All’s well that ends well
A comforting thought which all too often loses its deeper reference point when used, finger-waggingly, as an I told you so. All situations, human and otherwise, are complex and so fundamentally unknowable.
Platitudes and clichés can function as important touchstones that evoke deeper wisdom. They can also be poorly applied, like band-aids, over a gaping wound which will then be covered up and never properly tended to.
After a particularly gut-wrenching weekend, I am philosophical. I think of first impressions, and last impressions and how oddly similar they can be, even if years have passed between.
I think of real need, and wonder at how some can sense it and respond from a place of true humanity and courage. How others can so tangled in their unclaimed projections and external referencing that they meet real need with cruelty and resentment. Bewildered, afterward, perhaps; What did I do to deserve this, why do people misunderstand me? I’m trying so hard…
How still others see need and meet it with cold judgement. Not my problem.
I am messy, in the aftermath of a deeply painful and humbling change. My careful corners are badly dented, my wisdom has gone away to seek a more generous place. I am not graceful or beautiful; I do not feel loved.
In the aftermath, this is a place to sit. To be aware of the size and shape of the world.
(I do not feel misery, or despair – please don’t be alarmed that I might consider opting out. I neither fear death nor seek it; life holds great fascination for me.)
I do feel that it’s important to mark this particular end-point, though, and to understand all of its implications. To fully claim all of the choices that led me to this pivotal now. To see and own my ugliness, without judgement, in this deep, painful, human mess I’ve made.
There is real and extensive damage to assess; I am response-able.
John McCain just died – a steady, complex rock-of-gibraltar man who spoke his truth and respected his (worthy) opponents as much as he did himself.
I do think integrity has a great deal to do with my assessment of this mess I’ve made; it’s more than possible I’ve sold mine too cheaply, so far, in this lifetime. It dawns on me also that there’s nothing heavy about integrity, contrary to what I’ve believed.
I have the strongest feeling that integrity is about self respect, openness, light-heartedness and damned good boundaries.
While I build the strength I need to conjure the the sea change I know will come, I’ll sit in kindness with My Ugly-Unloved-Keira, here. We’ll play some string games, write some stories, draw the trees, sing some simple songs.
We’ll make up some mopping & sorting out games, and play some more.
We’ll write some letters, pile some rocks, build some research, ask new and curious questions, all the while keeping this gentle touchstone in mind:
You’ll never know till you try.