I was on board an aircraft on my way to Chennai. I was feeling cold and sleepy having to have woken up really early in the morning. Since it was a trip I was taking alone without my children, I decided to catch up on my sleep. I was feeling cold and so called for the flight attendant and asked her for a blanket. She said on that flight they did not offer blankets. She was kind and asked if it would be alright if she turned down the air conditioning a bit. I was about to say yes please, it is cold. But I stopped and told her that “I am feeling cold and that it might not be cold for the others.” So she smiled and said “you know what, I will get you a glass of warm water instead, that might help.” And so she got me a glass of nice warm water and you know what I drank it slowly and I actually felt my body warm up. I slept peacefully.
How often I try and change situations because they don’t work for me? I try and change the people I love, I try and change the way my children are, the way my parents are. How often earlier I have actually gone into restaurants and found the music loud and yelled at waiters to turn down the music, never stopping to think that some people might have come to that place to actually listen to loud music. What stops me from not eating at that restaurant? What stops me from not settling for that warm glass of water instead?
We stay on in relationships which do not work perhaps for one of the partners, and yet we go on being in denial and blame the other for things not working out. What stops us from taking responsibility and saying, “this is great as great can be, but it does not work for me.” Simply acknowledging this is the first step to transformation. I cannot turn the Sun down because it is hot…I can stay indoors and stay cool myself.
If I had agreed to the temperature being turned up a bit in the air cabin that day, I would have been operating form Ego, thinking, that I am the only one in that cabin and along with me all are feeling cold. And yet seeing that it was actually ‘I’ that was feeling cold I was able to go for a solution that worked for me.
Recently a close friend was often feeling a little fearful of our relationship since I was subtly trying to make the friend ‘fit the bill’. And I saw that if fear existed in our relationship love would soon die. Because where there is fear nothing else can survive. I apologized and took the power back in me. I figured that I could never ever make anyone fit the bill. I just had to change the bill. And that bill is me….I needed to go for the warm water solution…
To stay in a situation that does not work for you is the Ego’s trip to always ‘make it work’. A person like me who has had serious control issues with life and my own self knows better. The only way to make it work is ‘stop trying to make it work’. The only way transformation works is from the center, not the periphery. The center is my self, my need for a blanket, my need to be warm, my need to be safe and secure, my need to be loved and cared for, my need to be famous, my need to be powerful and ambitious, my need to be rich…
Take care of your own center and the periphery no longer remains an issue needing control. Go ahead take that warm glass of water instead and keep your body warm.
In her famous book, ‘Eat Pray Love’, Elizabeth Gilbert writes how one night when she was feeling lonely and wanted to be in bed with a man, she got up and fried herself some potatoes instead and ate it slowly. Well how true is that, sometimes one just gotta make do with fried potatoes and warm water dearies….
Love is within!