So it is what it is! Losing a loving parent when the other is abusive brings a turmoil. You live everyday running from yourself and trying to escape reality. No help arrives. No healing magic occurs. You just do not want to think about healing and move on with life apparently. Then a day comes when all is shattered again. The string around your neck pulls you back and you cannot run now. This is the time when you need to shed tears. You feel helpless. This is the time when you meet yourself.
For me, this is the time… I am sitting here in this small room cluttered with everything that can be here. And this is the time. Tears are filling up in my eyes, making the screen look blurred. I am feeling like something is stuck in my throat. My eyes are burning. My breathe is… Well, when I woke up the dream somehow made its way to the reality. I met my beloved mother. I know she is free now and doing what a free soul would do after escaping the prison of life.
Dreams are metaphors, maybe. When they repeat your past, you experience everything again. That is why I am tired. My soul is falling down the spiral again and I am waiting for a light to shine so that I can find the way back up. It is the time when I wait for the shepherd. I know, he will arrive. When? I don’t know. But he arrives when I least expect him. Maybe, he is on his way.
I wish everyone who is going through bad times or some kind of stress disorders to be healed. May God heal us. Amen. I may not supposed to be posting a prayer that appears so simple, here. But I did this. I do not want anyone to feel what I am feeling right now. It is a reminder for those who see this post. Please, pray for all the struggling souls. That’s how you can contribute to bring the blessings to earth. Thank you.
It may not be a perfect start for a blog post; because ultimately we all want audience. Many of the times I do care, but sometimes I do not care about what people think and who would read my writings. Well, I woke up yesterday but couldn’t find the time to write anything. I was feeling like I had not been writing for many days. It was just a few minutes ago that I checked my last post date. I wrote my last post on 3rd April and today is 8th; only 4 days in between. But for me it was a long time. Why I did not write? I did not have anything to write.
But, yesterday, something strange happened. Have you ever experience ‘wandering’? Strolling with nothing on your mind; just walking and observing surroundings. And I am not talking about rambling with your dog on walkways surrounded by green fields. I am talking about going to small roadside bazars, watching people arguing when bargaining over a few pennies. There, shopping choices are apparently many but possibilities are limited. I am talking about a walk on small lanes and along unfinished road tracks, dusty and muddy.
I went on such a walk yesterday. Alone. Not with my friend this time. So, you may anticipate what a women walking alone in such areas could experience; scorching hungry dirty gazes, evil grins. But it was not the center of my attention. I just kept moving ahead. I was feeling something else; a connection that was binding me with all the surroundings. The energy that was so engaging that I did not had even a millionth of a moment to pay attention to all the negativity. I was alone, but I was feeling the traces of the shepherd’s personality even here! Everywhere! In such a place that was just opposite to the mere glimpse of him. I remember him once saying, ” Want to experience the purity? Look into a dirty pool where that flower blooms.”
A maybe 12 year old buying cheap dresses with her mother and father. I felt the innocence in her eyes that sparkled when the shopkeeper showed her something colorful.
I literally took a deep breath when there was dust everywhere and an uncovered sewerage line. Gross? Yeah, call me crazy. I wanted to feel the connection more deeply. There were houses there. People live there. They breathe. There were plants, grass and flowers along that dirty water way. Those remind me of the shepherd. The eyes of toddlers, their smiles, their cute moves, everything symbolized his speech. I noticed a wall with very beautiful hand painted pictures. There was some artist nearby.
An old man was selling fruit in front of a huge shopping mall keeping an eye on a 5,6 year old kid who probably was his grandson. The kid was sitting on the stairs of the mall writing in his small copy without noticing other kids of his age in the mall enjoying, buying expensive fun stuff and new clothes with their parents. The kid was seemed contented with his cheap looking but clean dress….
(to be cont.)
So, I was here on WordPress and typing my “intellectual posts” and in my mind I had become a widely known writer after typing a few lines. Suddenly, he came. Yes, yes, my shepherd friend.
