Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Organizing rocks with a cane

 I saw an elderly man on the sidewalk, carefully nudging tiny cinder pebbles away from the sidewalk and more resolutely back into the perimeter of his yard. He painstakingly aimed, shoved, missed, aimed, missed, shoved each tiny pebble, even though no pebble was in actuality outside of the boundary of the yard. They were just dangerously close and, no doubt, anxious to escape onto the sidewalk. The mental image of this scene gnawed at me, and reminded me of how often I get caught in the trap of sorting the tiny, irritating pebbles in my life which are not horribly out of alignment, but rather have fallen into disarray with the perfect plan I have created for myself (my day, my week, my life). Of course I should by this time be pleasantly relaxed and un-flustered when all things (people?) do not fall into place or operate the way I anticipate/hope/expect... but, alas. I am guilty of cane sorting and the full picture of life (much of which I am certain/hopeful/fearful is yet to be seen) eludes me in those wretched moments of near sighted and obsessive (internal and external) puttering.

The unanticipated clouds roll into life and sometimes the beauty is magnified by them. Sometimes, in those cane-wielding moments, my vision is obscured by my perception and the clouds only shadow the sunlight.

So, when the screaming carries on for hours, the door jams break apart from another allergy-induced rage, the frustration of his inability to SAY what he needs/wants/feels reflects in his entire countenance, the vomiting commences for yet another day with no explanation for weeks on end, when the answers elude us, when his loneliness is visible to the naked eye because he is literally locked inside himself with no way out, when he runs away from me in the check out line at Safeway and heads for the open door, when the glass explodes onto the cement countertop as he slams it down in exasperation, when sleep evades us night after night because wakefulness plagues him relentlessly... I must remember to open my eyes and SEE what is before me and to remember that the sun is still shining behind the clouds. 

There is so much joy in his heart. If we but see it we will be forever changed by it.

Hope awaits us over each difficult mountain pass and joy finds us and guides us through the valleys. My beautiful friend(s) lost their baby due to miscarriage today, and the brevity of that loss is profound and real; yet, when I talked with her tonight, she was filled with peace, acceptance and true joy and not in dichotomy to the pain - but in unison with it. We each have our own unique "impossible" to face. What we do with that "impossible" is ours to decide. 

I choose hope. And joy. And delight. And wonder. In unison with the pain.

1 comment:

Lori said...

No words, just I love you.