Bringing the Calm and Sharing the Peace

Today is a day of frustration. My body won’t do what I need it to do; my head won’t do what I need it to do.

It’s a day of frustration and unknowing and a good dose of fear.

My attention won’t do what I need it to do.  It’s like buckshot; I send it out with all the focus I can muster only to have it spread out, landing on shiny and unshiny alike.

I’m frustrated due to limitation, but that will pass. I’m frustrated due to seeing otherwise intelligent people lose all reason when it comes to pride.

Pride of what?

I’m frustrated with politicians and pundits acting like three year old children, unable to discuss straight-forwardly what they are for, instead, countering and insulting their opponents. I’m frustrated with people who mistake opponents for enemies and sound bites for reasoned argument.

I’m frustrated with the celebrated repetition of falsehood: you know, the bearing false witness thing. I’m frustrated with the fact that we have lost our ability to consider the source.

Not all sources are equal.

I’m frustrated that parroting what so-and-so said or such-and-such did has become an art form, and when the parrots are confronted with contradictory data, they view facts as an assault on their character.

I’m frustrated with people who have appropriated the term “family values”: where once it meant honesty, integrity, good citizenship, and compassion, it has been reduced to “one man + one woman.”

I’m frustrated with the blame-game, this activity of (insert word here)-shaming, with finger-pointing and the utter, utter lack of accountability.

I’m frustrated with people who won’t do what I need them to do–return a phone call, fill a prescription.

I’m frustrated with myself–and it’s so much easier to find frustration with other things. I can’t seem to get a single word down about a cat I miss more than I thought I would. A cat whose timing was so precise, our evolution so cosmically timed, that her going off into the woods, ostensibly to die, coincided perfectly with my first RA flare up.

I’m frustrated.

Two strange things happened this week, both involving a single word “peace.”

Strange Thing Number One:

A coworker told me she loved to talk to me because “I bring the calm” and “I share the peace.”

I didn’t have the heart to tell her that just the day before, I launched a substantial tirade against people who don’t seem to know the difference between a routing number and an account number, those who take a piece of information from a single source, run with it, and preach it like it’s the sermon on the Mount, AND our politicians who get elected based on the quality of personal insults they can sling and their mastery of evading any solid question.

There is a certain amount of irony there: I’m pretty sure I used the words “spoon fed,” “stupid,” “astronomically, abysmally, and assholishly asinine.”

Because, yeah. I’ll admit it. Catching someone in a lie, someone who has a history of lying, does inspire a certain amount of moral judgment in me.

I’m working on it.

Strange Thing Number Two:

Meeting a friend I haven’t seen in a really long time, an unexpected
pleasure. “You seem, I don’t know, peaceful. You seem at peace,” she told me after I finished my portion of our catch-up session.

I explained the progression: the RA diagnosis (blessedly leaving out the warfare crawling), the Duggars, the Charleston shooting, and the way things come together in my brain.

I didn’t tell her about the broken teeth, the indignity and consequences of not being able to get out of bed, the endless questions  I don’t know how to answer on days I’m on crutches.

I may have told her about the teeth.  We were sharing margaritas.  And I did tell her about the effects of prednisone.

But the rest didn’t seem to matter.

Because, yeah, I guess I am at peace. I have moments in which I’m so frustrated at my hands that I pop off about politicians or so frustrated at my feet that I pop off about something else that frustrates me, but they’re moments, even if they stretch 10 or 20 minutes.

They’re moments, and moments pass.

And, while they may seem unproductive–or worse, counterproductive–to anyone but me, these tirades are helping me formulate…something. Something I don’t quite have a word for. A plan, maybe. An idea, ethereal and loosely gathered, that may lead to something else.

And between the moments, there is peace. And calm.  And optimism.

And that’s something.

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4 thoughts on “Bringing the Calm and Sharing the Peace”

  1. That is TRULY something!!! Oh, I can’t tell you how good it was to see your comment and to click over and find you here. It sounds like Life has been Happening to you in ways that I need to acquaint myself with. RA??? Hands and feet? Drugs? My heartfelt prayers go streaming to you right now, for relief and comfort.

    Thinking about this peace that your friends comment on, and your own musings on it, I don’t know that being a peaceful persons necessarily excludes having moments of torrential energy. In fact, it may be those moments when we spout off that help us to actually get in touch with and maintain a core of peace – like the eye within the storm. Maybe it’s not an ‘either/or’ but an ‘and/both’ kinda deal. 🙂

    Sending you love this morning, and gratitude for stopping by and leaving a footprint on my heart. xox

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    1. Also: I can’t figure out how to make the text on your site legible for me — I’ll be shooting you an email. Do you still get email at the address you have attached to The Wild Pomegranate?

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      1. I think I fixed the font problem. Was playing with the format last week and something happened. Should be legible now. And yeah, if the email address your seeing is j*****_h******* @ yahoo, that’s a good one. 🙂 So happy to read this was just a bad day! xox

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  2. That was a bad day; I’ve had good days since then. But many thanks for your love and prayers and know they’re right back atcha, woman. Speaking of eye of the storm…there’s a book I read years ago called “The ‘I’ of the Storm” by Gary Simmons that got me through the roughest funeral I’ve ever attended. I highly recommend it, and think it may be time I give it a re-read.

    Thank YOU for stopping by and leaving a footprint on my heart.

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