So be careful what you wish for. Or something like that.
A funny thing happened since I wrote that first blog entry in May, and I feel compelled to share it with you: transparently. There's so much healing that happens in transparency. When I dare to tell the truth about what's going on with me then it magically gives the person with whom I am sharing my experience the permission to do the same. It is my intention to live the transparent life. There's some part inside of me that inspires me to think that if I can share honestly with you about my struggles and victories, my challenges and my triumphs, my pain and my dreams despite the pain, then maybe you can relate a little bit and in that relation perhaps we will both be transformed.
I wrote that blog on a Friday in May, and by Monday, my world was a completely different place. All of the commitments I had made reference to in that first entry were beginning to be returned to me although I had no conscious memory of writing that while it was all happening. In the aftermath of it all, I can now see that there was massive amounts of change taking place to move me into that postion that I described in the blog entry, that position where "the only real question you need to ask yourself is what do you want and why do you want it" and where the answer is coming from love and not fear. My commitments have been dissolved, yes, or rather, my attachment to them has been.
And I should have read the fine print: during the part where all of your commitments are returned to you, be aware that you may experience loss of control, over-whelming terror, nausea, panic attacks, and over-all sense of massive discomfort.
No more office, almost no more job, working from Starbucks, back in the town I grew up in, one bedroom apartment, mom diagnosed with stage 3-4 lung cancer: crossroads. The perk (dare I say there is one): complete freedom to go in whatever direction I want to go in if only out of complete exhaustion from trying to paddle upstream against the current.
It's been a month since my mom was diagnosed. I had done some intense break-through work in the area of career and decided I wanted to make my move to writer, inspirational speaker, full time agent of transformation in the healing profession. I was fired 5 days later from my mortgage job I've been holding for the last 12 years (well, "firing" was definitely the feeling of the event in question and in the settling of the ashes, we'll just call it conveniently moved from current office to my home office by my father no less (who has doubled as my boss for the last 12 years). My mom was diagnosed about a week later.
Crucible: A test of the most decisive kind, a severe trial, as in the crucible of affliction.
Yes, it has been. The diagnosis was the straw that broke the camel's back and led to that forced action of letting go called surrender. I certainly cannot say that the "s" word was voluntary. There's an experience I once heard a spiritual speaker reference where a group of guys dog-pile onto one guy until he learns to surrender. They pin him down while he struggles against them and fights and fights until he finally figures out it's no use and just gives in. They provide for him the actual experience of surrender.
And so I refused to accept that diagnosis and the time limit they gave my mom, and I have been taking action daily ever since: alternative cures, reading, googling, doctors, clinics, teas, herbs and coffee enemas. Oxygen therapies, infrared saunas, apricot seeds, essiac teas and pancreatic enzymes. What is the true nature of health and how do you get back there when the C word and the acidity that caused it in the first place have spiraled out of control?
And as my investigations continued, one by one, those invisible angels of the SURRENDER league piled on me: a friend threatened suicide, another friend went through with it, 2 apartments, movers cancelled twice, movers are successful, furniture doesn't fit.....mortgages--mine and the ones I do for a living. And then the final glimpse: "It's been a month mom, and we haven't done a thing. Sure we've read a lot and we've followed the medical protocol but what about all the alternatives. We have to start somewhere, and no, for the last time, you can't have any bread--it converts to sugar. I don't know why the nurses give you gingerale; they obviously don't understand that they are giving the cancer a steak and eggs meal with all that sugar!" And then silence and a lot of tears..........if the intention is love, this doesn't seem to be doing it. Love her, just love her. And saving her, while in the name of love, isn't quite the same thing.
I can't have a break-through for my mom. I cannot have a breakthrough for my mom. I can't take the herbs, I can't do the enemas, I can't drink the juices for her, I can't eat alkaline for her, and I can't do the spiritual work. No matter how hard I work to find "the cure", I can't make her do it or want to do it for that matter. I finally got the euphemism my professors from my spiritual psychology used to mention: if someone is trapped in a well, you don't jump in the well or else you're both stuck. You throw down a rope--better yet, you can even throw down a ladder. But in either case, you can't make them climb it.
She could die. There's perfectly clean food right in front of her, and she still may die of starvation. I can't make her eat it, and even if she does, there's no guarantee she'll live even then. And then the greatest form of pain. Utter powerlessness.
And that's about the time that I heard the snap.
It was the first time I consciously experienced that feeling that I might just have a psychotic break, and the pain was beyond description. It was a death of the part of me that had always fantasized that I really did have control over my life, and it died writhing and shrieking.
Silence. And in that silence, God.
It's five days later now, and another part of me has been freed and so I begin the rebuild.
