When It Rains (in LA), It Pours

This feels like a particularly timely post on many levels. Not only because Los Angeles has been under a deluge of water for months (so much water!), but also because I have been particularly overwhelmed at times in my own world.

I’m not going to go into details about all the happenings. Mostly because they’re not important. I have perspective on them. I understand that there are worse things that could be happening but also that there are better. But I’m also not going to go into details because the truth is, if you feel overwhelmed it’s ok to feel overwhelmed no matter what the circumstances may be.

Your feelings are valid. They come up as lessons and you can learn and grow from them.

Anyhoo, let’s talk about the pouring rain.

rain.gif

What really got me recently that was particularly frustrating is that there were many things that normally act fine that all began to act up. And these were on a few different fronts. They reminded me, too, that there are other elements of my external world that I’m not particularly proud of yet or things I feel like I’m missing from the execution of and manifestation of my own dreams. And these factors were glaring right in my face, reminding me that these small things are still things that can get me totally off kilter and force to me to look in a mirror and, likely, see something I know still needs improvement.

If they had all happened separately, they would have been an inconvenience. Because they happened at the same time, they were overwhelming.

It’s one thing to go out for a walk in a light rain. That feels manageable. But when the skies open and the rain feels like it’s coming up from the ground and there are unavoidable puddles on every corner, that’s when you need to actually take action to attempt to do something about it.

And, like the rain, there’s only so much you can do. You put on the right gear, you stay smart, and you hope for the best.

The nice part about a deluge is, unlike a sprinkle, you have to confront it. You have to accept that it’s happening and take measures in response to it. I am particularly guilty of doing just enough to keep myself on course without being too inconvenienced by small issues around me. But when there are a ton of small issues that, when put together, make it impossible to actually do some of the basics I want to do, that’s when I have to put everything on pause and deal with them. And as obnoxious as it can feel at times, at least it forces me to do something about it instead of just pretend it’s not happening.

In that way, I’m grateful for the downpour. It’s a reminder that if and when you need to make life changes – even if they’re small – they’re better to confront quickly when they come to the surface rather than ignore them because they’re not a major issue yet.

The other nice part about the rains that it’s temporary. Deluge or not, it doesn’t last. There are repercussions to the rain (both physically and metaphorically). But it doesn’t last. So when it’s coming at you, you can just brace for impact and wait it out. Figure out what you have to do to keep yourself as dry and warm as possible (and it’s not always possible), then learn from the experience, do what you have to do, and move on.

I feel like I flipped between metaphor and pragmatic pretty ineffectively this post. I could go back in and figure it out, but my head is a rain shower at the moment so I’d rather let this be art and let it mean whatever it might mean to you without overthinking it, and move on.

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Man shakes his fist at God, God shakes the earth in response

Jeremy Young was never a religious man. So imagine his surprise when he walked off the train last Saturday into a rainstorm, shook his fist at the sky and cursed, imagine his surprise when the earth beneath him began shaking.

“As long as I shook my fist, I felt the earth below shaking right back,” Young explained. “I even stopped a couple times, and the second I raised my fist and made a sound, there was a slight quake. Like God was saying ‘nip it in the bud’ or something,” he added.

Rodney Wong, a passerby, saw the entire incident. “It was just the earth beneath the guy who was cursing the heavens. And the moment he stopped, the mini-quake stopped, too.”

God’s press secretary, who said God had to decline an interview because of his busy schedule, simply stated, “Let’s just say, the big guy’s getting somewhat crotchety in his old age. People have no patience for him anymore, so he’s been playing more practical jokes than he has in a couple thousand years. If it’s raining, it’s probably not because he wants you to have a bad day, but more likely because somebody somewhere needs some rain. He’s done worse in the past, let’s be honest. At least this is milder than a huge flood or fire or bees all over the place or something! I mean, let’s put this all in perspective, ok?”

With that simple angry, impatient gesture, Jeremy Young became a believer. And a more patient person. And, just a little, God-fearing.