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Saturday, February 16, 2013

Who's in charge here?


Being out of control just sucks. Feeling out of control sucks. It does. It just does.

I used to feel that way. It was a child's way of trying to keep the wolves from the door. It is a common experience of children who have experienced abuse. It is a common experience of children who grew up in the midst of chaos.

Who ever thought I would come to be a grand champion of Chaos. In theory. And even: in practice.

I love chaos. Being out of control is fine with me. It is the way of the world. We are not in control. We can be in charge of certain things, of some things. But we are not in control.

There is - news flash - no control. Meteors charge into the atmosphere. And this, this: children die. Markets blow up. Gangs shoot up the school ground. Planes crash.

Children die. I'm still feeling the shock and grief, from a distance, at the death of a two-year-old from Tay-Sachs. And friends remind me with a facebook post this afternoon of the death of their son two years ago from another hideous disease. I used to think somebody should be in control of these things. SomeBody should. But that's not how it is. Nature has its way with us.

Chaos, in theory, even in practice, takes us through the landscape of No Control. It takes us through the quagmires of grief and sadness. It pushes us across the terrain of loss. Real loss. Over which we have no control. And it nudges through fields of bleating sheep and crazy awful quicksand that can sink us if we don't make the best navigational choices. Chaos takes us into the valley of the shadow of death. It dumps us down in the dumpsters, the trash heaps of emotion. It is all about uncertainty. Questions. Where will I / we end up? What next?

It is not reasonable at this moment, with death breathing on my shoulder, to celebrate chaos. That would be crass, insensitive, insufferable.

But. I know, from painful experience, and some joyful experiences too, that chaos can lead to a new place. It is not a place free from jagged cliffs. But it is a place where life can be lived big and loud and good and true.

Control -- attempting to control -- makes us crazy. Chaos leads us on a meandering way straight through the rugged heart of life. And gives it back to us. Whoever thought it could be true?

But that seems to be the way it is. Chaos, lets the light in. Chaos, brings us past the roughest scatchiest patches. Chaos brings us through.

Nobody's in charge here. We go with what we get. And we make the choices that are put before us. Chaos. Chaos sets the table.

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