Lent 2008: Day 9 – The Day After

Today is the day after, when after our sometimes over-the-top efforts at expressing our love to those who are important to us, we face another day of living. Many of us, after maybe a bit of morning after glow, will have a kind of love hangover, a bit of postpartum denouement.

We all enjoy the big moment, participating in the big gesture, but there seems to be a price to pay afterwards, when things return to the everyday ebb and flow of life, to the mundane if you will. It is not that we are now mired in a valley, but after the mountain top, the relative letdown from that highpoint makes what remains appear even less than it is, pale by comparison to what we just experienced.

That is why keeping a bit of perspective, a sense of balance, whether at the high or even in the low points of life, is so significant. Looking at the streets of New York after a big event, a ticker tape parade, a New Year’s Eve celebration, can be almost depressing, as the workers sweep up the celebration’s aftermath.

There are such things as emotional and spiritual hangovers, when the energy expended reaching that pinnacle leaves us with a necessary recovery period as the reservoir is refilled. It is the price we pay for that exhilaration.

So, do not be surprised when it happens. Do not let it overtake your understanding of the moment, thinking it is more than it is. Give yourself a chance to recover before coming to any conclusions. Be especially compassionate to those around you; limit your demands; reduce your expectations; be reasonable in all things.

Grace and peace to your day and may your recovery be swift and full.

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