I am sensitive like the finest aviator watch that uses the motions of the adventurer wearing it in unlikely places to keep its own tiny, perfect gears moving in synch. I am sensitive like a flower that responds to sunlight and opens or a bird that senses danger and flies away long before it arrives. It is not easy being so sensitive, but even that simply drives me deeper into the arms of divine Love.
“Stay on the path even when it looks foolish and dangerous. If you think you are lost, stop and wait until the path becomes clear again. Gather any food and supplies you find even if they are a burden to carry – you will depend on them later. And don’t quit. It’s worth it.”
The moments in my life that have been most sure and which have left me with the most peace and joy have been moments of defiance. The times when, even though no one else would get it, I knew the path I needed to take forward and I took it. These are my reckless moments. Those things that caused offense, consternation, even concern for my sanity among those watching.
But I know a secret that most people never learn; that the landscape of the human heart is as wild and strange and fascinating as anything in all of creation. And I don’t have to travel the world or make a lot of money or have a fancy education to explore the human heart. Being a housewife in Wisconsin works just fine for that.
Me getting over my neurosis about singing in earshot of anyone and Ayla living off the land by herself for a couple of years with only the help of a horse, wolf and baby lion she domesticated herself are both fine examples of what it means to face daunting challenges with great courage, wisdom and determination. But it is also true that having been affirmed in some way – whether it be through a compliment or a sign from God – allows us to muster the courage we need to walk through challenges that just feel too big to be survived.
I’m a nice person. I like people. I never mean any harm and I certainly understand better than most what it’s like to be overly sensitive. If I say something meant to be funny and someone is offended, that’s their choice. I choose all the time to accept the people around me through empathy, understanding, tolerance and humility. Sometimes people persist in saying or doing things which are so outrageous that I do decide to take offense. But my knee-jerk reaction is always to avoid taking offense at things other people say or do. If that’s your choice as well, maybe we can share a few real laughs. If not, well, I hear the qxh also has a spreadsheet tracking when I came to bed with dirty feet that he’d be happy to share.
I can just see my children frolicking about the gardens, stopping to pluck a flower to adorn their curly hair while I sit with a glass of iced tea and soak in all the beauty of it. If only my yard didn’t actually look like it was waiting for a Chevy on cinder blocks to adorn it.
I got that not everyone was going to like me and I was cool with that (eventually). But what if the people who seemed to like me didn’t really? That was an intolerable thought to me. The idea of thinking that you were safe with people who weren’t really safe freaked me out. And like any good geek, I believed that gathering as much information as possible was the solution. . . Unfortunately for me, if there is a disorder which is the opposite of Asperger’s that makes you inappropriately hyper-sensitive to non-verbal social cues, I have that.