Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Bad Mood (The Murmurs)

Oh my god, I was in the *worst* mood last night - it really was a series of small irritations (a situation at work, frustration with my older son's less-than-responsible ways, having to take my dog to the vet for what turned out to be a corneal ulceration, my daughter's attitude, etc.) that compounded to become the proverbial straw.

I allowed these circumstances to sidetrack me from my walking, when I actually should have channeled my helplessness by pounding the pavement accompanied by some loud and upbeat tunes on my walkman - however, by 11 p.m. I was finally able to curl up with my book club selection (discussion group meeting tomorrow!), The Road by Cormac McCarthy, which I am enjoying very much... beautifully written despite the stark subject matter.

Today I will: know that the dog is getting better through repeated bacterial eyedrops application, look forward to my youngest coming home from college this evening, realize my daughter's and other son's behavior is short-lived, appreciate my husband's desire to soothe without feeling the need to solve... and make a point to walk every night the rest of the week - note to self: don't forget the jacuzzi!

This poem came along at the perfect time, to help me lose momentum and gain perspective - much better now...

POEM: A Prayer by Max Ehrmann

Let me do my work each day;
and if the darkened hours
of despair overcome me, may I
not forget the strength
that comforted me in the
desolation of other times.

May I still remember the bright
hours that found me walking
over the silent hills of my
childhood, or dreaming on the
margin of a quiet river,
when a light glowed within me,
and I promised my early God
to have courage amid the
tempests of the changing years.

Spare me from bitterness
and from the sharp passions of
unguarded moments. May
I not forget that poverty and
riches are of the spirit.
Though the world knows me not,
may my thoughts and actions
be such as shall keep me friendly
with myself.

Lift up my eyes
from the earth, and let me not
forget the uses of the stars.
Forbid that I should judge others
lest I condemn myself.
Let me not follow the clamor of
the world, but walk calmly
in my path.

Give me a few friends
who will love me for what
I am; and keep ever burning
before my vagrant steps
the kindly light of hope.

And though age and infirmity
overtake me, and I come not within
sight of the castle of my dreams,
teach me still to be thankful
for life, and for time's olden
memories that are good and
sweet; and may the evening's
twilight find me gentle still.

QUOTE: "An eye can threaten like a loaded and levelled gun, or it can insult like hissing or kicking; or, in its altered mood, by beams of kindness, it can make the heart dance for joy.... One of the most wonderful things in nature is a glance of the eye; it transcends speech; it is the bodily symbol of identity." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson


  1. Don't forget the jacuzzi...you're killing me, smalls.

    I'm sorry you had a suckfest for a day. [hugs]

  2. Hey, Ames -

    I know, I know... perspective is everything - in the grand scheme of things, I am a very blessed woman!

    But sometimes... it just gets old being *the responsible one* - I'm working hard to take charge of my own life and want everyone else to do the same (except the poor dog, who could not drive himself to the vet, especially with one eye swollen shut... :-)

    You are a dear to stop in here and comment - I am long overdue to weigh in at your space, as so much as sparked a reaction. Despite (or maybe because of) your work setbacks, you are writing more frequently, and always from the heart - I heart you... <3

  3. Yeah, I could see how the responsible thing would get old. I am totally jealous of your life, though. I'll trade you. (=

    And I heart you as well.

  4. Hey, Amy -

    You are exactly where you need to be, even if it doesn't feel that way sometimes - believe me, I've had my share of deep darks (my friend M's term), some of which I've put out here (alcoholic father, suicidal friend), others of which I've chosen to keep close (the isolation of various corporate moves, an ended-with-no-closure relationship)...

    I admire your ability and your willingness to speak so freely of your pain - I love the Jules Shear lyric: "some people are changed by great romances, but it's the wounds that have made us what we are" (although I always want to change the what to who... :-)

    The last two decades have allowed me to reprioritize, soften and follow my passions, while still acknowledging the struggle is an integral component of the journey - I have lived to tell about it and so will you...