I've been trying to see the good in crappy situations. I mean, 2020 is awful for so many reasons, and, for the most part, I am okay. Not thriving, but surviving.
As such, when crappy things happen, I've been trying to channel the thought "What's good? What's bad? Who knows." I'm also repeating, "But here we are," which is about the acceptance of the who knows thing.
The questions come from a Taoist story. The best I can find is from “The Tao Book and Card Pack” by Timothy Freke:
“When an old farmer’s stallion wins a prize at a country show, his neighbor calls round to congratulate him, but the old farmer says, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”
The next day some thieves come and steal his valuable animal. His neighbor comes to commiserate with him, but the old man replies, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”
A few days later the spirited stallion escapes from the thieves and joins a herd of wild mares, leading them back to the farm. The neighbor calls to share the farmer’s joy, but the farmer says, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”
The following day, while trying to break in one of the mares, the farmer’s son is thrown and fractures his leg. The neighbor calls to share the farmer’s sorrow, but the old man’s attitude remains the same as before.
The following week the army passes by, forcibly conscripting soldiers for the war, but they do not take the farmer’s son because he cannot walk. The neighbor thinks to himself, “Who knows what is good and what is bad?”"
This week, I helped a friend. That's good.
This week, I lost my best friend, because I helped the first friend. That's bad.
And... who knows. Maybe my best friend and I will reunite some day, and I can explain. Maybe we won't and we'll go on to be happier, or maybe more miserable, than we were.
What's good? What's bad? Who knows. Maybe hiring that lawyer was the right choice. Maybe walking away is the right choice. Maybe being done with feeling like crap is the right choice. Maybe recognizing and remembering the bad is the right choice, such that growth happens.
What's good? What's bad? Who knows.
Yeah. I miss him.