Many years ago I had a spiritual teacher who said to me that whenever I was spinning out of control with my emotions to think of the word JOY and focus on it. She said, “When you truly focus on the word, especially out loud, you cannot help but smile.” It’s true! To this day when I think of joy I do smile. It brings me into a momentary state of euphoria. On the same token I have found that there are other words that bring up images when I think of them. One of them is “chaos.” Just the thought of that word brings an image of a tornado and I can feel my emotions caught up in destruction. This holiday season has been full of moments that fit the image of the word chaos.
Now, in the midst of beginning anew, I am trying to recollect my sensitiveness. It’s been a hell of a few weeks with some lovely moments as well. Things have come up and out in more ways than I care to rationalize. Folks have been hurt in my presence, sometimes because of my own stupid and careless behavior, when chaos has been around. Other times just because the cosmic energy has shifted and negativity has visited from elsewhere. I take full responsibility for my ego stepping in at times. Self preservation is not necessarily a timing friend, especially when I should be reciting the word JOY over and over in those moments. I forget to do it through the heat of uncomfortable situations.
But, this is the thing about being human: we make mistakes. We all get caught in the tornado of emotions, mostly with things that don’t pertain to the present moment. The holidays, because they are full of expectations and high energy events involving food, drinking, and company, can add to the topsy-turvy of emotional disorder. Things are magnified in ways that make no sense. It’s in those times that perhaps my hippie ways should take others by the hand and start singing “KUMBAYA” or chanting “Om…Namaste!” I seem to forget that as well.
I sit now in the middle of the night trying to gather my thoughts with the word JOY! A smile appears on my face but my heart isn’t really feeling it. I have been running on empty for weeks now. I have to admit that I will not do this again next year…not like this. I cannot blame this on anyone but myself. And, for this I do apologize to those around me. In order for me to feel the word JOY I must find the right circumstances and events that pertain to it.
In the name of chaos I can only think that stress gathers in moments of presumption, expectancy and misunderstandings. What is it about the holidays that make people react in such hyper and sensitive ways? I have heard from others that this particular year has been truly a challenging one. I have my own preconceptions about the season and had hoped to skip it altogether. I vow next year to do just that because a tropical island isolated from the world will be the best cure for holiday blues.
I leave this small reflection upon a page: “I am responsible for myself. I am accountable for my behavior. I am fully conscious of my actions and reactions. I promise to treat each person, including myself, with sacredness, compassionate love, recognition and understanding through the open heart of Divinity.”
To all of you who have been stressed or hurt this past season, cut yourself some slack. It’s the holidays. Make your own mantra of truth and forgive yourself and those who have come into your spaces. It’s a new day, a new year, and the best time to make amends with your spirit. We are all humans taking each other home through mistakes, lessons, and stumbles. We can try to erase the chaos and focus on the joy. No one said it was easy….but it’s sure worth the journey. Mucho love to you!