The way to stay on a roll is to stay on a roll.
So if you are resisting your own desires, in the end you have to resist desire.
People who don’t do the whole penitent thing have trouble with this idea. They wonder why you can’t just desire a few things and leave the rest alone. They want me to desire on some kind of schedule, on some kind of framework, you know, like desiring on Wednesday afternoons from 1 to 4 PM.
But discipline isn’t like that, at least not in a way that I understand. I am on call all the time here, from 7 AM to 12:30 AM pee runs, and even beyond that for emergencies.
Others have told me that to really relax, they have to spend a day or two decompressing. I don’t have that. Even if my parents are away, they expect phone calls once or twice a day to chatter. That’s good for them, of course; I have seen many lonely old people, even old people who fall into a partner spiral, pacing over the same ground in the same dance over and over again. With me, my parents are constantly stimulated, have something new to discuss, and while that may be a bit irritating, it is also enervating, also lively.
Good things are going on in my sibling’s lives. My brother’s family is adopting a new child, a three year old to go with the eleven year old they adopted, along with 18, 22 and 24 year olds they had. My sister is having a gallery opening of a shared show, back to Art, as with the one woman show I helped her with a year ago.
Of course, few good things are happening in my life. Stairlifts and money loss and travel plans that probably won’t come true.
I will tell you this: I really, really, really want to be soft and sweet, happy for others.
But when you are on a roll you have to be on a roll, and that means I am often, at least on the surface, hard and bitter.
Christine didn’t really like my curmudgeon exterior. She joked I was turning her into a curmudgene, the feminine of curmudgeon.
I really do work to be encouraging and positive for the good things in people’s lives. I have long ago stopped being cynical and cutting to others, instead blessing their success.
But the one thing I can’t really figure out a way to do is to be happy for others. If I can’t be happy for myself, if my happiness needs to be denied, like I deny my own beauty and grace, well, how can I really be happy for others?
I don’t like being hard and bitter.
But when you are on a role, well, that role is you.