The day began perfectly with a fun run with Kerry and Jenny on the trails. Jenny just ran the Marathon 2 Marathon in West Texas, so we got to hear all about it. She had a wonderful run where her mind felt loose and happy. Like my experience in Portland, she never hit a wall. A success! I am always inspired by the successes of my friends.
Then, as I enjoyed my post-workout smoothie at the gym, I happened upon an article by Garrison Cohen that upped my peace of mind. The article appeared in an online journal called elephant. I recommend reading the article in full here.
The gist of it is that life at its richest is found “in the pits.” The analogy the article makes is in reference to a peach. There’s the juicy fruit and then there is a pit. Some people love relationships as long as they are enjoying the juicy fruit, but when they reach the pit, they quit and, as a result, miss the really good stuff. Here is part of the article:
In relationships we all enjoy the fun, light, playful, juicy exterior of knowing someone. And then when we come to a breakdown (the pit) we want to throw it away, ignore it, treat it as worthless. The majority of the time we see “the pit” of relationship as a waste of our time, not what we want, not fun anymore.
I believe we’re missing the point.
Just as the pit is the source of life for the fruit, breakdowns are the source of life for the relationship. Not just your relationship with him or her—but your relationship with everything and everyone, including yourself.
If we run from the breakdowns, we simply stay on the surface where we can only have light, fun experiences. When we allow ourselves to really experience the breakdowns, we start to see the core of who we really are. This can feel scary and vulnerable and yet, only by embracing the source of life can we continue to grow.
I’ve learned a great deal this past year, including that I am not someone who throws a relationship away when it experiences a breakdown. That doesn’t mean I’ve figured out how to successfully navigate through breakdowns. I haven’t. But I don’t expect light and fun all the time. In fact, going forward, I’m committed to “fighting” earlier in a relationship rather than later because challenges reveal how committed someone is to making the relationship work. Today, this article felt like the universe telling me that I’m okay, that I did my part this past year, and that I learned something from it.
Then – not that I needed anything else to make today a good one – I also moved offices today! After more than two years of being in temporary, somewhat make-shift office space, I now have a home. I can unpack and fully settle in. The timing could not be sweeter to make today feel like a new beginning.
Not a bad start to my new year, huh?