Growth is an erratic forward movement: two steps forward, one step back. Remember that and be very gentle with yourself. ~~~ Julia Cameron
I just started reading, The Creative Life by Julia Cameron. Not because I have dreams of being an artist. Not because I have dreams of being a writer. But, because I have dreams. It seems I’ve written often about friendship and forgiveness and trust and healing. I’ve been searching my heart for some inkling of a coherent thought that isn’t muted by my own inner voice. The question I keep coming back to is this… what do you do if you know you’re worth the effort but tired of trying to convince the rest of the world of this fact? I think, for me, the answer is beginning to form… let go of old thoughts, let go of things I can not control, unsettle my toes and let the sand form a new mound for me to stand. Be gentle with myself.
I had the most wonderful conversation the other night with a few friends. We talked about hugs and the power of human touch and the therapeutic resonance of the human voice… the power of connection. Simple human connection that can propel us all towards a new day. This comment was made about that powerful feeling, “…each wave is just different enough to unsettle my toes”. It took me a while to still my mind after that discussion. I continued to process the information and how I thought about it and how what the others said made sense to me in my life. I fell asleep, finally, smiling… my thoughts lingering on my friends.
As I drifted off to sleep, I felt my dream-self being transported to the beach. I was sitting there with a friend, faceless, both of us… our identities concealed in a foggy dream. We were talking and laughing and crying and digging our toes into the ever-changing sand along the edge of the water. It was just cold enough to need a jacket, the sun was setting — the sky was vivid purple and pink. I’ve had this dream before, it always seems so real. I never remember what we’re talking about, it’s as if our voices are muffled. A hushed conversation that only the dream version of ourselves are allowed to hear — but I distinctly remember turning to my faceless friend and telling her to open her eyes and see me. Then I awoke.
There was a girl I worked with for years who loved reading about dream interpretation. Whenever I had a dream I could remember I would rush to her and tell her the dream and ask, “… so, what do you make of that one?” She always said that the people and places in our dreams are secondary to the feeling you have when you wake up. She told me to write down what I was feeling when I awoke from a dream. Then, you could piece together what the subconscious was trying to tell you.
When I awoke from this picturesque dream of the beach, I felt anger that immediately turned into a sort of heartache which immediately turned into a sense of longing which soon gave way to a wave of warm connection that kept me tucked under my covers for a few more minutes.
It seems it all came full circle back to that conversation from the night before — the power of human connection. The power to lift our friends and carry them when needed. The power to hold a hand when it reaches for you in the dark of a dream. The power to open your eyes and see.
Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths. ~~~ Walt Disney
I think we’re all intended to go down new paths, if we’re evolving. Personal evolution is just that… personal. You think it has occurred or is occurring and maybe those around you are blind to it. I thought, for a while, that this was because perhaps what I thought was evolution was just my wheels spinning. But… I believe that I’m spinning my wheels in hopes that those around me, those I care about, are evolving too. Personal evolution can be measured in the baby steps or the giant bounds we take. It’s scary to un-stick your feet and point them in a forward direction, it’s more scary to be stuck in a moment — a moment that doesn’t exist anymore. A moment filled with words and thoughts and people who don’t exist anymore. Personal evolution.
The death of a loved one is a powerful thing. We miss. We long. We cry. We yell. We wish for an outcome that might have given us just a bit longer to linger in the warmth of their touch. But, in the end, we pick ourselves up and we move on. We continue in our forward progress because there is no point in lingering in the solace of the death of that lost human connection. We don’t search for replacements for our mothers or our fathers or our grandparents or our cousins or our friends who have died. You don’t replace someone with whom you shared such a strong connection. Death took them. It’s easy, no gray areas.
Death can sometimes be the easiest way to lose someone. You recognize the vacant spot because a person use to be there and you’re okay with the emptiness of it because they’re gone, gone from this world. There’s a reason you no longer share the connectivity of a hug or the warmth of their hand to hold. You miss it and you long for it and you cry for its absence but you understand why. You understand that death is the reason… not because you aren’t worth the effort or you aren’t good enough — death then, brings you comfort. I think… I hope, that personal evolution involves knowing we are just enough.
We were made to lift each other up. We were made to cheer each other on. We were made to be angry and loathsome and helpful and kind and connected — we were made to share the simplicity of the human connection… we were made for this complicated ride amongst the breaking waves. The only thing I need to prove is that I am reaching my hand out in the dark of a dream, I am opening my eyes to see, I am connecting. So, with each new wave, I am unsettling my toes just enough to let the sand build up — just enough to recognize the stronghold of a simple connection. My eyes are opening — we are all just enough, with nothing to prove.
A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of Nature ~~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Check out this: Love Letter To The World