Friday, September 10, 2010

It's all in the 'tude

I wonder if others notice that messages start streaming in from different sources in the universe when you are vulnerable. I do. Maybe they are always there but when your defenses are down, you are more vulnerable and more open to the cosmos. Before I left the house this morning to walk my dog, there was a recuperating Iraqi Vet on television. He lost two friends on the battlefield as well as his legs. His recovery was challenging if not grueling. He spoke about his attitude as being the one variable that only he could control. I left the house this morning thinking that along with visualizing a calm a.m. rising, I could also fine tune my attitude. After all, my attitude is just how I see things. It's the frame that I put around the events in my life. I look back at my own family and the dysfunction that resulted in a rag tag bunch of people devoid of bonds and with blood ties only. That resonates with me. I grew up feeling disenfranchised from a family who screamed, mocked, assigned blame to a family target, never expressed and/or resolved feelings and who demonstrated no compassion whatsoever nor did they encourage other family members in such attempts. I recall sitting at my desk as a teenager writing pages on lined school paper to a facsimile of a picture of God by Michelangelo. I wrote page after page trying to elicit compassion, understanding and guidance from a picture of a picture! Today I write this blog and my picture is a more peaceful me.

So now back to the 'tude thing. When my kids tell me about their difficulties, I feel a visceral heart stopping. I am caught in the moment. I have to adjust my attitude to this is what is happening now but there will be a solution and a resolution later. I do not have to provide the Rx. Sometimes their drama feels overwhelming to me. They both have been in and out of trauma dramas. They rely on me for feedback. They've both told me that I provide wisdom and perspective. I am happy to provide the common sense. I'm glad to own some. The irony for me is that I receive so little compassion from them. But I am astutely aware that I can only change me so I will continue to provide "motherly" advice and expect none back in return.

Tonight before I go to sleep, I will visualize a quiet and calm a.m. awakening. I will envision remaining calm when my daughter calls to chronicle a nasty custody case for my Grandson. I will continue to try and be her rock. And I will tell myself that issues come and go. They do not remain static and I will punctuate on the resolution rather than the details of the crisis dujour. Hopefully, tomorrow will bring peace, a lightened load on my heart and an optimistic attitude. I've never worked so hard on feeling good. Perhaps I took it for granted. It's not a given, I am appreciating.