Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. But anger is like fire. It burns it all clean.

Today I spent a good chunk of time cleaning out the storage unit I managed to inherit after my split. Although there was some of my stuff in there, a lot of its contents were things that could be labeled as “ours”–and as I sifted through the beat up boxes of things accumulated over 8 years, my initial reaction was to be angry–angry that this was left to me to take care of, angry that I was spending my day off in the cold cleaning up another mess. But I stopped myself before I could really wallow in it, and instead shifted my thoughts to positive ones: how completing this task was helping me move forward, how it was helping to bring closure, how it was moving me closer to the next stage in my life.

Anger is such a useless emotion if you just choose to dwell in it, but if you channel it in the right way, it can become a really powerful motivator. There are many times that I forget that, and it takes me too long to remember this notion, but I’m proud to say that today was one of those days where I embraced it pretty quickly.

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas…

Yesterday was my dad’s birthday and earlier in the day I stopped at my brother and sister-in-law’s place to drop off some stuff before the dinner they were hosting for the occasion.

My friend was with me, and we got to talking about the holidays and Christmas, and my sis-in-law asked us what our favorite Christmas song was. I initially said, “Oh Holy Night,” but then I thought more on it and quickly added “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.”

This isn’t the first time I’ve been struck by this song’s sentiment (loyal readers of the blog might remember last year’s musings on the subject), but I am impressed at how intensely it’s stricken me this year. Continue reading

Seeking peace.

The first day we were in Iceland, we pretty much got off the plane and then into one of the biggest, craziest-looking roided-out SUV vehicles I’ve ever seen. Our guide, Isak, took us around in this monster vehicle for hours–showing us the snowy mountains, rural towns, and moon-like terrains.

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See? I wasn’t kidding!

Most of our stops were planned, though we veered off a couple of times to check out some unplanned sites (the country’s prized breed of horses, who huddled together near a farm off the road we were traveling; a local coffee shop were I got homemade bread slathered with butter, and then layered with hard-boiled eggs slices and smoked salmon). Another stop was to view a particularly beautiful view of the landscape.

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Icelandic horses

At that point, while driving on one of the larger roads in the area, no cars had passed us for miles, and when we got out of the car, closing the doors behind us, I was struck with how calm the world felt. I looked out over this stretch of land and was overwhelmed with the sense of peace I felt. I like the 5 of us were completely alone up there, but in the best of ways.

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I know it looks weird, but it was delicious!

Now, a little over a month later, in the middle of a million hectic things happening all at once, I think back to those moments along the side of the road, and the absolute quiet and peace I experienced there. I am wishing for that feeling more than ever, and I’m hopeful that it’s something that can be attained without a plane ride…

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The spot where I think I’ve experienced the truest peace/quiet/feeling of aloneness.