It started with coffee with the Queen.
Actually it started with her reminding me over and over…and over again, that today was that love holiday. Why do I need a special day to tell you that I love you? I don’t. Why is it yet another day out of the year when I spend money on my kids to buy them presents as if I’m obligated to do so? Anyway, it’s love day and I’m minus the self required love this year, which the Queen has reminded me of while I busily continue to hate and dismantle its relevance.
I go to Starbucks for coffee, which I swear I’m going to quit drinking, but I talk myself into it by saying it’s what I’m getting me for love day- to prove how far I have to go on my self-love issues I’ll be honest and admit that I had a freebie coming. Yep. Couldn’t even buy myself a cup of coffee. Maybe I love me and I’m just cheap? While in Starbucks I notice that all love day advertisements say, share the love with EVERYONE…or, share the love with your FRIENDS. It’s very politically correct. Like that whole holiday fiasco that’s gone from a respectable black and white to an uncomfortable shade of Chartreuse. ‘Friends’ and ‘Everyone’ are indicative of people like me who don’t have someone special perse, but instead must have an everyone or at least friends that I can love instead. I haven’t checked lately, but I’m curious as to what the divorce rates are these days if the Coffee Soul Sucker is being so vague as to whom I have to share with this year…
I’d like to point out here that a very old habit of mine is being noticed. Okay, not just noticed, but stared at for a long enough period that it requires me to catch you doing so. I used to say that I was just comfortable being me- and that’s the truth, however, I’m also uncomfortable being me more days than not and during those times, being noticed for my outside kept me distracted from the gaping hole inside. Remember, a habit is something we do to avoid what we need to do and don’t want to know about. Even if we don’t know specifically what we are avoiding, we are most definitely aware that we are avoiding something and it’s internal.
This habit, for me, must be about five lifetimes old. That’s a rough guess and I’m relatively sure that one of those lifetimes was considerably shorter than the others, so it barely counts. Also, it’s a habit that was supported by many, if not all, of the women in my life who had a direct influence on what I would retain as useful information to make it through life. It’s important to remember that it became a habit because in the beginning, it worked. Even if the way in which it worked had more to do with what we deemed necessary for survival as opposed to what we actually needed to live. I had no parents. My skill was getting noticed. It provided food, housing, clothing and at times, money. It helped me get my 1973 Lemans fixed when the brakes went out and I had no money- and that car got me to school and my job. However, like all addictions- the roots are in pain and avoidance. Most habits, even the ones we deem “good” can be bad if the soul intent is to avoid…I have a habit of avoiding things like love day through getting noticed. And so I did just that.
We’ve talked about this next part before, but I like to point it out so that you know there’s a reason we undertake this painful little journey- there’s a reason for the journey and the pain. It’s how you know you’re actually going forward…and that it’s better to go the route of the tortoise than that annoying and condescending hare…
I was standing there getting noticed…and it wasn’t working for me. It was actually making me feel sick. I remember once being so wired on coke that someone told me to smoke it and I got sick. It wasn’t working. I actually got scared because my drug wasn’t working anymore. I kept taking more! So as you can see, it really is a slow process! Today though, I didn’t take more. Not only that, but I had this new habit- the good kind, like eating healthy;
I was watching the Queen do her little number. I didn’t stop her, I just watched her. I was aware of her. I was aware that she was all in my mind. I was watching my mind go on and on in its little drama and then I swear, it/she turned around and looked at me as if I had caught her trying to smoke the cocaine that wasn’t working. So I took her hand and we left. There are very few times in my life that I’ve had compassion for myself. I’ve had hate, anger, loathing, and pity- a gamut of negative emotions and judgements, but compassion is a new one. In that moment though, I had it. I couldn’t let her go on like that anymore. We got in the truck and cried a little. I told her,
“Look, I know it’s hard. I mean it’s love day and here we are alone, but you know if we do that the Big Guy is just gonna shred it into pieces and throw it in the fire, so let’s just not. He can’t give us what we want if we are always grasping for what we don’t just to avoid the pain. We are just going to have to hurt through it.”
And then the Queen slinked away. You know, there may be hope for her yet and really, that was a damn good cup of six-dollar coffee for free.
A text message to myself: “I remember when all I knew how to do was blame everyone and everything else for my life and what happened to me. Even what I did to myself seemed caused by what someone made me do. And now…I can’t even look at anyone else but me. Everyone that would fit my blame profile is gone anyway. Sure, my ex lingers in my mind, the rebound came in for parts, the ex husbands are always here somewhere, but where I used to say, “Seeing you hurts me.” Now I only see the why of what I did, didn’t do or do still. Just me. And it should be fantastic, a gold star…It IS those things. When it isn’t sucking too.”
