Dealing with contrast.
Physical pain, a screaming baby, a dozen minor annoyances.
It’s a pretty good place to be, to be feeling like ****, dealing with a bunch of small gripes and irritations, and knowing inside out that this is exactly where you are meant to be.
Not lashing out or exploding or spiralling downward. Not making things worse or losing hope or giving up entirely – though you may have done all that plenty of times in the past.
But knowing that things only feel bad because they have to get better. Knowing because you’ve seen this pattern repeat six or seven times in the past half-year alone.
Knowing, thank God, that these are questions calling forth answers by the mere fact we notice them and want an answer.
We don’t have to have the answer at hand or know what it will look like, because the question itself is what brings the answer to us.
And all we need to do is not cling so tight to the contrast, and not keep focusing so much on how difficult or troubling or impossible the situation feels.
In other words we need to have a little bit of faith in the process.
I’ve been around long enough to know that these small everyday burdens can feel excruciating in the moment, but they are not forever. And in their passage we are raised up and brought to a higher perspective.
They’re questions! Our struggle with them is a question! Our inability to cope with them is a question!
And in time we may go from struggle and frustration to eagerness and excitement when we see a new question form and wonder what the answer is going to be.
My pain is going to subside, my baby is going to sleep well, and the other nuisances are barely worth mentioning and will shortly be forgotten and submerged in the rising tide as I get better and better at feeling good.
This is the worst I’ve felt in fifteen days of focusing on happiness. That alone is a sign of how far I’ve come. If this is the worst I’ve felt, then that alone is something to appreciate.
My happiness work is going so well I even feel good about feeling bad right now!
That’s a suitable paradox as I wish you all a Happy Easter.