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  • Writer's pictureLaurie Granieri

Being led

I had one of those commutes yesterday morning, just an apocalyptic mess, a no-way-out kind of situation. I was already suffused with rage over so much that I announced to B. that I was turning around and coming home. But then, I was already wearing real clothes and makeup much of the work for the day had already been done just in my getting ready for it, girding the ol' loins, so I went.

But I drove in the wrong direction, on purpose. I just started south on Route 31, not to get lost (although I think that's next on my agenda: driving aimlessly in Hunterdon County. It's a costly proposition these days, but a much-needed one. I'll call it my staycation) but to take a longer way to work. I did not want to know where I was going.

This level of curiosity about not knowing, about this mystery, is, for me, uncommon. I long to know, to plan, to map out. So much of my aforementioned rage is bound up with overscheduling/hand-wringing over the unknown. I've been told that much of our suffering is derived from just this state, this need to know in a perpetually uncertain world. This knowing just hasn't hit my bones yet.

The point was to keep going, to keep moving, as poet Maggie Smith would say. Keep moving:

I allowed the efficient voice of the Google Maps lady to lead me to work a new way, a very long way, but I didn't care. I was passive. I did as I was told. I did not rush. I just obeyed and figured I'd get there when I got there.

Reader, I arrived one minute early.

Surrender, surrender, surrender. Cheryl Strayed to Debbie Millman: The thing I have many times advised others to do when they feel powerless is to surrender and to accept that's about accepting what's true, accepting what's true. Really, one of the most radical acts of my life. And I think any life, even if what's true isn't what you want to be true. Right. Because then you can work from a place of reality rather than delusion. And so I'm trying to accept it and let go of.

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