Friday, October 5, 2012

Memoir of a Week

There are times in everyone's life when the Truth is laid bare. Sometimes they're called "crises," or "growing pains." You hear them referred to as "breakdowns" or "a-ha moments." Some people prefer their moments of Truth to occur shortly after great quantities of alcohol are consumed. Whatever. "The Truth will out," as Shakespeare told us.

And it's true. But you have to be listening and you have to be ready to hear it. 

I've been having Truth smack me square in the face for quite some time now. Not every day of course, but for the past two years or so there has been an incredible shift inside my brain and in my gut (or heart or whichever chakra floats your boat.) It's not been the most steady of times for me, though I admit most of it is really exciting. Every possible minute I feel like I'm being propelled TOWARDS something, even if I'm not entirely certain what it is. But there's this path which emerges just a bit more each week and I'm either to follow it or back track.

This week has been trying for my poor (white American girl) psyche. "Coincidences" lined up perfectly to shape a week that tested what I think of my current station:  I'm reading Paulo Coelho's novel The Alchemist, which is so far all about how to live while recognizing signs and signals concerning one's next steps. I had a very small moment of personal success and it was dazzling, and then I had a moment which showed me something about myself I don't particularly like. It was a very yin and yang sort of week. And if that's too woo-woo then it was a very "Good, Bad and Ugly" sort of week. 

When we're awake for our lives this can happen pretty often. I don't ascribe to the notion that everything happens for a reason, but I do believe that every situation can have a purpose. The difference to me is that within a random universe we can make each moment count for something. We can learn whatever lesson is there to learn from even the smallest, most seemingly insignificant, instances.

So while I'm not trying to be vague on purpose, I hope I'm at least drawing a wide enough swath of situation to let you find yourself in it. Because it really applies to anyone. A new job, a new baby, a new relationship, the end of a relationship, a death, a move to a new city, retirement, a medical milestone or diagnosis...there are times in our lives when the Truth is laid bare and we need to know what to do with it. 

And while I have seen some Truths this week, I have no firm answer. I have only a few more feet on the path open to me. I'm standing here deciding which way I want to go. Last week we learned about Jhamak Kumari Ghimire and my final thought was that this voice inside me is trying to get louder. And I'm supposed to listen. I also read a short excerpt from a wise woman named Dr. Christiane Northrup and she says, "The woman...who is becoming the queen of herself, finds herself at a crossroads of life, torn between the old way she has always known and a new way she has just begun to dream of." That's me this fact, that's me these past two years.

You can be anyone and know this moment, without being a woman, without being in some cataclysmic moment in your life. It's simply the moment when you realize you're on the wrong path; when the better path is just starting to reveal itself and you're not sure what to do.

We're such complex creatures. We can be blazingly honest in the middle of a lie. We can be terribly insecure as we stand tall and shout our loudest. When our insides are twisted and we feel like flying apart at the seams we can still get up and show the world a face of cool and calm. We can do all this and still look around to compare ourselves to others who seem to have it all together. How do we know that we're walking train wrecks in our own lives and not see it in the people around us? How can we be so near sighted? 

The Truth, as I see it this week, is that we're all kids who got big. Not one of us feels like we're qualified to be the person everyone else sees. Although we are quite certain that everyone else is steady and sure, with all the answers, we know that we're the lost one. The only lost one who has none of the answers. I'm sure that every person reading this has had times in their lives when they've been the kid who showed up to the board meeting: out of place, under qualified and woefully unprepared. It really sucks.

But you know, here's the thing. It's all of us, every minute of every day and I forget that all the time. I forget that I am one of millions, not the only one. I forget constantly that the "best of" that everyone around me is showing the public is much, much different than the "blooper" footage they're keeping secret. We don't really need to see or know everyone's screw ups but it really is very important to remember that everyone has them. EVERY ONE.

No one you know truly has it all together. And sometimes we're really good at fooling even ourselves into believing the mirage. What's important is that you be willing to look closely when the veil is lifted, and be open to seeing the Truth as it is. Because that's the only way to move forward and to make this all count. I was told that simple things aren't always easy and I think that's a Truth. Maybe that's what ties us all up and keeps us under cover, believing the mirages people show us. We would rather have easy than simple. 

So my week beat me up. It tossed me high, it flung me low. I made mistakes, I had triumphs and for whatever reason my eyes were wide open for all of it. I am, perhaps, moving towards the simple over the easy. I like all things best when they're free from tangles and the heartache that tangles cause. Maybe that's where you are, too; whether it is time to let go of something or time to grab on to something new.

This is the Truth as my week showed it. 

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