Sunday, June 22, 2014

sunday grace

everything that slows us down and forces patience, everything that sets us back into
the slow circles of an instrument of grace.
-may sarton

truer words were never written.  while my life is not normally what one would consider fast-paced, i practice keeping things slow on a pretty regular basis.  patience is my work in this life.  for so many years, i thought that slowing down meant giving up and being lazy and i allowed life to force me to slow down (or smack me down in some cases) through stress, critical setbacks or losses and sometimes being unwell.

i try to be better than that.  and i continue to work on building a life that supports and nurtures time and space and expansiveness and mindfulness.  practicing within these realms allows me to demonstrate patience and grace under other circumstances that are not as pleasant.

some things that help me practice slowing down:

  • yoga
  • nature
  • a safe home that reflects who we are

  • paying attention to details of life and the nuances of the human condition
  • making art (and making a mess a lot of the time)

  • listening
  • gardening

  • cooking

  • recognizing my shenpas
  • a giant pink bucket of flowers

  • practicing living in the current moment (hour, day, week, month, season, year, life) and not getting too wrapped up in what's to come (this one is tough for me)
  • the farmers' market

  • going to a real honest-to-goodness local bookshop that is not named barnes and noble and purchasing a real honest-to-goodness book (a book that i can touch and smell and whose paper can soak in a tear or two)
  • spending time with all the lives and love and history and mistakes and victories woven into those pages

  • allowing room for not always being right and being mindful of when i overgeneralize

this week, a friend from high school became one of the most powerful people in washington.  kevin mccarthy happens to represent the political party whose tactics i, ahem, pretty much despise.  but what i know about him is his kindness and his intelligence and incredible work ethic and that he is one of the most down-to-earth humans you can ever know.  from time to time i've worried about some of his alliances--he's one of the famed "young guns"--and that he mentored kevin spacey while spacey was preparing for his scary-ass machiavellian role in house of cards.  while i'm certain we disagree on many things, i trust that his authenticity and his kindness and his love of people that i witnessed on a regular basis so many years ago was genuine and true and remains to this day.

he offers me hope that my nation is not doomed to a slow death-by-divisiveness.  

that's a giant pink bucket of grace right there.