Spiritual desert of a laundry room
It has been a long day and you are very tired. You cooked and fed your family dinner, cleaned up the dishes and checked kid’s homework. All you want is to go to bed. After a week of work, taking care of family, cooking and cleaning, checking homework and running errands almost everything is done and the house is quiet. Resentment is building up as you are folding laundry. There you are, in a quiet house, feeling so sorry for yourself. It is late at night and you are exhausted. You are physically, emotionally and spiritually spent…
Does it sound at all familiar? Very likely it does. At times like this you may just want to sit down and cry, feeling sorry for yourself. Or you may get angry, harboring resentment towards ungrateful or innocent members of the household. You may begin questioning: ‘Lord, why do I have to do it all by myself? Why there is no help? I know, nobody can do this job better than I can… If I decide to ask someone to help me with laundry or house cleaning they probably will mess things up! Very likely my sweaters and delicates will be shrunk, my carefully sorted whites will end up being washed with a red t-shirt or whatever someone else puts away will take me hours to find! That is why I don’t delegate… Yes, I do feel resentful for doing everything by myself and I can’t help it!”
Is there anything wrong with this picture? Do you see any contradiction here? What do you think can help you to begin enjoying your life?
Is it possible you can you get help by delegating the chores? Can you learn to be patient with other people’s mistakes when they are trying to help and contribute? Unfortunately, a common reaction for most of us is to negatively react and unleash anger at the person, usually a loved one or spouse, who was trying to help. Additionally, if he gets scolded for doing things in a wrong way he may not even want to help again and give it another try. This in turn can make us even more resentful and subject to our own self-righteousness and self-pity. Why we allow such patterns to occur? It is never too late to re-focus and get out of this downward spiral of misery. Do you punish a baby when she is making her first steps and fall again and again? My guess is you just lift her up, encouraging and praising her with smiles and cheering. Why don’t we do it with the grown-ups in our lives? Why can’t we smile looking at the burned dinner someone tried to make for us and simply say “Thank you” biting our tongue and silencing our mocking comments? Why don’t we allow others to help us even if we know they are not going to do a “perfect” job? Why don’t we kindly ask for help when no one volunteers? Can we communicate love instead of hurt and resentment? How can we accomplish this? How can we become happier and cultivate loving and caring relationships? We should realize achieving positive changes takes work and continuous effort. Sometimes we should ask ourselves are we just generally lazy? Even worse are we tempted to leave everything as is and resort to unleashing anger at times to the people we love. Is that the kind of life we should be living?
Changes happened when we get to the point where we want them to occur. You can be happy if you use the right approach. Change your perspective. Don’t attempt to change others or make their lives miserable. Establish a new habit of gratitude that leads to happiness. Focus on love. When you feel resentment and anger towards someone try to remember what you appreciate about this person. Focus on what you like about him or her. Meditate on love.
It takes time and effort to build a mutual loving and caring relationship. For a garden to flourish it not only needs to be planted, but fertilized, watered, weeded and pruned. It is our choice to be together with someone. It is our choice to work on connection and partnership. It is our choice to sow kindness and love with generosity of heart to reap joy and peace.
“Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19