Monday, March 13, 2017

A Blanket, A Pot of Soup, and Clear Water

Image result for free image of a pot of soup on the stove

I give up! I am throwing up my hands and giving up! I would wave a white flag of surrender, but it would probably blow away!

After a week of wind storms with downed trees, power lines and flying trash cans, followed by record-breaking, bitter cold in the single digits with below zero wind chills, the icing on the cake (or on us, as it were) is coming tonight and for the next 48 hours in the form of a real nor'easter, promising at least a foot of snow and 40 mph wind gusts. Oh, joy! So I surrender, and I am here to tell you that despite what you may have been taught, surrender is not always a bad thing.

Surrender does not always mean that you lose and the other guy wins. It doesn't mean that you are weak, or a failure, or not enough. Sometimes surrender means accepting the present moment for what it is, understanding that we do not control everything in life, let alone the whole world, and that there are times when it is wiser and more courageous to wait until, as Lao Tzu tells us: "...your mud settles and the water is clear?" I don't have any control over the weather. It is March in the Northeast section of the country which means anything from 70 degrees and sunny to minus 4 temperatures and snow storms. It is what it is. Instead of wailing about it and wishing for spring, it better serves me and my well being to let my mud settle until my water is clear. In other words, spring will get here when it gets here.

The same holds true of surrendering to other things we have no control over, like the actions of another person. Ranting and raving, and pointing fingers, does nothing to change that person, and it does not allow us to see things clearly. By surrendering to what is and giving ourselves the room to let our water clear, we can see the bigger picture and make our plans for new and better times ahead. All we need to do is be willing to let go.

So today I will fight the crowds at the store to pick up some milk and other items "just in case," and then retire to my old rocking chair with a warm blanket, a pot of soup on the stove, and the big, fat novel I picked up at the library book sale last week. Let the winds blow, the snow come down and winter, hopefully, finally, blow itself out. When my mud settles and my water clears, I'll get back out there again!

And so it is.

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