Thursday, April 15, 2010

One wild & precious life...

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?" -- Mary Oliver

I read this quote this morning that really captivated me.  In the sequence of emotional memory and energetic breakthroughs, today this quote wrapped itself around me like a warm blanket.  It's comforting, asked in a non-threatening or scary way.  I'm not scared by this, per se, but I am intrigued, and, if I am to admit honestly, a bit perplexed (with a hint of scared)... what will I do with this one wild and precious life?

My inner dialogue has been fast-paced and working overtime.  It's making up for the lack of disciplined journaling that I am used to, or even the sporadic touches of online blogging.  I think there has been a little fear in committing thought to paper, this essence of a semi-permanent nature to hold outside of myself.  But the journaling is a life-line.  I can't be without it.  It is the sacred vessel that holds my inner being.  There is some attachment there, as the vehicle for release, the vehicle which I don't allow others an opportunity to take the steering wheel and drive.  It's an aspect of my controlling nature I choose not to release... release, that word has particular resonance with me this week... this month.

Jonathan and Amy have crossed my mind a lot this week.  It's odd that after all these years of not caring about "American Idol" I find myself watching it week after week, thinking of Jonathan, how he loved his Tuesday nights making fun or loving the contestants.  I won't hear him rave/complain about them anymore.  His darkness... I will, perhaps, forever shake my head at what could have been.  Then again, if you're in that darkness, you can't see ahead, except the illusion (which becomes a near-fostered reality) of an even denser darkness.  It's suffocating.  I can't say that I don't understand why he did it, because I do, but it's our loss.  He's gone, from this physical realm, except for the memories that those of us who loved him carry with us... it's not visceral though.  Not the way I would want it to be.

When I think of Jonathan, it's only natural to think of Amy, who died less than a week later.  One life taken with awareness, the other without.  Chad's upcoming release of his new record brings to the forefront of my mind of just how much we'd be emailing each other right now in joyful anticipation.  Now I listen to his songs for the both of us in some ways.  Stepping foot into Tupelo, the last place we saw each other, the last time we hugged, it's painful.  It brings it all back.  It brings too much of it back.  Too much loss... is there ever an amount of loss that is acceptable?  Such silliness that flows out of our mouths...

So, naturally, this quote, this one wild and precious life... what is my plan?  The gut instinct simply says, matter of fact, "none".

None.

I don't tend to make plans.  I grew up not making plans.  You don't make plans when you're not sure what you're future holds.  You feel defeated by the anguish of the inner world you're enveloped in, and while there are moments of light, moments of aspirations and desires, for some, like myself at that tender age, it wasn't enough to foster plans. 

I've been thinking a lot about that time, of the darkness, specifically when it began.  I was a happy child.  As a middle child I had any "Jan Brady" moments of sibling rivalry, but overall my childhood was happy, filled with memories of fun times. 

When did the darkness creep in?  Or, when did I stop choosing to embrace myself in light?  Those years... it feels like medieval times now, to think of when that was.  So long ago, yet still fresh in the mind in many ways.  I don't want to forget those times.  I also don't want to convince myself that it's a pattern of return.  Things emerge, like a spiral, but you're never in that same place twice as you might believe you are.  Turning the mirror: I am never in the same place twice...  ::breathe::

I was listening to a song yesterday that brought up the mixture of darkness and the impermanence of life.  It brings it back to this question of the one wild and precious life... I love how it rolls off the tongue, full of mystery and excitement, yet profound, simplistically, but powerfully, true.  One life.  One wild life.  One precious life.  Just one... just one.

Irregardless of our thoughts of reincarnation, it's present moment awareness of what this moment has to bring.  It's the rhythmic tales and myths of the perpetual to-do list that has no true meaning or reflection of life.  Dirty dishes, laundry, organization... is this what we're going to look back as the pivotal aspects of our lives when we're drawing in our last breath?  Will we, then, have actual regret of what wasn't "planned", or more importantly, what wasn't "lived"? 

It reminded me of the Japanese Wabi Sabi.  How I love that word!  But, I also love the idea behind it.  As a former artist (I feel content to say that even though I feel like I am a creative being and an artist of life, that the "former artist" in me speaks more to the chapter of my life that began the healing process of my dark days), I love imperfections.  I do.  Imperfections are beautifully perfect to.  They're unique and divine, in ways that aren't characteristically 'normal' of our vision of perfection. 

I'm intrigued by the three realities of wabi-sabi: nothing lasts, nothing is finished and nothing is perfect.  I may disagree with the last reality, because I have adapted a very different point of view of perfection, but the first two ring true for me in this moment.

I've been thinking about the various things on my plate.  I've been thinking about where I want to really, truly, lend my energies to, and there are areas in which I know it would be best if I pulled back, so that I can be connected to that passionate essence I feel has been missing in this particular area.  I've been given an opportunity to explore these thoughts and questions in the flesh, and it has helped in clarity (awareness), but now comes the choice.

Next week I plan to be offline to participate in the No Impact Project's carbon cleanse week.  While I know I probably won't be doing everything to the extreme, this is about having mindfulness of what my footprint really looks like as well as taking this time to create the shifts that I have been wanting to create, as well as strengthen any that have already taken place.  I can see areas in my life where I can serve to be less wasteful, and I'm looking forward to having the week to explore that further.

It's not mandatory to be offline, that is simply something I wanted to do to help create a bigger impact (or less of an impact!) as well as get in touch with the roots of what I have been missing -- natural connection.  The cyber realm offers much in connection that I actually do enjoy, because I feel like my stronger points are through the written word versus the spoken word, but I know I have this natural tendency to withdraw and get lost in work.  Great work, work of the spirits, but still, when you're 'using' it as a way to disconnect, there is no connection there in the way that I would want.

It will also be nice to not worry about what "has" to get done, but just disconnecting in a blissful way.  I'm looking forward to writing more, reading, spending time with my daughter and not having to play the balancing act. 

Somehow I feel this is all connected -- doing the carbon cleanse, looking at life, looking at waste, both as a physical aspect that harms the Mother, but also how the metaphysical symptoms of the same waste creates a discordance within myself.  It's a cleanse, yes, but it's also a good time for personal retreat. 

My altar has been shifted to reflect the season, and while there are some other minor shifts that I would like to create on the altar for my studies with the Temple, it has a happy vibe to it, so I'm flowing with it now and allowing it to shift as needed.  Funny how I can be less controlling and have a partnership with my altar and yet in other areas I sometimes forget the gifts of equality...

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