These days have been eerily monotonous, yet ironically chaotic. In the midst of the unknown, we have been locked down in our homes, thrust into our own little worlds, and mandated to shelter in place with our biggest questions and deepest fears. It has felt like—so far—2020 around the globe has been a time of frenzied seeking, as our panic buttons have all been simultaneously pressed.
To soothe myself, I dug around for answers. Explanations. I needed to understand, to decipher, and to unfold this picture so I could hold it out in front of me and finally see what the hell was actually going on. Since my business was forced to shut down on March 16, I’ve had plenty of free time and unlimited internet access, so I explored in earnest, grasping for the answers that might quench my burning questions. If I could succeed, maybe, just maybe, I could finally feel safe and secure again. Maybe I could feel peace…
And let me tell you, I found the answers! That’s right. I found the right videos, the perfect articles, and all of the sources that made total and complete sense. Of course, there was chilling news immersed within these answers, however, at least I was beginning to understand what was going on. Armed with this newfound knowledge, I was determined to help everyone I could, because from what I learned, we all had to be on the same page, or else…well, just read the articles and watch the videos…then you’ll get it!!
So began my campaign of questions. That’s where I had begun my journey, so I figured that’s where I could start with others; publicly ask questions on social media about what I was seeing, hearing and reading. It was mostly a satisfying exchange. People would agree, or not. Everyone was typically respectful and kind, even when they were passionate. And some would share what they had heard or seen or read. Some of it was contrary to what I had unveiled.
That’s when I noticed it. The acceleration of my heart beat. The shake in my hands. The sweat on my brow. I was upset! Why? I was terrified for those people that weren’t “getting it”.
It felt like I was in a house with all of humanity. And the house was on fire. Thick smoke made it impossible to see. I wanted to go inside every single room and grab each person out myself. If I didn’t, how would I know they were safe? How would they make it out?
The irony of it all hit me in the face like bubbles blown by a toddler upwind. I actually started to laugh at myself. How adorable am I? There I was, terrified that others were trying to put one over on us, to control us. I knew all of the ways they were going about it. Remember, I read the articles, saw the videos and heard the news! These people had to be stopped!
So what did I do? I asked leading questions to try to manipulate people into seeing my point of view, to hold my belief, to act and respond the same way I was acting and responding. Not because I’m some jerk-dictator or grandiose narcissist, but because I wanted them to be safe, and I felt like I knew better how to make that happen. After all, I was the one who did all of the research. I knew!
And that’s when I really got it. I’m doing the very thing I’m so concerned about others doing to us! Isn’t that so hilarious?
It is said that the outer world is a projection of our inner world. Now you know the mess dwelling inside my head. Am I doomed here forever?
There is a way out, I think. I’m trying it out anyways, and so far it’s been working out pretty well. The way out for me has been to trust in others more. Have more faith. Trust in their autonomy and their process. Let each find their own path. Every life is here to gather its own treasures, and fortunately we won’t all treasure the same things, so there will always be more than enough for everyone.
Honor others. Allowing others to walk their own path without my interference means that I see them as powerful people. Isn’t that true empowerment?
Respect. Showing others respect includes listening to their views, trying to understand their model of the world, and not trying to change it.
Love. Love that we aren’t all the same, that there are varieties and variations and these are the hues that keep life not only interesting, but insanely beautiful.
Together, and in our own special ways, we will find our corridor through this smoky house, and our passage will be united yet unique. As all spokes on a wheel lead to the center, so too will we all find our way home, even if our chosen paths are different. When I realized this, my heart rate returned to normal, my hands stopped shaking, and I could focus again on who I am in this moment now, trusting that everyone around me will be doing the same. Peace and health be with you. And me. Amen.