Am (stupidly, short-sightedly) drinking coffee in a (stupid, short-sighted) attempt to work through it, as I'd feel like too much of a schmo bailing on any of the commitments I have in the next 24 hours.
Why is this feeling so familiar, I wondered briefly as Trader Joe's Bay Blend and the moka pot prepared to bail my ass out once again? Because it's My Thing, for one, my overachieving, approval-needing, lack-of-entitlement-ing thing. But also because the nature of balance is...imbalance.
Okay, bear with me here. You have a scale, one of those jobbies like Miz Justice is holding, above. You put something on one side and then, to balance it out, you put something of equal weight on the other side.
But for however long it takes you to put that other thing on, even if it's a split-second, things are, all together now, out of balance! Out of whack! Off-kilter! Completely fakakta!
With planning and practice, of course, the lag time between farkakte and perfect balance gets shorter. You learn to keep the pile of feathers right next to the pile of cotton or drywall screws or JELL-O. You learn, in fact, that if you are balancing drywall screws and feathers, you will need far more feathers in ready supply than you will should you be balancing cotton and feathers. But the first time you try to balance feathers and JELL-O? Dude, you are looking at a serious mess. So, you know, try to roll with it. (And have the equivalent of paper towels at the ready, if possible.)
Even when your repertoire of items to balance becomes both vast and deep, though, you can't keep the scales balanced perfectly all the time. Why?
Because of air.
Yes, stupid air is messing with your scales. A good, honkin' breeze or a sudden draft when someone comes in the door and you have a window open will mess you up. Heck, even just floaty, floaty air will throw your scales off balance: it may be imperceptible, but it's happening. Unless you're in a vacuum. And you know how Nature feels about that.
This week, I had a surprise overabundance of good times dropped in my lap. I don't know about you, but I have already passed up enough good times for three lifetimes, and I'm over that crap. So I went a little crazy, hanging with my peeps, talking my cords dry, generally raising a ruckus.
And, rather than let down anyone who was depending on me, I did the work, too. Smart? Maybe not. Balanced? In the short run, definitely not. I'm here, fingers crossed (well, when they're not wrapped around my coffee mug), hoping that the stretch I get to include on this particular balance sheet extends through Monday. I have payment in full for the piper: Friday post-COB to Tuesday morning, I've stripped down to the bone. Excepting a hair coloring appt. (hardly rough duty), I could spend the whole three dancing nude around my living room and not dismay anyone except Eileen, my across-the-way neighbor. (She's a proper lady, is Eileen.)
Here's to me...and you...and (thank you, Miranda July) everyone we know not beating themselves up over imbalance, optical illusion that she is. The reality of imbalance is more like us: constantly changing, messy, equal parts wabi and sabi.
And compelling. Because hey, when you look at that frieze above, what's more interesting: the stone lady and her sword, or that endlessly shifting scale?
Yeah. Thought so...