There comes a time in your life when you have to let go of all the pointless drama and the people who create it and surround yourself with people who make you laugh so hard that you forget the bad and focus solely on the good. After all, life is too short to be anything but happy.
There are days when my mind feels super-crowded, what with a million things to be done, mingling with thoughts of overwhelm and fatigue. My brain freezes into inaction, with apparently no scope of thawing.
Sometimes I transfer my thoughts, which, these days, usually revolve around my ever-growing (too-much) to-do list, on paper. I jot down multiple lists: work, blogs, home, errands to run outside, book to read and review, craft projects and on and on and on. Then, when I read what I’ve written, I just end up feeling rather victimized. Oh, I know that is a rather strong word—and probably not even the right word, but it did sound very soothing for a moment! Like a big fat sigh!
Then no sooner than have I ticked something off the list and feel like celebrating with a big mug of coffee, than something new comes up, begging to get on that list.
A bit of exasperation sets in.
Do you ever feel like that?
While I love the pressure and am usually overenthusiastic, there are days, especially these days, when I wonder how I am going to tackle it all.
Self-pity has a nice ring and can taste good when one feels overwhelmed. I certainly go through brief phases when I enjoy wallowing in it, just a little.
I then shake myself out of it quickly and turn to my favorite task, which is organizing, and re-organizing my to-do list, as though it will magically change things. It does too, sometimes.
After all, I am quite an expert at managing the list, even though, of late, I am not so great at implementing tasks with the enthusiasm and speed that I once used to be.
Too much digital noise and a sense of feeling suffocated. My mind now wants to spiral down that staircase where, at each step, there’s something to pull me down deeper into that not-very-nice place. I even indulge in feeling a bit sorry for myself when this happens.
Then, just like in the movies, I hear a heavenly voice echoing in my head—I am sure it is my Mom—saying, “Self-pity is a choice”.
That’s the truth.
But you know how truths are.
Especially if you are not in the state of mind to accept them.
“Problems exist only in the human mind.” – Anthony de Mello
Okay, de Mello, you and my Mom both!
My Mom was a firm believer of this. She had a policy which she often thrust at me—and it went something like “If you can identify the problem, you have the ability to find the solution”. Nice attitude for someone who was a teacher for over forty years and greatly adored by all the lives she touched.
Not surprising then, that I turn to her whenever my mind is in slight chaos, because I know that in that direction, I will find sense and sensibility.
My Mom was my best friend, and I cherish our relationship. I miss the wonderful camaraderie we shared as mother and daughter. I smile now to think how very “complementary” we were, to each other. It was probably because she was only eighteen years old when I was born, and the bond became stronger, thanks to her being a single parent.
I get a warm feeling thinking about the little things—the clothes we shared, the argument over who would wear a new sari first. My mind goes all mushy thinking of how we would surprise each other by finishing off chores either of us didn’t quite feel like doing, and then feel thrilled when the other appreciated it.
My Mom had an extra-special way of doing these things. If I did the washing up on a day when she was tired, she’d wake up in the morning and say, “Looks like an angel visited our home. I am making a strong cup of coffee for my favorite angel.”
Yes, I know I meandered a little there, but my Mom is my favorite source of motivation. Sometimes I wonder how she was so good-natured all the time. She did not have an easy life, yet she was constantly cheerful. Considering what she had gone through, anyone else in her situation would have so different, introverted, and complaining. But not my Mom. She simply emerged stronger through her negative experiences.
“What is the point in wallowing in misery,” she would reason.
I’d be crazy not to be inspired by that.
Oh yes, we do live and learn. And I am grateful she passed on much of that strength to me.
People often say that as time passes, the void she left in our lives will heal and fill. Except, I really don’t want that. I cherish all our moments together and appreciate how fortunate I am to have memories that will remain fresh, forever.
I remember her most when my head feels about to burst with all that freakish stuff going on inside. Recalling incidences and happy moments, fills my mind with good thoughts. Slowly, I try to let go of the mental restlessness, and consciously calm my mind.
I know that this too shall pass.
I know that right now, I am in the right place.
I will appreciate it.
I will once again review my daily routine and ensure that I enjoy it.
I will squash that whine before it surfaces.
I will take stock of what matters, what must be done.
I will not agonize over my list.
I will not get tired even before I begin taking action.
I will prioritize, segregate, focus, and get started.
As I finish each item on the list, I’ll strike it off and celebrate, and move on to the next one.
If I cannot finish something, I won’t let it stress me out.
I will set my mind free and embrace myself.
After all, why should I water my weeds?
The time has come in my life when I must let go of all the pointless drama and the people who create it, and surround myself with people who make me laugh so hard that I forget the bad, and focus solely on the good. After all, life is too short to be anything but happy.
Self pity is a choice. So why not let go of the drama?
What do you think? Would you agree?