Today I woke up feeling anxious. Coursework from last week (the week I was in residence) has to be completed and an assignment written. This week’s coursework, too, must be done. I am not as far along as I expected with the packing but this week is it! I must pack everything that is not nailed in place. Richard is far away and I miss him. The list goes on and on. Yet, as I look at my “chaotic” list, I think of how fortunate that this is my chaos. Richard has been gone for a matter of weeks. I have friends whose husbands, wives, and significant others are gone for months or years, to places like Afghanistan and Iraq. I have to pack up all my things to move to another place where there will be space for us with a roof over our heads. I know folks who worked hard, paid their bills, but because of shady banking practices they lost their home and their possessions and must now rely on friends and family to sustain them as they try to get back on their feet. I complain of the aches and pains of aging, but I’ve lost friends and family to cancer, heart disease, and AIDS. All of them would have welcomed the signs of aging and growing older. Instead their lives were cut short. Even though I have friends who have endured the worst kinds of chaos and loss, each seemed to find a place of quiet calm in the midst of their storms. I learn from my friends. I’ve learned that regardless of the “mess” we are in, there are places of retreat that calm our nerves, sustain our spirits, and rejuvenate our bodies and souls. This is a spiritual thing. This is a place where we connect with the Divine and all that is holy. This is a place deep within us where we discover our true priorities. This is a place of peace and assurance that regardless of what is happening around us or what is happening to us, all is ultimately for the good. We must trust that, put one foot in front of the other, and choose life and holiness as best we know it. My chaos at the moment is not as drastic as all that, but it is chaos none-the-less. And when I pause for a few minutes to center myself, I realize that I am grateful for the calm amidst the storm.
- Gratitude 54: Our last visit to Burke Lake (perpetualgratitude.wordpress.com)
- Gratitude (olmwsimpletruths.wordpress.com)
- With My Deepest Gratitude and Thanks (terri0729.wordpress.com)
- Gratitude 62: Fellow Learners (perpetualgratitude.wordpress.com)
- Such gratitude! (charioteers.org)
- Gratitude 61: Those Who Made the Ultimate Sacrifice (perpetualgratitude.wordpress.com)
- Day 37: The Calm Before the Storm (aroundthecountryin40days.wordpress.com)