“It is what it is!” Have you ever noticed how many times we use this in our everyday conversations with each other? Honestly, I have to admit that I tend to cringe whenever I hear that phrase.
“This traffic sucks, c’mon people let’s get a move on it! Oh well, it is what it is!”
“Man, this weather is crazy, one day blistering heat, the next day it’s freezing! Oh well, it is what it is!”
“Damn, I can’t get this stain out of my shirt no matter how many times I wash it! Oh well, it is what it is!”
Why do we use this saying for so many things?!
The more I’ve thought about it, the more I think it’s just another way of people trying to find acceptance with less than desired circumstances in life, especially when they appear to be totally out of their control. Which ironically, is a subject that seems to be the main focus of much of my life (and my writing) as of late and probably the very reason why I find myself so annoyed any time I hear someone using the “It is what it is!” phrase these days.
The very fact this saying keeps getting under my skin as much as it has been recently led me to believe there was probably an underlying reason for that. The more I thought about it, the more I wondered if maybe the Universe was trying to remind me of something my 1stsponsor introduced me to when she had me read a paragraph on p. 417 in the 4thedition of the Alcoholics Anonymous big book a ton of times. It begins with nine very eloquent, yet quite simple words…
“Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today…”
Nine words that seem to keep showing up in my life in far too many ways lately to be just a coincidence!
Nevertheless, learning acceptance is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in life. While I’m pretty good at doing that when it comes to the things that don’t have much of a direct impact upon my life, like with drastic weather or congested traffic or even a stain on my shirt, I’m quite awful with it when it comes to the things that I feel closely tied to, like with my yard and its present state of being fungus and insect-riddled. And when I don’t practice acceptance with things just like this, I generally exhaust myself in repeated attempts to find ways to fix it or remove it from my life.
Unfortunately, trying to fix or remove all those unsettling things from my life has only ever hindered my quest towards spiritual enlightenment, solely because each of those attempts to do so merely caused my faith to be more in myself than in something Greater. Sadly, I lived that way for a long time, the result of which only led to sheer exhaustion and pure frustration on a daily basis.
So, while I might indeed not like whenever I hear those cringe-worthy words, “It is what it is!”, I’m choosing to believe that maybe they’re actually a gift from Source to take a deeper look at the very thing I’ve avoided the majority of my life, that being acceptance of what is, no matter how unsettling it may appear to be. Because the alternative, of placing my faith in my ego to find a solution to fixing it or removing it from my life is only going to leave me feeling entirely miserable and distant from God, two things I most assuredly don’t want to happen…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson