Time to Don Your Night Goggles
by jane arie baldwin
Night vision eyewear can be very helpful when you don’t have the ability to see in the dark. What if we could break out those goggles at any time when doubt, fear, loneliness and alienation have become our default settings?
I think we can.
On Halloween I started a post titled, Nightmare By the Sea but I never finished it because it didn’t have an ending until last night. The beautiful American couple in the movie By the Sea, live in a beautiful Maltese setting and drive an exquisite vintage Citroen convertible (with Cartier red leather interior) through narrow winding cobbled streets, to rocky cliffs overlooking the azure-blue Mediterranean Sea.
But alas, seeping out into this glorious veneer is a lonely, alienated and empty interior. The reason? Because she couldn’t have children. Really? The couple with six kids, half of them adopted and this is the story the chose to tell? Oye!
Their self-absorbed sadness was too much, “Go outside!” I screamed at the screen, as if Freddy Krueger were behind them. “For God’s sakes, get away from each other, go swim in the ocean, adopt a kid already, and please someone tell a joke!”
The urgency I felt yelling at the TV, Mystery Science Theater –style on Halloween is the same urgency I feel now, “Run!”
Trump is my Freddie Krueger. All the white men he will surround himself with, their thoughts on controlling women’s choices among other important social issues.
So today, yes, I’m suffering. In the ebb and flow of life I’ve been in the flow for the last eight years, I’ve felt a part of something important, a community with a leader that made changes that felt in alignment with my beliefs.
And that is it right there. Beliefs. Ideas. Mindsets. This construct is what we’re up against. These thoughts that lure us into feeling good and riding high on that feeling and then comes the inevitable hangover, the suffering.
“Suffering is not a mistake. It is part of the path.” —- Dharma saying
So what’s there while we’re suffering? Everything that was there before: the beautiful couple, the blue ocean and the old convertible (though now the leather seats are probably ripped and faded). The question is: Did you ever make to the beach? Help a child? Find the humor?
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” —- Viktor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
When we know what truth looks like we can find it, even in the dark. Truth exists in our courage to trust love, our faith in the inherent goodness in each other, and our constant cultivation of hope.
“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” —- Maya Angelou
Lest we forget that this election brought us the first Latina senator, the first black/Indian (female) senator, the first female Somali Muslim woman in the house. Sometimes it’s the smallest differences that make the greatest impact. Hope is always there. It’s just that sometimes we need those night goggles.