Thursday, June 08, 2006

Somewhere Between

One of my goals in life is to find balance. I know it seems like a rather vague goal. I mean, how does one measure balance? (Just ask that one-legged waitress at IHOP!) Seriously though. Notice. There in the parenthesis is something semi-laughable followed by 'seriously though'. Balance. I have to admit, though, that it's rarely that simple.

On any given day you can find me somewhere between galavant and mosey. Between ecstatic and depressed. Between pensive and thoughtless. Between Iraq and a hard place. (See! There I go again!) Between holding back tears and knee slapping. Between prayer and cursing. Between poetic and idiotic. Between careful and wreckless. Between selfless and self-absorbed. Between real and wannabe. Between useful tool and and useless fool. Between here and there. So, what's my point?? I find myself sliding around on these continuums sometimes at a pace that makes me dizzy. Can that be? Does balance make you dizzy? I don't know, I'm just curious.


Anonymous said...

Hey John, I rarely offer commentary on your thoughts. They stand alone and are yours...not mine to oppose or adjust.

Balance can be terrible idol that calls us to avoid anything dangerous. You are right to visit the knee slap and tears. To live there or only be at extremes says something about our disbelief that life can be nice often. To rarely visit those places says something about our fear that life can be hard often. So we attempt to edit our experience by either effort.

Sometimes balance is another way to say, I'd like to respond to life without knee jerking or numbing. I suspect this is what you are meaning. Can i face life as it is or do I need to have hyterics (of any sort) or aloof cool that can't be hurt to survive it? Blame shifting, denial, happy talk, positive self banter,
cynicism, shame, rewriting reality, narrow reality viewing and posturing etc. are all self deceptions that create the illusiton of balance so we can sedate ourselves to self at night feeling like we are okay.

Remember, dead men have perfect balance. They are unmoved by life and no one can hurt them. They feel no pain. alive people often try to imitate the dead in this same way. It does not work...they usually end up killing those around them as well as themselves. It is not suicide, as much as it is an infectuous desease. Others catch it and break out in sores. Slow dead for all.

But, what they seek, to feel balanced without going to the end of the teter-totter, ends up killing them. In their graves, perfect balance is found.

Rather, your approach is more of a "Can I face life as I find it,
live kindly, compassionatly,
honestly and true faced and still feel intact at the end of the day?" I see you here. It has given many around you life. You have kept me alive as I have tryed to numb and avoid the pain of life.

Enter God who claims to make sence of it all. I relate to your paragraph of tool-fool, poet-idiot, here-there is me as well. sorry for the was good for me to write. I struggle with the pull toward "balance" these days, but I find it is more often a pull toward a painless llife. it will leave me joyless as well. I choose to live with you in the whole spectrum.


Steph said...

Wow. I had so much to say after reading this post, but I could never say it better than Mark just did, so I won't try. But I agree with him wholeheartedly. I'm just like you, you know that, but I embrace it. I love the highs and appreciate the lows because I grow from them. And I suspect that the joy you see in me and often refer to fondly would not be there if I were to strive for more of that kind of balance. You would be sad if I changed that part of me and you would want the old, crazy unpredictable, "out of balance" me back. I wouldn't change a thing about you. Thank god you're out of balance, otherwise you would bore me to tears.

Steph said...

Didn't I start that comment by saying I wouldn't even try to comment? Yeah, you know me better than that! :)

Wonderland said...

This blog was just hard to pass up. Balance you say?? That would be knowing both ends and deciding to stay just about in the middle. Be careful what you wish for. Iam with Michelle Branch - She's riding the highs and digging the lows. Without one or the other we really would be missing out.
I would guess since you are seeking balance your simple awareness of it is going to serve you well. Keep on doing what you do and don't stop blogging. Keep asking about things like balance.

Roger Austin said...

I don't know if I am posting this to the archives, but this is my first visit to your blog and right off the bat I find myself attracted to your transparency. (Lynda Richards told me about you.)

I'll limit my response to sharing a little known hymn by John Newton who penned Amazing Grace. Newton apparently knew firsthand about the conflicting feelings that compete in our hearts. I resonate with these words and perhaps you will too: