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Desiring the McDreamy

Posted Oct 07 2008 7:15pm
It's gorgeous, important, enticing, sexy, powerful, soul-satisfying, everything you ever wanted...and it's not yours.

I call it "The McDreamy."

Fans of the TV show Grey's Anatomy know what I'm talking about. For the rest, Patrick Dempsey's character on the show, the heartbreaker Dr. Derek Shepherd, a.k.a. Dr. McDreamy, has come to mean, in the popular lexicon, a devilishly handsome man that women want and can't have. In this case, the McDreamy is a married man who still loves the wife from whom he is separated. As wonderful as he is, he's also self-absorbed and unavailable.

I'm expanding the meaning of McDreamy to encompass whatever we desire that continually eludes us, and we just don't get it--or don't want to get it. It could be the perfect partner (if only s/he weren't already married)...or it might be the perfect house (that we can't afford or that someone else bought first), the perfect car (limited edition, when they're gone, they're gone), the dream job (only one person gets to be the Yankees announcer, and so far, it's not you), the book deal (editors and agents love it but in this economy, they won't take a chance on an unknown like you). It could be that you want the youthful beauty, health and flexibility of a 25-year-old, and you're 50. (Okay, now you've met one of my McDreamies!)

The difference between a McDreamy and something you could actually work towards getting is this: you simply can't have it. Even the most fervent practitioner of The Secret can't get it. It's not yours, and it's not going to happen in this lifetime, ever. You could have something else that is just as good, or even better for you, but no...it won't do at all, and so you get to be miserable and unfulfilled.

What's your McDreamy? Name it: "I'll never be happy without ______." Is that true? Hold your desire up against the Four Questions and Turnaround of The Work. Let your answers arise from the heart.

How do you react when you believe this thought? Look over your life; describe your past as you've strived for the unattainable.

Who would you be without this thought? Describe a happy life without the McDreamy. What does it look like? How would you treat yourself and others differently?

Turn the thought around: "I'll always be happy without _____ ." Is that as true or truer? Give specific examples.

Now, find three reasons why you are better off without that McDreamy.

The McDreamy: do you even want it anymore?

"Reality unfolds without desire, bringing with it more beauty, more luxury, more exquisite surprises than the imagination could ever devise. The mind, as it lives through its desires, demands that the body follow after it. How else can it mirror back original cause? Anger, sadness, or frustration lets us know that we're at war with the way of it. Even when we get what we wanted, we want it to last, and it doesn't, it can't. And because life is projected and mind is so full of confusion, there is no peace. But when you allow life to flow like water, you become that water. And you watch life lived to the ultimate, always giving you more than you need."
--Byron Katie, from A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are


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