Day: June 13, 2017
Tapering off Expectations
The Daily Post
Jun 13, 2017
“Most things will be okay eventually, but not everything will be. Sometimes you’ll put up a good fight and lose. Sometimes you’ll hold on really hard and realize there is no choice but to let go. Acceptance is a small, quiet room.”
— Cheryl Strayed
I’ve been studying Buddhism since 2012. What follows is my interpretation. At that point in my life I was constantly upset and frustrated when things did not go my way. Ego. I wanted complete control. I felt I could design my life the way I wanted it to be. Not so. Gradually I’ve begun to Let Go of what “should be” and concentrate on ‘what is.’ I’ve had to accept many things especially the physical limitations of growing older. However I had a choice. Either be Happy with the way things are now or continue beating my head against a brick wall. I am choosing the former.
It may sound odd but I’ve given up expectations. Expectations often bring disappointment and frustration. Not having expectations does not mean I don’t have dreams, goals or plans for the future it means I must accept a large dose of reality.
For example I’m still in the working world and I take the subway to work every day. For a long time I’ve been having trouble going up and down steps. Some of the problem is due to my reduced vision from a stroke I had in November 2008 and some is due to arthritis. So rather than running with the young does who race off the train in a frenzy I now get off the train, stand by a pole or sign where I’m not in the line of unrelenting merging passengers. After things have slowed down then I make my way up several flights of steps. This is wisdom as one of my co-workers was pushed by a teenager and badly damaged his knee. Once you sustain certain injuries after age 50 your body does not heal or go back together like it did when younger. I know I have a bad back, knees and eyesight.
I had a lot of expectations when I was younger and I was like one of those little dogs that bites and holds on no matter what. Until my life went totally sideways and I found myself in a position where those plans meant nothing. Survival meant more. Gradually as I began to let go life gets better even though it is still a roller coaster. Once admitted to myself that I had no control over various aspects of my life then much of the disappointment and frustration passed. As I enter into my 60s I’m all for a peaceful less stressful life. For me I know life is not a competition. Whatever God has for me will be.
Yes Be in the Moment. Many years ago I remember my Dad looking at his old Air-force picture and saying out loud, “What happened to that young man in the picture? I did not understand. Now I do. Fast forward to recently when I enacted the same with my old Army photo. What happened to that young woman in the picture? Well she’s gone. Along with her health and resiliency. Most days my body with its challenges tells me what I’m gonna do.
The woman I am now left behind that long ago youth. Whatever I wanted then obviously is not going to take place now. And as the Doris Day song goes, Que Sera. Sera. Whatever will be. Will be. The future’s not ours to see. Que Sera. Sera.
As my Dad used to say, If its meant for you. Then you will receive. It will happen. I remind myself of this daily. Cuts down on agitation. Brings peace. Life itself has more than enough challenges so I strive for peace. Another one of those sayings from my youth, Man proposes. God disposes.
The time for tapering off has come……..
There is nothing left to prove to anybody……. Because even the guy with all the toys has to die and cannot take anything with him.
Time to say Farewell to the Rat Race. A race that not even rats win!
My only responsibility in life is to take care of my brother Stephen who has Autism. All else means very little.
My Ultimate Goal ~~ To be a Lady of Leisure
Yes pure Laziness and Indolence. Since I’ve been working since I was 17 and I’m now 58 I deserve to drop out, disengage and disconnect by age 60.