Sometimes, we Smiths (as in Andrea and me) get a little morose. I don’t think we’re depressed - maybe just overly realistic and too in tune with the goings on in the world.
Sometimes, this works to my advantage. Like the time I said to Andrea, “We should buy a place on water.” And Andrea responding by bemoaning the state of our 401k and then agreeing. Or when I spend her money playing video games.
Last Monday, we left our cottage early and went through the Hardee’s drive thru. We had been inspired by a bit that comedian Fortune Feimster did on Hardee’s biscuits. We got a sandwich but I’d really like to take the biscuit and slather it with jam.
As we prepared to leave, the drive thru worker said, “Have a blessed day.”
“What would a blessed day look like?” I wondered aloud, out of ear shot.
Without missing a beat, Andrea immediately replied, “I’d have a blessed day if I won the lottery.”
I like it - dreaming big. Would a blessed day be meaningful? I’d like to think so. Sometimes, I don’t quite understand why we’re all here. Don’t misunderstand this and message me the number of the Samaritans. I question this more when things happen that I can’t understand or I’m moving through a difficult time. Both of which are current truths.
On more than one occasion, I’ve written about how I struggle to let go. This weekend, Andrea and I put a little free library in front of our house. We stocked it with books inside our home that I’ve kept a long while. Books I’ve moved (more than once). Letting go of some of these was cathartic. On the one hand, it was admitting that my “to be read” pile is so long that there is no way I’m going to get back to reading any favorites again. I’m not a particularly nostalgic person, and holding onto things is as nostalgic as I get. I didn’t used to be this way. But these books. I can’t tell you their plot - the plot is long forgotten. But I can tell you where I was when I read them. I remember being on a beach in Nags Head reading The Goon Squad, then reading White Teeth. I can tell you how the books made me feel. I can remember the sound of the ocean and the feel of sun on my face when I read these book on the beach.
I couldn’t let them all go - all the books I’ve read. I held onto Dry by Augusten Burroughs because I read it when I was less than 90-days sober and I thought, “Well. If this guy can do it, maybe I can do it.” And I emailed Burroughs and he responded and I later met him in Western MA and he signed my book. Turns out that I could do it and have done it for 20 years. That book - that book stays.
Other things are harder to let go of than books. Like - trying to control the outcome. Or the suffering of others - not that you let go of it per se, you carry that for them, with others. Alone, the weight it is too much. Unbearable.
Maybe that’s part of the secret to having a blessed day? Sharing it with others. Asking for help. Making time for yourself and for self care even when your calendar is stretched to breaking. That’s the time you need it most - all of it.