Notes From The Furlough: Day 18

Torment is of our own devising.

Please discuss. How does this play out in life?

I’ll start us out. My life is a patchwork of experiences. Some I enjoy; some seem to pass me by neutrally; some I endure. It’s easy to embrace and be thankful for pleasant occurrences. With a little focus, I can also be present for neutral events and try to savor them. I find it more difficult, as I suspect most of us do, to handle unwanted experiences. COVID-19 and its attendant changes in lifestyle certainly qualifies as unwanted, something I might simply hope to endure.

Today I’m reminded that to see it as such is to ignore its potential benefits. Nature is rebounding from man’s effects on the environment. People are for the most part drawing together for the common good. We’ve had a pause in our lives to reflect and re-prioritize. My Corona staycation may have unanticipated negative effects—on my job, finances, and social life. Certainly I’ve been lucky not to have the illness impact the survival and health of family and friends. The virus also has served up unexpected positive effects—time for neglected hobbies and chores, an opportunity to re-evaluate, increased enjoyment of my own company. COVID-19 and its effects is a mixed bag for me. How I perceive these events is a choice. I can choose whether to resist or accept. Suffering, for me, is optional.

How about you? What have you been simply enduring and how might you choose to experience it differently?