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Faith, friends and family.
Today I am so grateful to my son’s fiance’s Father. On xmas morning a frozen pipe burst in the garage and the garage/extra room started to flood. This house is under contract and close to closing. I will be moving soon. Thank goodness I was still here but have been without water since Xmas day. Her Dad fixed the issue today so today he is my hero and a true anchor!
Would you try to anchor a sinking vessel?
My faith in the Divine.
My spiritual practices.
Mother Nature, the Redwoods.
Anchors are good to help provide some stability, particularly in turmoil. But I also need to be mindful they can also hold me back when it is time to move on. Awareness is key.
Thanks, Don…great advice and beautiful awareness!
I have had many anchors. I think we all have because growth in self-awareness comes from our life experiences. As a child who was bullied, I would say determination was my anchor. As a young adult, fear of failure taught me to proceed even if I was shaking in my boots! The birth of my children made them my anchor. They needed me. My husband was a good man but he suffered from the disease of alcoholism. I had to be strong for them. Many dear friends come to mind and their loving support through many challenges was such a welcome anchor. Sometimes you just need a friend with skin! I had been taught that faith was a list of beliefs and one of those beliefs was a God who demanded perfection of me if I wanted Him to love me. For me faith is no longer a list of beliefs.. For me, faith is trust and it took me many years to realize that dogma can be dangerous but life is trust worthy and grace is always flowing. I knew I was to go with the flow. When I began to let life show me the way, I found that I, too, was trustworthy. Today my job is willingness. Today I know I am loved. Today, I am rooted and anchored in love.. Today, I am filled with gratitude because I choose love. One of the biggest storms in my life was my divorce after 35 years of marriage. It took over ten years of grief for me to write the poem below. I share it and the author’s note I wrote at the time it was written. I share it in hopes that it may be helpful to others facing their own storm of loss.
A Time to Let Go by Carol Ann Conner
What is grief?
But a passage — a letting go
that comes draped in confusion
and seems too harsh for me to face
But protection doesn’t come
as the anger of loss pulses
through my body
like a fire raging out of control,
a fire that can only be contained
if accepted and felt.
The internal storm begins.
A primal scream
fuels the burning flames.
I smolder like a chard building
stark against the horizon.
My shelter gone,
I bargain with my ghosts,
with bolts of emotional lightning
that I am convinced
are trying to destroy me.
I desperately look
for a place to hide.
Finally, I surrender.
I seek haven in my humanity,
clinging to the dust of creation.
A gentle rain of tears begins to fall
and I release my pain.
Embracing life’s cleansing ritual,
I look at my wound.
I grant it permission to heal.
Peering into the mist
of new beginnings,
I sense that I am not alone,
Just lonely and afraid
as I start all over again.
I will embrace willingness
instead of willfulness.
Love instead of fear.
Life instead of death.
Only then will the path widen,
The storms cease,
and the fires light
to my new home.
This poem is reflective of my own journey, of my capacity for denial, for fighting and fleeing from life when I experience loss, even though every religious discipline teaches us to flow, to let go, to release our hurt so it can be transformed and provide us with renewed energy for whatever life still holds for us. As I enter the winter of my own life, I am thankful for the awareness letting go brings. I know that my job is willingness. When I am truly willing, life dances me, romances me, and helps me pack and unpack, sorting what is worth keeping and let go of what is not life-giving. For this I am most grateful.
My Dear Carol, Thank you for your openess and truthfullness…and a sharing of your life and struggles. We all can learn from one another. The sharing of your heart is a true gift. Wishing you all things good in the New Year.
Thank you for sharing this glimpse into your life Carol.
Joseph, you are most welcome.
Thank you dearly for your willingness to share the depth of your Love and all your heart with us. I am deeply moved by what you convey. Thank you from my heart, dear Carol. It is a true light for me and all of us.
O.Christina, I appreciate your note very much. Thank you.
My inherent optimism, which echoes my mom’s outlook that things generally work themselves out. Maybe not precisely to my specifications every time, but whatever it is I’ll be able to handle it or adapt to it and go on.
Being connected to my friends and being out in nature, are two things that seem to keep me from being blown away by winds of unpredictability, self doubt, and general turmoil. Both of these things require an output of energy. That’s the hard part. Getting out the door or picking up the phone, is not always as easy as it should be.
My faith is my anchor- always. When stressed and unsure I turn to prayer…and when settled and at peace, I also turn to prayer.
Gratefulness. Yes, this.
To find moments throughout each day to acknowledge and be thankful for the love and kindness that comes from the heart. To spend these moments outdoors and find surprise and wonder in the simple everyday things I ignore when busy.
The universe holds me every moment and is my anchor.
Daily connection with the Divine within me, others & creation.
The love for the out of doors, the varying weather, all of it’s inhabitants from the things that crawl to the things that soar and everything in between. The love and kindness that resides deep in my being that always has been there even when I have ignored it. I am discovering that the present is all I have so do not squander the moment.
A belief that I am not alone as I face storms, and that all storms eventually pass. And, as Christine pointed out, I make sure that I’m helping myself as much as possible with healthy food, rest, and activities.
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