It Is Always Now
But you know what? They didn't have worse problems than mine; they just had different ones. Pain is relative, and personal, and subjective. I was bawling because I felt alone, and abandoned, and that's what people do sometimes when they feel abandoned: cry like babies and hope someone will hear. But some of the people in that room would have loved to be left alone, for just five minutes--the harried mother, the patient husband taking verbal abuse--they'd have traded places with me in a second. From the depths of your own pain, it can seem like none of the other humans really understand.
They do, though. After a very difficult day at work I came home still feeling isolated and misunderstood, to be greeted by a text from a friend who knew nothing about what I was going through. She just wanted to say hello. And that she loved me. And she sent me this:
It turns out that I can do "now." I can't do the past again and the future, honestly, doesn't look all that great. But Now, well, it's just me on the couch with a headache and some fresh tears and a little bit of hope. It's not comfortable, but it's doable. It's just a moment. I'm breathing into this moment--and this one--and this one. I still have to deal with tomorrow, but not Now. Now is filled with its own beauty, its own ache, it is filled with the love of a friend and the peaceful sleep of my dog at my feet. And I find that if I give thanks, then something out there--or in here--returns that gratitude with a quiet nod. It's enough for Now.