Saturday, July 18, 2015

What Does It Mean to Face Your Problems?

Wouldn't it be easier to avoid facing one's problems?  Even suffering is easier than facing one's problems -- for a while.  Eventually we put on our big girl or big boy pants and deal with things.  Here's a poem I wrote on the topic in 2005 about things that had happened years earlier.  Here it is years later and there are still many things that need facing - probably always will be.


 "Maybe you never get over anything. You just find a way of carrying it as gently as possible."  -- Bronwen Wallace
Facing it is deciding not to wipe blood off the floor
Well, not so much deciding, as letting it sit there, declaring itself.

          Facing it is sitting alone, 
          watching your 8-year-old play baseball
          in a park on a sunny day
          And when she makes her way around the bases, you think
                   If this is as good as it gets –
                   This is pretty good.

          Facing it is saying to a new lover,
          “What makes your life meaningful?”
          And if he says, “My gun collection,”
          disarming him with a smile
          and cancelling the next date.

          Facing it is seeing it in others
          – an isolated student or neighbour
          entombed in anger
          on the verge of explosion.
          So you listen, just listen – 
           a candle in a cave.

          Then facing it is writing it
          telling it
          to yourself, to another
          to the world.

          Facing it is accepting it
          with compassion and grace
          letting your heart grow wider

          and eventually
          scrubbing the blood off the floor
          packing up and moving on
                   and carrying it with you,
                     . . . gently

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