Every day, we are asked to find a center, a place of calm and good feeling in the face of challenges from the outside, challenges within. My car broke down yesterday, and all kinds of warning lights were flashing. I took it to my mechanic, and he said he fixed it, but it wasn't fixed, and I took it to another mechanic who needs it overnight. We thought we had a solid buyer for the farm, the buyer didn't want the farm. Another potential buyer from the Midwest turned out to want to meet me and the dogs, but didn't want the house. I am grateful I don't listen to the news and get the earth's bad news every day all day.
That is the spiritual quest isn't it? My work day was broken up, melted away. Okay, I said. Okay. I am the richest man in the world, I said. No one has it better than I do. I looked over at Maria and gave her a hug and I thought, and then I said "when you are in my arms I have all the wealth and glory and good fortune that there is in the world." And she just gave me the sweetest smile, and the world was so filled with light and color I could barely open my eyes.
Everyone's troubles are worse than mine. I had begun to see the day as a struggle story, and then checked myself. For much of my life, I told struggle stories. About my life, my work, my publisher, book tours, phone companies, computers, my family. I see the world differently now. I am, like all crazy people, prone to relapse. I check myself. My life is not a struggle. My life is not an argument. The person who ought to buy the farm will, the person who doesn't belong on the the farm won't. Cars are machines and they will have problems.
Struggle stories are the currency of our social networks. The price of things. Politicians. The Left and the Right. Bosses and health care, customer service and tech support, phone trees and corporate callousness. I read my Thoreau every morning. We make our own life. We choose our stories.
I am in a good flow of life, and that's where I will swim. That's my river. Struggle stories, like the sad game, steal our wealth. I have better stories to tell.