“When you are joyous, look deeply into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy. When you are sorrowful, look again into your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.” Khalil Gibran
How do you handle disappointment? Does it plunge you into depression or are you able to learn from it and still expect the best from life?
Yesterday I sat in the doctor’s office nervously waiting for him to appear. The silence calmed me a bit as did the smile from my fiancé who was there with me. The doctor came in smiling after having seen the x-rays of the ankle I had broken. “A good sign,” I thought, waiting for him to speak.
We Share Joy Simply By Expressing It
His words were exactly what I wanted to hear. The boot was booted, and I could bear weight again. We were all smiling and I was so happy I forgot to ask the questions I should have asked. He could tell from the smile on my face that he needed to add, “But no jumping or running.” And he laughed joyfully with me.
I may have been seated but I was jumping for joy, and so were the nurse and my fiancé. It was contagious. But that is often the way joy is—it radiates and infects those around us, and before they know it, they are dancing the dance with us.
It’s the small things on this journey that sometimes give the greatest joy—being able to climb up six stairs without falling, being able to sleep with my foot free of the heavy boot, my fiancé bringing me a vase of Gerber daisies, having two hours to sit and talk with my best friend. Even the ice cream I frequently get seemed tastier.
We Experience Sadness Only When We Lose What We Value
When we are forced to focus, we may actually realize that we become sad only when we lose or feel we will lose what we care about. For an independent active person like me, not being able to walk for six weeks was huge. For someone who is sedentary, it might be just an inconvenience. For someone who follows a particular football team, the loss of a game is upsetting. Not being a fan, I wouldn’t even notice.
I value freedom, and I need a lot of it in terms of making my own decisions, following my spiritual path, and writing. None of these were affected by the restrictions I have had recently, but the physical restriction weighed me down so much that I began to get depressed about growing older, and I worried about the time when I would be permanently restricted.
Even When Negative Experiences Occur, We Can Still Expect the Best From Life
At that point, I stopped and thought, “Wait a minute. I never think like this. I always assume I’ll be active until the day I die.” I took a deep breath, did a little meditation, and let the fear go. My sense of well-being returned. What happens, happens, but I’ll always take the best care of myself that I can, so there is no reason to dwell on the worst that could happen. It’s not unreasonable for me to expect all will be well even when, once in a while, negative things happen.
Because I was a dancer for many years, just being able to walk feels like an incredible freedom. I feel like I’m dancing just because I can look other adults in the eye now instead of seeing the world from a knee-level perspective. Everyone is my dancing partner and I’m feeling footloose and fancy free.
© 2014 Georganne Spruce ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5
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