Radical Acceptance at Fry Lodge 

In one of our recent end-of-day conversations, Kristine introduced me to the concept of radical acceptance. For some reason I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind, and I think it’s a good approach to life for Fry Lodge these days; so I’m sharing with the Fry Lodge Faithful. 

The opportunities for practicing radical acceptance are endless at Fry Lodge. Take breakfast, for instance. 

Here’s an excerpt from a 2012 article from Psychology Today that explains the concept for those interested. 

Radical acceptance is about accepting of life on life’s terms and not resisting what you cannot or choose not to change. Radical Acceptance is about saying yes to life, just as it is.

People often say, “I can’t stand this,” “This isn’t fair,” “This can’t be true,” and “This shouldn’t be this way.” It’s almost as if we think refusing to accept the truth will keep it from being true or that accepting means agreeing. Accepting doesn’t mean agreeing.

It’s exhausting to fight reality and it doesn’t work. Refusing to accept that you were fired for something you didn’t do, that your friend cheated you, or that you weren’t accepted into college you wanted to attend doesn’t change the situation and it adds to the pain you experience.

Accepting reality is difficult when life is painful. No one wants to experience pain, disappointment, sadness or loss. But those experiences are a part of life. When you attempt to avoid or resist those emotions, you add suffering to your pain. You may build the emotion bigger with your thoughts or create more misery by attempting to avoid the painful emotions. You can stop suffering by practicing acceptance.


Serializing Fry Lodge

It all started 8 weeks ago. Henry and I, kind of bored on a Saturday afternoon, listened to This American Life on the Internet/radio. The episode was called “Alibi.” As the rest of the world now knows, that was the beginning of a new weekly podcast called Serial, a story told week by week, produced by WBEZ Chicago. It’s a true story about Adnan Sayed, who was convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee, in 1999. He was sentenced to life in prison, and maintains his innocence to this day. You can learn more about it by listening to the podcasts. Well, Henry and I are totally addicted to this story. Every Thursday, we listen to the latest episode before reading other bedtime stories that are probably more appropriate for a seven-year-old. To be honest, I did consider a few times that this material might be too mature for Henry. But his reaction to it tells me that it’s OK. Sure, there is the occasional f-bomb dropped. But it’s nothing he hasn’t (very rarely!) heard come out of his parents’ mouths. Henry of course knows that murder is wrong. And he asks really good questions, including the meaning of words like “innocuous” or “nonchalant.” I’ve even caught him using those words in a sentence later. He also has me pause the episode periodically to discuss his own thoughts about who actually committed this murder. And his theories are pretty good. Tonight, when the host, Sarah Koenig, asked for Season 2 donations, Henry said he wants to donate $2.50. I’m not sure who is enjoying this weekly ritual more, Henry or me. It’s quality time, for sure.  Can’t wait ’til next Thursday. On Serial.