in, we drop by with something in hand…

We keep standing up to make our art even when we could be predictable pedestrians.

Because the day will most certainly come…that you will be struck down or ground down by life. It can come in tiny tearing heartbreaks five times a day, just walking through your neighborhood. It could come in the name of tragedy that could only happen once in a lifetime.

And you will need to withdraw the insights that you put into your heart’s escrow. And you will need to call on your people— the unseen and the ones right in front of you — to help you meet the day.

You will be interrupted.

You will be called on to expand. 

You will be asked who you are and why you are here.”

So I look for the insights in my hearts escrow. I continue to search for answers. I continue to not know. I continue to hold compassion. And, every day, I continue to practice.



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