July has been a sea soaked, raspberry studded, sunshine infused hoot around here. Bob and I are approaching our wedding day (August 17th!!) and July has been about the gratitude of preparing.
By preparing, I mean buying blue mason jars and kazoos, choosing blueberry and marionberry pie for dessert, memorizing poetry for my vows… and I mean emotional priming, getting ready to cross this sacred threshold, witnessed by 92 of our friends and family, getting ready to be married.
A few weeks ago, I started to worry that I wouldn’t get ready, at least not in time. That I didn’t even know what being ready meant. I fussed about my vows, obsessed about losing weight to fit in my dress, and all around got crabby. I felt like a river roaring into a more and more narrow canyon. I binged on nut crackers. I got headaches. My mom’s failing memory rubbed me raw…
Then, thankfully, life graced me with just what I needed.
It was this past Friday, the very last moments of the last day of Taos (my annual writing retreat). We always end with a ritual that includes stating something you know now and want to remember. I often don’t participate but I needed to jump in at the last minute. I didn’t have my “remembrance statement” ready. I took a deep breath, asked my heart what I wanted, and out of my mouth came the words, “I am willing to be loved.”
Repeating that over and over during the ritual broke me open. I sobbed, I laughed, I nodded. Yes, it’s true, I saw: I am willing to be loved.
After we said our goodbyes and I drove away, I realized: my headache was gone. I was ready. To marry my Bob, to pledge to be with him until the day we die (which means something very different at 50 then it did at 27.) I was flooded with readiness, with ease, with rightness.
Life will grace you – we just need to stay awake, to keep listening, keep asking, keep walking. Keep opening to life.
Each morning in Taos we started our writing practice by listing 10 things we had noticed since our eyes opened. A single raindrop in a spider web, blueberry muffins baking, twirl of cotton skirt against my legs, coyotes yipping, soft sponge of scrambled eggs…
Why not do the same for yourself right now? Give yourself a quick gift of noticing how exactly life is offering itself to you right now, through your senses. The beating heart of existence thrumming and singing to you to come be with it, be alive, right now… Writing in sensory concrete words and phrases what you notice makes it more real, and it’s an incredible way to keep a journal of your days.
LOVELY NEWS BITS
Come write with me and the very brave Laurie Wagner in the Bay Area September 13 – 15, 2103.
We have 3 spots left, an amazing group of varied and loving women gathering… We will both generate new writing and dive into how to craft your writing to reach your audience Fantastic for bloggers, memoirs writers, anyone who wants to make the leap from journaling /morning pages to producing writing that leaps off the page and into other people’s hearts.
We are all crossing sacred thresholds all the time. Life is a state of constant change. We become ready by embracing that truth by knowing what Buddhist teacher Pema Chodron says to be true, “We think that the point is to pass the test or to overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart.”
Let us meet each other in this lively tender place of coming together and falling apart, and live there, ready and not ready, grateful and crabby, all in, all here.
So much love,