This morning I was down in the basement. I'm speaking literally, not metaphorically, for once. Dirk's collection, neatly stored in cardboard boxes, littered the floor, the dampness had disintegrated the boxes. My first thought was, 'well, it's his collection, he can sort this'. Not, I will agree with you, the most compassionate reaction to have.
Fortunately, my second thought was more redeeming. 'What if this were my collection? Would I want him to react that way? What if he looked after my collection as I would, how overjoyed, how cherished I would feel?' I took the high road. I went out and got new boxes, threw out the old ones, restacked them and put the dust sheets into the wash to clean them up.
As I meditated on the situation this evening, I felt as though I were bathed in a glow of golden light. One of the reasons I try so hard in life is because I can be mean sometimes. I could have left the mess for Dirk to clear, but I didn't. I saw myself on Dirk's side, not my own side, looking out for his good instead of my own. That's not always a decision I make: sometimes I am less kind.
It is said that whatever is inside comes out. We cannot hide our true characters forever. If I am unkind to him, it is because I am unkind to myself. I see myself sabotaging myself. Today was different. I saw the potential for unkindness, for the small victory of 'it's-not-my-problem', but I was immediately drawn to a deeper feeling of solidarity between Dirk and myself. I saw the oneness of our path.
In meditation, I saw that this oneness extends beyond marriage to all beings. We are all on the same path, getting side tracked by keeping score is an illusion that does not serve us. I am left with a humbling feeling of solidarity, and slightly bewildered: intellectually I thought I understood solidarity, oneness, but now I feel it.