"One thing's for sure. Nothing is getting less interesting."
Those were my words to my yoga teacher and friend Heather in March over a glass of wine. We'd both arrived to our 40's (41 for me).
In each of our lives, some things had unraveled, lots had been stirred, most things were uncertain. Yet something stood more rooted inside.
I stand rooted. Inside and through the sea of myself. Grounded in my own sea. It's a contradiction. It's my truth. I'm a woman. I live as water and tree.
I hold reverence for the way the moon cyclically stirs the seas inside of us. I'm fascinated by the way cycles affect our lives and tides as women - seven years, nine years - the ones that give us compassion and insight into our journey. I honor that the mystery will always be beyond my grasping to understand - anyone or anything - in a finite way. Let alone, myself.
I love how the world hides her explanations, but never her magic. If you're looking. If you're listening.
Last year, around this time, I found myself shaking up my life. I had my choices. I had no choice. It was intuition. It was survival. Nothing at all was easy. Some things were effortless. I walked away. I walked towards. Something hard fell away. Something softer came. I returned to familiarity. I saw familiar things as new. I opened my arms to wider uncertainty.
Later Melanie Champagne, astrologist and myth-teller, told me I had been in a "rebirth year". Where there is rebirth, there has been release.
I let go of love. I held onto love.
I let go of a partnership with an individual I love dearly. For me, love is a present rarely left in the past. If I loved her, I love her.
Sometimes, dreams are disparate. Sometimes, feet want different places. Sometimes, hearts do. Sometimes, just because nothing is wrong doesn't mean it's right. Or enough. Two halves cannot always make a sum. Courses are run, sometimes pulling us up shorter than we expected. I needed me as whole. I wanted for her the same.
This time, breaking my pattern and showing courage meant letting go before love had. I didn't decide. I knew it in my bones. I just stopped denying that I knew what I knew. In release, we sometimes choose the truer pain, and then it promises to visit us in waves. We accept the pact. We expect the return.
We know love and loss have more than two letters in common.
Courage will not always look like courage. Love will at times not look like love. Nobody else gets to tell my half of a love story. Nobody else could. I will have made mistakes, too many, in the telling. In the making and unmaking of it, too. I will have made mistakes.
But love finds a way to stay. You lose her, or him or them. You hold onto her, or him or them. Both are true. And at once. We don't stop loving. We say, choose love. Love chooses us. Love goes on choosing us, love chooses love.
I let go of writing. Writing found me again.
Fear can keep you from writing, but I suspect fear can also make you write. For five years, I'd been trying to create some kind of book draft. I'd come at it from four different ways. That's what it would mean, right, to be a writer. Even if I needed to hide on a mountain top and shut the world away if I was to do this. Hell or high water.
The day after my 40th birthday in March 2017, I walked into an antique store in Napier, New Zealand. When I walked out of that store, I was undone. I'd become viscerally aware that I didn't truly give a damn about cultivating something for posterity's sake.
While so intent on expanding the reach of my voice in the world, I'd somehow become quieter and more closed off from it. Whatever I'd been up to, for me, had taken me away, not towards, my sense of sacred connection.
I didn't want my writing to outlive me or even live beyond me. I simply wanted it to live through me.
Two months later, I forgot about my big book project. It fell away. But I didn't forget about writing, not at all. Writing wouldn't let me forget. Sometimes I stand under an umbrella in a rainy street, pounding away into my phone as lines come faster than the rain. Sometimes I hike into the forest, stopping not for breath but words. Sometimes I wake in middle of the night, fumbling for the keys.
I share them as freely as they come. I give them away.
Maybe on a longer road, I started writing my book when I stopped writing my big book. That's for another day. I only know that, for me, writing began to flow from life again, and that makes all the difference to me. Writing became alive again. It expanded me. It returned to presence.
You know, this isn't what I intended to write today.
That happens all the time. I'm sure I had a plan. I'm sure I had something more direct in mind, more focused.
I could say it's the almost full moon, that threw me off the plan. I could say its eclipse season, and it may well be. But don't get me wrong, I'm the author. Of this note. Of this life. I wrote this. Me, and all that is. Me and all that is me.
And then, these stories too are told too neatly. More always remains, unsaid. Sometimes, unwritten words speak louder. We are asked to whisper into this moment, let the present find its voice now. Listen.
Maybe that's just it, what I really want to say is, I hope you allow yourself. I hope you allow. The said. The unsaid. The voiced. The path lived. The written. The unwritten. The written differently.
We gather to tell something about the truth of a woman's life, yours, something about having a voice, something about creating. And if we all dare that... well, Muriel Rukeyser said, "The world would split open."
If we all dare that, one thing's for sure. Nothing is getting less interesting.
Much love xoxo