It Is What It Is

It Is What It Is June 14, 2007
Seems you can’t live too long on this earth without realizing that human relationships involve conflict.

All the time.

The question is, of course, how that conflict is managed (as I often tell couples in premarital counseling).

Learn to meet conflict head on and manage it effectively and, well, you’re on your way, way down the road to healthy living.

But what about when conflicts just cannot be resolved?

No matter how hard you try?

Just look around the landscape of international politics and this reality becomes strikingly obvious. And, this reality is, naturally, ridiculously frustrating for those of us “problem-solving” types.

(I don’t know about you, but I find I generally prefer to live in the blissful denial that I can fix things.)

Thankfully, it seems, I am finally old enough to realize, at least occasionally, that I can’t always fix everything.

And to calm my nerves when I come to this realization, I repeat the phrase Mark taught me: “It is what it is.”

(Who knew he was such a philosopher?)

It is what it is.

Sometimes packages cannot be tied up in neat little bows.

Sometimes we can part ways in disagreement while at the same time whispering prayers that each one receive grace and peace . . . grace and peace . . . grace and peace.

And sometimes we can love and lose . . . with some of the love lingering long past the loss.

In all of this I recall these words of Sufi poet, Rumi:

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field.

I’ll meet you there.

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field.

I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,

The world is too full to talk about.

Ideas, language, even the phrase each other, doesn’t make any sense.

Today, I am laying down in that very field, noticing the beautiful wildflowers all around me, feeling the gentle breeze, acknowledging the one who lies beside me.

And it’s good. Really good, in fact . . . lying in that field.

. . . all the while repeating to myself: “It is what it is.”

And I’ve never done anything harder.

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