I’ve been trying to make sense of this. Of all this. The last three years, or is it really the last fifty. Please godde, don’t let it be some clichéd mid-life crisis. But it seems that all the things I was SO sure of thirty years ago offer only glimmers of cognizance now.
Maybe life does that to a person; disproving theories and philosophies we adopt when we are young and inexperienced of the world. Probably. THAT makes sense. But being able to say that all this chaos is reasonable because in the larger picture it makes sense is ridiculous.
I don’t know who I am anymore. I have clung to a life raft-dream since my early childhood: I would return to the wilderness and life a life of simplicity. I’ve spent a lifetime learning tools and skills for that sustainable life. And now age and infirmities try to dictate that effort was all for naught? Criminals destroy the very property to which I have planned my escape?
Clearly, absolutely, I am thinking in polar opposites. But even in saying that, can I be sure of that? If such polarized thinking doesn’t allow for gray possibilities, then can I even be sure that what I am processing now is real? Somewhere in my psyche is there a maelstrom of gray-ness swirling and gathering speed, waiting to explode over my senses so that in some indeterminate, unexpected moment I will be so utterly engulfed in the plethora of opportunities that lie between black and white that I will suddenly be transformed and, finally, it will all make sense?
I don’t think so.
Speaking of polar opposites, will my adopted black son stop hating me for being white. Will the whole notion of nurture over nature finally return or be forever disproved? Is there a solution to the mental illness that drives him to homelessness. Will I at last, and finally, know how to best parent my children of diversity?
I don’t think so.
Therapists, life coaches, ministers and madmen like to tell us that living in the fringes, along the great “unknowing” is the Mystery of Life. God, if you like the notion. Emotional regulation, if that suits you better. Really? We are supposed to lay down our high ideals and our never-die integrities to live in some lukewarm version of what they call “healthy?”
Perhaps my hyper-vigilant need to control my environment won’t allow for such versions of life. I know lots of people who live there; who are content and live predictable, successful lives. I have been told that my need to see things as either one way or another, without allowing myself options in between was a survival mechanism I used during my traumatic childhood. Yea, so what? There are thousands of “life coaches” that teach skills of goal-setting. What’s wrong with envisioning a life that brings you peace and safety and then using your intellect and innate gifts to make it happen?
Well, right now I’m living an incongruous reality. For all the notions I had of what life was “supposed” to be, and all the machinations of making it just that way, other people keep messing it up. And I don’t mean the clash between two high ideals and which is the better of the two. I’m talking about the evil people do and how it impacts our version of life as we think it should be. When addictions and mental illness and greed and miscommunication and ignorance throw themselves into your road to freedom, the question becomes, do I drive right over those bodies, or do I stop to help?