“It does not seem enjoyable, but you will learn to enjoy it because it is freeing you. In truth, pain is the price of freedom and the moment that you are willing to pay that price, you will no longer be afraid.” The Untethered Soul, Michael Singer
I went to my healer yesterday with all of this…Crying as usual, angry, desperate, hormonal. So grateful for the awareness that this raw wound in the middle of my chest where my heart is, is actually a gift. I used to think it was just my hormones on some sort of unbalanced suicide mission. Mostly because for more than twenty years that’s exactly what my period was. (sorry guys, but really, if you’re anywhere near women, or want to be, you seriously need to learn this stuff. And girls, if you’ve passed off your emotional tirades as “that time of the month” quit making excuses and start doing some research. End lecture.) Where was I? Oh yes, the healer and my daily fit- The thing is, like it or not and irregardless of whether you are ready to hear this, it is always you…but, sometimes things happen, pain comes up and out, issues bubble over to be sounded and simmered down, so that you can be prepared for what comes next. Think of your heart as the Universe’s prep table and the next time you find yourself asking what in the heck is going on with me, is it hormones?! Ask this instead, What’s the Big Guy cooking up now? It’s not like the answer is going to come to you right away, unless you’re, a) psychic, or b) that intune with God (which you aren’t or you would get the answer without asking the question) but it eases the anxiety and angst of the burning in your chest. You can rest in the awareness of knowing that this pain is going to pass and with its passing, usher you forward. You shouldn’t worry so much. Cry your tears, but get a good pair of walking shoes.
I left my healer feeling clearer, reminded of something that I had realized the other day, which I’ll save for another time, but the gist is this…never do it for the money.
In the grand scheme of things, you and I have no idea what is best for us. My mother died and I’ve been known to say it was the best thing to ever happen to me. Not because she wasn’t such a great mom, but because she did the best she could in any given moment, and what she lacked in life, she taught me through her death. I would not be here now if she were alive. God knew that. She learned what she needed to know and began teaching me what I needed when she was done. Knowing that my definition of an event as good, bad, or otherwise doesn’t change the purpose of it. It’s not easy to have faith, but if you do the answers will reveal that. Okay, quick example since I told it to someone else already-
In one of my posts I determined that I create lack. Money would be one area in which I do this. Financially speaking, and trust me, we have a whole other blog on this subject, I have been a wreck. Negate reasons right now. Me, money= wreck. Because I can’t trust myself with money, I am not going to get my raise or another job that pays me more. Why? Because I don’t trust myself with more. I don’t believe I deserve more. More money for me right now would just be more lack. So, had I gotten the raise, or the job that paid more, I’d just be financially worse off! Don’t believe me? I don’t blame you, but I’m in the middle of an experiment right now and I’ll keep you posted. Either way, I believe that the Universe knows what it’s doing and I just have to learn the lesson.
That being said-
The ex text me today. I know the number one break up rule, so don’t yell at me. Here’s the thing- It’s love day. An old habit was headed off at the gate this morning during coffee- why? Because you can’t get what you need if you’re tied up in some form of misguided mishap…When the Universe gives you a text from your ex on love day, after you’ve had coffee with the Queen, you pay attention. IF you are doing the work. I know what you’re thinking and you’re wrong. There is a lesson in everything- you however, do not determine the curriculum. Learn that and you’re headed for honor roll. Realize that every opportunity is one to learn from, even the painful ones, and you will learn. So here’s what I learned today.
If you can’t work within yourself, you can’t work within an “us”. On my best day, I walk with an emotional limp, well hidden by a free spirit and natural intellect. On my worst days, I am the biggest mass of codependency you’ve ever seen on hands and knees, probably begging for more abuse and gladly self inflicting it. Lucky for me that I have a lot of good days as of late, sprinkled with more best days and a narrowed down set of worst days. The above phrase came to me while I was talking to him- Negate what he did or didn’t do. He did his best in any given moment. The compassionate thing to do for both of us would have been to walk away, because let’s be honest, our individual bests were barely keeping us alive, let alone enough to sustain a functional, loving, productive “us”. And because I knew better- emphasis on I. Like it or not, the part about our best not being enough- that’s still true. A little more proof of the process, perhaps for both of us. This conversation today did not end in dinner date plans. I did not do my usual dance of seduction…that thing I do when I say all of the right things to push all of the right buttons that have always lead to us going to dinner, swearing this time is different and then collapsing under the weight of our own individual failings because nothing had changed, or changed enough. The truth is, I really want to do things different in my life and when you want that, you do EVERYTHING different and see where it leads. The truth is, sometimes being loving isn’t professing your love, but walking away to prove that you do. Believe it or not, and even though I secretly wanted the familiarity of the dinner date routine, not having it is the best thing for us both.
Does that mean it isn’t love?
Text to him: “I finally understand what Susan meant by “That’s all mind stuff.” When it is love, I’m not attached to it, an outcome or you. You can be you which is in essence, love and I can be me- also love. When I imbue it with a sense of responsibility, outcome, and or expectation, it isn’t love. So I do love you. It was love. But there were too many times when it wasn’t and for that I am sorry.”
