Wednesday, September 12, 2007

No title, don't have one, can't think anymore

Have you ever had an exchange with someone that left you thinking, "Wait a second. Perhaps everything I thought was true isn't." And then you wonder what is true, if perhaps you'll turn around to discover that you're levitating or living in someone else's house. Or you suddenly expect to look up and see the sky is pink or that squirrels are building elaborate condominiums in the trees. Nope. It's just the woodpeckers hammering away. For a second there, I thought they were on the inside of my head. We all live in a yellow submarine... If I could perhaps get my brain to stop racing, maybe I could wrap it all the way around the material I'm struggling with. Sort of wrestle the subject to the ground, as it were.

In other news, I'd been hoping for awhile to get G and Q weekly appointments in OT and Speech, respectively, in place of the twice per month schedules they have been on. It's been several months since their therapists last brought it up, but in the last several days schedule slots have opened--no doubt due to the shake-up of a new school year. So the boys will be at the therapy place a little more, hopefully with corollary pay-off.

For many, many weeks, I've been waking up with the words to Lincoln Brewster's Everlasting God running in my head.

Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord
Wait upon the Lord
We will wait upon the Lord...
...Our God You reign forever
Our hope our strong Deliverer
You are the everlasting God
The everlasting God
You do not faint You won't grow weary
You're the defender of the weak
You comfort those in need
You lift us up on wings like eagles...

So. Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord... The first thing running through my head every morning, as I whisk through the shower, run on to breakfasting everyone, mixing/dosing meds, doing school, Strength will rise... A luverly friend mentioned to her friend that I was having this experience, how much I was really leaning on the words as things were crummy and even when they weren't. In that same conversation, my friend said that she was going to get the CD and send it to her friend to get it autographed, because her friend? She sings with Lincoln Brewster. How awesome is that?! So, dear friend of friend said, "Naw, let me just get one at church." She did, she got it autographed, and she sent it to me. It came with the sweetest note from dear friend of friend and the text Phillipians 1:6 written in the front of the CD cover, along with the autograph. When I went to look it up, this is what I read. What encouragement.

As I was thinking about all this, I realized that some people who read here may find all this religion--or dogma, really--stuff offensive. (Turns out I'm more widely linked than I'd realized.) Two things: first, that makes me cringe a little, since I hope to not accidentally turn anyone off to the whole God thing. Sooner or later, I'm bound to say something you don't agree with. I believe religion/spirituality to be a very personal journey and that none of us has any business crawling up other people's noses on the subject. Second, get over it. You may have noticed that I linked God's Politics on the side -->. Again, I hope it doesn't offend anyone, but if so, I trust that you too (the other side) are capable of getting over it. Heh.

I find myself in the odd position of being too conservative, too liberal, too something for apparently most actual organizations. Sometimes, for most actual people. Is it not weird--that I'm not conservative or liberal enough? At this point, even the labels make me cringe. I'm more and more okay with that. Turns out that if you go reading the fine print, most organizations aren't so much worth the hoop-jumping they require for inclusion. I'd rather be free to figure out what, where, how, than have to toe the line with some funky statement of faith that I'm not reeeeally sure I can agree with. Or one that I'm pretty sure I can't agree with. Or one that makes me want to dial 911 and whisper, "Help!" I'd rather stumble a little, while earnestly using the magnificent brain God gave me (you have one too, yes you do) than sit up on high somewhere all safely bundled and cossetted, free from any errant challenge.

Besides, in order to be a bonafide grown-up, one must be able to do what one loves, knows, believes to be right and then stand, whatever the fall-out. If you're going to open your mouth, you'd better be prepared for what comes next. This has made me more careful about what I say. Is it worth it to bring up a hot topic or offer my opinion when someone else has done so? Perhaps. Am I willing to go down the path of re-hashing all the particulars of whatever someone else may feel they need to say to justify themselves in response to me? It depends. Less and less so, actually. There are a few people and a couple of topics I'm willing to go there with, but that is almost 100% of the time a simple conversation between friends. Anymore, I mostly have no problem sitting quietly and letting things just waft by. Seriously. I'm Busy. I enjoy hearing other people's opinions, but I don't really have the energy to grapple with all the nice people and their tough topics. Plus, I think, as I've regarded myself more seriously as a writer (ahem), that I've had to come to grips with the idea that there are people alive on the planet today who will never like me (wince), even people who when reading here will then feel entitled to say or do rather odd things. Doing this, this writing thing, while still being who I am, has required me to get over myself a little. This is good. And I'm still learning, slowly, painfully, how to be human. I feel rather naked right now, actually. Breathing in and out, iiiiiiit's ooookaaaayyyy...

When I was an adolescent, the church's youth paper put out an issue that dealt with abortion. Stories and first person accounts from all sides were tactfully presented. The editorial piece that tied it all up for me said basically this: Until both sides are willing to recognize that if their mothers had followed medical advice, we would have lost both Beethoven and Hitler, I can't take either side's posturing seriously. The details of the platforms, sure. The politics, no.

This is the trouble with life, as I see it. There's a lot to think about while we're busy with the quotidian. Sometimes we don't do a very good job with all that spiky, volatile, difficult information. Sometimes, often when we need the most help, we don't do a very good job with each other. Sometimes, we have to slow up enough to realize that there are two sides to every story, that taking care of the people first, stuff second is where it's at, that we're going to have to sift through it all for ourselves, whether we like it or not, or the experience never becomes our own. Even if we don't really feel up for the task, it's what we have to do. And at the end of it all, there might not be a perfect solution.

I know of someone who believes that we are all far more products of our religious upbringings than we're willing to admit, cognitively. That we must acknowledge, even embrace the traditions we were raised in, at the very least as our roots, lest we spend the rest of our time here being chased and therefore owned by our fears of the same. We're all inhabitants of a messed-up, piercingly beautiful planet, and the manifestation of that is rampant.

If only we could take the good, the glowing, the rich and emollient and leave the rest. If only the things that fill us up were enough to mend others' broken hearts. If only I knew...

After days like today, I feel drained. Sort of in a good way--lots of great stuff accomplished, yes--but mostly just drained. And it makes me wonder. Maybe those squirrels really are building condos.

Thanks, thanks and more thanks to the wonderful person who sent me the CD. What a blessing. She's on-air talent, you may even have heard her (wink). I'm off to look at next week's lessons, then settle my brain, I hope. When you find The Answers, email me, will you? Thanks.

'night, all. Sweet dreams.

Strength will rise...


Robin said...

Very Eloquent! I read your blog weekly and am always impressed with your love and especially your strength.

Anonymous said...

BRAVO,Thank you for expressing what I have wanted to tell many people