"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." A.A. Milne

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Cleaning After Sickness, Spiritual and Physical

So this is probably going to be rather rambly. I have ideas dancing in my head but they have not come to full clarity Who knows if they ever will? I will just write them down and see what happens.

The past couple of days has involved a lot of puke in this house. It has been worse than a fraternity house with free kegs. The house just stank. No way around it, it stank something vile. For me the most natural desire in the world was clean it and get rid of the ick as soon as we were feeling better. I think that is rather natural to many of us.

However, while doing this I had a conversation with my best friend. She is the coolest girl evah, seriously. She is really coming into her own and taking charge of her life. I love it. She is releasing herself from "shoulds" and from doing things just because of some tenuous obligation. I love it. I have been doing this process just a bit longer than she has so it is really cool and interesting to revisit it with her.

One of the common side effects of this endeavor is a voluntary seclusion, a stepping out of the world so to speak. It is a very strange thing in a society to lauds extroversion and pushes us to constantly connect on a superficial level. It is hard to stop and have true introspection at the speed of life so pushed by those around us. I am not sure you can have a close look at yourself and who you truly are if you don't eschew society, at least for while. But it still feels weird and feels as if you are somehow doing something wrong.

There was a conversation within all of this that made me realize I am now in a self perpetuating cycle of withdrawing and rejoining and it is very similar to cleaning after a sickness. I have strong boundaries and a strong sense of self but I can only take so much of the constantly battering of the petty manipulations and pressure that has become the norm in our culture. Don't believe me? Look at your local church. How often do you see a few beleaguered women trying to teach all the Sunday School, organize all the dinners, arrange all the flowers, etc because they truly believe the whole fabric of their world will unravel if they don't sacrifice their own needs and health for the "greater good"? So I find I can only take so much before I must withdraw and do a spiritual cleaning.

It is a time to nurture and refresh myself. I only allow an extremely narrow group of people contact during this time. Otherwise, I just isolate myself and my family. After this self imposed banishment, I can rejoin mainstream life and not be batted around too badly.

What is the point of this post? I don't know. Maybe just to say that if you need time, take it. Don't allow anyone to should you to the point of exhaustion. Better yet, don't let anyone should you including yourself. Take the time you need and listen to what your spirit is telling you it longs for.

Be at peace and spread joy.

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