A Change of Heart

Posted by Mimi Meredith at Saturday, February 14th, 2015 9:12 am

It is ironic that on this day of all days, I woke up so greatly disappointed in my own heart.

It functions well enough. It would probably be improved by aerobic conditioning. But what part of me wouldn’t?

No. This was deeper. IMG_0061

It was the dawn of my consciousness today—in that gray moment of the morning before my brain chatter commences—when I realized the ways in which my heart has changed for the worse.

In the book What Alice Forgot, a woman on the brink of her 40th birthday falls and hits her head. She wakes up certain that she is 29, with absolutely no recollection of the events of the past decade. Her amnesia allows the reader to see Alice respond to her 40-year-old world as her 29-year-old self. She is madly in love with her husband—who 40-year-old Alice is divorcing. She is so happy to see her next-door neighbor—with whom 40-year-old Alice no longer speaks. And she longs for a moment to get her bearings—but 40-year-old Alice fills every waking moment with manic micro management.

Maybe 29-year-old Mimi woke me up this morning and that is where the deep sense of shame crept in. My heart, as it turns out, is getting hard. I have become a very critical person. And, regardless of my lecturing others against the risk of processing things personally, I do. And then I carefully build little walls…or are they mine fields…so “that won’t happen again.”

Anne Lamott quoted a friend of hers who said, “I don’t judge, I diagnosis.” I thought that was hilarious because it’s exactly what I do. Well hello. Laughing at it doesn’t make it healthy. Acknowledging that I sound like a critical bitch doesn’t make me less of a bitch. And it serves no good purpose. Goodness isn’t growing. I’ve trampled it underfoot.

So today, I’m giving myself a Valentine’s Day gift. It’s like a spa treatment (which makes it sound more appealing than an exorcism). I’m taking a Heart Cleanse. Right now. I’m putting down the mortar of protection I’ve been using to mend little broken corners. I’m liberating myself from the burden of correcting others and I’m going to find beauty in the moment. Young Mimi was brilliant at that. And I want her back.

Please help me. Correct me when my bitchy self tries to stake a claim in the conversation with some snarky (albeit funny) aside. Gently correct me (or hit me on the side of the head—whatever form of intervention you choose) when I climb up on my high horse. You’ll know I’m there because I’ll share comments under the guise of self-deprecation. It will sound like this… “I don’t mean to imply that I’m all that and a bag of chips, but…

God needs my heart to change. It was crystal clear to me somewhere around 5:30 a.m. I don’t want to lose that conviction. I’m starting. Now.

It's Happy Heart Day. Literally.

  • http://Heartspoken.com/ Elizabeth H. Cottrell

    Oh, my friend, I’m proud of you! I doubt your heart is as hard as you seem to think, but whose heart isn’t harder than it should be by Christ’s standard? And we DO get into bad habits without realizing it. To me, though, you will always be a gardener of goodness, and your reflection today is a beautiful example. Love and goodness beaming your way from Virginia.

    • Mimi Meredith

      Thank you, my friend! I think I need to spend a bit more time cultivating my spirit. How about a retreat in Virginia brought to us by Heartspoken! I’d be there with bells on!

      • http://Heartspoken.com/ Elizabeth H. Cottrell

        Now THAT’s something I’ll have to work on!