Thursday, September 12, 2013

September 12: Nice and Peaceful, Happy Places, Piece of Mind

That's the whole trouble.  You can't ever find a place that's nice and peaceful, because there isn't any.  You may think there is, but once you get there, when you're not looking, somebody'll sneak up and write "Fuck you" right under your nose...

When I started flipping through my copy of Catcher, looking for a passage that captured my mood this evening, I held little hope.  My state of mind is so foul and negative that I thought Holden Caulfield, even in his most desperate and depressed moments, couldn't describe my feelings.  Then I happened upon the little passage above, and saw that it was good (yes, I'm stealing from the Book of Genesis).

I have a few happy places in my life, places where I always have a sense of self-worth, safety, and value.  When I teach, I feel that in the classroom.  When I help my daughter with her homework or give my son a bath or make dinner for my wife, I feel that in my home.  When I participate in a worship service or sing in the choir or plan an event, I feel felt that in church.  That's right, I scratched out the present tense because, right now, church is not one of my happy places.  It's like Holden says.  Someone sneaked up when I wasn't looking and scratched "Fuck you" on the altar.

That sounds harsh, I know.  I'm dealing with some anger issues.  I've worked for the church for close to 15 years as an organist and worship leader.  I loved every second of it.  The songs, concerts, cantatas, plays, writing workshops, children's Christmas programs.  However, after yesterday's news that the church is eliminating my salaried position, I'm currently feeling betrayed, devalued, insulted.  I'm a used Kleenex.  I was useful for a while, but now I'm a ball of tissue crusted with snot.

I'm looking for peace of mind for my piece of mind tonight.  I want to be calm and happy again.  I've been trying to get there all day long.  It's not happening.  Until I sat down at my laptop this evening to blog, I don't think I've had a single positive thought.  I just realized something, though.  Typing my posts makes me happy.  In some weird way, when I'm blogging, I feel connected and safe with people who care about me.  And I don't even know them.

There, I've found happiness.  It may be fleeting.  It may only last as long as my laptop screen is glowing in my dark office at the university.  It may be a complete fabrication of my currently chaotic mind.  But that's what happiness is, I think.  It's whatever you want it to be.  A blog post.  A can of Diet Coke.  A little girl chewing gum loudly.  A rainstorm on a September evening.

That's a piece/peace of Saint Marty's mind.

Anyone need a tissue?

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