Letting life happen in me…

Photo Credit: Gabrielle Clark

Who am I?

I ask and ask many times and I step back, but nothing comes.

I stay and say it is okay.

I drift off and remember something I have read yesterday – ‘we must defend your dwelling place in us to the last’, so I come back. I ask again.

Then I remember a lovely note from a friend – ‘its okay and enjoy life’ he says – This makes me smile. Enjoy life – yes! The smile keeps growing. I think this is enough and I finish.

I come across a poem and I am moved by the line – “Close your eyes and follow your breath to the still place that leads to the invisible path that leads you home.”

I pause again and follow my breath – a feeling is coming in my body. It’s big! It is like a feeling of ecstasy, it is scary and nice and I am allowing it.

I remember the support of the chair.

It feels like I am allowing life to flow in me and it is so beautiful and light and uplifting. I can still feel it now, it is tingling and buzzing with life. “Let life happen to you” says Rilke.

Perhaps I am the vehicle for the life that is longing to live in me. Or am I the life I felt moving in me.

I don’t know.

Who am I beyond the conditioning that has been imposed on me?

Who is the one that looks out from behind my eyes?

Who is the one that looks out from behind your eyes?

Can I even risk being seen that deeply, seeing that deeply. The thought of that scares and excites me.

I hold both, as a hopeful possibility.

 

Note Authors of my inspiration in order: Etty Hillesum, Rainer Maria Rilke and Teresa of Avila

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Death Was Scary Then

When I was young my Mother died.

Recently I had an experience with a little bird that made me think about it. I wish I had known how to be grounded and present then.

Today I held a dead bird in the palm of my hand. The cat bought it in to me. I picked it up and gently held it.

At first I hoped it would come to life, maybe it was feigning death to protect itself. I moved my hand so it could feel the sun -maybe that would help. I tried to will it back to life.

It felt very sacred. I could feel the life in my hand and hoped the bird could feel it too.

I remembered my Mother dying when I was young and wished I would have touched her body – like I was with the bird – while it was still warm. I wished I hadn’t wanted to get away quickly. I wished I had put my head on her heart and my hand on her face. I wish I had of loved her more. Death was scarier then.

I stayed with the bird and all that was happening in this moment – my memory of my Mother’s death, the birds death, my aliveness and the aliveness I could hear and feel all around me.

I remembered them coming and putting coins on her eyes. That was weird. I didn’t like that. Why couldn’t we look at her eyes. The birds eyes were beautiful to look at. But death was scary then.

The cat walked past. I wanted to be mad at it. Then I thought, well, it just did what it naturally does. Just like the cancer did in my Mum. I gently put the bird in the garden and remembered its bones will turn into dust and then it will be the earth.

I don’t want to be put into a box and embalmed with chemicals that won’t let me become the earth. I hope someone who is not scared of death – someone who can feel their own ground and aliveness – will be brave and stay with me for a while, just until I am cold and gone. Then they can put me in the earth until my bones become dust.

Then I will be the earth too.

I am sorry Mum x.

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Breaking the Spell of Suffering

I am hard on myself and I need to break the spell of that.

When the overwhelm sets in, it takes over my body.

Before I know it I have lost myself, I am not solid.

I am like a leaf being blown around in a storm.

I am lost. I have no home base.

When I can break the spell of the panic, the overwhelm, the negative thoughts – I feel wider, softer.  I have freedom to move.

The reward from doing that is that I can hear the birdsong and the wind in the trees.

I am available to experiencing life in the here and now.

How I break it is to pause, to slow down, to remember to come back to myself, my surroundings, my breath, the beauty that is there for me as a solid support – 24 hours a day 7 days a week 52 weeks of every year.

Not as a technique that I have learned and must get right, must do a certain way. If I do that, I am going against the unique way my body knows and desires to be.

If I do that, then the trying hard sets in, the sense of failure, I don’t get it, can’t do it.

The words come in and beat me up.

I must pause and find some sense of solidity that is outside me.

I simply pause and wait for the right way for me that is coming from my own unique bodily knowing of how to be in this world.

Finally – I can trust me.

I can break the spell like that and then the magic of the birdsong will appear for me, and I can breathe out.

Because I can trust me and my body knowing of what it needs,

I can trust you and your body knowing.

I know you will find your own unique way that is just right for you.

Thank you Kevin.

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