In Short Stories

Life is so messy sometimes; the messiness in my own thoughts and feelings, in my interactions with others and with life.
I used to think that controlling the mess and bringing order would result in peace and serenity. But it doesn’t. Even cleaning up the mess doesn’t; it just makes space for another mess. I’m not saying that one shouldn’t at least do some tidying and cleaning. However one can’t have the expectation of one clean-up lasting forever, and this IS what I always secretly hope…

messy woman.jpg

Living is messy and ever-changing. If it shows itself neat and tidy something is not being lived and might even be stagnating. Life will venture where it will, in spite of us as individuals or as a species. It will keep sprouting unexpectedly and seemingly randomly.

I have been trying to create order; attempting to put and keep things in their place. I have had hopes of conquering mess once and for all, so I can breathe easy and relax. I have found mess hard, disturbing, worrying, ugly and a time-waster. Mess is what needs to be tidied up so real life can begin; a so called fresh start from a clean slate.

I have been annoyed at others who create mess at my feet and demand they tidy up!

But…. life is messy. Relationships are messy. Being part of a family is soooo messy. Being an individual human being leading a human life  in the big wide world is really messy.

The messiness is relentless; I want the mess to end but not life; I want life to attain order and at the same time I want to wonder at its imperfect beauties and unexpected serendipities.

Wanting to be out of mess is wanting things to feel right and uncomplicated, no stains but cleanliness, smooth even surfaces with no splinters.

Those quick moments of no mess that we have in life, by ourselves or with others, are like anchors. We want to keep going back to those moments of stillness, clarity and rightness. We hanker for those past moments, in our minds, remembered as clearly defined islands of satisfaction and ease. They come to stand out in our lives as beacons of happiness, standing tall and standing out due to the light they shine on our mind and our lives.

We forget that something happened before. The beacon has its base firmly in the dirt from which it was created. The messy dirt consisting maybe, of carelessly uttered words followed by regret, our fear-fueled thoughts, our too high expectations of ourselves and others, landing us in feelings of inadequacy, powerlessness, meaninglessness, separation and a tightening of the heart.

Mix all that messiness with our own courage, another’s kindness, or our own or another’s will to love, forgive or not-to-take-it-all-too-seriously, or… even with the subtle whiff of a flower, or a beautiful sunset or your daughters bubbling laugh at her brother’s joke. And… hey presto…. a moment of perfection, beauty and happiness.

An orchestra playing a piece of music will create a particular one-off event of perfection through a messy concoction of skill, tiny mistakes, emotion, individual interpretation, love of music, humidity in the air affecting instruments etc. Have the same music created digitally… ‘perfectly’ … and it will be empty.

Mess is a given; an aspect of life. It comes and goes, it changes. In it we find who we are and what living is about in all its complexity. To find happiness and ease in this mess, we rely on the grace that comes from our own and another’s will to love and our own and…. another’s will to see through the mess to the human life being lived beneath.

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