Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Amazing Grace

Fortunately, my doctor friend will soon be back in his true roll as a healer of others. Returning to the hospital after my last entry, the delight was palpable to find him awake and alert, though exhausted from his ordeal. Hour by hour, he improves so well that today we hope to move him to a rehab facility, the first steps on a good walk home.

Gratitude colors the tears of relief and brightens the loopy grins of joy. Parents, children, friends and partner all celebrate the return of warmth to his eyes, the powerful embrace in his recognition. This is a man who energizes with his healing touch, who we are blessed to know is healing himself.

Once the grip of death recedes a little, we are bathed in this wave of ebullience and jubilation, grateful for things so simple as the very air we breathe. Human connection, even with complete strangers passed in the hallway, is rife with a tenderness that could make us rich if it could only be bottled and sold.

In fact, these hard times make me appreciate just how rich I actually am. The lack of dollars only constitutes an inability to have and do “things”. At home pondering my resume and the jobs that might invite its reach, I recognize the value of my own heart and the lessons learned living less authentically than I am now.

Where I once was so stretched and challenged to do things “Right”, a rat racing a maze of corners and curves too complicated to maneuver safely, the stress blinded me to the sunshine and misty rains of the particular day. I felt the embraces of those who loved me, but empty inside and too terrified by the depth of that emptiness to even cry out for help, I could not fully embrace in return.

When approached so closely by specters such as bankruptcy and divorce, we have choices, but the ability to contemplate the past and consider the future, to actually make change (or choose to not), can be like wading through thickening concrete. Made difficult by so many options and possibilities, the decision becomes impossibly suspended, shadowed in the nuances of every variation. The spirit becomes immobilized, easier to continue just as we are, maintaining the status for fear of choosing wrong—stagnant for better or worse.

Death looms even larger, a mysteriously dark, impenetrably thick wall, too huge to climb over or around, too impossible to ignore. Passing through is beyond our ken and returning unthinkable. The past will become fixed in stone, unchangeable, forever left behind.

In this place of fear and uncertainty, dawns an exquisite feeling of giving up, letting go to forces beyond us. The choice is no longer ours to make. Our past so complete and certain, our future so unknown, unimaginable, we can only have this moment, this instant to live our last next best moment. We become our truest selves: we hold the hands—no matter our differences and issues--of those around us.

To live another moment is to feel blessed with a gift so precious. The world is illuminated, brilliant with promise. So grateful to be alive, to have that next moment (and the one after that), our ecstasy spreads to each other, compounding the energy, multiplying forever outwards.

In our joy, we commit to live more fully, embrace our future to make better choices. We vow to live the life we always wanted, follow the dreams we have carefully nurtured through the daily struggle. Time is short, Life so large and important.

In the meantime, we will make that so often postponed call to Aunt Alice, take the extra time for a walk on Tuesday, exercise, exercise, exercise…So quickly that clairvoyant optimism, the sense of enlightened peace, the empowering connection to the Universe recedes, lost in the maze as we become tiny scurrying rats once again.

Please share with your friends

1 comment:

Laurie said...

I don't want to be a tiny scurring rat Kip. This past year I vowed to do the things I wanted to do but thought were reserved for other, more adventurous people. My first move (although minor to many) was to buy a canoe and put it on the lake. I love it. Next will be sky diving in a year for a milestone birthday.

I have lived too long on the porch watching others live life. I refuse to penalize myself any longer for being me. Now I get to play. I give myself permission.