What is to be done, or, the non-conformist

The title, if I remember correctly, of Lenin’s little tome.  Good concept, poor execution I always thought, overall.  But as things continue to roll along sometimes it is not so easy to keep a grip on exactly what IS, in fact, to be done and the answers are elusive.   The Partner expressed some frustration of late with my apparently life long high level of non-conformity and it brought that original question to a place where it could be examined in a different light.  Finally.  SHEESH.

The main thing is staying in the present, out of the future and leaving the past where it belongs.  We’re working on that Gentle Reader, feverishly at times.   Success is variable, of course, but every once in a while a concept emerges and clarity seems closer.   This week I realized that part of the thing of it is that we are quite often presented with a situation, event, occurrence, what not, that is just SO NOT WHAT WE WANTED TO SEE that discomfort ensues during the struggle to reframe the offending appearance so it doesn’t look Quite So Awful.  This reframing attempt has the effect of keeping us from seeing and coping effectively with what is before us, in my experience.  Depending on what elements have created this reframing, we can be in quite a pickle- not, essentially, functioning in real time and making healthy decisions.  What really needs to be done is rather take a deep, deep breath, lay the expectations down and step back from them calmly, take a long blink and look again.  It can be surprisingly difficult to do this even though once you do, the simplicity and ease of it is clear.  Let’s just say there were many opportunities for this of late, whether it be about dismal and heart breaking family relations or unwanted illnesses or broken windshields or inexplicably needing another smog test on the car.   Finally, as well, the moment has come to stop trying to make other people happy.  They really have to do that themselves, it turns out, and none of us is obligated to tolerate baseline nastiness.  Who knew?

Part, as well, of dealing with PTSD is just this process of stopping and realizing that one is safe in the current moment, the old thing is not happening and we don’t have to have all those feelings and thoughts and sensations.   It’s kind of like taking off a suit of armor which then reveals a blindingly light deprived body that blinks in the unaccustomed warmth of actual reality.   Keeping your courage up while experiencing this is the next trick I’m learning how to do- no one is more surprised at this than I am.   Being an old dog and all.

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