Tag Archives: human being

I Must Be Human

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Just when I thought
I had fallen as far as I could,
the ground opens up
and I start falling again.
Just when I thought
I felt as much joy,
peace, and fulfillment
as I humanly could,
my heart opens up
and reveals a deeper,
wider possibility for bliss.
Who I am, bouncing
from one extreme to the other
so quickly my head whirls?
I must be human.

Life Fully Lived

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Living on the edge of my comfort zone,
seeing how many hang-ups I still have,
wanting to embody perfection of patience,
compassion, understanding, self-restraint,
being confronted with human reality…
I feel the disappointment when I fail
and wonder if I can do better the next time.
After so many years of strengthening the habit
of reacting with anger
what can I realistically expect from myself now?
My loved ones are the most ruthless
at pointing out how far I have yet to go
and the least likely
to celebrate how far I’ve already come.
So there is the added disappointment
of wanting to be seen and heard
and not being met with the understanding
I so deeply long for.
Perhaps I can have compassion for all of us,
for the challenge of existing in an apparently
connected universe
while simultaneously living in the isolation
of one’s own imagined world.
This is the plight we all must navigate
and the gift we must all unwrap
if we are ever to experience
the bliss of divine union,
the peace of life fully lived.

Observing the Perfection

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After going and and going
and trying and trying
and wanting and wishing
and regretting and fixing
and pushing and pulling
negotiating and resisting
and persevering and persisting
achieving and believing
failing and wailing
delaying and replaying…
I’ve come to realize
that all I’ve been seeking
and all I’ve been wanting
is what I already have,
is who I already am.
And so I settle into
a quieter version of myself…
one who sits, listens,
waits and watches,
observing the perfection
of this unfolding,
ever evolving universe.

Trying

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Trying to be good, do good
trying to get things done
trying to be patient, to be kind
trying to stay awake and open.
Trying to get “there”
trying to be here
trying to know myself,
to understand others
trying to forgive.
Trying to believe, to trust,
trying to let go
and flow with this endless river.
All of this trying, trying, trying
is so tiring, tiring, tiring.
But…
I am not a human trying.
I am a human being.
Let me set down the burden
of such impossible expectations
and embrace the being
concealed by all the trying.
I wish I could say it is easy to do this–
but I would be lying.

Meditate First

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Guilt and shame
Rage and frustration
Disappointment and impatience
Hopelessness and despair…
all before 9 am.
I should’ve awakened early
and meditated first.

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It was my daughter’s first day of first grade.  My in-laws were preparing to leave.  The house was in chaos, and what I thought was an innocent request to help with the garbage was somehow interpreted as a tyrannical outburst which mortified and outraged my husband.

I think I need to develop the discipline to get up and meditate first before I speak to anyone–even when I’m tired and am seduced by the idea of meditating at some point mid-morning, after I’ve had my coffee and the number of humans in the house has been reduced to two.  When I sit first, I have a tendency to be more calm, more insightful, more patient, more aware, and this translates into better, smoother interactions with my family.

I’ve known this for a long time, but sometimes I flub up and can’t manage to get up before everyone else.  This is where I need to remind myself that I’m human, and sometimes life is messy.  I can offer myself a good dose of self-compassion and give myself a break for once.

I’ll try to wake up earlier tomorrow and see what happens.

Something is Enough

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I set out to write something witty and brilliant
and the words elude me.
My brain is tired and protests
any probing into its depths
to yank out the perfect word
in some memory bank tucked far away
beneath the piles of laundry in my bedroom
and dishes stacked in the sink.
Ah yes, I remember now,
I don’t have to be good.
I am a human being,
and this is enough.
With the pressure off,
I don’t need to write something witty and brilliant,
I don’t even need to write something passable.
I just need to to write something.
And something is enough.

Parenting Since Time Immemorial

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Parenting…
being kind and patient
becomes increasingly difficult as the day wears on
and self-criticism becomes easier.
The importance of taking deep breaths is forgotten
and resentment remembered.
The positivity has flown out the window
and some monster lurks
shrieking right inside my brain.
The tired child within me
resists being responsible for so much
when all she wants is to rest.
Parenting…
giving you opportunities
to become a better, wiser,
more patient, more strong,
more loving, more courageous,
more responsible person,
since time immemorial…