Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Speaking of Fine

I read an interesting blog entry this morning by Al Andrews on Donald Miller's Storyline blog. It was called "What To Say When Everything is Not Fine." You can read it here (but promise to come back...Donald's blog is a vortex of good things...)

It basically was addressing why we feel the need to say we're fine when we're really not, particularly in the context of meeting up with a friend or an acquaintance. I've been thinking about it all day and it really has me wondering what it is we fear in being vulnerable. Now, if you know me at all, you know that I am not going to persuade anyone that we should be blurting out our medical history or the details of our tempestuous on-again-off-again relationships woes, but I will say that I often err on the side of answering, "I'm fine" when really I'm not. And, to be honest, I often walk away feeling somewhat disenchanted with myself in that type of interaction. If I meet someone who I consider a friend or a kindred spirit type, I actually demean the relationship when I cover up the truth of my reality. Not only am I being false in lying (however socially acceptable that is in this instance) but I'm also putting out a sense of well being that may cause my friend to think that I have everything under control even though they know circumstances say different.

I would go so far as to say that I might even be putting them in a position to lie back to me, to cover their feelings,  or to feel badly that if I, in the gong show that is my life, am handling it so well, perhaps he/she isn't handling their own circumstances with such amazing poise and dignity. (Feel free to choke on your morning coffee here...)

So, even though you haven't asked, here's the raw truth right now. I'm doing okay at best. Having my position cut and being unemployed wasn't in my summer plans. I was hoping to ramp up the work I was doing building on the momentum I had, not being cut loose and figuring out how to move forward.  I am still disentangling from the position while looking for new work, simply because everyone else in the office is on holidays - that bites a little, if I'm being honest.  I told a friend who is in the same position having just lost her job unexpectedly that I have had to stop following the social media of people I worked alongside who are living at the lake this summer while I'm dropping resumes and reading rejection letters. It's just the reality of this stage of life.

And yet, though our holiday plans became a stay-cation, there's a lot of lovely things about this period if I can stop and remember. I get out on the river at least once a week to paddle. I spent an unexpected few days with my sister in laws and friends out in Manitoba...that was a bonus. And even our inability to travel as we would have liked meant that we explored some unique and interesting adventures and places we would likely have missed in our hometown. It's not all doom and gloom...except when it is.

I've been comparing it in my mind to a summer storm. It blows in, wrecks plans, makes lots of noise and rattles everyone....but when it leaves, the summer days seem fresher and more lovely because it passed through.  So, I took a few minutes to look through some photos of the last week and I would say that probably they portray that life is pretty sweet. And in fact, it is. I am just reminded of what my wise friend, Rich Shannon, told me once...that anything online is just a snapshot of that particular moment in time...not the full story. So, what you won't see is the fingers-crossed-hoping-the-debit-card-goes-through....the racing in my brain even while floating in my friends' beautiful pool... or the watching of the clock as I take the dog to our favourite place for a run in the river, not wanting to miss a potential call back on a job application. But, you know what? I'm glad you don't see those things. They're not what I want to take away from the beauty of all we are able to enjoy in these days.

The boys at Blue Mountain Adventure Ziplines

Our family had the place to ourselves and we had an amazing time!

The beauty of the prairies in the summer is unbelievable.

Road trip to Alberta for a wedding

Catching up with old friends before they move overseas...

A little reminder at my seat at the wedding

Beauty in this season

Berries and blue skies in our favourite park

Charlie and I having fun at the river...just us on a weekday!

Easton and Simon taking relaxation to the next level

Finding rest in Margie's pool

Venturing out on Rock Lake with Kim

So, yes, life isn't a bowl of cherries. It's not. And it won't be for a while, I guess. But I'm just fine. I really am.

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