The Serenity Prayer
God grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can
And wisdom to know the difference
Over the past month, I repeat this pray under my breath while driving, on the yoga mat, in public when someone is rude for no discernable reason, when my heart is heavy, when all I want to do is say enough life. I’ve had enough.
I’ve been absent on my blog on and off for quite some time now. Spring is here. I’m out digging in the dirt, planting new seeds, watching the “grandma” tree opening up small buds. They are not all the way open yet. It is as if they are hesitant, not sure what the weather will bring. If they open will it frost? Will a tornado rip the tree out by its roots; recklessly pull freshly sprouted white flowers into its windy grasp? Will there be sun to warm the buds, give them life? Will there be ample rain?
Like the hesitant buds, I let nature take hold and allow my flowers to slowly appear. Nature gives us no straight answers. We just know that we must let go and let what will be unfold. There is a scary unpredictability in giving up the control we forever cling to keep us safe.
As an abused child, I learned as most survivors have that we have no control. In adulthood, we grasp for control in every situation, trying to compensate yet we miss the mark because deep down we still feel powerless. In our mind’s eye we tell ourselves we can control things around us, keep people and the ups and downs in life safely managed to spare our hearts.
Yet, we must live and in living there is pain.
I repeat this prayer as a mantra to remind myself I have power to change myself, heal myself. I have power to share my experience and give a face to the trauma which often leads to the mental illness many quietly struggle with.
Like the “grandma” tree I cannot, however, control everything. Some things must be surrendered to a higher power-God, the universe-however it appears to each of us. It is in the wisdom between the two extremes where we must find true peace. So for now I’m surrendering, holding onto hope that nature will be kind.
The Grandma Tree Explained
The “grandma tree” is a Bartlet Pear which grandma gave me when I first moved into our newly built house. The lot had been stripped of its topsoil; the backyard was sandy dirt, heavy rocks. My dad, husband, and brother tilled the backyard and removed as many rocks as possible before putting down grass seed.
The three worked together to dig a hole in the stubborn compact dirt, one large enough to accommodate the new tree. The tree was planted. The tree is eleven years old. Dad is seventy; no longer does he have specs of dark hair left. It is all gray. My brother is a soldier somewhere in the Middle East. My husband is away working much of every month. Grandma will have passed a year in May.
It is close to June when I last fell apart. This year I’m not falling apart as easily. I’m stronger, my roots are firmly attached to the earth, yet wind still pulls at my limbs, threatening to destroy the growth.
I sit under the “grandma tree” often and reflect on how life has changed with each passing year. I sit under it when I want to remember the Spring when grandma sat in the kitchen with me and looked out the window as the three beloved men in my life planted tree roots.
Copyright 2015 bdlheart