I grew up hearing that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. I relegated that to some vague concept of Chemistry because it was too scary to apply it to everyday life. It works perfectly in that giving would automatically activate receiving, but when I think of doing good and getting bad as a result I was not tickled. Yet the law pervades even now, wrenching hearts in its wake. It’s totally oblivious while we scream ungrateful dog/bitch!!! at each other out of the depths of our perplexity, having given our all and gotten a lynching in return. How do we get rid of it? Maybe we can’t. Hence it becomes another opportunity to increase our awareness of the mysteries of our multidimensional selves. How cannot be answered externally, this we discover along the journey. Some things cannot be taught by another no matter how well-formulated our questions or their explanations are. They simply have to be experienced. Here are some experiences a few folks had…
A friend of one of my clients sat for a moment to complain to me. She makes the effort to visit the Home almost daily to be with her friend knowing that she has no family here and would need emotional support. As a reward my client keeps her eyes closed and is silent. The friend insists on conversing knowing that she is awake and listening, but she gets tired of the monologue and when she encourages my client to respond, those efforts are met with displays of annoyance. They were childhood friend and she remained here while my client and her family migrated. When my client would later return to spend holidays, it would be at her house. Now both in their 60s, the bond continued until my client had a stroke. The friend recounted how it was again her place at which my client ended up and it was arduous to take care of her, but she tried. On days she wanted to rest she could not, on days she wanted to order in lunch she had to cook because my client had special needs and she felt obligated to facing the stove to prepare the right meals.
When the physical fatigue was too much she advised the relatives and a Home was decided on. Now it is much easier to visit, so she does. And she hates to say it, but the attitude she gets is nothing short of ingratitude. I told her to consider that while she remained in Trinidad and played the perfect wife and mother her friend was ‘out there’ being the best professional her single/childless status could afford and her accomplishments mounted high. To return home and hang out with an oldtime friend who runs behind her husband and children is good for a brief periods, but now she is stuck with you and your talk of children and grandchildren and maybe you stir in her ‘what if’ questions, causing her to see that having grandchildren of her own could have been a source of comfort now. Maybe she is hating you for being the one in good health while she accomplished much but not enough to keep her out of a wheelchair. Maybe your visits are not comforting, but depressing, so she cannot find gratitude to express.
When I left there I needed a taxi to get me from over the highway to the Eastern Main Road. Nothing in sight. The somethings that followed the nothing were private vehicles. Then a snow-cone cart came along. I asked the rider to give me drop. He had a big umbrella and enough ice to keep me cool. He thought I was joking. I wasn’t. A ride is a ride. He said it was easier to imagine me in a nice air-conditioned car, which he did not have or he would have gone for it and helped me. Hmmm. I was left alone again. Shortly after what he desired for me did happen. Private car with the driver was offering a ride. I got in and handed him my fare. He refused it. Said he was going in my direction and would be burning no more fuel by taking me. I told him that I was not paying him for the ride, I was merely expressing my gratitude by giving him the money. He said he won’t argue. Took the money, placed it between the two seats and continued driving.
Then the trip suddenly became very long, either that or time stood still. He turned and asked me what it is that we women really want, and then we seemed to have gone through his whole life before he dropped me at the EMR. He was on his way to see his woman. They have had a relationship for several years, but he is never too sure whether they have one or not. She’d be with him for a few months, then disappear for the next few. And just when he thinks of moving on, she would call again, and for all he tries he cannot keep himself from acceding to her wishes. Before our fateful meeting there was no communication. Then she called and he dropped what he was doing to her. He is 50 and she is 38. He is tired of being played like this but it has been like this for years a part of him seemed to have settled into the routine. Now he wanted me to tell him what really do we women want because he is sure he have given her his all and yet she leaves when he least expects.
He has his own home, she is building hers. One reason he is going is because the workmen she hired are not doing the job well and he knows how to remedy that, but it will not be easy as the workmen are her relatives. I asked if he had erectile dysfunction. No! Actually the sex is so good it is the main reason he can’t understand why she leaves. What about money. That is there. It is the reason they met and quite possible the reason she stays. Does she have someone else? Not easy to admit, but he feels she has her ‘favourite’ man out there and she just uses him for his money. And when did you figure that out? Long ago. And you’re still going. Yes, he can’t explain it, but he has to go. Hmmm. I’d say she is one of the better women.
