A Well Used Art Form I F’ed Up, Photo by BradensEye

From slightly to royally, f’ing up happens. Maybe you’re a righteous do-gooder, but I’m going to call you out that somewhere in our space-time continuum you’ve had at least one moment that wasn’t worth glorifying. You were fully responsible for something that went wrong. Thoroughly or in a small way. It mattered, and not in a happy way. I don’t care what it was, is, how many of them you’ve had, nor how spectacular or lacking in verve they’ve been. They all hold a gift for you.

My zeal for positivity and trust has led me into many a dark and stormy outcome. Think along the range from simply a band-aid to tsunamis and the nuclear bomb. My pièce de résistance involved dramatic inclusions from the LAPD (yes, that’s the Los Angeles Police Department) and domestic violence counseling to court cases and restraining orders. Part of the ‘gift’ I unwrapped years into the ordeal was reckoning that I had big, fat, juicy choices within every turn of my life. Only, I’d been making really whacked ones about men, in this case. Giving up ‘victim’ mode opened more doors than I ever knew existed. Doorways that kept giving unto more doorways of stronger potential. That lotus blossom ever-unfolding more beautiful petal the Buddhist and meditation teachings inferred took on a new meaning for me.

Even with my optimism, I’ve been known to go off the rails. There are scads of random memories from which I can pull. There was the time when I first moved to Los Angeles, at the young age of twenty-two, I recollect a road rage incident where I was driving in a much-less-than-Beverly Hills neighborhood, contextually as a white girl with an African-American friend of mine, and somebody pulled up next to us wanting to start ‘something’. We launched back. There was shouting and jumping out of the cars, and then we sped away. F’ing insane, right?! It’s like a slow motion thought when I glance over the vague visuals of it now. It was sincerely a giant mistake of emotions led astray. For no logical reason. My gift from this one — There is absolutely nothing good that may come of road rage. Oh, and people could be harmed, or die. That should wake anyone up. It doesn’t always. And I don’t deserve sainthood in stating it this way. I’ve caught myself more than a few times since starting to lose it. There’s no excuse from tired to being flipped off, cut off, or children riding with you, whatever you might think is ok with this never will be. Just don’t do it.

Today, my rage or any traffic issues counteraction is the affirmation consideration that the universe is saving me from something if I don’t engage, don’t panic, don’t bitch, moan, or otherwise get hysterical. Like aliens, I’ve come to believe it too. I really trust that suddenly coming to a complete standstill on the 405 freeway late at night, when GPS didn’t catch the accident in time to warn and reroute me means there is something much worse that would likely have crossed my path if I’d arrived at the hoped timing. Or, that similarly along my lifetime spectrum, I needed to slow down this point in time to allow something wonderful to catch up with me to time it’s future occurrence with me correctly.

I look to apply this opportune ‘opposites’ mechanism in nearly every single wild instance of my existence now. Case in point — I got permission this week to sit outside in the grass under the trees to complete some of my work for the consulting company I’m working with, which boosted my sunny personality with fresh air and productivity. However, packing up to go back inside I realized I obtained tree sap all over my yoga outfit as I stood up. Funny enough, I decided it meant I needed to do laundry, which was true, as well that I was supposed to reset my stress by a simple warm water hands washing mini time out in my day to remove the some of the sap I’d inadvertently applied to my palms when brushing ground crumbs off the back of my pants.

Then there was the time around age seven when I was playing with real metal darts with my best friend as my younger sister was walking nearby without me paying attention to her. We kept distancing ourselves from the dartboard that was bolted to the tree in my friend’s yard. I threw my metal dart and heard a blood-curdling scream, as the tip landed sticking up from my sister’s forearm instead of anywhere near the target. My gift was knowing that one should honestly only play ever play with soft darts unless you’re a trained professional with dart gear. (They really should have dart gear. Notwithstanding that parents could have been supervising a bit more, but I will debate that one to my deathbed in that my idyllic youthful freedoms have formed a rare bird in me that I would never wish to give up, all my sensational f’up’s included.)

Recognizing that you don’t have forever gives you the gift to choose a rosy option. Even assuming we get the lurid space to come back to this planet to do it all again, or even more than a few times (input for my reincarnation fan club comrades), you’re almost assuredly never coming back to get the redo exactly over again. So, you might as well get into the empirical humbleness that we could support a masterpiece or a costly rendition.

The gift of f’ing up is that any collapse you may incur is legit liberation. The laws of f’ing up include in the fine print that you are permitted growth if you dare. They’ve been eluding to, telling, and sometimes yelling at us to go farther, faster, wider, to aim to be stronger. We’ve been given and produced God’s, Goddesses, gurus, scores of books, movies, videos, speakers, and a throng of other devices as a fulcrum to tilt you towards my side — that there is a gift in your living mistakes. As solidly as you know when you’ve hit the jackpot. It’s real. This is how you do it. Entropy is a beginning and not an end. Failure is your friend, not a slave or a master of disguise. Have no fear, there are gifts to claim wherever you veer.

Go forth with your f’ing up my dears!

LOVER of life. Especially people, places, philanthropy and photography.