Monday, August 23, 2010

Risking and Living

As a young child I learned pretty quickly how to survive, how to protect myself. Yet as a young child I hung on dearly to hope that maybe, maybe this time when I stick my hand over a burning stove, maybe this time it won't hurt and burn me. Maybe this time if I love, I won't be hurt or I won't be left ... how is it possible that on the outside life can appear so perfect, yet on the inside, the fire of hell is scorching my heart? I have come to believe that there is nothing more powerful than love. From the moment I entered this miraculous world I wanted to be loved and nurtured.

Old hurts and old patterns are hard to break. Oftentimes, for me, I don't even know that I'm reliving these old ways. I have learned to protect my heart. I have learned to let people reach me, but only up to a certain point, and then I run as fast as I can. And only now, at the age of 46, and after decades of pain, reflection, loss, searching, longing, avoidance ... am I recognizing the need to integrate the adult heart in me with the heart of the little girl inside of me, who continues to long for deep love and connection. It's as if I can hear her say, "Step Aside. I want to love again, I want to play. I want to live!"

And so, I am going to step aside and I am going to venture down a new path .... a path of integrating, embracing and loving all parts of myself. I am going to risk loving - loving with all my heart, knowing in the end that my heart may shatter into pieces. For decades my heart has been intact as I have worked hard to protect it ... but the longing and aching for true, deep love and connection, have seeped into other parts of my body, manifesting in disease. This time though, I believe that when my heart shatters into a million pieces after loving with all my heart, that each piece of my heart will have an even greater capacity of not only loving and living, but receiving love and light from the incredible beings around me.

Mind, body, heart, spirit.

I love this Wendell Berry poem, "A Journey" ... there are doors all around me. Every door I touch will lead me on ...

The Journey
~ Wendell Berry

Through many doors it's been - through
the first into light, afraid, crying
for fear, for air, no going back.
Then other doors: the one where shadows
waited like night, the one nobody
opened when I knocked, and the one where somebody
did. (It was over a cliff and I fell.)

One time there wasn't any door; I turned to look
where I had been - only that? Only
the meaningless windows leading down one
by one to the faint small beginning? 
Past the middle of life, and nothing
done - but a voice came on: "I am
the door," someone said. I closed my eyes;
whatever I touched led on.

1 comment:

  1. This post was so unbelievably relevant to me. Right now I've been looking for a way to express the feelings I've had about love, and I just think that you are so right- there is NOTHING more powerful than love. I was just discussing this morning, with a friend of mine, how staggering love can be. It is the catalyst for the greatest and worst behavior in our species, when you think about it.

    Without writing a short novel here, it's just so amazing how we find people when we need them, and then (if we're lucky) we get to keep them forever. I'm so glad to have found your blog.