Loving The Mess That Is My Best…Insight from Martha

bless this messI’m always pathetically grateful for January, this blank slate of a month, in which I can resolve to clean up the utter mess I made of the holidays. I always mess up the holidays. Combine my logistical incompetence with the social demands of December, and you have the Hindenburg of social faux pas. I could tell you everything I did wrong last month, but then I’d end up in bed eating the Funyuns of Shame for another week, so let us not speak of it.

Suffice it to say that as 2015 begins, I’m taking stock of my life and realizing that I have messed up virtually everything I’ve ever done for over half a century. News flash: I am never going to do life right.

And yet…

By being my incompetent self, I seem to have weeded out the friends and acquaintances who can’t stand my inadequacies. Each year I’m surrounded by more kind, understanding people who seem willing to love the messes I make.

When neurosurgeon Eben Alexander went into a coma and had one whale of a near-death experience, he received three messages:  “You are loved and cherished, dearly, forever,” “You have nothing to fear,” and “There is nothing you can do wrong.”

My New Year’s resolution is first, to do my best in all situations, and second, to stand in the mess that is my best, and remember Alexander’s three messages:  Dearly loved, nothing to fear, no way to get it wrong.

Just contemplating this helps me put down the Funyuns. It makes me suspect that maybe, instead of being here to get things right, we’re here to learn to love the mess that is every human life. If that’s the one thing I get right this year, it just may be enough.

Lame Animal Totem: The Blobfish

blobfishThe Blobfish is a creature made of gelatinous tissue that allows it to float around the deep ocean floor, compensating for near-total lack of muscle by being totally nondiscriminating in its eating habits. Sound like you? Quelle coincidence! You and I have the same totem animal this month!

Blobfish energy is flaccid, weak-willed, and…I don’t know, whatever. When Blobfish floops and plurbles up through the plumbing of your subconscious and into the toilet bowl of your conscious attention, it’s time to relinquish all resolve, put on your bathrobe, and eat every last bit of pudding in the fridge.  If you can’t find pudding, eat…you know, whatever.

Call on Blobfish for help when you feel too energized, focused, and successful, which is just annoying to the rest of us. Blobfish will drag you right back down to a place where you inspire no envy or competition, where you can spend entire weekends just gloomily watching your thighs age. Then, like me, you can pass along to the world the ringing message at the core of your life:  Um…like, you know, whatever.

Top Dog: How to Deal with a Know-it-All

Recently, due to several misguided decisions, I found myself having a sleepover with five friendly but ambitious dogs. The entire night was one long dominance display. No sooner had I settled each pooch onto a separate cushion than the biggest one got up, grabbed a chew toy, and stood over the others, proclaiming (in dog read more…

Lame Animal Totem: Tardigrade

The Tardigrade is a truly wondrous creature: an eight-legged microscopic beastie also known as the “moss piglet” that can go without food or water for more than ten years, live in the vacuum of space, stew in boiling water, and keep waddling onward, good as new.  Tardigrade energy is the totem of people who just will read more…