I have many favorite quotes, pages upon pages of favorite quotes in fact. But along came one last week to trump them all.
Or perhaps I was just ready for it - yes, Taylor Swift, I am.
"When the student is ready, the teacher appears," so goes a Buddhist saying.
It also tethered me to my own heart and the hopes that reside there.
If you've been around me long, you're apt to know my favorite kind of weather, my favorite places to eat, my favorite clothes to wear, my favorite writers, my favorite number, my favorite breakfast, my favorite fruits, and my favorite activities. It is not being full of desire that eludes me.
-Tandem, GB&D, and White Duck Taco
-Lululemon shorts, Old Navy tank top, and Classic Van's shoes - and my AE camouflage shirt
-Anne Lamott, Alexander McCall Smith, and Gretchen Rubin
-No-bake bars and bulletproof coffee
-Watermelon, grapes, and figs
-Waterskiing, copying quotes, taking walks, time alone
I know people who are easy to please, and I admire them, and I want to be like them.
I want to want a straw for my water, but be okay if I can't get one. I want to want a veggie tray with every meal, but be perfectly content eating a simple bowl of chili and no carrots and celery to crunch. I want to want time alone every single day, but trust that God can provide rest for me in the midst of buzz and bustle. I want to want summer forever, but take winter with joy. I want to sit in a hard chair, but cheerfully sit everywhere there is to sit in this room. I want to walk alone and early, but know that a walk is a walk even with a stroller. I want to stay home at the lake, but focus on what I would like if I liked the beach.
Anne Lamott says, "Life is already an obstacle course, and when you're adding your own impediments (thinking they're helping), you really crazy it up." She also says, "I had a stern talk with myself, about getting out of myself to be a person for others."
I would do well to take her advice, to not let my desires become demands, to not let my wishes override my decency, my flexibility, or my experience of a broader view of life. I can keep my desires, but fence them into the joy of serving others and surrendering to life on life's terms.
It is the dichotomy of this quote speaking simultaneously to who I am, and to who I want to become, that appeals greatly to me. I am, and I am becoming. I want, and I am wanting not. I desire, and I defer. I am ready, and I reap from Gretchen Rubin this line for a lifetime.