I'll tell you one of the really good things about getting older: Slowly, you start to work out a comprehension of your own inherent madness. Last night, besieged by jetlag, kept awake and worried by lingering dental pain, ruminating over an unresolved (though by no means fatal) interpersonal issue and maybe (just MAYBE) experiencing just the tiniest (TEENSIEST) bit of PMS, I had one of those really bad 3am episodes. You've all been there, right? You all know what goes down at 3am when you let your mind act out like a drunken sailor on a 24-hour shore pass? (No actual drinking was involved, boringly.) Anyhow, you all know how it goes — so I will spare you the details.

EXCEPT to say that I remembered this line, quoted below, which gave me the perspective to recognize that it would probably be really healthy for me not give my thoughts very much credence at this unpleasant moment of flash anxiety. Because I am old enough to know better. Old enough to know that I've been here before, and to wait it out — the way you stand under a tree during a rainstorm. Old enough to know that I don't necessarily have to take action on every one of my thoughts. Old enough to know that sometimes my opinions are wrong — or at least shady. Old enough to know that making decisions based upon a 3am worry-bout hardly ever leads to good results. Old enough to know that there are certain times of day and month when my decision-making is not entirely to be trusted. Old enough to know that the best thing for me to do at such a moment is go to a quiet room, open up my favorite volume of Hafiz poems, and read them aloud to myself until that old, generous mystic reminds me once more of all the wit and magic and comfort of love. (Hence my middle-of-the-night Hafiz posting, 6 hours ago. THANK YOU, HAFIZ.)

Then sleep in until 10am. Wake up feeling better. Live to fight another day. Be grateful that I allowed nothing to escalate out of my mind last night. Be grateful for the strategies that come with age. Make some tea. Be grateful for the tea. Feed the cats. Be grateful for the cats. Go kiss husband. Be grateful for the husband.

It's all gonna be alright.

Love
Liz

via Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook Wall

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