Grace under Pressure

Today’s post is from the 2007 archives. 

Solace

Memories rage
like a river
creating grace of countless pebbles
turning them to sand

I’ve been told I exhibit grace under pressure. What does that even mean?

Why do so many people see me that way?

…grace under pressure…

I try to accept the things people say about me. Try to understand that how I’m perceived is what I am, existentially speaking. Usually, I can get it to mesh with how I see myself.

Grace is the opposite of everything I see in me. Where do people keep getting that idea? How can I have this quality and remain unaware of it within me?

As far as I can tell, I’m not graceful. I can’t even take this compliment graciously. I grumble and refute every word. I look it up in the dictionary and scoff at a description of me (of all people) as “elegant.”

I look at the definition a little longer and laugh – a disposition to kindness and compassion; to benefit or serve another; or to be generous or helpful; a sense of propriety and consideration for others.

I read a little further and realize that the idea of “effortless beauty in motion or expression” – which I’d initially eliminated in the face of my rampant clumsiness and awkwardness – may apply not to physical beauty. One of the definitions even said
“physical, intellectual, or moral Beauty”. Another said instead “a quality of inherent excellence”.

I realize …with this new idea… that I do manage to convey a sense of effortlessness even under extreme duress. Show consideration and kindness even in pain.

It is not how I feel – but it is how I may seem.

I think others see me going through life’s gauntlets with dignity and strength. They see an effortless continuation of motion through crisis.

I see myself as just another river rock….

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