Learning, Loneliness and Acceptance

One would think that sitting alone in a small house, not being able to bathe, put weight on my foot, drive and seeing no one would basically protect me from making any social faux pas, would give me time to reflect and grow; basically I am on an enforced retreat.

Well the only difficulty is self. Learning to forgive the mistakes that I have made in the past and to forgive the errors that I am committing in the present is on- going.

No amount of isolation can still the inner voice. And how wonderful to have the internet so that I can make graceless and judgmental responses to others. Yes, the shadow self is alive and well no matter how I try to quell the beast, no matter how isolated I am there are still opportunities to go to school.

Images of self

Yesterday was a black day. A day full of sunshine can be a black night of the soul. So much grief was coming up about the stupid choices I had made. Sorrow was my company and tears my shroud. A friend dropped by and I pulled myself together enough to get through a conversation looking fairly normal. She looked beautiful and spoke of cheerful, hopeful things. I warmed myself in her presence.

Yesterday I also took the 83 short poems I posted on Facebook and put them into text files. The first edit took most of the day.

So I am learning, I am grieving, I am clearing my past life and past hopes that were held in my marriage. I am not restless in the sense that I want to get past this stage. Acceptance for the physical restriction, the isolation, the surfacing of deep sadness is inevitable. But I do set out to create new possibilities through my writing and art.

interlocking light and dark

Hay House Radio had a wonderful broadcast a few days ago which spoke to my heart. The broadcast was called Enchanted Love. The statement contained in that broadcast is helping me to understand and forgive myself for my paralysis. “To be cheated on by one you love takes a toll from your sense of well-being and is a life-force injury.” The understanding that came to me when I heard this was that I have lost the steam in my engine this last 19 months. Never before have I been so stalled and felt so lost. I haven’t felt like I had the energy to move forward. So forgiving myself for the situation is where I begin.

Another lesson this session brought me has to do with one of my great weaknesses: “Listen to others without reacting.” My desire to “fix” others, to offer help, advice, a way out is not appropriate. My judging, analyzing etc are wrong- headed. People just want to be loved and accepted for who they are. Rushing in without permission is a boundary violation. So the advice to ,”Listen to others, without reacting,” was something I really needed to connect with.

Another gem from the show is exactly what I was talking about earlier in this blog. “The universe always has an assignment for you.” So be as hermit-like as you will, the lessons will come in. Judge not others: judge not yourself. How can I be loving and compassionate even when I make stupid, bone-headed mistakes.

Another area of discussion was surrender. ” Detox your life by placing problems in God’s hands.” Or for others it might be changed to say, let go and trust that an answer will come. I have always been of a mind that I had to control myself, others and my environment. The horrendous chaos in my childhood was partially responsible for my creating this coping skill.

And, perhaps, my very nature is that of one who is disciplined and demanding.

So there is grief. Grief over my lost dreams and deep, heart-felt connectedness to my husband. Disappointment that at my age I have to find a way to recover my financial strength. And the issue of watching myself in the world with the intention of being loving, failing at times because my very nature is surfacing.
Forgiveness is the answer and the freedom.

I need to feel desire again. I need to feel a passionate sense of connectedness again… to life, to other people and to myself. No matter how imperfect I am, I need to trust that “Your desires become your destiny.

I get my stitches out September 6th and will be able to have a bath, perhaps put my heel down and my world will expand. There is so much to learn. I wonder what assignment the universe has for me in the next phase of my life. Perhaps, I can dance again soon.

Going Cold Turkey

Intellectually I know that my addictions swath me in a cocoon of numbness. But during this last period from August 17th on I have had all of my default survival skills stripped from me.

shadows, silver water mirrors the sky

First my issues of abandonment and being unloveable surfaced big time when my marriage collapsed because of basic bedrock trust betrayal. Working my way through the depression of the separation from one who I believed to be my best friend and love of my life was difficult. I was surrounded by loving friends and went into counseling to work on my issues. Going to Gabor Mate’s retreat in Victoria moved me forward rapidly.
However, on August 17th I had my bunion removed and that entailed restructuring the big toe joint on my right toe. Not being able to walk at all, struggling with what I call stoned crutching ( taking oxycondon for pain) and being unable to drive was difficult.
So the universe has seen fit to strip me of relationship addiction, of work addiction and of the distraction of shopping. How have I fared through this process? Try to guess!!

