There is a lot going on right now. Today, in my little corner of the world, the movers came. The next time I see the kids’ photos, my quilted rocking chair, and Seamus Heaney will be in Tel Aviv. Exciting. Also heavy. And hard.
Change. Never easy.
And SCOTUS. I’m not going to write about the decision, but I will say that this past weekend was heavy. And hard.
Feeling heavy things is never easy.
And over the years I’ve perfected the art of avoiding them. Trying to fix them. Transform them. Into beautifully packaged, easily palatable feel-good, ego-boosting emotions. Like gratitude. And self-confidence.
So with the intent to transform my unnamed heaviness into gratitude, I head out for a walk. On Sunday, after the rain had stopped. And as my feet hit the pavement, I cried out to God, Please send me a sign. Help me to feel grateful. Find the silver lining. Show me something I’m missing…
I saw puddles. Dew. Flickering rays of sun attempting to break through clouds. And out of nowhere a gust of wind blew past me, shaking the leaves of the maple towering over me. And water trickled down my face. Like tears. And then real tears, as if they had been given permission, streamed down my face.
And the face muscles loosened. And the shoulders softened. And the heart opened.
Cry. Feel. Stop protecting yourself from feeling. Stop controlling your world. Feel. Feel whatever is asking to be felt. And cry.
That is what I heard.
Psychologist Margaret Paul writes, There are only two possible intentions in any given moment: the intent to learn about loving yourself and others, and the intent to protect against pain with some form of controlling behavior.
The rain washed away all my resistance. My desire to control. And the sky and the trees and ground held me. I eventually made my way back home, where I found my daughter. And we held each other in silence. Silent tears trickling down our cheeks.