“Ego is like a room of your own, a room with a view with the temperature and the smells and the music that you like. You want it your own way. You’d just like to have a little peace, you’d like to have a little happiness, you know, just gimme a break. But the more you think that way, the more you try to get life to come out so that it will always suit you, the more your fear of other people and what’s outside your room grows. Rather than becoming more relaxed, you start pulling down the shades and locking the door. When you do go out, you find the experience more and more unsettling and disagreeable. You become touchier, more fearful, more irritable than ever. The more you try to get it your way, the less you feel at home.”
Pema Chodron (via Yoga Bala)
I recognize myself in this description. I think that I’m simplifying life by pushing friends away. I get impatient with the drama in my friends’ lives. (Most of them don’t have children, though.) I went to a party not long ago and left early and irritated – too much talk of drunken nights out, too many people hitting on each other, too many middle-aged men telling frat stories. I’d rather just stay home.
Instead of content, I feel frustrated by my detachment. But when I venture out, I feel frustrated by my inability to connect with other people – not to mention exhausted from attempting to make small talk while monitoring the activity of a two-year-old. After reading this, I wonder if I just need to “get acquainted” with my discontent instead of trying to eliminate it: acknowledge that I’m feeling dissatisfied, then go clean peanut butter off of my toddler.