Life is unpredictable
And we have to live with that fact. We make plans, we try to foresee what’s gonna happen. Sometimes we succeed, but all to often the future becomes something quite different than we could imagine. And the reason is as simple as this: In all predictions in life there are to many variables we ny no means can control. And since everything is interconnected, every factor influence all other factors. After all, the flap of a butterfly’s wing in Brazil can spur the formation of a tornado in Texas. The cascade of events is unpredictable to a large degree.
My wife, active, and in good physical condition, slipped on some spilled cherries in a supermarket, with a a broken hip as result. After surgery she has has now returned home. 6 weeks without any weightbearing on the broken leg, and then a slow rehabilitation periode. To her this is a radical change in life, at least for some time.
But my practical life has also changed. I have to dedicate more of my time to her and her needs, and since we run a home together, call it a joint venture, more duties shall be added to those I ususally have to deal with. She is bound to stay home. Me not so much, but my usual freedom to spend hours in office or on travel (my job is a combination) has suddenly become restricted. Happily I can work from home, I can organize my own work, and I can cancel all appointments that do not have the highest priority. My team of good colleges cover up for me. Actually it is no big problem to me, but, of course, a bigger problem for my wife.
Point is: This sudden change in life could never have been foreseen. This is what life is about: Things happen, things change, and we are affected in ways we never would have imagined. Life is fundamentally only change. And Zen is to ride this wave of change. For what else could we possibly do? But to often we try to change what can’t be changed, to cling to what we know shall pass, to crave for what we shall never have, and to wish for another time, another situation, or another condition. Zen is the opposite. Zen is to accept whatever happens, with an open mind and curiosity. For whatever that arises, good or bad, shall ultimately also always pass away. To be part of that eternal change, and of those never ending transitions, is life itself. There is nothing we can do to change that fact.
So the consequences of this hip fracture is rather interesting; The way this accident influence us, how we shall manage the situation, how I manage to combine work with my new duties, how empathic I manage to be during this periode of unusual stress, how I find practical solutions, how I shall react over time to the fact that I down-prioritize my work, and to observe what I actually can learn from this.
Thanks to an unpredictable life, I may get more insight, and perhaps even end up wiser?