When I was 38 weeks pregnant with my first child, I went to the grocery store one night to pick up a few things. A gentleman in a hurry accidentally cut me off in the isle with his cart and almost kept going but then I turned around and he saw my gigantic pregnant belly. Instantly he slowed down and apologized. “I’m so sorry!” he said. “I didn’t realize you were in a delicate condition.”
That brings me to something else I’ve noticed lately in my own self and in the conversations I’ve been having with my clients. There’s this illusion (it shows up extra strong at church) that everyone is doing just fine. Everyone smiles and is kind and says they are fine. I say I am fine when people ask me, and they say they are fine too. I’m fine. You’re fine. We’re all just fine, right? Everyone looks nice in their church clothes and everyone seems to have things mostly together.
Except many of us are not fine at all. Not because anything is wrong, but because as spiritual beings having a human experience, sometimes we are not fine. Sometimes it’s just a little bit of feeling uncomfortable without knowing quite why. Other times we are a complete wreck inside, and other times we are excited and happy and joyful. But most of the time it’s anything but “fine.” We’re in a delicate condition being here on earth.
I think it has something to do with the constant searching for the feeling of complete love we felt for ourselves and everyone around us, which we had before we came to earth. We didn’t question our worth and therefore we didn’t question anyone else’s worth either. A part of us remembers feeling that way and is longing to feel it again and every now and then we catch a glimpse of it and it feels amazing.
It also has to do with the underlying concern about whether or not the experience we’re having on earth is as it should be, when will it look how we think it should look, and what’s around the corner? Will I be able to handle it? It shows up as mild as resistance to what is going on or as extreme as anxiety and fear.
Then I think back to the man I met in the grocery story years ago and I wonder what would happen if what we were going through on the inside were more visible on the outside like a woman at the tail end of a pregnancy. I wonder if we would be more compassionate with one another. I wonder even more if we would be more open about sharing our struggles and allowing other people to help and support and love us through it all.
I hope you’ll remember when you go to church this Sunday, that the people around you are not fine. Some of them are doing amazing. Others are really struggling or just a little bit down but almost nobody is “fine.” We’re all in a delicate condition and we all just need one another. Love is the closest feeling I think we can have in this earthly life to what we felt in the pre-existence. And you will genuinely love MORE of the people around you by loving yourself more. It’s ok to not be fine and to love yourself anyway. It’s part of what we’re here to learn.
Have an amazing week.
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