There seems to be light at the end of the tunnel.
I seem to have made it through the latest chapter of dark times.
When I started this blog, I felt lost. Then I found myself through writing and gave myself a voice that I’d never possessed before, at least for myself. I’d been championing for others for decades; animal rights, women’s rights, diversity, environment. It had become painful apparent to me that a great deal of time had been spent advocating for others and not myself. That was a game changer.
Writing this blog has enabled me to find my voice through writing but look several issues squarely in the eye. Honoring myself was one. A simple bumper sticker noticed by the artist, Terri St. Cloud of Bone Sigh Arts. Honor Yourself. Simple words that were nearly impossible to integrate.
The next issue was that I couldn’t wrap my thinking around the fact that someone, anyone would want to read what I had to say. In my mind, my words had to be profound, a literary masterpiece before putting them out for the world to see. Shouldn’t I get a MFA in writing or something or some sort of artistic approval before being so bold as to put my words, my life, my history into words? Well, that answer came soon too. Survivors trickled in, slowly at first, some stumbling and fragmented, some already having honed their beautiful craft of expression. All were worthy and I felt so blessed to be a part of a counterculture emerging for survivors, men and women, who were taking back their power. I wanted to be a part of that. For me, it was coming home.
My most recent absence is due to my utter confusion and re-entry into that dark place. You see, I thought I’d been through it and had emerged complete, or at least complete enough. I thought I was finally, finally in that safe cocoon where I could share my story of abuse and survival with the clarity of hindsight. I was wrong, at least sort of.
This summer I separated from my husband. My fairy tale crashed and I felt that I was a fraud. How on earth could I write stories of hope and love when I had failed at my own love story? Slowly, I moved through the hazy days of summer with my tool bag (purple of course) of rest, solitude, meditation, reading and dark chocolate. I cried when I felt like it, wandered through the library, raged at Grandmother moon in the wee hours of the morning when sleep eluded me, slept any time I felt fatigued and tried, oh how I tried, to find joy anywhere I could. I picked flowers and herbs from my beautiful garden and gave them to anyone I could think of; my church for Sunday morning service, the women at the convenient mart on the corner who are always so kind and make me laugh every time I’m there buying chocolate, my dear friend’s mother who was passing this summer, a friend who works long hours and commutes into the city each day. I gave them just because. Just because in the absence of my own joy, I needed to create that precious spark of joy for someone else and live vicariously off of that until I had my own.
Many, many people supported me though this passage, you will find them on my blogroll and Facebook page. I simply couldn’t have weathered this without logging on to see their daily posts on love, writing, poetry, painting, nature, food. I traveled with several as they made major changes in their lives too and hope that I provided them a wee bit of support also.
Slowly that spark began to burn again. Now I have more words and more insight into myself. I tip my hat to the dark side, purpose well served.
I still live a love story. Really, there is a love story in here somewhere. One that, once again, must begin with myself. With or without a partner, my daughter, my dogs, my house. I can write words of hope because now I’ve lived them again. I’m not a fraud but an innocent person who stumbles and trips often, sometimes sitting in the mud puddle I fell in, squalling and crying. But then there are times, when I laugh and dance around with a soggy tutu.
It’s all good.