Monday, June 7, 2010

Open Wounds: The end is a mystery ...

Two summers ago I took a trip up to Ely, Minnesota and had the opportunity to "hang out" with the wolves at the International Wolf Center. I took these photos of one of the gray wolves who spontaneously just took off ... I stumbled upon this image today. It reminds me of how I've been feeling lately. It's as if my life is passing me by ... often, it all feels like a blur.

I wrote about Open Heart yesterday. Today, the words that come to mind are Open Wounds. How many of us carry with us wounds from our childhood, losses and tragic experiences that have shaped and molded us into the adults we are today? How many of us spend our lives shutting out the pain, burying it and hoping it never surfaces again ... unaware that pain will find a way to seep out of our body, our essence, our being ... somehow, someway.

How many of us come to finally embrace life, and all it presents to us ... good and bad?

Truth is, it's been hard for me lately .... to open up my heart means to open up old wounds. And what is it about the ties we have with our parents that somehow reach deep into our core, our belly of existence - of life? I'm in my mid 40s yet it feels like I am returning to the womb of my mother. I am witnessing unexpressed emotions of my mother taking shape -- one moment there's an ugly monster; another moment, complete utter desperation - a sad, lost child. One moment, I feel compassion; the next - sadness; then even anger. My emotions have been on a roller coaster.

How do I find peace in hurtful words that are like salt poured onto open wounds, and not thrash in pain? How do I embrace the burn and let the healing begin? How do I separate myself, my emotions from my mother? Is that even possible? Is the umbilical cord ever truly severed? How do I not take things personally, when in my heart and in my gut, it feels personal and has peeled back the bandaid that has covered old wounds ... open wounds exposed to the harsh elements, to stinging words that scorch my body. How do I move through this, with grace, love and compassion .. even anger at the injustice of it all ... and trust that healing will take place, naturally, organically. And that in the end, all wounds heal if we acknowledge their truth, their pain, their reality.

My mother calls to Papa now ... begging him to raise from his grave and "talk to your kids. Wake them up!" I talk to Papa every day too. A different conversation. Actually, no words. Just simple longing for him to carry me once again, and to hold me and to protect me. To guide me. To comfort my mom. And yes, to comfort me, and my siblings.

 How do I know what is the right thing to do, the right choice to make? Is there such a thing as "right"?

Today I am filled with questions.

I remember this white wolf. Our eyes met and life came to a standstill ... if only for a moment. There's a wisdom I yearn for that i see in the spirit of animals ...

To stand still. To pause. To breathe.

To stop running.

While I was in Ely I compiled the images I took of the wolves and created a video ... the images played to the music of Sting, "The Book of my Life." It seems like the book of my life is forever changing ... a verse from the song goes like this ... and it speaks the truth for me.

"Though the pages are numbered /I can't see where they lead
For the end is a mystery no-one can read
In the book of my life ... "

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