Well, friends. I come to you in confession today, and the truth is this:
Over the last several weeks, I just completely forgot to have even a speck of fun over here. I admit it. I got so caught up and wrapped up and jacked up on politics and being a grown up, and I forgot to kick back and laugh a little and be creative just for the sake of, well…creativity and laughter and kicking it.
Today, the kids and I came home from school and gymnastics, and I asked them to wash their hands immediately, like I do (small people are walking VESSELS OF DISEASE, I tell you). They washed their hands and came into the living room to color and destroy everything within arm’s reach, so I walked to the bathroom to wash my own hands. And, Lord, have mercy.
What were these two miniature people DOING in this bathroom, because couldn’t be simple hand washing! I mean, guys, the soap container was on its side and dried soap was smeared (and strangely, colored blue and purple) all along the sink and the floor and all the things. The hand towel was balled up on its hanger, barely hanging on by a thread and, again, a lot of bizarre blue and purple (was there a marker in the car I hadn’t noticed?). Bubbles in the sink. Bubbles on the floor. Just like blue and purple and bubbles chaos went to a car wash in my bathroom, and oh, my friends, I had a start for a moment, and then.
I had to sit down and laugh. Because chaos is okay. Let’s say that together with feeling, shall we? Chaos is okay!
Yes, it is.
We are full grown men and women. We can do all of these hard times and difficult conversations and frightening moments and unnecessary threats. We’re going to be able to clean up the messes and put things back together. We’re going to be able to stand up for one another and our planet and for those in need and for the oppressed. We’re going to be able to do the things we’re scared of, and try the thing we haven’t tried before and make it through all of the 3 year old tantrums and survive another bloody Valentine’s Day. Yes, we are!
We’re going to be able to do it, because we’re grown ups, and that’s what we are FULLY CAPABLE OF DOING. This is why we’re here, guys. To walk into the exploded, tiny bathrooms of our lives and put things back where they belong. We are so entirely grown and possible and ABLE. And, if we aren’t able, we can remember that we are also RESOURCEFUL. We are overwhelmed, but we are breathing! With eyes wide open! Let’s start there. And, while we’re breathing and looking, maybe we can remember to do all things with some amount of levity. With a sense of humor. With a kind of ease. Oh, we do deserve that, my friends. Certainly, we do.
I don’t know about you, but when I forget to be easy, things stop working right. Things start clamping down. My hands begin to ball up, and my jaw sets itself into place and my legs lock and my brain starts exploding and bubbles start going EVERYWHERE. And, worst of all, I forget to laugh. I forget that I did not come here to be a hard-hearted person with a tough mug. I forget that I came here to live fully and honestly and joyfully.
Now, I just have to stop for a minute and make sure you understand that I’m not suggesting we have to all stop caring or paying attention or standing up for what is right. Finding humor in chaos and messy times doesn’t mean giving up the work at hand. It simply suggests a kind of uncurling of gripped fingers, and allowing for shoulders to drop (dramatically, if they must!). It begs a breath of fresh air and a lighter touch. It simply means: Loosen up, and live into this in a way that won’t suck your soul all the way out of your blessed body.
You feel me?
I really needed this moment today in a most desperate way. Because the world needs me hard, but I cannot sustain generosity and kindness for others when I am a ball of fire and mud. If I’m going to roll up to this circus show and make some noise, then I will have to show up with laughter, with love and with a whole boatload of personal flair. And, none of those things are even remotely accessible when I am heavy. I must, oh I must, I MUST stay light.
Friends and neighbors, I invite you to join me in taking a nice, deep, relaxing breath of bathroom chaos this week, and returning to the work at hand with renewed freedom, lightness and creativity. Laughter. Fun. Play. Bubbles all over. The mess is outside, and the mess in inside. Still, we can do this! We are grown ups. The most fun and wonderful and capable kinds, indeed.