embracing the unexpected. Not.

“Word to the wise: You just never know when the Universe is gonna goose ya.”

For this post, I scanned the internet for an appropriate quote on the unexpected. I found inspirational quotes on how beautiful it can be to embrace the unexpected, how our paths are defined by doing so, and how inner peace is attained by accepting it. 

So not where I am at right now. Then I found the one above, and it’s just about right on the head. Found on a yoga site, no less. I consider that pretty ironic. 

To make the story short and not become one of those old ladies (I am not old) who traps you for 2 hours lamenting and listing her ills, let me sum it up. For the past month, as soon as I start getting up from some physical ailment, another one shoves me down. Pretty much literally, as in, my green chair is permanently imprinted with my backside. We have had a lovely spring, but I have not seen it. And the latest, a sprained ankle, has just made me bereft of any of that “look on the bright side” spirit. Sometimes, life just gooses ya, and it stinks.

We often look at lousy circumstances and ask God, “OK, what are you teaching me here? What am I supposed to learn?” Or sometimes, when it’s been a bit much, “Don’t you think I’m done learning this *#%@& lesson by now???” (No, of course I don’t do that. But some people do.) 

One surprising thing I’ve learned is that sometimes, it’s not all about me. Maybe, someone else is supposed to learn a lesson through what’s going on in my life, and I’m just supposed to sit still and let it happen. Or at least, not get in the way. 

Maybe that sounds like I think I’m some kind of amazingly spiritual role model that God uses as his shining example. Um, not . . . exactly. Or perhaps it just sounds like I’m a human guinea pig for God’s cosmic experiments. First, I don’t believe God messes with people like that, and second, if he wanted to, he’s God, so I guess I’m OK with that. He can do what he wants with things that belong to him.

I told my family, for instance, that maybe they’re supposed to be learning how to manage to get through a day without Mom/Wife running the ship. You know, about the fifth time you’re asked “What’s for dinner?” or “Where is my piece of paper I left right there?” you’re highly likely to explode with something like, “Yes, I’m faking it. At night when you’re all asleep, I get out of this chair and rearrange the house with all your stuff! I haven’t stood up in a week, how am I supposed to know what’s for dinner???” (No, of course I don’t do that. But, again, some people do.) 

Maybe they’re supposed to learn to develop a “sight” outside their own little worlds. Seeing places they’re needed and ways they should help the world function. Realizing those “other” needs might break into their own agendas. Opening eyes to things that are not in the plan. Maybe starting with the dishes . . . 

I say it half-facetiously, since when asked they are pretty good at helping out, but I’m also quite serious. Most of us are so encased in our personal agendas we simply don’t look around to see where we could be stretching ourselves. And I have learned that this is true of myself, as well. 

It’s not all about me. When bad things happen to me, it’s still not. Saying, “God, what are you going to teach me?” is still rather self-centered. It’s still about what I can get out of a lousy situation. What can someone else get? A different perspective, I think.

One thought on “embracing the unexpected. Not.

  1. Jill: so sorry you're going through all of this. It makes Heaven more desirable, doesn't it? Some horrible days, my husband and I look at each other and say, “This would be a good time for Jesus to return!”


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