Murmuring

I think about finding that elusive balance between the past and the future.

Lean back, and I find myself swamped in what has already happened. Regret, remorse, guilt, sorrow, grief —whatever the emotional residue may be. I go there again and again, even though going there changes nothing.

When I lean forward, into the future, I am also off-balance. Hope, fear, excitement, anxiety, grasping —I go there too. I go there again and again, even though going there also changes nothing. I cannot control the future any more than I can change the past.

All I can do is be present. But I shy away from the present because the present is full of terrible uncertainty. It changes from moment to moment. All is changing.

But If I don’t know what’s going to happen next, and if I can’t make sense of what has already happened, then where is the ground of the present? And if the present is groundless, what is there to hold onto?

*

It has been a hard year. I am ready to see it go. Personally, it has been a year of enormous challenges. Many days I’ve felt overwhelmed to the point of numbness and desperation. I’ve found myself starting and stopping, writing and deleting.

This is a year in which I have learned more about shock, loss, grief, strength, kindness, courage, home, and family. I’ve learned that I am surrounded by enormously loving people who will catch me if I fall if only I am strong enough to let them.

This is counter-intuitive. It takes strength to say “I’m hurting”. Strength to say “I’m vulnerable”. This is too much to bear. But the moment I do, I find I am given just what I need.

Happy new year.

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