Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Unexpected ripples

One of the women in my spirituality class yesterday mentioned the pleasure she finds in looking at circular ripples like these.

It made me think of this picture from the California Academy of Sciences, which I've been meaning to share with you; there is something very soothing about both the ripples and the colors of this aquarium shot.

But I also realized yesterday, in talking with my husband, that not all ripples are calming.  I was trying to explain to him how much I wish he would begin actively looking for work, and as I began to articulate the feeling it quickly became apparent that I'd tapped into some sort of volcano; that actually I've been upset for some time -- however much I've tried to stay calm and go with the flow -- by his procrastination in this area.

Once released, of course, it was hard to stem the tide of feelings; they were rippling out with a momentum of their own.  I never actually yelled, or burst into tears (though I felt myself on the edge of both), but I could feel how deeply distraught I've been about this situation, and, worse yet, how long it's been coloring my interactions with him, and how rude I've become to him.

Yes, I get that by ordinary standards these variations in my behavior are small, but I also realize I've not been liking myself all that much lately, precisely because of my reluctance to engage in meaningless chatter with him.  Apparently some part of me decided -- without actually checking with the rest of me -- that if he wasn't talking about his job hunt I wasn't interested in what he had to say.

It's pretty disturbing to see how unconscious I can be even when I'm making a deliberate effort to be more conscious.  Disturbing also to see how separate I can feel when I work so hard toward oneness.  Fortunately we are reading about acceptance in spirituality class, and this week's learning is to accept, not only the challenges life throws us, but also our own sometimes fishy responses.

And so I look at this image and long to slip into its depth and color; to accept that the ripples of feeling may not just be on the surface; may be bubbling up from a far deeper place than the reflections I've been sharing.  Nothing here is all that clear; there are lots of distortions, and will continue to be for a while.  And it's all good -- the striving, the procrastination, the attempts to hide and the overflow, the recognition and the distortion... it's all part of what is here, and what is now.  And every moment I spend getting to know it better, sinking into it, is time well spent.


Joy in Motion said...

I appreciate your honesty about your struggles. I have definitely experienced feelings of resentment, anger, and pain insidiously insert themselves into my dealings with others without my realizing it. It’s amazing how quickly that ripple effect takes place when you don’t deal with such feelings – however small – right away. But it definitely shows how big the small things really are, that there really is no separation, and that our heart and actions are intimately bound. Even when we think we can keep one from the other, reality shows us that we can’t and, even more important, that we’re not meant to.

I discovered your blog last month, and I so much enjoy seeing your new posts magically appear in my Google Reader each day. Thank you for sharing!

Joyce Wycoff said...

Diane ... that image is stunningly beautiful and if you ripple that beautifully, all is well. ;-)

Unknown said...

That's some good work.

Shamima Sultana said...

Really great the photos.