Boy, more and more these days, I see I’m obliged to face some really difficult situations. Some of them I can share freely with you and others I can’t. Some involve other people who would not appreciate suddenly finding themselves in online articles.
Some involve behind-the-scenes matters that I simply cannot share or I’ll find myself cooling my heels on the dark planes (just kidding – the Boss has urged me to seek relief in humor).
Maybe I can make this the one place where I just share about it all and then beg your cooperation.
The relative degree of acceptance of this blog, not only from readers but from other quarters, has been as much of a surprise to me as it has been to anyone else. I didn’t take a course in how to manage what arises when something catches on. I have no degree in how to manage the stresses in one’s personal life, the unexpected situations that arise, how to turn to friends and say, “I’m sorry. I cannot see you to the extent you’d like or to the extent I have been,” and so on.
A certain number of people around me are handling very difficult situations and I’m honor-bound to attend to their needs. Moreover, the number of situations that publishing this blog gives rise to steadily increases. The nature of the matters that readers present to me expands into areas that I’m not sure I have expertise in. And the inbox fills up faster than I can attend to.
At the same time as I operate at the outer limits of my capacity, I’m increasingly asked to operate in ways that challenge my normal idea of myself, as we’ll all be sooner or later, I think. Unfortunately I cannot go into that, nor will you be able to when it happens to you. On top of that, situations arise which challenge to the utmost one’s own notion of one’s self. What then becomes required of you can be overwhelming or can turn a person inside out.
My early notions of wanting to be completely transparent are shown to be a fond hope. I now understand a little of why another man whom I dearly love and who took on a challenging position found that he too could not honor his early promises for complete transparency. There are some things that are too important to be completely transparent about. I can only be transparent about not being completely transparent and take the consequences.
Moreover some avenues I’ve opened up because they are good things present unique challenges of their own, which can only be known after one wades in. Additionally, new avenues or ways of communicating develop every month and mean fresh ways that others request to be heard, my time, fresh costs, on and on it goes. The input can be challenging, but it’s not visible or known to anyone else but the one principally involved.
So altogether, I live my life these days on a somewhat slim margin. Any major stressor suddenly arising and I’m in danger of entering a zone that I’m not very familiar with and don’t quite know how to navigate. I need to reduce the stress levels in my life, if even just to keep a margin of room for sudden increases and, fond hope, even rest. I also may need for there to be days when I don’t publish as much as I usually do because something else has come up that needs my input. Or I just simply need time out.
That’s probably as much as I can say without violating confidentialities and offending people. And it summarizes more situations than you probably ever want to hear about. Although I may appear calm here, I am in fact handling more in my life than I can keep straight. I can’t resist saying: I don’t know how I’m doing it.
Having reached these outer limits, and not fooling myself that this will be the last time I need to do this, I’ll be exploring ways that I can reduce the workload, demands, obligations, expectations, and so on. The ways arrived at must be such that they in turn don’t present new challenges. In India, the peculiarities of the electrical system produce a need for what they call “load-shedding.” They turn out the light of the lighthouse, private dwellings, etc. (Not sure what happens to ships.) I’m going to need to load-shed.
So, once again, if you see differences in the way things are done, it all comes down to load-shedding. Or if I don’t respond to you, same thing – load-shedding.
It doesn’t mean the dark has gotten us. It doesn’t mean we’ve sold out to anyone or are doing anything that needs to be explained. It just means that I’m trying to bring my life back into the range of the manageable while still addressing matters that border on … the unimaginable – an interesting challenge.
And please know that I know that I have all the assistance that I need from the Invisibles. This is not a plea for assistance or advice. Don’t suddenly flood me with condolences! Eeeek! No, no! King Kong the postman! (How am I doing with the humor, Boss?)
It just requires my reflecting and then acting.