Adventures in Divorce

I always wondered why people who murdered their spouses didn't just get a divorce.... I now understand why

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Location: Nap Town, Indie-anne-ahhhhhh!, United States

No, I'm not a prophetess. Cassandra, according to Greek mythology, spurned the advances of the Greek god Apollo and her gift of prophecy was cursed so that her predictions would never be believed. Such is my life. I tend not to think like most people, which is a gift... but also a curse. So step into my mind, take off your shoes and stay for awhile... you're always welcome, loved ones.

August 27, 2008

Realizations in You Life (My Mantras)

Over the past year I have really transformed my thinking and attitude as a way to cope with all of the upheaval and turmoil in my life. I'm sure I've used this quote before, but it bears repeating: “Sometimes God calms the storm, sometimes He calms the sailor.” The storm is not over, that's for sure, but what is over is my frenzied response to everything going on in my life. In 2005 I received a fortune cookie that said "You will come to realizations in you life that will change you forever." I held onto that fortune not only because the glaring typographical error tickled me, but it also spoke to me. Now, 3 years later, I realize that cookie was abso-fucking-lutely right.

So, below are some of my "mantras" (or my realizations) that I use to get through everyday life. No, I don't sit around chanting om mani padme hum or anything like that (tho that is a good one if you are into chanting and meditation.... I actually a Chenrezig/Guayin necklace that I can't seem to find anywhere), but rather these are some real life practical ones that are suited to how my brain works. So there you go......

1. Everything works out the way it is supposed to.

This is a variation on "everything happens for a reason"..... for some reason, I just don't like that phrase, I think because it makes you search for a reason that may not be readily apparent. This concept also helps me accept that even though things may not turn out the way I WANT them to, this is the way it's supposed to be, and there's an underlying reason for it that I may or may not ever become aware of, or may become aware of years from now, and I just have to accept that. In the end, in the grand scheme of things, everything will be okay.

2. It will get done.

I developed this one in law school (and prior to the whole "git er done" thing came about), where we had 50-100 page reading assignments (that's per day, per class), oodles of cases to brief for class discussion, and a 50+ page article I had to write for law review, all while battling the most hellacious depression and general state of brokeassededness ever. This then carried over when I started working at The Firm where I started eating dinner more at work than I did at home (but at least they fed us good..... we had dinner delivered from downtown restaurants). I developed the mentality that not getting something done was just not an option. (Actually, I have to backtrack and say this mentality started in undergrad when I had my CORE business classes and we had the huge mega group project that spanned 3 classes and was a requirement for graduation.) There was just no sense in getting all freaked out over everything I had/have to do, because it has to get done. And it will get done. And then I can breathe.

3. Let it go.

This is a HUGE one that I discovered the importance of through my reading about Zen, and is a key priniciple of Zen philosophy. It's based on the idea that pain in life is unavoidable, but suffering is. And suffering arises from attachment. When you hold on to painful feelings and thoughts, that's what causes you to suffer. Let those go, and the suffering associated with that pain ceases. And if Eastern religions and philosophies aren't your thing, it's basically the Cliff Notes version of the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Part of letting go is acceptance of things the way they are and letting go of the wish that they were different and the frantic, futile attempts to change them (when we have no control over the situation, that is). It's letting to of that desire to control everything.

4. 5 years from now, none of this will matter.

When things seem at their bleakest, their most arduous, and everything seems like I disaster, I stop and think that whatever I'm going through now, I won't be going through forever. Five years is really an arbitrary time period, but one that holds true...... think about something that was keeping you awake at night 5 years ago. Are you still worried about it now? Probably not. And if so, you probably need to let it go. Things in life change so quickly and drastically, so to let something that is, by it's very nature, a temporary situation just destroy you is tragic. TRUST ME ON THIS ONE.

5. Tragedy + Time = Comedy

I had to steal this one from Chris Rock, discussing his motivation behind his show "Everybody Hates Chris": "'I went through all this stuff,' Rock tells JET. 'It wasn't funny at the time, but tragedy plus time equals comedy as they say. I'm over it. Hey, I won. That's how I look at it.'" Word, my damie...... sa da tay. I've been through a lot of crazy shit in the past year. A lot. And truly crazy (that's what this blog is all about, after all). It sure the hell wasn't funny at the time (like walking out and seeing profanity spray painted across my Civic), but you know, I can laugh about it now, and I do laugh about it now, and I don't mind when other people laugh about it now. Bitchassed behavior really is quite comical (once the mess is cleaned up). Its my way of coping with bad things that happen in my life.

6. C'est la vie/So it goes

This just means "that's life.... shit happens..... oh well...... what can you do." The first phrase is (obviously) french, and who can forget the song from the 80's by Robbie Nevil that had me dancing around in my underwear as a little girl. The second phrase is from Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five" (I *heart* Vonnegut, perhaps because I too have a dark comedy streak), which to me has a more melancholy connotation perhaps because it's how the Tralfamadorians think about dead people (''When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in a bad condition in that particular moment, but that same person is just fine in plenty of other moments. Now, when I myself hear that somebody is dead, I simply shrug and say what the Tralfamadorians say about dead people, which is 'So it goes'.''). Obviously, I don't use it to refer to dead people, but more often than not when I uses it, it's either preceded or followed by a *sigh*. In either case, it's just life, and there's nothing you can do about some things. Accept them and move on.

