On this day, I was in a right filthy mood, huffing and silently cursing my husband (mmm, was it silent? I don’t remember. Maybe he heard me. Maybe my neighbours heard me. The dog may have blushed. Whatever). On this day, my patience was thin. My mind was whirring with all manner of “angry wife” frustrations: why must I tolerate this annoying, potentially dangerous and downright embarrassing driveway situation? Talking of “situations”, what about the other things he was meant to deal with, like the shed and the steps, that irritating issue with my car and WHY CAN HE NOT JUST BE LIKE A NORMAL HUSBAND AND GET STUFF FIXED?! GRRR!! Then, right amongst my swearing and anger and crazed ball of everything I never wanted to become, I saw this at my feet:
How. Very. Dare. I?
That funny little rock, exposed in the dirt from the rain that caused the damage that was seemingly so life shattering for me, jolted me into a renewed awareness of the moment. I knew right then that there was nowhere I’d rather be. My life is brimming with the pleasures of love, friendship, convenience, and safety. Pleasures that many, many people do not enjoy and it is not lost on me that any one (or all!) of these could be gone in an instant.
It takes constant mental/emotional adjustment to realign with the feelings of gratitude, contentment, thrill, and awe of the profound gorgeousness of my life. Sometimes, several days go by without me remembering that I am among the most fortunate people on earth to have a home, great health, loving people, and abundant food at my disposal.
You will experience painful things. I will experience painful things. Our loved ones will too and we will feel lost, frustrated, and useless because we can’t fix it for them. Cute love hearts and inspirational quotes won’t magically place life back where we would prefer it to be during times of darkness but I’ve learnt that reaching for the little things that bring us pleasure, comfort, and perspective when everything feels wrong can be a very powerful anchor. Discovering hearts in nature is something that I always take as a gentle reminder to consider what my overall attitude and viewpoint is looking like in that very moment. We can’t control everything, but I am learning that irritations that escalate and create angst for me and those around me are very much within my control. In the day to day business of being a person, raw emotions certainly have a valuable place but if I’m really honest with myself, I can see that, while the heightened and melodramatic behaviour that I display sometimes might deliver a degree of satisfaction, the real contentment and restoration comes from patience and tenderness – both with ourselves and others.