If the way I used to live, trying to control everyone and everything didn't work, what would surrender look like on a daily basis? Could it really work? What if I did make choices based on love instead of fear? What would I choose and why would I choose it?
I have decided to ask and answer the only quesiton that matters to me at this point in my life:
For what purpose was I put on this planet? Is there a unique contribution I can make with my gifts and talents and the culmination of all my experiences here in the last 38 years? Lord knows I have tried every other way of living here and it's gotten me...well--here!
And so I say yes and get out of my own way! And this entry becomes the first testament to that yes. We are all a force of life, of goodness, and an aide and vessel of loving for each other if we so choose to be. How can I truly comfort another person or bring peace through the depth of turmoil that I have experienced in my own life? How can what I've learned in my life make a difference for someone else? How can I be of use here?
And so I make it my mission to share with you everything I've learned through my experiences in the hopes that something I say might make your world a little bit better today. And if I can ease your angst today even a little through this way of serving you, then for that time, however brief or how long, I get that beautiful reprieve from my own angst called peace.
Happy Day after Thanksgiving.
Friday, May 14, 2010
Free Will: The power of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances or by an agency such as fate or divine will.
Um hmm. "Unconstrained." Just as I suspected when I had the inspiration to define "free will" this morning. And shortly after that moment, I began to have a realization--well, an experience, really, during which it was as if all the strands of my energy were suddenly cut from every commitment I have in my life today and returned to me. And as the awareness continued to surface, it was as if God itself were standing in front of me and saying:
"Here, Alycia, take them all back: the commitments, the have-to's, the shoulds, and the want- to's. And while you're at it, take back the responses that contained the phrase "not a chance in you no-where" as well and all the other imagined obligations that you have been having an inner tantrum about for the last week or two as if there was someone or something standing over you forcing you to do everything you do.
Let's pause for a moment while you both listen and hear what it is I am saying to you.
Consider that everything that is in your life today is there because you have placed it there. Consider that you have placed it there by choosing to attach to it for whatever reason you did so at the time it was presented to you. Then consider that, in reality, there is no where you have to be, no one you have to talk to, nothing you have to participate in and nothing you have to do no matter what you have ever been told or what you have interpreted based on your personal experiences. There is no job you have to go to, no project that is mandated for you to finish, no activity that requires your presence and no person that you have to have a relationship with or even contact with for that matter. Rather, there have been options presented to you over and over as you have traveled this journey--options that you yourself have actually commissioned on your own behalf.
In fact, there have been an infinite number of experiences and options that have been presented for your consideration over your life time, and in this moment, I am asking you to suspend all self-imposed requirements and ask yourself the following questions:
"Did you actually consciously choose what it is that you have in your life today because you were inspired toward those choices by the love in your heart or did you or someone else or something else tell you that what you have or what you think you want is what you are supposed to have or supposed to want? Or better yet, were you somehow convinced by your own thinking or by a past experience that what you have committed to is what you had better do if you want to "make it" in this world?
On the days before today, have you woken up and looked out on the day from a place of Divine Inspiration and joyfully aligned with all the goodness that has always been meant for you or have you been so busy trying to make "it" that you don't even know what the "it" you are trying to make is anymore?
Do you move along your day and when options are presented, gently peer inside listening for the whisper of the yearnings of your heart or have you been so busy running towards some predetermined goal that you decided on by some means at some point so very long ago that you don't even remember now where you are running to or what you are running for?
And if your answers tend to side more at this point with the latter choices, ask yourself this: What if you could start over and make a conscious choice--one that was really made from what you really loved and really wanted and really believed instead of one based on fear of not getting what it is you think you are supposed to want in order to survive? What if you could look at the palette of choices before you, undo every commitment, and start fresh and re-create your life right in this moment? What if no matter what you have created so far, we could clear the slate right now, and you really could embrace the truth that there is nothing mandatory about your experience here--all of it is choice and all of what you choose is up to you.
I am Infinitely patient, and I have given you both the power and the ability to decide what it is that you want to do with the time you are given. There is no guilt, no pressure, and no judgment associated with what we are discussing right now. It's completely up to you, and no matter what you choose, you will be deeply and profoundly and endlessly loved.
There are, of course, consequences to the decisions you make and the actions you choose because for every action there is a corresponding reaction--it's universal law. Yet, while there are consequences, there is no judgment (other than your own if you so choose to judge). I love you no matter what you do--the only real question you need to ask yourself is what do you want and why do you want it? If you know the answer to that and the answer to that is coming from a place of love rather than from fear, you've made a very enlightened beginning.
So given all of what I have shared with you as the basic rules of the game and knowing everything that you know based on all of your experiences up until this point, if you could start over in this moment, what would you choose and why would you choose it?"
Yes, that is the question.....a very good question, indeed.