I had typed this so far. Have you ever wonder we ask a lot and don’t thank that much? We cannot go a few minutes without God’s blessing (think about oxygen in the air).
He added, “We are designed to depend on Him.”
“You!”, I was astonished. “Where you come from all of a sudden?” My eyes could easily break that lady’s eye popping world record.
“I was passing by and saw you writing.” he replied.
“Okay. Well, now I should ask you how we can thank God. I understand what you said; we are designed to depend on Him.”
“It is simple.” Yes, for you. How can he be always right? I thought.
He smiled and I could not look into his eyes. He was a mind reader. I had forgot.
“Say ‘Thank you, God’, he continued, ” and feel the thankfulness and his love.”
“I want to do more.” I said
“Well, you cannot pay thanks equal to his favors for you. He is your creator.”
“I know. But I want to thank Him and be one in those who he considered Thankful.” I was serious.
“Okay then I have an advice for you. Thank him whenever you feel that you should be thankful. Just say, ‘Thank you God’ with all your heart. And help others. You don’t know how much He loves you and His other creatures. If you will help His creatures He will be very happy with you. He loves you thousands times more than your mother. And you know how a women feels when someone helps her child.”
We had a party yesterday. You know, I and my shepherd friend. No need to mention the ‘surprise visit’.
Nowadays, my mind is revolving around some specific human behavior; abuse. This is making me look like I am sick. And no doubt the memories and a lot that is going on right now, has make me sick, Headache is my fellow now. Well, he noticed and through his remarkable knowledge of reading faces (I think, he can read minds), he start telling me his life experiences. He also had abusive people in his life. On the contrary, I always believed that he has had a very peaceful life. He told me a lot about those people and how he lived in between them. Long story short. He told me, “Do not bring them everywhere you go.”
“I have left them.”
“Don’t carry them in your hearts then. Otherwise, you will ruin your present, your future. Lets party!”
Our party is not like others, you know. We eat very strange but delicious food. We talk a lot. Most of the time I am listening.
I am not a good writer, but even if I were Shakespeare I could not write the exact feelings that I experience during our small 2 person conferences.
My shepherd friend is really cool.. witty, I must say. Once I was not in the mood to listen his routine talks about being positive and all. He said, “The chances of a negative event is equal to the chances of something good”.
I asked in return, “Who guarantees a positive outcome of any event?” Oh yes, I was feeling cranky.
“Who guarantees a negative outcome of any event?” He replied, “Don’t worry!” He smiled.
It had been so long. My shepherd friend did not visit me. Weather was not good here. But today he came. He bought freshly baked cookies. You know how much I love chocolate chip cookies! To tell you the truth, they make me feel like I am having royal breakfast. Well, as my shepherd friend is the greatest chef I have ever met, I loved the cookies he brought today.
“Where were you?” I asked.
“Well, I am coming here daily nowadays. You seem busy in something.”
“Busy? Me? No. I am just doing the routine things. I did not know when you came. Are you coming daily? Really?”
“You were busy. You did not even notice me. I come daily here.”
“I am sorry.”
“Don’t be. We are friends.” he said. “Lets thank God for everything”.
“What? Is it some kind of activity or ritual…” I couldn’t complete the sentence. I saw lights showering all over my farm and the meadows, illuminating everything. I just fell down on my knees and thank God. For what? I cannot enlist everything, every blessing. I thanked God and felt like the thankfulness is the light coming from some unknown resource and filling up in my heart. My heart felt like a glowing bulb emitting light and I fell asleep.
I am typing this now. It is difficult to open eyes and avoid typos. My friend is still here with me. My heart is still glowing. My friend seems someone out of this world. It seems like it is difficult to understand him. He said that he was coming here daily. When? I don’t know. I was waiting for him. He never tell lies. I know he was coming here if he is saying so, but why I did not notice although I was waiting for him? I don’t have the answer yet.