One of the sore points in the relationship is her habit of gambling. She’d ask him for money, he gives her, and then she has to ask again because she lost rather than won the amount she had anticipated. He feels he has to leave the country and go someplace far for a few months in order to break the tie between them. Then go. Nah, he likes home. Humans are the best. I told him he seems to be the one who needs the relationship, so he is the one who has to make the change. See what it is she has that you need, see if you can source that in someone who has a little more respect for you and your money and give that relationship a chance. I was exiting the car telling him that knowing what women want is of no use to him, he has to know what he wants and how much he is willing to pay for it. Everything else is secondary. Meanwhile, he could take up some studies, build a kennel, or start a kitchen garden, something that would use up some of the mental space this woman is occupying. I shut the car door and he headed off to his ungrateful woman.
The old folks casually say life begins at 40. Part of it takes us back that never-ending chakra story and the development of the third-eye chakra. Subtle changes which would have begun in the mid-30s are becoming evident. Hereon is the perfect time for estranged relationships and divorces as the changes that take place within are no longer tolerant of the pretenses we wish to keep up. Our being screams for authenticity, self-acceptance. We are in crisis because things are shifting to a very spiritual mode at a point when we are making positive strides materially and want to continue along that path: the woman/man (though probably someone else’s spouse), the car, the promotion, the house, etc. that we dreamed of (not the one we had to settle for before) are mysteriously now accessible even as we are being pulled in another direction. If we don’t thread wisely and cooperate with the change within a whirlwind tends to come out of nowhere and knock those things out of our reach in a flash.
Attention is considered the first act of will because it establishes the relationship between us and that which we experience, allowing us to raise the level of our experience to gain insight for better living. True, we have been paying attention all our lives, but that is passive attention of random stimuli. At this point in our lives it is critical to engage in active attention as such harmonizes us with wider sphere of things. But we want to stay passive. So trauma has to be brought in. Trauma has the highest record of getting our active attention and shifting our focus. Sadly, some of us literally end up penniless and threadbare. But it is at this juncture in our darkest moments that we suddenly hear the voice of God directing us. Having survived the 40s and reached 50, it is astounding that many seem to have catapulted right back to their teen years. Senseless, unless there is a bigger picture and steps are taken to break our will to ensure we continue the dance necessary for the maintenance of the beauty of that big picture.
After I left him I thought too of the meeting of Adam and Eve. He was an image of divinity…a reflection. She was bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh. Quite a definition for a wife. Yet women are clamoured after for every reason other than because they are bones of a man’s bone and flesh of his flesh, which is probably why they end up neglected rather than being cared for as a man cares for himself. It could be that jealousy and insecurity stem from laying claim to bone and flesh that is not yours. A man sees what he wants and goes after it knowing that she is not his, will never be his. Hence he has to take all kinds of precaution to keep her for he knows the day that the man whose bone and flesh she is should pass by, it would be his loss. And even as he subconsciously await that day, his efforts are spent on multiplied methods of control to prevent it, and the love they initially professed becomes a chronic case of cataract that blurs their vision into blindness. Occasionally they might stumble onto a pleasant patch, but most of the time they are striking out at air, anything, just to keep the balance they had when they used to see. So maybe we should cease to decry divorce as it might well be a public testimony of our willingness to give up bones that were never ours.
In speaking of bone let’s do that scientific thing. There is another law, Wolff’s Law to exact, that says: every change in the form and function of a bone, or in its function alone, is followed by certain definite changes in its internal architecture and secondary alterations in its external conformation. Translation: woe is man who has the wrong bones, she will be a trouble to his blood and every organ it reaches. No rock will be large enough to hide under because incompatible DNA cannot be plastered by looks or wealth or whatever else we come up with. Whenever we touch on the skeletal system we come across osteoblasts and osteoclasts. The former builds, the later breaks down. The former is controlled by the thyroid via calcitonin, the latter by the parathyroid via PTH. The thyroid and parathyroid could be considered flesh. If there is any problem with those pieces of flesh, we automatically have bone problems. So men need to be careful about the wife thing. If that woman puts her mind to activating osteoclasts, she would dismantle you faster than you could say: crumble. It is important to find your wife and you’d certainly have a good thing because those blast and clast attributes would be used to build you up in pertinent areas while chipping away at that which would be detrimental to the relationship.
So the next time you see a pretty lady, be careful. Don’t try to jump her bones, they might belong to a man. As for us single ladies… In our defence I’d say that our bone structure is so unique there is possibly no man alive with a perfect DNA match. But given our technological age we don’t have to be alone. We can reverse the roles and arrange surgery for a man of our choice to at least have some of our marrow. When the anaesthetics wear off and he looks up from his hospital bed with curious eyes, we could give him a wide smile and say: you are bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh…be grateful. Not man alone could give speech.