The day dawns,
and with it
a new beginning
full of new possibilities.
God, let me open my eyes
to this day.
Let my path be made clear
Let me see what needs to be seen
and let me do what needs to be done.
And when I close my eyes tonight,
let me know that I lived this day
to the fullest.
A gift from above.
A job falling right into my lap.
Being guided and led along this path
to financial autonomy
and emotional freedom.
Now it’s time to give thanks,
and even more thanks.
Thanks for the friend who thought of me
when the school was desperate for a teacher,
thanks for my experience teaching
that would make me eligible to help this school.
Thanks to God for carrying me through the uncertainty.
Thanks to friends and family who listened
as I complained about the uncertainty.
I’m still a bit shocked
that it could be this simple, fluid and easy.
But I’ve worked hard this year,
making amends with myself, with God and with life.
From this place of wholeness
magic just happens.
It’s a constant struggle between my past and my future.
The past is familiar; it leaps up into my consciousness
and makes itself seen and felt again and again and again.
The future is unknown; it’s the stuff hoped for
and requires faith and focus to keep my vision clear.
I pray for the stamina to keep reinvesting my energy in my future,
to draw my attention back to the good things to come.
I pray for the time when his choices aren’t ricocheting in my mind
they way they’ve done for over a year—
and it’s been quite an interesting year.
Each day, I discover, I make a choice.
I can choose victimhood or empowerment;
but it’s always my choice.
May I always choose empowerment.
Hmmm. In today’s prompt we were invited to write a poem in which something big and something small come together. I immediately think about (big) ideas like love, marriage, hopes and fears, beginnings and endings, and (small) units of time, like just one day in the life. The trajectory of our (big) lives is made up of countless (small) days. If I were to examine one small day in the life of my marriage (which, now that he has moved out, is swiftly approaching its endpoint) do I pick a day when things were going well, or do I pick a day when it had already gone to hell? Do I count the years of our marriage as a (small) period of time in comparison to the (big) trajectory of my life? Is this how I find healing? The (big) emotions of grief, pain, betrayal and loss meet the (small) moment to moment experiences of breathing, eating, sleeping, and taking one step at a time. In order to live skillfully as humans we must be deeply aware of all of these juxtapositions and learn how to navigate among them with grace and intention. Can I let the (big) vision of stepping into my highest self be embodied within the reality of my shortcomings as one (small) woman?
I see her now,
how she tried so hard to be good.
I see how she wanted it to work
and in ways big and small
sacrificed the best of herself
for a vision she held
of the grand institution of marriage
and the complexities of life with young children.
He held no such vision.
Unlike her, he saw their conflict
as symptoms of a mismatch.
Where she was ready to confront the issues
and find solutions,
he invested in the belief
that things should be easier than they were.
So he took the easy way out.
He blamed her for his pain,
told his story to countless others,
created an army that supported his victimhood
and started a war in their home.
She dove deeper into herself
to find the sanctuary promised by the scriptures
of all the world’s faiths.
As she came to rest in the arms
of divine union with self,
he sought the embrace of another,
one outside their sanctified union,
because by that point,
what they had once shared was dead to him.
She grieved. She lost weight. She lost sleep.
She lost friends. She lost hope. Almost.
From the tiniest stirrings of hope almost lost
emerged a new awareness, a strength
forged in the fires of mourning.
One day she looked in the mirror
and realized that it had to happen this way.
He needed to reject the self she was
so that she could discover
the self she was born to be.
Yes it hurts sometimes still…
but behind the hurt there grows
something that will never be tarnished
by the stories of victimization,
justification, and rationalization:
the big Self,
the miracle of existence,
the song of gratitude,
the promise of forgiveness.
My mind asks
When will this be over?
I am filled with anxiety
and there is no apparent end
Then Spirit gently reminds me
This isn’t being done to you
this is being done for you
It changes quickly.
(It always does.)
A good night of sleep
or a solid meal
and the demons
that seemed so ferocious
dissipate back into wisps of ether,
and I’m left wondering
what I got so worked up about.
And so it goes,
the cyclical nature
of weather and emotions
and time and libidos…
and all I can do
is try to slow down
my own thinking
take a deep breath,
all is well.
I have found that my journals help to reveal the cyclical nature of things. They have been a source of great comfort to me, as I see that the struggles I’m having now are the same ones I had when I was 20. Different characters, different contexts, but same feelings: fear, anxiety, depression, powerlessness, loneliness, transmuted into courage, confidence, joy, empowerment, connection. Cycling endlessly, for all time.
Maybe I can let go
of my ideas about
how things should be
so I can love them as they are.
This is nothing new;
I have been trying this for years,
I believe it might be possible.
I could let go
of my ideas
of right and wrong
for just a second.
I could relax
for just one second,
and stop trying to be
right about everything.
What would happen then?
Who would I be then?
What would this Universe
inside the belief
That what is, is
is what I want…?
every day experiences.
I am ready for that proof.