My shepherd friend visited me today and it was a surprise, again! He always surprises me, but sometimes his surprise visits are extraordinary. He ‘caught me in the act’, according to his terminology.
“Why the long face?” his voice was enough to make me jump. I was sitting beside my chicken coop, head tilted and vision set on a grass leaf, right on the shady side of the leaf. The sun was rising and the golden sunshine was making the grass glow. I was not present there mentally. I was looking at the shady side of the leaf apparently, but my mind was being dragged into the ‘black hole’. Again, ‘black hole’ is his term he use to describe negativity.
Well, he really have ‘caught me in the act’. I was thinking about my deceased grand mother. I actually was not lucky enough to see my parents. My father died before my birth. My mother could not bear the loss and died right after I took my first breathe. I never really feel any heartache because of this. I had my grandma to look after me and she was a wonderful lady.
“You kinda scared me!” I said
He laughed. “It is called surprise, my dear friend. What happened to you?”
“Nothing. You mean No-good-thing?”
“I am missing my grandma. Sometimes I miss her so much. Why did God chose me to bear such losses. All I have was my grandma in the name of family.
“Well, I must say, you are again disturbing yourself and worrying about God business. He send your grandma to this world years before you. She spent her life here and left after the decided time.”
“I know. Where is your herd?” I changed the topic.
“Nearby. Want some delicious food? Didn’t you make coffee today?”
“Yes. I did.”
He opened his bag and took out strange but surprisingly delicious snacks.
“How do you make these?”
“Chef’s secret.” he winked.
“I wish I were like you.”
“You mean old?” he laughed.
“So, you think I am old.” he laughed again.
“What is this?” I pointed to something he had wrapped in cloth. “Looks like a box.”
“Yes, it is box of wonders. And it is the answer to the question you always ask, ‘ Why are you so carefree?’ he unwrapped the box. It was made of wood and to be honest I have never seen such a beautiful design made on wood before. He opened it. There was a book wrapped in a beautiful colorful velvet cloth.
He opened the book. It was the Holy Book.
“It is the answer to my question that why you don’t take stress? I have read it before.”
“That’s my point, friend. You have read it and I believe in it.”
“I cannot believe I turned 30.”
“40! You are now old, man!”
“Wrinkles! I will look creepy in the years to come!”
“My dad had a heartache. He had a huge business loss.”
“She wants divorce.”
“You do not love me anymore.”
“I am here in old age home and my daughter in law has snatched my son from me.”
“Sigh! Those golden old days! I remember when I was…..”
We have heard all the above and a lot more complains. We don’t like changes, but everything is prone to change. We need sunshine to ripe our crops, but if the sun shines all the time the crop will get withered. Days transform into nights. Seasons change. Time passes. We cannot be young for as long as we live as we cannot be a toddler for all our lives. Once we lived in caves now we build houses. Once we were dependent on our parents for survival, but now we do not ask them to feed us. Imagine a 12 year old still crawling because he does not want to change. Imagine your old KG friend still stealing your lunch. Imagine your are still after your first crush.
Everything changes, everyone changes. In most cases, we accept those changes. And when we accept we transform ourselves and get comfortable with the new state. The problem begins when we refuse to accept. The lack or absence of acceptance causes discomfort and distress.
How can we accept the changes?
We can train our mind to accept changes. It is simple. But it takes time. Follow these steps and see results.
1. Act as if you have accepted. Try to control your mind, do not let your mind control you.
2. Stop whining.
3. Do what you enjoy the most.
4. Keep yourself busy.
5 Talk to yourself. Obviously, you do not want to do this in front of everyone. Sit in front of a mirror and tell yourself that everything is fine. You are still beautiful. You are emotionally independent. You are capable to accept the changes. You are capable to move on. You are strong. Say whatever lifts your spirit, but do not ‘console’.
6.Be patient and pray.
Try the above exercise and you will be surprised to see a whole new ‘You’.
