I’ve heard that beaded bracelets are the rage now. I even purchased a power set of green, gold, and wooden beads completed by Buddha charms, a dangling tassel, and gold beads this weekend despite my economically challenged bank account. I am thinking about signing up for a jewelry beading class. Thinking of the holiday gifts that I will present to grateful friends and the money that I will have saved by designing and threading the beads. My life needs some threading and design, I think. It seems that I can’t take a class for that.
I live with the haunting certainty that everyone else understands and manipulates life with a deft authority that I lack. I believed that life got better as one aged. This horror show is not getting better. I was strengthened by the certainty that my talent and reasonable intelligence would earn a job that I enjoyed that paid well. And surely I would meet a decent human male after the wreckage of my divorce. Hadn’t my friends married and built ‘successful’ lives during my single interment? Honesty compels me to admit that I’m confused. Hard work, personality, charm, have failed, and I struggle to approximate some continuity, consistency and purpose for my life.
I really do listen to advice. I’ve learned to notice how the scent and feel of my cat’s fur against my chest comforts me as I fall asleep. Coffee positively delights me. I’ve even gained a grudging appreciation for a select few Reality Shows, when I manage not to use them as further proof that my life has failed. And I deeply appreciate a small group of friends who have listened patiently to my ranting.
I wanted to prepare for my future, like a reasonably well-adjusted adult. But it seemed like I was always in survival mode and I squandered the opportunity to think about – well – middle age and God help me, what comes after. I want to envision a positive future but I’m not feeling all chirpy and encouraged right now.
I want to pray, really, I do. But I seem to just whine at God before remembering that spirituality is not about getting what I want, but wanting what I have. Spirituality is about gratitude and joy. It relates to profound relief that I can walk and run and go to the gym and strain my muscles against resistance. I am thankful for the familiarity in my friends’ eyes. My ears hear music and my feet can dance. So why can’t my spirit soar despite the circumstances? Is it only a question of choice? I choose to be happy and recognize the blessings in my life.
I remember that it takes but a moment to change a life, and a decision to start transmuting negative patterns. I close my eyes and remember the whispering sound of the Aegean. I feel Mediterranean sun on my face. I fall asleep in the midst of snow’s muted shadows. I remember and I smile.