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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

Fix You

I’m a fixer. Give me a problem, and I can solve it. I don’t say this to brag. I mean, likely, I got good at solving problems because I have had many opportunities (i.e. problems) to solve. My belief in my ability to solve problems deepened after reading Marie Forleo’s book Everything is Figureoutable, which centers on retraining your brain to think more creatively and positively in the face of setbacks.


Marie’s mom once told her, “Nothing in life is that complicated. You can do whatever you set your mind to if you roll up your sleeves. Everything is figureoutable.”


My mom gave me similar advice when I was growing up, telling me that I could accomplish whatever I set my mind to. This has proven true.


But here is what I cannot do: help others. Because what I mean by “help others” is take a magic wand and fix whatever bullshit life has heaped upon them. I’d like to wave a wand and heal their illnesses – mental or physical. Their addictions. Their job loss. Their grief. Their bruised, battered, and often broken relationships. Mom hadn’t mentioned that if I set my mind to healing or helping others, it doesn’t work.


To be fair, no one ever came and waved a magic wand in my direction. I had to journey through the mud and muck myself. But, as Thich Nhat Hanh said, “No mud, no lotus.” Can you appreciate the lotus without going through the mud? It’s tempting to say yes, but I think the mud makes you appreciate the lotus more. This logic works for me until I consider friends who have struggled with illness that’s no fault of their own. Where’s the lotus in that? I don’t know because I’m lucky with my health – I say lucky because it often seems so random.


I used to confuse “help” with “fix.” Recently, I said, “I don’t try to fix things anymore.”  After a pause, I admitted, “Well, I did have a recent relapse with that, but overall.” Because by things, I meant people. People are messy. Honestly, they are not problems that need to be solved. I know this. I also know witnessing someone else’s suffering, self-inflicted or otherwise, can be painful. I want for others what I’ve found for myself – peace. But again, no magic wand here. Just digging in and doing the work. The work has been like an onion, I peel one layer, only to discover that another layer awaits. How many layers are there?


Maybe part of doing the work is so we can bear witness to and be there for others. As Ram Dass said, “We’re all just walking each other home.”



 

Fix You, Coldplay

When you try your best but you don't succeed

When you get what you want but not what you need

When you feel so tired but you can't sleep

Stuck in reverse

 

When the tears come streaming down your face

When you lose something you can't replace

When you love someone but it goes to waste

Could it be worse?

 

Lights will guide you home

And ignite your bones

And I will try to fix you

 

High up above or down below

When you're too in love to let it go

If you never try you'll never know

Just what you're worth

 

Lights will guide you home

And ignite your bones

And I will try to fix you

 

Tears come streaming down your face

When you lose something you cannot replace

Tears come streaming down your face

And I

 

Tears come streaming down your face

I promise you I will learn from all my mistakes

Tears come streaming down your face

And I

 

Lights will guide you home

And ignite your bones

And I will try to fix you

 

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