Which Show Is Going on?

This is the week it all falls apart. By which I don’t mean, this is the only week in my life things have ever fallen apart, but rather, this is a fine exemplar of the type.

Here are some possible distinguishing characteristics of this type of week:

  • The second week back from vacation
  • The second week into trying to establish new habits
  • The week I realize a deadline is much closer than it seemed only a few days ago
  • The week I get caught up in getting things done
  • The week I start to believe I can impose a routine of perfection on my life
  • The week there must be some cosmic explanation—like solar flares—for my moods because I sure can’t figure out why I’m being so difficult

Here is how the script goes: I think I am pretty on top of it, as in, walking around with my own theme music. For example, this week, a friend said she was feeling anxious, and I thought, oh, I have these great new habits that could help with that. Then reality happens. For example, I count the number of days until a deadline. Music changes to Psycho theme.

Act II: This could go many ways. I could look at the week’s distinguishing characteristics and realize none of them are actually a big deal. I could breathe in God loving me through and through and through, Psycho music and all, as Jim Finley would say. I could go for a walk or do something creative.

But I like to save all of that for Act III, heighten the suspense, build dramatic tension. Act II consists of confusing my self—hidden with Christ in God—with any number of exterior, ego-driven criteria. For example, why am I so bad at ironing or keeping plants alive or meeting deadlines?

If I choose to argue with the voice asking that question, I’m doomed. We’ll never make it to Act III because the voice will not have a logical conversation. It will simply place me again and again at the beginning of Act II.

If, on the other hand, I can remember that my life is not about me, that I am part of a much bigger Whole, then I can see that the show is already going on and inviting me to join in.

3 thoughts on “Which Show Is Going on?

  1. Rachel
    Well said.
    I remember coming home after a beautiful 10 day silent retreat.

    I remember a long ACT 1. It was so well written.
    The character was a Saint. I was type cast. So what, I loved that part.

    There was a long intermission, where , I got lost. I could not find my way back to the stage until right before curtain. Act 2 began. I was nervous. I blew my lines. I began to ad lib. It was a disaster.

    And can you believe it, the Director brought in my understudy for Act 3. I was humiliated. It seemed my career was over.
    I still go to auditions. I’m hoping for another run. I would love to get to Act 3.
    I have it in me. I believe.
    -Miguel

  2. Miguel, what a fantastic reply. Rachel, what a fantastic script. I don’t mean “fantasy” fantastic, I mean wonderful and spot on.

    I am in the middle of asking how I know when I need to DO something, and when I need to let go of it. Or maybe, how to manage both at the same time. When I can stay in the middle, things get done, I feel pretty good, and I’m not obsessing. Ha! I get flashes. More like a movie with fast-cut edits.

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