Sunday, July 15, 2012

Anatomy of a Disappointment

Okay, this isn't about the disappointment itself . . . meaning not the particulars of a single event in time and space, but about the logic or "illogic" of the effects of the disappointment for all of us

I remember when I was about six years old and I was somewhere with my mother. I can't remember what was going on, but I do remember . . . rather clearly . . . her telling some of her friends that "he (speaking of me) feels things very deeply."  That's been my problem my whole life.

But I'm not alone. I think many of us wrestle with the aftermath of loss and pain. Some people seem to stand up and walk away from disaster and never look back.  I still have the intuition that what they are doing isn't processing it better, but suppressing it more.  Those same people do tend to live more in the plastic world in my opinion.

So, yesterday I had a huge disappointment.  I won't say what it was as not to distract from the point in the same way a trauma surgeon can't obsess about the weapon as he must devote his attention to the wound.  And this isn't meant to be about me either . . . but how we humans, in general, deal with disappointment.

I took a long walk last night above the sea.  I listened to the voices inside my head, what they were trying to tell me.  There were many, such as, "you are a failure."  But one voice stood out beyond all the others and that is the sense of unfairness.

I believe more than many that life is brutally unfair. I've seen the suffering in the developing world where good, hard-working people are crushed under the thumb of evil dictators, or under the rocks of a mountain top which fell upon them after the tectonic plates simply readjusted to make themselves feel less cramped. And it seems that the most vulnerable and innocent suffer the most.

But back to my own little private struggle, I noticed how every cell inside me seems to resonate with justice and fairness.  God is just, thus we were created with this overwhelming sense of fairness and justice. So when we live in a world where fairness is supplanted by evil, the reverberations almost shatter us like a crystal wine glass in the wake of a operatic voice of high intensity.

In my case the "shattering" is almost always a flow into anger.  Unfairness pisses me off.  I hate it when the children of the world suffer . . . I hate it even more (because I'm a self-centered person) when I am dealt unfairness.

So as I walked above the water and the waves, and I let my mind settle back on the event, I feel my blood pressure going up, my palms becoming sweaty and my gut churn.

I turn the corner up the trail and know that for my own well being, I have to let it alone. What is . . . is what it is.  I have to walk away. There is  at time for fighting against injustice, especially when it comes to others, and there is a time for moving on.  Moving on is so hard. I have this fault of allowing the injustices turn to anger and imaginary revenge.

It seems to make so much sense to me that God's greatest mission for us on this earth is to seek justice. 

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