I have spent almost all of my life trying to control. Other people, situations, my own inner drama. In the past few months I have spent my first time ever really alone. Not in a relationship, not dependent on smoking massive amounts of weed to numb my unhappiness, anxiety and fear (that doesn't actually work), not placing something immediately into that space, not closing myself off, but instead holding it. Honoring it and allowing it to be open. It's radical because I am consciously choosing it as part of my path towards liberation. Not only that but I am choosing to ENJOY it as much as I can! It's radical because it's not something anyone that I was raised around would have consciously chose. This layer of radical aloneness for me, although very new, is about honoring the woman that I have become and letting go of the girl that I used to be.
There are moments of gut wrenching desperation where I can feel this part of me that is heavily addicted. Without having anyone to pass on my anger or blame to- there were times in the past few months that felt super intense and deeply healing somehow- all at once. When this addictive thing comes up, it feels like I NEED something. And up until now, instead of honoring what it is I may actually need- I tend avoid it. I find something else to do or I identify so much with that part of myself that nothing else exists anymore. Eventually I do reach out, get the help I need, but I am referring to my initial reaction. Which in the past has been to get even smaller and hide. Avoiding feeling any sense of discomfort, pain or even joy for that matter.
On David Harshada Wagner's retreat last weekend we went on a silent walk, keeping all of our senses wide open. As we all marched together through the forest we had an opportunity to sit and meditate, reflect. As I sat, I got this intense contraction in my chest, and an insight that I missed my father. He passed away over 7 years ago. In a way it felt good to acknowledge that sincere feeling of absence for someone you love. I sat with it in the middle of the woods surrounded by 50 other people having their own experiences of being with what was during this experiment. I tried to turn my attention to the leaves twisting and turning, flowing down the brook I sat next to. I listened to the rustling of the leaves, smelled the wet dirt- felt the mist on my face. So much joy came in sensing what was in that moment, all of it- and the tenderness began to reveal itself.
This story, about my father and his addictions, and the addictions that I have faced, tends to pop up when I am moving into a deeper connection within myself and my truth. Or when I am in a situation that is mirroring that part of myself. It's one of the stronger ones that keeps me hooked, keeps me the victim. I mean I buried him on my 25th birthday! What ammo that is. But the truth is that although it is, and was, super sad and painful- that is not how I relate to myself anymore. I get sad and angry sure, but I'm not sad and angry. Do you see the difference? Now I am able to also experience the enthusiasm and the love that life is constantly revealing. And sometimes even the truth that lies beneath it all.
Last night as I made myself dinner this energy of anxiety overcame and I had this impulsive prayer come in. My prayers are usually about my deep intentions around freedom, love, being of service and then also filled with things I want. Ways of being I want to let go of, and desires that I feel are true for me. But in this moment, I just had a sense that I didn't care about any of that, that I just wanted to be free from the way that I was relating, and stuck to, my past. Free from the way I withhold and confine the love I have for myself at times.
As I sat later that night with some people from my community in meditation I felt the deep root of it all. It was this need to control. As I let it soften I began to cry. And as it released I realized "it" didn't have me, I was holding on to "it." I fell deeper and deeper until I let go and was able to rest into the energy and love of my soul and the beautiful souls I was sitting with.
When I am alone at times I will avoid this discomfort or pain that shows up, even if I am meditating I will stop and start doing something else. But I felt how the support of those around me and the support of Spirit allowed me to go past it and through to the depths of my Love. I saw and felt the Love that I do have for my father, my mother, the family I never speak to, all the unconsciousness I came from, and the deep gratitude for the awake people I am surrounded by today.
I am still moving through all of this and will be, but I know in my heart that big things have shifted and are shifting- and that I am becoming more myself every day.