On Loving Disorder

One night, I fell asleep with that tired, old feeling of not having it all together.

Like I was a car trying to go forward, but when I hit the gas, the front right wheel fell off, then the fender, rearview mirror, steering wheel. While all around me, the other cars were zipping smoothly along.

My reaction to this has always been to make a list: Write this. Follow-up on that. Call her, then him. Finish Big Project.

Next morning, I made the list. And I hit it hard. It was a bit joyless. But by the time the sun had dropped out of the sky, I had done everything on that list.

And I still felt like I didn’t have it all together.

OH COME ON, I exasperated as I lay in bed that night. What’s it take?

And something in my mind or irritated heart, maybe both, woke up.

What if this is part of the human experience? What if, despite all outward appearances, no one has it together and the secret is to love our very human disorder rather than spend life joylessly pushing it away?

I lay in bed with that idea. And the longer I lay with it, the wilder it seemed, and the better I felt.

Well, I’m in, I decided. There will always be disorder that I cannot list, fix, work, plan away. So, embrace it. Not resign to it, but be loving towards it. Why not be a gracious host of disorder?

And that night, I fell asleep with a newer, kinder feeling that I was a human being who was a little more accepting of the human experience.

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