When you think about your world, do you tend to be a glass half full or glass half empty person? I don’t mean the person you portray to the public – I mean in your heart of hearts, known only to you. Do you usually think that everything is going to be okay? Or are you pretty sure that it won’t be? One isn’t better than the other – they both have their benefits – but it is about finding a balance and making it work for your life. As one of my favorite quotes goes, “Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.”
I tend to be a glass half full person – to a fault. I live my life believing that there is some kind of plan and I tend to think of the obstacles as being put there for me to learn from. So where does this put me on a daily basis? Usually I try to see the world as a beautiful place with gifts to give, lessons to offer and vulnerabilities to nurture. I love the little things, like when my son can’t help but burst out laughing or when my daughter gives a relaxed sigh while I’m hugging her. I eat those up. This isn’t to say that I don’t see the world for what it is. I am not naive, I am a Chicagoan and very familiar with the uncertainty of things. I think that I’m tougher than I am, I am sarcastic, I’m a realist, and I like things to be fair, even if they’re not in my favor. But when something happens that doesn’t fit into the glass-half-full-world that I see? It is devastating to me. I can’t make sense of it because I am never ready for it. And that’s the rub.
Sometimes I wish that I had a harder shell. I wish that I could watch the news and spend time on Facebook without having to speed past all of the negativity about our world. I want to raise my children in an environment where they are as safe as possible, and part of that means that I have to take care of my own anxiety. I know that I’m not alone in this. You can’t shut out the entire world (nor should you) and you have to live your life. There are responsibilities that we have to take care of regardless of our mental state or the state of the world. You cannot completely shut down and you cannot run around consistently vulnerable. It is a tightrope walk on a fine line between too much and too little.
The above quote is one that I love because I think that it is a statement about one’s attitude. It is a commentary about what you want and what you are willing to experience to get there. What gratitude you are able to feel along the way and how vulnerable you are willing to be.
As I’m writing this, the song “Wait For It” from Hamilton is running through my head.
“We laugh and we cry
And we break
And we make our mistakes…
I’m willing to wait for it.”
Feeling the rain is a matter of being in it. Being willing to risk being open and letting it drizzle in. Regardless of whether your glass is typically half full or half empty, you can feel the rain. Be open to the process that this world may have in store for you. Feel the rain when you are in it and appreciate those moments. Otherwise, you are just getting wet.