Have you ever been in one of those emotional funks where you aren’t really sure how you should feel? It almost feels like a war of emotions inside of you. There are reasons to be happy, sad, excited, worried, anxious, angry and joyful. I have been in this funk for four months!!!
Will it ever stop? I think I am experiencing male menopause. Or, possibly, I am experiencing life the way it is meant to be experienced, all jumbled up together.
Louis C.K. was the host on Saturday Night Live a couple of weeks ago. He delivered the funniest monologue I have seen in a long time. He is a comedian. SNL doesn’t usually have stand up comedians deliver the monologue. Possibly, that is why I found it funnier than usual. I realized as I was laughing, I hadn’t laughed in a while. Sad, huh? Well, it made me sad that I hadn’t laughed in a while. Then, it confused me because I was sad for laughing. Do you see what I mean?
My step-dad died in December. He was 86 and lived a great life – treated my mom with love and dignity, which I will always appreciate and love about him. I was sad by his passing, but happy to have known him. Aughh! The competition for my emotional energy is exhausting and, at times, depressing.
We just finished a swimming pool – something my wife has wanted for a long time. We had a pool at our old house. When we moved we couldn’t find a house with a pool we liked. So, our intent was to always put one in. Our further intent was to have enough money to put one in. I really thought the Dave Ramsey class, Financial Peace, would put a hold on spending money for a pool. Say hello to a home equity line of credit and more debt. I’m sorry, Dave.
This past week our family has been out in the back yard together more than we have in the three years we have lived in this house. So, I feel satisfied and fulfilled in providing something valuable to my family. However, is “broke” a feeling??? I know it isn’t. Fear is, though. Will we be able to afford to do the other things we would like to do as a family?
Currently, I office in the church I worked in for 19 years. My office is next door to the Senior Pastor’s office, the hub of all activity. Not being part of the staff for the past year has been strange. Things are happening in our church, most of which I am not aware, even though I am tangential to all decisions. I feel sad and, sometimes, angry when decisions are made of which I don’t agree.
On the other side of this, I don’t have to go to all the church meetings which brings me a feeling of relief and, sometimes, elation when I see everybody traipse off to their meeting, pausing their busy work load. In fact, the church staff is in a meeting right now. It is nice and quiet in the office. It happens to be a great time to write a blog. I feel free………
I’m in the middle of recruiting youth ministers for our next class which begins in August. I would like to have the class put together by May. I have traveled most of the state, talking to youth ministers and pastors. There seems to be a great deal of interest. So, I become excited about the possibilities.
In February one youth minister told me she was sending her application the following week. Six weeks later, no application. My phone calls and emails are left not returned. Confusion sets in. Do I continue to call her? I’m reminded by this truth every year. I am never able to accurately predict who is legitimately interested in being part of YMI. I am always frustrated by this reality.
I’ve determined I am a mess right now. I have committed myself to living the moments of life as they come. Last night after dinner, the kids were all getting ready for bed. I finished cleaning up the dishes. I grabbed a glass of water, walked out back, turned on the pool light, sat down and appreciated the newly replanted palm trees framing our back yard pool. I was owning the emotion of the moment.
I just sat.
I let the feelings of joy and anxiety poor over me. I didn’t pray. Although, my soul was making a connection.
I just sat.
Sometimes, possibly most of the time, stopping long enough to absorb the moment settles the soul.
I plan to do that more often, embracing one thing at a time, appreciating the moment for all that it is, good or bad. In a TED talk on stress not too long ago, the expert physiologist suggested embracing stress allows a person to open their capillaries, thereby allowing for better decision making and ultimately better health and a longer life. I think I can do that, one emotion at a time.