Embrace the changes!
My shepherd friend is so generous. He never hesitates to share his knowledge. His words are chests of treasure. When he speaks all else seems to be quiet. It seems like even the wind stops here to listen to him.
Today we are sitting in our respective places like always; he is sitting under the tree and I am sitting by the fence of my farm. Weather is partially cloudy and we are eating my home baked cookies with coffee. He has brought something to eat like always. I do not know the name, but these are delicious; small round buns with delicious filling.
“Do you know there are signals around here that your laptop catches and connects to the internet as you call it?”, he says sipping his coffee and looking somewhere in the sky.
“Yes, I know. Can you see those signals?” I followed his vision with a curious dumb look on my face.
“No.”, he laughs, ” I cannot. I am not some super-human.”
I smile; it is all I could do when he laughs at me, but his laughter does not have offending tone. We enjoy each other’s company.
“Why do you think my book does not catch those signals?” , he asks.
“Because it is a book. It is not a machine or something. ” I say. He never ask foolish questions.
“Is that a machine?” He takes out his small radio from his bag.
“Yes. It is.”
“It cannot connect to the internet. It is even unable to catch the video of the songs, that I listen”.
“It is because it was not being designed to do so. It plays sound, not pictures.”
“It just catches another type of signals. Right?”
“It is because it was designed so. Isn’t it?”
“You know we are machines. We humans, are machines. We have many signals kinds of signals around us. Grief, despair, hope, sorrow, happiness, power, helplessness etc. We catch all of them. We should process the ones that benefit us. And delete the rest.”
“So there must be some anti-virus software programs for humans too,” I says jokingly.
“Yes, there is. It is called prayer. Pray in order to get help from the One who created you. From all the signals receive and cherish those which are positive. Remember, these signals are everywhere, pick the good ones all the time wherever you go, whatever you do. Smile, be thankful and build an ARK. Watch Evan Almighty, if you want to know what ark truly is?”
I smile. I have watched the movie, but I do not have to build an ark like Noah’s ark. I just have to practice A Random act of Kindness.
Yesterday, the shepherd and I talked for about an hour. Whenever he visits the lands near to my farm I always invite him to have tea and biscuits with me. He always share his food with me. And to be honest, his food is always so delicious that sometimes I doubt that he is a chef too.
He had left but his voice was still echoing in my head. Do you run the world business?
I see above the clouds were floating in the sky and the sunshine was seemed to play hide and seek with the land. I was confused. My mind was daggling between the two extremes; faith and fear.
The sun, the clouds, the weather, the grass in pasture, my breathe, my heartbeat; all that was around me and within me, was not being run by me. How would I fed my cattle on my own? How would I made my respiratory system, my blood circulating system running without the One who was running it?
I, like my old shepherd friend, was feeling silly. I was afraid too. I was afraid of dark; The dark that always ate up all the green of my farm at night; the dark that always made me feel helpless and unable to see anyone who could harm my cattle when I was in my house. Why I was feeling silly? I was feeling silly because I came to understood something that I already knew.
Who took care of my cattle when I sat with the shepherd? Who used to took away the dark and brought the sun back to the sky in the morning? Who made me forget my bad days when I laugh at the jokes of my shepherd friend?
I knew the answer. I understood it, then. But why was the confusion there? Why was I finding myself swinging between fair and faith?
I thought. I thought for days, for nights. I thought it all the time until today. I know it now.
I need to fear because God does not want me to be careless. He does not want me to just sit back, relax and forget all my duties. My farm and cattle need me. God wants me to take care of them. God wants me to be dutiful.
I need to have faith because God does not want me to have fear to the point of anxiety or depression. He wants me to know that He is there with me all the time; be it a bright sunny day or one of the darkest nights.
I need to have enough fear to lock the door, and I need to have enough faith to sleep believing that no one will break that lock.
So, I should not swing in between the two extremes; I should just stay and relax in between faith and fear.