I love this quote, but unfortunately I wrote it down some time ago without noting who said it.  The credit for its brilliance belongs to someone unnamed. 

What I want to do and what I do are two seperate things.  If we all went
 around doing what we wanted all the time, there would be chaos.

Restraint is a word that none of us really love.  It doesn't leave us with warm fuzzies nor does it paint a picture of ease or comfort. I am not drawn to that word.  And, if words were colors the word restraint would be unpleasant to look at, like the color calf shit yellow. We don't normally say, "Hey, dish me up some restraint.  I am craving to be withheld from something I really want to have, do or say."  I can remember saying to my now grown daughter, "Well, I don't really care if you want to do it.  You still have to do it."  (For that sentence that flew from my mouth I should have to give back my Mother Of The Year Award!)  People sometimes file restraining orders against another person.  It literally means they are kept back by the law from that person.  Usually because the result would harmful to either or both parties.  Distance is kept to keep chaos from breaking loose on some level.  Restraint and chaos are opposite end of the spectrum words.  There is a range of things I want to do.  Some of those things are good things like; run 8 miles, learn to downhill ski, hike the grand canyon, get published, live full of grace and joy.  Those things that I want would not cause chaos if I did them.  There are though other things that I want, but if I did them, pursued them, became them, chaos would ensue in my life.  What I really want to do is tell the clerk who is checking me out to quit talking to a co-worker and get to it - quit pausing every time a word comes out of your mouth.  What I really want is to eat pie every day.  Chaos would come upon me in the way of weight and ultimately unhappiness.  What I really want is to have a bull horn attached to my car to be able to say what I think to slow drivers who impede my need for speed.  Chaos would come in the form of some one probably shooting me or ramming me with their car.  What I really want is to hide from my neighbor man when he sees me outside working because I don't want to lose 30 minutes of time talking.  What I really want is to say what I really feel ahead of the feelings of others.  Chaos would come in the form of many broken relationships.  The funny thing is that in doing the things that I really want that cause ultimate chaos is that they are all highly selfish.  They put me ahead of other people's feelings, thoughts, personalities, needs.  Which really then would cancel out the thing I want most - to be a person of love, laughter and grace.  Restraint, even in its calf shit yellow state, brings order, allows growth, peace, grace, discipline, safety and ultimately helps us deny self of things that may be harmful both to us and others.  Calf shit yellow maybe sort of attractive in the right light!

1 comment:

  1. Simon Birch
    Said it. Movie. "A prayer to owen meany" a.k.a Simon Birch.