I write and think about resiliency. Didion writes about fragility. From my perspective they seem to be close to the same thing. Maybe different takes on the same theme. I think I was born with it, and life came at me in such a way to develop it. A sense of humor, someone said in chalice group at FUS, and certainly that is part of it. Generally, I was unaware of how powerful resiliency is. Was. Was until I lost it. It is as if it was eaten by locust swarming near my soul. I have had no idea of how to replant, cultivate, fertilize, and wait patiently for flowering.
Patience and time. And gentle guiding reminders. And a willingness to learn lessons again and again.
This past week. After the desperate maneuverings to rid myself of the burdens of my mother’s estate -- which are neither onerous nor gut wrenching but in which I perceive a quick sand situation from which I cannot imagine release -- only to discover that the personalities involved lack the generosity of spirit and possibility the ability to run the final lap of the marathon, I bow to the inevitability of continuing to the finish. This is not what I want. I did not need the lesson in endurance, but the lesson of perspective. What I chose to look at, to consider, to take into my heart to nurture. I still seem to need lessons in choice and choosing.
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. ~Eleanor Roosevelt, 'This Is My Story,' 1937
To this I add, no one can make your feel awful or wonderful, broken or complete without your complicity.
For me that means turning away from what is selfish, from what is crazy and cruel and intentionally thoughtless, what wants the argument, the warfare, what does not feed me and focusing on the generous, the open spirited, the loving that pours into my experience. To my attorney and his mother who offer wise counsel, to the Mayor of Bloomfield who cut through reams of red tape, to my contractor whose has shared in my frustration and who gleefully inquired, “How did you do that?” with a permit in hand, to my realtor who proclaims that she “remains optimistic,” to my girlfriends who listen, to Marcia and late night assurances of sanity, to Mary and tea, to Julia’s therapists who insist that my newest “plan” is not a failure as I insist but only needs a bit of tweaking, to Traci and her reminder that I “am a good mother,” and as always, to Cheshire, to Lisa, to Nick.
And explaining to my sister in an email message, I write, “I have to laugh at myself . . . ,“ I gasp a small gasp and marvel that I’ve found a way, perhaps a mere footpath of a way back to some resiliency. I’ve found with ever so much help that if I just turn around, completely 180 degrees around, there is a view of ocean with spectacular crashing waves that fill my ears with heavenly song.