Thursday, August 11, 2011

Upon the wind

The storm had blown through when Ellie and I set out for our walk. Above, rain laden clouds hung like pregnant whales floating in an ocean of grey. A hawk glided on the wind that rustled through the trees whispering stories of the places it had been and wild flowers bent their heads towards the earth offering up their seed pods to be borne upon the breeze.

It was a blustery, beautiful evening for a walk.

Ellie, oblivious to the wind and clouds above sniffed and snuffed her way along the path. In a former life I swear she was a horse. She loves to eat grass and canters like a quarterhorse if let off leash.

Me, I am earthbound, grounded, firmly planted on this great ball of life spinning through space. I am mother earth's child, illusions cast to the wind, reality gripping me in its gravitational pull to keep on trekking, keep on putting one foot in front of the other. There is much to see, and even more to do in whatever time I have to create my path through this world of wonder all around me.

Life is good.

Even when memories pull at gravity, opening doors into another element of the past that lay forgotten on the trail from there to here.

It happens occasionally. Not often anymore, though in the past, these moments came more frequently. Perhaps it is as we move beyond the pale of 'what was' into what is true today, gravities drag looses its intensity as we become more centered in the now.

I think the trigger came in a comment I read in Jim Loehr's, The Power of Story. "Individual and collective disasters happen when we don't examine our story to see if it's really ours anymore." p183 He went on to write about Stockholm Syndrome and wrote, "if you don't start listening to your intuition, you make your evolving story vulnerable to hijacking, to rerouting, to programming."

I have a story from the past that shed light on my life in ways I never could imagine. Sometimes, like storm clouds rolling in from the north, however, it sweeps in to pull me back, to remind me of 'what was and shall never be again.'

And when it does, sometimes, my imagination gets caught up in the thrall of the story swooshing in with the wind, and I begin to vibrate like leaves on the tree rustlings.

The story's pull manifests itself in odd and disturbing ways. I walk into the garage and imagine 'he' is standing outside waiting for the door to roll up. I once asked a security expert if I was wrong to get into my car and lock the doors before opening the garage and he said "No. You live in the inner core of a big city. That's just smart behaviour."

It is a fine line between defying gravity versus living freely in the moment of now.

Yesterday, as I loaded Ellie into the back of my car I waited until I was inside before opening the garage door. Changes in my habitual behaviours need to be observed. I need to question myself -- "what is this about?" "What am I fearing?" "What does this signify?" "How real is this 'fear?'"

I smiled as I pulled out of the garage, doors locked. "He" wasn't there but he was taking up headspace -- and that's a place he doesn't need to be.

I thought about my actions as Ellie and I walked along the ridge that skirts the river valley far below.

What if 'he' was standing outside the door?

There was a time when my daughters feared he would hunt me down and kill me. There was a time when I feared his presence.

But I faced that dragon. Turned into the wind and confronted it head on.

He had already tried that. And more importantly, my life is not the most precious thing I hold dear. My family is.

I learned that through those dark and cloudy days of his walking through my life.

I almost lost my family back then. And then I had the chance to reclaim what I love the most in this world. My daughters and my relationship with them.

To have lost my family would have been more devastating than my life because in losing my daughters, the story of my being a victim would have perpetuated itself through their lives. They would have continued on their journeys believing their mother hadn't loved them enough to turn up, to fight for her life.

I have been blessed. I have had the opportunity for redemption. I have had the gift of healing, a gift founded in Love. A gift more valuable than any I have ever been given. I have reclaimed my relationship with my daughters. Rebuilt my family.

I am truly blessed.

I walked along the ridge last night, wind blowing at my back as Ellie and I walked eastward, pushing me away, away from those times, those dark clouds of discord that veil the beauty of today when I give into the pull to succumb to fear.

I have no need of locking away my heart. No need to put up my defenses to protect my thinking. I open the windows and doors of my mind and set my thinking free to soar, to roam to glide upon the wind like an eagle catching the updrafts.

And in the meantime, when I feel the pull, I'll lock my doors and keep the boogie man at bay. He doesn't deserve the time of day to disturb my peace of mind!



The Mess Hall Queen said...

This is the best thing I have read in a LONG time. Thank you!

Jennifer Richardson said...

Oh heart is stretched
in a wonderful way
as I let this wash over me
....the kind of pulling, stretching
pain that feels good because it's so
needful and opening to healing and light and space and air.
Big, tender thanks for that.
(... like pregnant whales floating in an ocean
of grey.....overwhelmingly beautiful.)

Anonymous said...

No he doesn't deserve one second of your time. And you should be very proud of yourself in the way you've built back your life with your daughters, your family and your friends. I know that it hasn't been easy & your amazing strength and love has kept you going. I'm proud of you girlfriend. Love ya'.....jd

Maureen said...

Out of one very bad story have come others that are very, very good. You reshaped the matter that could have left you hard, cut away what never was part of who you are. The gift is what you were able to reveal. . . and she's special.

S. Etole said...

Your awareness always astounds me.

Claudia said...

your words always give so much food for thoughts..i think there's so much depth in them because you went through so much in the quote..Individual and collective disasters happen when we don't examine our story to see if it's really ours anymore..

Fi said...

Can't begin to imagine what you must have endured, or the terror you lived with - but can definitely be inspired by the strength and wisdom you impart on all of us on a daily basis.

There's always light at the end of the tunnel, it's just finding a way to reach it. You're proof it can be done.


The Mess Hall Queen said...

When I read it, I felt like it was me she was talking about :) and I also had to stop for a minute and realize I wasn't right there walking with her! Beautiful descriptive writing! :) but, what can we expect from a Jewel :) of a soul.