half full / half empty

Today is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.*  The sun has returned and no rain in sight…I think. Of course, I am a city girl and don’t really know one cloud from another, but it sounds good to say it…uplifting…positive after the gloom.

Have all the troubles and cares resolved themselves? No, but the sunshine really does help to think more creatively about them. All my life I’ve had people passing judgment on me for one thing and another, especially for the way I am wired and how my brain functions. Have heard enough about pessimism vs. optimism and want to say clearly that according to contemporary scientific research there is a good reason for people being at either end of that spectrum—or if they are lucky—in the middle of it (that is where I try to reside). My partner is reading a book called, “Fingerprints of God, The Search for the Science of Spirituality,” by Barbara Bradley Hagerty. In the pages of this book are  interesting accounts of cellular and genetic brain wave reasons for people (like me) being difficult, i.e., unlike most—or as my partner would say: “A handful!”

Although I try to balance in the middle of full and empty, I am basically a glass half empty person. My sensory perceptions are tuned way up high most of the time. I resonate with people who have neurological disabilities. I don’t try to be pessimistic, it’s the fall-back state that takes over after enough blows to my person overtake my fragile equilibrium. So what does one do when perceptions flood the senses? In terms of people and place, this is pretty much how I have always been: flooded with perception and sensate knowing. The thing is that where people are concerned, I am more often on target (or close to target) than not, so it is difficult to let go of what others may term merely a hunch, but for me is a lead to understanding.

I am 70 years old and have been tuning in to behavior and motivation (mine and that of others) since I was 12. That’s a long time.  I was once headed for clinical social work, i.e. to be a therapist. Church discipline got in the way of completing that  course of study. I believe I am gifted of God in this area and would have made a very good therapist, but I also have a streak of impatience and don’t know how long I could have hung in with clients who need coaxing and cajoling to do the work of seeing, accepting and working with their shadow selves. People don’t like change, especially when it comes to their own personal sacred cows—myself included. What I think, has given me a handy edge on this is my use and knowledge of the Enneagram—a personality typing tool whose sole purpose is to bring awareness of the shadow defenses in ourselves that get in the way of becoming all that God intends for us to be.

Raven 1x1.5 Well…as my luck would have it (half-empty, right?) while I’ve been waxing eloquently here about shadows, gifts and sacred cows, the sun has once more disappeared and dark gray gloom descends upon my backyard, surrounding my lovely windowed studio, and crying: “Nevermore, Nevermore.” Looks like I will have to be extra creative today to stay ahead of Mr. Gloomy day. It’s just too bad chocolate upsets my stomach!

*(Psa 118:24)

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July 2009

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