darkness is an edge and so is sunrise

I have had to face a deep depression. Looking down into the pain that I have carried from childhood is not easy. But I have been sitting with my pain. Because actually, what choice do I have now? Alone each day in my house with the struggle of getting from room to room, I know that it won’t be until September 6th when the stitches come out that I can stabilize myself. Once I can put my heel down, I anticipate greater freedom of movement.
So I sit with it, as Thich Nhat Han recommends and hold my sorrow close to me. I did all that I knew how to do. I worked furiously hard only to be set back financially to when I was in my 40’s. I loved full heartedly in the only way I knew how to love. But I did not care for myself enough. I awake each day with passion for life and sit here now without a sense of calling. I know this is a time of growth. The addictions are stripped away. It is like tearing up the floor boards and seeing that the grief monsters are underneath. And so I cry and grieve once again for those things I have brought into my life because I was too blind to see. I own it all. Studying the inevitable arch of attraction I know that I have indeed authored all that is happening to me. But it doesn’t make the grief any less real, or bitter.
Today I wrote a poem. I worked my new software, I talked to friends. I am doing all I know to do to work with this period of loss. And I am also sitting with it as if it were a baby. I hold my grief close and speak to it. It will get better I say. It will get better. Talking, Time and Tears will help.
I have survived these losses
to the storms, black weather,
sharp rocks scarring deep the very form of me.
Floating lost upon dark waters
with no sense of place or shore.
The harbors that I found were
unsafe havens, jagged rock bound traps
because I could not judge my depth.
I sit in mists of my own making
unable to discern the line of land.
The ship of self crying out the question
“,which way home,” returns
an echoed sound
unheard in gray, vast emptiness.

Rededication Reboot

Every once in a while, I fall off the depression wagon. Yesterday was one of those days. My neighbour phoned only five hours after I got to sleep, then a friend dropped by. The entire day I was in my bathrobe with no make up on. I ate ice cream, I ate watermelon and I watched a year of Better Off Ted on Netflix.
Knowing the foot surgery is next week and anticipating weeks of inactivity, I feel stalled. What can I start? Not much.

So today I begin again. I have the gift of obsession so once things become ritualistic, I am part of the habit. It is mindless and unnoticed. Making my bed, caring for my plants, mowing the lawn, laundry, cleaning, weighing myself each morning, flossing… so many hundreds of rituals of self care and caring for the environment are instilled in my psyche.
However, I have also patterned a habit of grief. When someone asks me where I have gone or who I see, I feel black emptiness. “No. I am not finding anyone.” My response brings with it so much emotion.
Whom can I trust? If I can be duped for over a decade about the most basic of issues in intimacy, can I trust myself? Always, my mind runs back to that.
So what I am beginning to understand is that I am isolating myself in an effort to protect myself from negative associations. And how is that working?
My spirits are lighter when I am with people. I enjoy walking along the river and seeing families. But the feeling of being outside, excluded and disembodied is the stage of grief I am working through at the present time.
My therapist has moved to Israel so I am missing that contact. My thoughts keep drifting to the idea of getting a life coach. I need to kick my butt or have someone to check in with about attaining my goals. It is too easy to drift. It is too easy to say to myself…. just a little while longer. You will feel stronger in a month.
It has been 19 months since I discovered the last straw and had the strength to end the fantasy relationship. Now I am finding that intentions do not overcome inertia. Only momentum overcomes inertia.
I need a direction. I need a calling. Habits of spiritual growth need to be strengthened. The necessity of sitting meditation every day is foremost in my intention to change my mindset and to become a stronger person.
The Nike magazine ad is posted all over my house…”Make Yourself Stronger.” That is my goal. And sometimes that means realizing that I need to spend a day crying for lost dreams, sometimes I need to be angry that I got off the rails 18 years ago and made a bad choice and sometimes it means I need to just lay down in my bathrobe, watch Better Off Ted and eat ice cream.
When the Shaw Cable Interview rotated on TV yesterday, I could see the sadness was still around me. It also refocused me to pay attention to the back of my hair. Sometimes it is not always what we can see that needs taken care of. Sometimes we need a 180 view of ourselves to understand in greater depth. So while I was having my off day or day off, I watched my self time after time. I watched my video clip and observed my self talk. What I needed to do, what I should have done, what if. But basically, I worked myself up to a state of self-compassion. I wanted to say to myself, “It will be alright. It will get better.”
Watching my mind fascinates me. I am saying to myself, “Come on. Give me a break. I am after all only human.” But I also know that re-dedicating myself to my central goal of being a more centred human being means discipline. So I take out my list, go back to training myself. But first, I need a cup of coffee.

Remember to Dance