a.ce.di.a = spiritual torpor and apathy
For the past four years I have had the privilege to stay home. For some, this decision has been a source of amazement: "What do you do all day? Don't you get bored? Aren't you lonely?" The truth is, I am never bored and I am never lonely.
There is so much to feel, so much to think about, so much to enjoy! A poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox comes to mind, it's called "Coleur de Rose" and it goes like this:
I want more lives in which to love
This world so full of beauty,
I want more days to use the ways
I know of doing duty;
I ask no greater joy than this
(So much I am life's lover,)
When I reach age to turn the page
And read the story over.
I must say that during the first days of my freedom I'd get up in a frenzy. I had to keep busy, I had to do tangible things, like cleaning, organizing, shopping, paying bills, anything! I felt guilty if I stopped moving and I found staying home quite tiring, then slowly, I regained control. I began to realize it was okay to stop between chores and enjoy a cup of coffee, it was okay to go for a walk instead of cleaning. I had to get used to have time on my hands, to be my own boss. It was unsettling to ponder, to look deep into myself, to question things, to come to conclusions, and to realize the answers had been there all along, I just had not been able to see them.
It took a long time to let go of my emotional burdens and the extra luggage I had carried for years, then the grip that had held me down lost it's strength. This change was possible only when I got off the "mad train", when I stopped the constant race against the clock, when there was silence around and Peace stood behind each door. Every day a layer was shed and I felt lighter, hopeful, composed. I also found there could be a lot of noise within silence. My inner voice sounded strange and loud, I had not heard it since I was a child and was startled by it's presence. I began to appreciate the pleasures and the power of silence.
Some time ago I came across a very interesting website called Thinking Faith and found an article that briefly explains how our society is suffering from a severe case of Acedia. I could not agree more. I also think the remedy is inside each one of us. The secret is to stop and listen to the inner voice that hides within the silence. The voice that is drowned by stress, duties, chores, and life in general.
These days, when someone calls me and asks "What are you doing?" I am no longer ashamed to say, "Nothing much." I don't feel guilty to want to sit, think, dream. I am no longer afraid to stop whatever I'm doing and find a little time to smell the roses.
Photo by Bing Images