This past weekend was glorious and I was able to be in the garden; pulling out weeds, turning over the veggie beds, putting in some new plants and clipping a few for inside. Bliss! Exhausting bliss! I was so sweaty and dirty when it was time for dinner, which had totally caught me off guard. I felt like a kid again! After dinner, as the fatigue set in, I noticed there was still dirt under my nails. I noticed the polish from the wedding last weekend was really just random splotches of color now. Just like a kid again! Only this felt bad. I noticed how self-conscious it made me feel, this was not the way an adult with their shit together behaves. And adult wears garden gloves. An adult knows where they put their garden gloves so they can wear them whenever they need them. An adult removes the polish that has chipped so as not to look like a lady of the night. Seriously, Harper, what adulting classes did you attend?? This is the example you want to set for the kids? I noticed the thinking as something coming on, and was able to sit with it as it rolled through. Shame. That's shame. I used to follow up this awareness of shame with the second wave of critical self-talk: Welp, you've ruined a perfectly nice day because you just couldn't keep it positive and enjoy yourself. Now you're bumming everyone out with your moping, way to go. I've learned a gentler way, and it actually asks me to do even less than before. I don't react, I don't partcipate, I wait. I wait and I let it all have me, like getting caught in a rain storm. I'm made of resilient stuff, we all are. I'm not my thoughts, I'm not my emotions. They are unexpected houseguests, and so I make room for them and remind myself that, when they disturb my routine, they are only passing through.
I was moved by a poem shared by a dear friend this week. It's called Guest House by Rumi:
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.