Today, a carefully planned, very important meeting for tomorrow completely fell apart. I was surrounded by frustration, anger, tension.
And I wasn't bothered. I was frustrated about certain things, but I felt like the drama was happening at a distance. My usual wont is to absorb all the feelings and then return them in some fashion, get caught up in it, even get off on the adrenaline.
Today - nothing. I did what needed doing, but felt remarkably calm throughout. I rather thought it might be a blessing in disguise. Something similar happened a few weeks ago when a friend's unexpected reaction knocked me for six, but I managed to pause, breathe and react to the person I know and love, not the words of a moment.
Suddenly, I've turned around to find that I'm beginning to act out of stillness. Oh, sure, I still go off on one. Yes, I still say things to catalyse a situation or to shock. But more and more often, I'm finding that instead of going full-tilt into a charged conversation - very much the way one had to deal with my father - I'm pulling back, slowing it down.
And I'm discovering that - contrary to what I'd been afraid of - it doesn't mean that I'm less passionate or less intense. I'm still loud, expressive, can talk a hind leg off a donkey and gesture a lot - that's not ever going to change. It simply means the energy isn't wasted the way it was when I'd go full tilt - lashing out, into an argument, political discussion, etc. It's channelled. Moving from stillness doesn't mean I'm boring, or lacking vibrancy, colour or passion: it means I'm beginning to use it well.
Apparently, the spiritual practice that I've been doing not-as-well-or-as-regularly-as-I-might has been working more-than-I-deserve.