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Jim said...

Hey,

Just started my divorce journey and my journal keeping. I am sure you have read it already or covered it, but read "The Five Things You Cannot Change". Great book.

I loved your 6 Mantras. I will need to think on them and maybe add a few for myself

September 4, 2008 at 2:44 PM  

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Adventures in Divorce: Realizations in You Life (My Mantras)

Realizations in You Life (My Mantras)

Over the past year I have really transformed my thinking and attitude as a way to cope with all of the upheaval and turmoil in my life. I'm sure I've used this quote before, but it bears repeating: “Sometimes God calms the storm, sometimes He calms the sailor.” The storm is not over, that's for sure, but what is over is my frenzied response to everything going on in my life. In 2005 I received a fortune cookie that said "You will come to realizations in you life that will change you forever." I held onto that fortune not only because the glaring typographical error tickled me, but it also spoke to me. Now, 3 years later, I realize that cookie was abso-fucking-lutely right.

So, below are some of my "mantras" (or my realizations) that I use to get through everyday life. No, I don't sit around chanting om mani padme hum or anything like that (tho that is a good one if you are into chanting and meditation.... I actually a Chenrezig/Guayin necklace that I can't seem to find anywhere), but rather these are some real life practical ones that are suited to how my brain works. So there you go......

1. Everything works out the way it is supposed to.

This is a variation on "everything happens for a reason"..... for some reason, I just don't like that phrase, I think because it makes you search for a reason that may not be readily apparent. This concept also helps me accept that even though things may not turn out the way I WANT them to, this is the way it's supposed to be, and there's an underlying reason for it that I may or may not ever become aware of, or may become aware of years from now, and I just have to accept that. In the end, in the grand scheme of things, everything will be okay.

2. It will get done.

I developed this one in law school (and prior to the whole "git er done" thing came about), where we had 50-100 page reading assignments (that's per day, per class), oodles of cases to brief for class discussion, and a 50+ page article I had to write for law review, all while battling the most hellacious depression and general state of brokeassededness ever. This then carried over when I started working at The Firm where I started eating dinner more at work than I did at home (but at least they fed us good..... we had dinner delivered from downtown restaurants). I developed the mentality that not getting something done was just not an option. (Actually, I have to backtrack and say this mentality started in undergrad when I had my CORE business classes and we had the huge mega group project that spanned 3 classes and was a requirement for graduation.) There was just no sense in getting all freaked out over everything I had/have to do, because it has to get done. And it will get done. And then I can breathe.

3. Let it go.

This is a HUGE one that I discovered the importance of through my reading about Zen, and is a key priniciple of Zen philosophy. It's based on the idea that pain in life is unavoidable, but suffering is. And suffering arises from attachment. When you hold on to painful feelings and thoughts, that's what causes you to suffer. Let those go, and the suffering associated with that pain ceases. And if Eastern religions and philosophies aren't your thing, it's basically the Cliff Notes version of the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Part of letting go is acceptance of things the way they are and letting go of the wish that they were different and the frantic, futile attempts to change them (when we have no control over the situation, that is). It's letting to of that desire to control everything.

4. 5 years from now, none of this will matter.

When things seem at their bleakest, their most arduous, and everything seems like I disaster, I stop and think that whatever I'm going through now, I won't be going through forever. Five years is really an arbitrary time period, but one that holds true...... think about something that was keeping you awake at night 5 years ago. Are you still worried about it now? Probably not. And if so, you probably need to let it go. Things in life change so quickly and drastically, so to let something that is, by it's very nature, a temporary situation just destroy you is tragic. TRUST ME ON THIS ONE.

5. Tragedy + Time = Comedy

I had to steal this one from Chris Rock, discussing his motivation behind his show "Everybody Hates Chris": "'I went through all this stuff,' Rock tells JET. 'It wasn't funny at the time, but tragedy plus time equals comedy as they say. I'm over it. Hey, I won. That's how I look at it.'" Word, my damie...... sa da tay. I've been through a lot of crazy shit in the past year. A lot. And truly crazy (that's what this blog is all about, after all). It sure the hell wasn't funny at the time (like walking out and seeing profanity spray painted across my Civic), but you know, I can laugh about it now, and I do laugh about it now, and I don't mind when other people laugh about it now. Bitchassed behavior really is quite comical (once the mess is cleaned up). Its my way of coping with bad things that happen in my life.

6. C'est la vie/So it goes

This just means "that's life.... shit happens..... oh well...... what can you do." The first phrase is (obviously) french, and who can forget the song from the 80's by Robbie Nevil that had me dancing around in my underwear as a little girl. The second phrase is from Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five" (I *heart* Vonnegut, perhaps because I too have a dark comedy streak), which to me has a more melancholy connotation perhaps because it's how the Tralfamadorians think about dead people (''When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in a bad condition in that particular moment, but that same person is just fine in plenty of other moments. Now, when I myself hear that somebody is dead, I simply shrug and say what the Tralfamadorians say about dead people, which is 'So it goes'.''). Obviously, I don't use it to refer to dead people, but more often than not when I uses it, it's either preceded or followed by a *sigh*. In either case, it's just life, and there's nothing you can do about some things. Accept them and move on.

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