That’s the truth of the statement. Love is simple, but our minds are not. Our pain feels overwhelming and it is, but we confuse quantity with quality. There’s no quality to your pain. It’s just pain. It’s not complicated. Enlightenment is turning the light on in your heart and realizing that there really is no monster in the closet.
Embracing change by letting go and realizing that change IS the new routine.
“You only have to be willing to open your heart in the face of anything and everything and permit the purification process to take place. When you do this, the first thing you will see is that situations will unfold that will hit your stuff, but in truth that is exactly what has been happening your entire life. The only difference is that now you see it as a good thing because it’s a opprotunity to let go.”
“Decide that you don’t want the weakest part of you running your life. You want to be free of this. You want to talk to people because you find them interesting, not because you’re lonely. You want to have relationships with people because you genuinely like them, not because you need for them to like you. You want to love because you truly love. Not because you need to avoid your inner problems.”
Both quotes are from the same book, The Untethered Soul. I was listening to it today and getting that feeling I get when my soul is about to shift. If I could get better at silencing my mind, my soul could shift so much faster. I go through this little conversation in my head where my mind tries to rationalize…like a brainstorming of my ego which has suddenly branched into a schizophrenic. Suddenly there’s logic, doubt, the Queen, justification, the defense team…but there’s this new presence-Me. The self. The me that has been here since the beginning of…well, since the beginning of me. So I watched the chaos in the war room. All that noise, that anxiety. Because they know that the end is near. That I’m figuring this all out and soon I won’t need ego to live on anymore.
It was Pema Chodron that first taught me of annihiliation. Jesus who first taught me of dying unto myself. You know, life is about death and resurrection. It’s a story as old as time. We die to who we were, the story. We die to our past. We die to old habits and bad behaviors. And we resurrect. The living is in the resurrection. We focus too much on the crucifixion. The pain, the blood, the injustice of how we die and at the hands of who- But upon closer study, you see that the wise ones chose to die. Remember that. They chose to die and not blame, judge, or resist. Because they know- and you know, that life is in the resurrection.
The top of the mountain- Tuck and roll.
The last thing I want to give you is today’s epiphany. I wanted to give it to you in my own voice, with my own words, but I can’t figure out how to do that. I know that writing it may not do it justice, but I hope it finds you as it found me. Let me tell you a few things about the experience;
It happened as I was checking out at the guard shack of the largest, busiest, most unprivate coal mine in the Basin. The guard shack lady, caught me. At what, you ask? At clapping and laughing. I was clapping for myself because I finally got it. Yes. Literally clapping. When I pulled away from the building, I had to pull over and let me tell you, I am not a religious person. I don’t have “a faith” but faith has me and so does God and at that moment, he almost had me on my knees for anyone to see, but he saved me complete humiliation and instead I did some weird little dance and laughed- a lot. Maybe it just looked like I had something crawling on me? Who cares! It was so wonderful that I found myself saying over and over, out loud- I love you God- and I meant it. I meant it like you mean it to an old friend, your first love, your forever love…It was the most perfect, indescribable feeling I’ve had yet. The first part is me coming to realization, and then you’ll be able to figure out where the Universe steps in and runs my mouth;
Transcribed from voice memo:
“So, I just realized that I actually learned to let it go. I’m sitting at North Antelope, at the guard shack, waiting to go, and I’m listening to my book and it’s talking about the noticer and how I’m not the jealousy and I’m not the pain, I’m the one who notices, I’m the one who’s aware of that. And then it dawns on me- I’m thinking about how my body is different (energy/anxiety reference) (laughter) It dawns on me that I did it! I let it go! I didn’t get caught up with it, I didn’t run with it…and it was so fantastic…I wanted to cry and that’s the first time (in a while) that I felt that good cry, that good joyous relief filled, God cry, where you just know that you’re finally making that progress… where you have that brief moment where you know….You’re on top of the mountain and you know- you know, you know, you KNOW that the valley is down there. You know that here in about…a week, you’re going to be on top of the mountain, sitting on your butt, getting ready to tuck and roll into the valley. You know that. But you love the top of the mountain and what you find at the top of the mountain is what makes that fall into the valley bearable now! Almost…almost wanting it! Almost just….telling the Universe, “Bring it on! I can do it! Let’s see what’s down there!” You’re thankful for the opportunity to stand at the top of the mountain that you know you are going to careen down at any given moment because you WANT to know what’s in there now! You really are tired of it. You don’t want a hug anymore. You don’t want somebody to come along and say, “Oh it will be okay.” You want to stand at the top of the mountain and say, “It’s NOT okay! Let’s see what’s down there. Let’s go look and see what it is I need to wade through and dig through and dig UP and throw out and replant.” And the next thing you know you’re not even in the valley anymore. You’ve started climbing up the hill and the top of the mountain is in sight and you are so….TIRED. You’re not even excited to get to the top of the mountain! You’re so TIRED of climbing and it seems like it will never end and God, it seems like the mountain tops get higher, and higher and higher….Which makes the view greater, and greater and greater. And the fall DEEPER. I wonder if someday you don’t just stand on a mountain top?”