Health · Life · Life Lessons · Meaning of Life · Mental Health · Uncategorized · Wellness

Idle Chatter: The Mundane that Saves Us

coffeetalkI haven’t been myself lately. Burned out and under the weather as it were, I’ve taken to keeping my own company and dreading anything other than sleep or a hot bath. I know I’m not alone when I say that sometimes I feel like I’m at my limit.

 

I’ve been making more of an effort to reach out to my friends. Most of these phone calls and texts look like a casual ‘how are you’, but they are way more than that. I learned long ago that winding conversations often create a safe place to explore what’s going on emotionally . It allows your mind to wrap its limited matter around the vast open parallel universe where our emotions dwell. I have often said that we are nothing, if not the stories we share.

I have long held the belief that you can argue logic, but not emotion; hence the great wars and repeated debates about God-talk and creationism. At some point it comes down to faith, and faith is not logical, faith is emotional. Love is not logical – love is emotional.  Day-to-day functioning is logical. Passion is not logical – passion is emotional, and in my opinion, passion gets things done.

Now don’t get your pants wet. Logic is no greater a reality than emotion. None at all. The goober of it all is that our culture, our world, and everything we base our economy, ethics and livelihoods on assumes that logic has a higher value. It may be so.

It also may be so that our emotions, our subconscious and our intuition are more powerful, more accurate and way more authentic to our spiritual selves than logic. And that, for me at least, holds a hell of a lot of value.

That’s where idle chatter comes in. I’ve been reaching out for conversation, contact and exchange with my friends lately for many reasons; mostly just to try and stay calm and not live in my own head for so long. That shit can make you crazy.

Slow conversation that meanders through a garden of subjects often is the best conversation. It connects us with others, and it reacquaints us with our own thoughts, values and priorities.

If you have friends who can carry a conversation about life, art, faith, politics and relationships, count yourself very lucky. These are the people who buoy us up when it feels like we’re drowning in the tumultuous sea of every-day demands.

Allow space and time for symposiumesque conversations, I believe this helps heal all of us.

 

 

 

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Is There A Hole In Christmas?

IMG_3679“They say that anger is just love disappointed”….

So went the lyrics of the Eagles song I had cranked as I poured my first coffee this morning.

After changing plans due to weather I crawled back under my covers and settled in between my mass of duvet and fluffy pillows. I starred out at my tiny piece of the snow-covered urban wilderness.

Thursday already,” I thought to myself with a sigh. My week off is almost over. I decided I’d lay in just a while longer and watch the white tree boughs brighten as the sun rose.  Willie Nelson was already stretched out in his watch position, letting me know that all was right outside the window and that I was safe from threat of intruders. “Good old Willie Nelson,” I smiled, and let my eyes close.

Our little corner of the world is a happy place. Sure, there’s the stress and demands of every day living, but I’ve been really good at keeping any nonsense at bay, and it’s something that I’m glad that I did.

As I indulged in the soft warmth of my bed, I listened to those song lyrics and thought about anger, disappointment, love and wisdom. Discernment as you know my darlings, has been front and center for me and has pushed my girl-brain into overdrive.

Anger, for a woman is something that’s not ok. We’re supposed to be gentle, smile, and be mothering. So, quite often an angry woman is not seen as feminine at all, but an abomination of all that is sugar, spice and everything nice.

Every time I’ve been angry, it’s been because I’ve been hurt, felt rejected, or disappointed in love. Not necessarily glass-slipper love, but love in general; friendship, romance or collegial respect.

So what does this have to do with Christmas? Well, sometimes holidays get muddled up in what we think should be happening, who we think we should be spending time with, and giving or receiving the gifts that should be under the tree. It’s when those should-be’s don’t happen we feel hurt and angry, and that is the hole that we put into the season of Christmas.

Yah, you read that right – you put it there. I put it there. We put it there. Sometimes we do such a good job of it, it should come wrapped in shiny paper and a beautiful bow so that we’re forced to open it and stare our disappointment down. We’d all open a beautiful package with grand expectations (mine would be a tiny blue Tiffany box by the way), and then we’d be wounded when it was empty. Empty! Empty? Yes – empty. Odd  isn’t it? It would be empty. Because it’s not real. Because it’s a figment of our fucked-up imaginations and social subconscience.

Christmas is a season of giving, a season of light, a season of slumber and contemplation. I wrote about waiting, hope, endings and beginnings last year as the season of Advent started.  Light and giving sound great right? Well, slumber and contemplation can be cozy, but they can be uncomfortable too. But I’m convinced that it’s in those moments of discomfort that we choose to grow or let the expectations we never grew out of turn us into some kind of jerk.

Drop the should if you can. Just let them go. Enjoy what you truly enjoy, embrace the friendships that keep you sane, and toast the things that your wise discernment has help you cast aside. If you haven’t begun to think about the wisdom of discernment, maybe contemplation can be your gift to yourself this Christmas.