Peace is better than chocolate

Graceful like an elephant

I was thinking today about what I want. And I can’t think of anything. More time in the sun, maybe. But I took a few hours this morning and laid out by the pool. Another trip to Florida. But that will happen. Probably in the next couple of months. But even if it takes longer than that, it’s not some long-term, impossible goal. It’s not a dream.

I used to want things. I used to want to be and do and have.

But I don’t have much to prove anymore. And I like it this way.

I think that what I want most in the world is more grace. To grow ever more graceful at dealing with life.

When I was fat, I was self-conscious about how graceful I was physically. If I tripped, I was humiliated. And often angry at anyone who saw me. Especially if they had the indecency to smile or laugh.

Graceful as an elephant. It was a phrase that was used in my family. And I was fat. Like an elephant. And could imagine how people saw me. Lumbering around. And I was bitter about it.

In retrospect, I was physically graceful my whole life. Even if I didn’t know it. Strong, flexible, with great rhythm. I was not personally, spiritually or emotionally graceful though.

When I lost weight, I wanted to look like a beautiful, confident woman. I wanted to look like I belonged in my body. I didn’t think I did belong in my body and it often felt like I was an “eternal fat girl” conning the world. But I was interested in selling this con, so I started to look around and notice what beautiful, confident women were doing and copying them.

One of the first things I remember taking note of was grace in the face of being ungraceful. I found that beautiful, confident women tripped when they were walking, too. Sometimes they even fell. And do you know what they did? They smiled!!! They laughed! They made some charming remark and moved along! It turned out that grace was not about moving flawlessly through the world, but rather about how one dealt with the flaws.

I started to do this too. I got myself a little shtick. I would curtsy, and say, “You can call me Grace.”

And this was so incredibly freeing. I could let it go. I could have peace. I did not have to feel like a victim. Of an uneven sidewalk. Or my grotesque body. I did not have to feel ashamed for the rest of the day. I didn’t have to lumber around, stomping and snorting. Graceful like an elephant.

This has been a lesson to learn over and over in different ways. Grace is not about perfection, but about my attitude and reactions to imperfection.

And that is the only thing that I can think of that I really want. That is my dearest goal right now. To be ever more graceful. To find the peace that brings the grace. And the grace that brings the peace.

Maybe some idea or intense yearning will come out of the blue and light a fire under my ass one of these days. And perhaps I will have the grace to go fearlessly forward into the unknown with excitement and wonder. I’m not ruling it out.

But it sure is nice to sit here with nothing to wish for.


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