Friday, May 4, 2012

All Else Is Madness

“See if you catch yourself complaining, in either speech or thought, about a situation you find yourself in, what other people do or say, your surroundings, your life situation, even the weather. To complain is always non-acceptance if what is. It invariably carries an unconscious negative charge. When you complain, you make yourself into a victim. When you speak out, you are in power. So change the situation by taking action or by speaking out if necessary or possible; leave the situation or accept it. All else is madness.”

Leave the situation or accept it... If we don't choose one or the other, what are we left with?
Suffering, plain and simple.

In some situations, we have no choice. I can't change the weather, and I most definitely cannot change being sick. So I can either linger in my miserableness - believing the untruth that it will somehow help - or...OR I can accept my circumstances and live in a place of power. Knowing I am the creator of my own happiness, my own peace.

As someone suffering from chronic illness, understanding this truth can be one of the greatest contributing factors to my well-being. Realizing and exercising my power to either accept a situation or to leave it creates an environment in which I can move freely in my life and not waste my energy existing in a place of friction.

If I utilize my place of power in order to accept my situation, what does that look like? Let's say all week I looked forward to Thursday to write in my blog. In my mind, the stars would all align on this day - kids gone, husband gone, laundry done, no doctor's appointments... It's not only the perfect day, it's the only day. But guess what? Thursday I wake up sick. Body hurts, bowels don't work, brain in a complete fog. THIS was really my Thursday. Disheartened and frustrated, I crawled out of bed, lit my favorite candles (maybe creating the mood will help) and plopped down in front of the computer. Let me tell was painful. Type...delete...type...delete...type...delete. Pick up a book to get some ideas. Type...delete...type...delete. Go get something to eat, make some tea. Type...delete...type...delete. You get the picture. Friction is not a pleasant state of being. The minute I gave myself permission - the minute I decided that I didn't want to be in this place, a beautiful calm came over me and I got to ask myself the open ended question of, "Now what can I do?" You see, it isn't about being defeated. It isn't about waving the white flag at all. It's about accepting reality and realizing I have the choice to create my own happiness.

If I utilize my place of power in order to leave my situation, what does that look like? Often times, we remain in limbo, in that place of untruth in order to not let someone down. It could be ourselves or it could be someone else. For me, many times this is the case with family members. Let's say I have an understanding with myself. When I am really, really sick, can't get out of bed kind of sick, I have no problem letting my family take care of me. I simply don't have a choice. But there is also what I refer to as the gray area of my sickness. Opposite of being down for the count is a great day. The kind of day that fools me into thinking I'm not really sick. These are my best days. In the middle of these two extremes is where I live most of my life. Working really hard to not look sick and keeping things in a state of normalcy. I do this mostly because my family has been through a great deal with my illnesses and if I can help it, I like to give them a break. This is also a place where I quite frequently live in limbo - in that place of untruth.

A classic example would be cleaning up the kitchen after supper. For me, this is a very difficult task. By this time of the day I am usually feeling quite sick. It is also one of those tasks that, prior to becoming ill, was always something I enjoyed. (yes, I'm weird) I love taking care of my family, I always have. Letting everyone sit and visit after a meal has been a gift freely given. My family is fantastic at helping me in many other areas, but in this particular situation, I like giving them a break.  But I have noticed as of late, that what I want to do, and what I should do are not in alignment. First of all, I am suffering physically. That's the obvious. Second of all, my mind is suffering. The thoughts I am thinking are not consistent with what my actions are intending. This is a snippet of my brain... I can't do this...just get the table cleared off...I can't do this...just put the food away...why won't they just offer to help...just let them go...I can't do week I'm gonna have a family meeting...oh, they're so happy, just let them go...I don't want them to worry...just wash, don't worry about drying...ugh, I wish they would help me put these dishes away...I think I need to sit down...once again, you get the picture. I can promise you, as long as I do not accept the reality of what is and continue to make myself the victim - albeit a martyr with the very best of intentions - I will suffer . And so will my family.

It's crazy what we tell ourselves really, if you seriously give it some thought. There are always two choices, and two choices only. Accept or leave. Unless, of course, we enjoy remaining in limbo, convincing ourselves that complaining (or sadness, or anger, or bitterness, or hopelessness, or fear, or worry...) will somehow miraculously change our situation. Suffering is caused by being "here" and wanting to be "there". Once we empower ourselves with the choice to either accept or leave, then the door is wide open, and true change happens. Change of heart, change of circumstances...change of life, where there is no inner conflict, no resistance and no negativity. And where there is no inner conflict -

Peace resides.

...and maybe a little madness!


Tweedles -- that's me said...

I try making "peace with myself and situations ", and that helps too.

All of what you have said makes so much sense, and you say it beautifully.

susan said...


What a beauty - the new Grandbaby, that is!

Your writing, as always, touched a chord.

Many many years ago, I read a book that said - "to love is to be happy with - no expectations, no judgements, no conditions."

I have used it as my guide for how to treat those I love for over 35 years. When I remember that is how to love, I am filled with happiness.

Often, the most challenging is to remember to love myself in the same way.

When I judge what is happening to me, fill my mind with expectations and my body doesn't cooperate, then I sometimes forget, and that's when the autoimmune disease wins yet again.

As long as I remember to live in the present moment, honoring my ability at that instant, and loving myself for what is now, then I truly am loving myself. And that allows me to love those around me!

The most difficult things about this whole experience has been to let go of my self image of the strong mother, homemaker, superwoman; trust that my loved ones are strong enough to cope with my reality; allow them to share in the tasks of life.

If I truly love them, I have to be willing to let them love me, let them see me, as I truly am each day, and accept their love. It's not an easy thing for me to do, I don't always succeed, when I do, life is so much better for us all.

Thank you for your beautiful post.

Tweedles -- that's me said...

As part of my journey- I have come back to read others comments.
There is so much to absorb,, and I want to draw it all in like a sponge.
I just cannot remember all of what I read!! So much going on around me- that its sometimes hard to concentrate,, or maybe its just me.