If you walk outside your home every day and are set upon by mosquitos that don’t go away until you go back into your home, you may have some sense of how I feel…of why I told a friend I was losing my mind.
I’m a very privileged person. I have an amazing family, amazing friends, amazing job, live in an amazing city, travel to amazing places, and am in fairly amazing health. You get it, my life is amazing. Yet, I find myself irritated, grumpy, distracted, angry, etc. all too often. It is as though I am not-so-slowly slipping into a place that is dark enough that I won’t be able to find my way back to the light.
What are the mosquitos that are swarming so thick that they are blocking out the light, driving me mad?
I can’t say with certainty. One of the biggest failings of all humans is that it is hard for us to see ourselves and our motivations. I’ve got some good guesses though.
I grew up mostly sheltered and very idealistic. The world was absolutely a wonderful place full of sunlight, magical forests full of fairies, silvery fish swimming in fountains of youth, and people that loved with open and honest hearts. Jesus loved ALL the little children of the world. I could be or do ANYTHING I wanted, if I just tried.
It was great. I’m so thankful for that. The only problem is that I’ve become an adult that is eroded to the core by disappointment, and life is full of disappointment if you are an idealist. People are just bad at treating the world around them well. We maim, kill, destroy, insult, abuse, and pollute. Sometimes it is through ignorance, but more often than not, it is with knowledge, forethought, and selfishness. It sounds dark and awful, and it is, and none of us are innocent of it. The older I get, the more I see of it. That may be from increased exposure through age or our ever present media, or maybe things are getting worse. I can’t know. The mosquitos of disappointment swarm, and the light disappears.
My friend said “Lose your mind. And tell us about it.”
I don’t want to lose it, to surrender to the darkness. Every day (THANKFULLY!!!) I am also reminded that people can love, build, sing, move, laugh, give, and hope. To surrender those things is to truly lose myself, my mind. I AM STRONGER THAN THAT. I choose the light, and want to embrace everything that keeps me in it.
What I want to tell you are the stories about how I stay here in the light, how I cut away the shadows with my twin swords, Love and Hope. When I pull you into my arms, smile into your eyes, do you a favor, or rail against the darkness, don’t dismiss me, don’t turn away. That is Love and Hope doing their work. When I fall or make a mistake, reach your hand out. Come dance with me, and laugh with me, and lay in the sunshine. I’m ready to have fun, and fight for the light. If you come to me with an armful of darkness and aren’t prepared to let it go, don’t be surprised if I turn away. Mosquitos will no longer be tolerated.
I’m going to go have fun and be happy now. Let me know if you want to join me, but be forewarned, I might include you in the stories. I might also sing.
Or, maybe losing my mind IS embracing the light.