We drove into our driveway about 1 a.m. on the heels of a two-week vacation. We hadn’t taken that much time off in years. The first week we were constantly thinking about matters back home and at the office, frequently checking emails and attending to this and that. After another couple days, though, we managed to fully disconnect. (I am grateful to my clients who extended a bit of patience as I attended to the need to recharge. THANK YOU!)
As we sat in our driveway repeatedly tapping the button on the panel, the garage door would not open. We weren’t up for problems before we even got in the house! Once inside, the air conditioning didn’t seem to be working. With the flip of a dial, we gratefully heard it kick in. We unpacked only the necessities, made coffee for the morning, and collapsed into bed about 2 a.m.
In the morning, we discover the following; the cat barfed on the new carpet, Piper’s new dog crate door came off the hinges, the knob that locks the slider door had broken, the hot tub wasn’t hot and was making a strange noise, the kitchen sink trap leaks, and Dearest’s convertible had a seriously cracked windshield.
Returning from vacation is hard enough, thank you. I could feel myself deflating.
I decided to apply the magic elixir of music and soon Nicole Mullen’s song, “Redeemer,” came on. I stopped loading the washer with the third load of clothes (thankfully it worked) and soon tears spilled down my vacation-tanned cheeks. I was catapulted back to a difficult time in my life when I clung to the words and music of this song. This song that back then reminded me that Spirit was alive and well and that she had this, and me, covered.
I walked out to the deck and stooped down next to Dearest who was up to his armpits in hot tub manuals and parts. I put my hand on his arms and through tears said, “Do you recognize how very small our problems are?” As he heard the song rise to a crescendo, he got it. He dropped his manual and hugged me. We gained a little perspective in that moment: take a breath and know, given the real problems we’ve survived, we can face down pet peculiarities and broken hot tubs and slider doors. It’s not cancer, or divorce, or the death of someone we love.
But…maybe those are the things you are facing. Maybe you are in a very difficult time; a time when your problems feel completely crushing.
I’ve worked with hundreds of people through the most awful time in many of their lives. What I’ve observed about most allows me to predict that; you will connect with your core strength and wisdom. You will make it out from under the crushing weight. You will reach out to friends and lean on them for a while. (We all need to be needed by the way. Your friends will feel relieved to have a way to help, so ask). If you are so oriented, you will draw on your higher power or Spirit or God and you will feel his or her presence in comforting ways that will deepen your own inner resources. You will draw on professional resources as needed. You will not just talk about your children being first, you will make them so. You will not give in to negative self talk and criticism. You will be given a bit of perspective each day and all you need to find that day’s little piece of joy and gratitude.
And….I hope you too have a little vacation in the works–and that you return to only small problems!
Wishing you wisdom,