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When it seems joy eludes me…

I am trying to make sense of myself tonight.  It has been a long day, not conducive to thinking.  I got up late this morning, missed the alarm altogether.  That means I am half an hour behind all day.  In my subconscious, the thoughts linger from our argument last night, but I am able to push them aside with thoughts of bed-making, clothes selections and hair doing.  I am able to push thoughts of our disagreement completely to the back of my mind by the time I rush out the door to the van, shouting at children to get on board as I search for my key.

A long day begins and ends with children.  I am a kindergarten teacher.  I wipe up crumbs, pull on mittens, adjust snow pants, and look for dry socks amongst the clutter of messy lockers.  I am as comfortable discussing bathroom routines with my students, as I am helping my own little one rinse soap suds from her hair in the tub.  I am mother, to one and all.

I am also wife.  I sometimes am confused how one can be both, interchangeably.  These roles are often tapping into an emotional reserve for which I sometimes feel has a limited supply.  I am drained tonight.  The well is dry.  There is seemingly not a drop of feeling left inside the reserve from which I draw my energy and emotion.

I said selfish, cutting remarks to him last night in the heat of the moment, and I want to say I am sorry. I just can’t bring myself to do so. Yet. One must admit they are wrong to say sorry, and I sometimes question how feelings can be wrong.  I feel tired. Is that wrong?  I also feel inadequate.  Many deep hurts begin with feelings of inadequacy.

I know a little boy.  He has anger issues.  He likes to make snide comments about the little girls in our class.  He is physical in his anger, and he has little control over his emotions.  That little boy can make or break my day.  When it is a bad day for him, it is a bad day for me.  On a good day, I see him for whom he really is.  A little boy who knows hurt and can do and say only what he has seen to be real.  He is what he has experienced in his short, five years of life.  I understand him because I know from whence he comes.  He is what he is, and I accept him faults and all.  He comes from a life of pain.

So do we all.

We all feel pain and we can understand suffering.  We can understand ourselves by understanding that which hurts us.  We can help others understand us too by allowing them a view to our deeper selves.  We are more than the obvious stuff that easily floats to the surface.

This I know.  That joy overrides sorrow.  In life, joy is the trump card.  When life throws you an onion, peel it back and expose the juices that flow.  They are the flavouring of life.  They bring rich goodness to season our lives, in spite of the bite with which they present themselves.  We will always have sorrow and pain, but joy comes new in the morning.

Joy is a gift, and it will ever be mine for the choosing.


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