On Suffering

Two posts in one day, because lately it seems like I can never finish one the day I start it.  Well, to be fair, last night was a little chaotic with the election, plus my father-in-law visited for a few hours, then we were watching the election results as they came in.  I will say my piece about it and then I will leave it.  I did not vote for Trump, and I am really disappointed and shocked that things turned out the way they did, but I think both candidates handled the situation gracefully last night.  In the end, no matter who is in that position, they will be put through scrutiny and people will look on them with approval or disapproval.  One of the great things about our country is that the president cannot just make a rash decision and just carry it out on his own.  Like all disappointments, for those of us who didn't get our wish, we will adapt and move on, the sooner we do so the better.  I am feeling better about it now than I was last night or even this morning.  Oh well.  In four years we will be doing this all over again!  That makes me exhausted just thinking about it!
Today I wore another one of my new sweater dresses, and it is less flattering than yesterday's dress in my opinion, because it clings more to my not-proud-of places on my stomach.  When I decided to buy it, I had two things in my mind; One, that I will eventually lose weight and it will look better, and two, that I am going to try to judge myself less harshly and by buying and wearing these items, I am sending myself a message that I am lovable, attractive, professional and just generally wonderful no matter what I look like. 
The fact that I'm wearing a dress that makes me a little self-conscious on a day where my spirits are a little droopy, might not be the best choice, but I am going to keep my chin up and remember who I am and what I am made of.  A really good thing is that I have not had any desire to comfort-eat.  This feeling is one that would have made me do so in the past.  This is how I know I am healing.  In my learning (though I admit it is small) of the Buddhist philosophy, I am most drawn to the concept of letting go of emotional attachment to things that will change.  (ahem! Everything changes) and I came across a picture on Pinterest that really reaches me:
Having emotions over things serve a purpose, to deepen our understanding, but if we don't eventually let it go we will suffer.  That is my goal, to begin learning, understanding, then letting go of what makes me suffer.  So many times in life we fail to realize that the choice is ours.  Life will happen to us, much of it we cannot control, but what we internalize and feel about it is a choice we make.  If I continue to blame my parents/childhood for my emotional eating or blame the food industry for making our food so horrible, or blaming society for putting pressure on women to look like emaciated pre-pubescent girls, I will never feel inner peace.  And without that, I am reacting to something I believe I have no control over.  I am going to search for that inner peace.  It hides in a quiet place, something I haven't been making a priority lately, but something whose needs have been quietly making themselves known.  Meditation, focus, awareness, lightness of spirit, easy breath and a release of tension.  I feel better just saying the words.  Maybe it's finally time to put them into practice. 
However you feel about the election results, and wherever you are on your journey, I wish you well and hope you find the peace we all seek.


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