Letting in the Light
Like every woman in my circle, I have been affected deeply by the results of the US election.
Like every woman in my circle, I have been affected deeply by the results of the US election. In addition, I have had the unenviable task of resolving the fact that my young adult son and his father both voted for the other candidate. And it was really hard. Especially so, since my son was gleeful. Boasting. He felt so vindicated.
My daughter and I both had to process strong, conflicting emotions. And they were much more complex than just experiencing loss or bewilderment. We felt betrayed by the men in our own family. And we also knew — very quickly — that we were not alone in having to process this. We all have situations in our life where someone we hold close sees or feels things in a very different way. The immediate job is to find a way to honour our own perspective but still hold space for the “other”.
As she lamented soulfully, “I love them both so much…how can this be?”
How can this be?
It would be great if we all agreed on everything and especially with those we have to eat Sunday dinner with or go to bed beside. The division in our own family was just a microcosm of the divisiveness that was exposed at a larger social level. I saw quite quickly that resolving this chasm in my own life was at the top of my soul agenda.
And as with most tasks in the realm of the soul journey, I got a bit of help. One of my wisest friends was helping me process my feelings of guilt and self-recrimination about my son’s stance. She calmly replied, “It is all just energy. He is playing with energy”.
I saw quite quickly that resolving this chasm in my own life was at the top of my soul agenda.
And I know this energy. It is not unfamiliar. That could be why I have been so triggered by it. It is in my world already. I just try to ignore it. I hoped it was on its way out of my life. I thought that the world was becoming safer, more tolerant and that “things were looking up”. I thought my son was just being argumentative and immature. But his choice and stance are more than that. And the full expression of this energy is now in the air that I breathe. I have to acknowledge it. And much to my chagrin, I have to hold space for it.
Many of us are coping with how to take full breaths when the air we inhale stinks so badly. It is a natural preservation strategy to hold our breath. To spray room freshener to mask it. Or to try to hide from it. Find better air somewhere else. But as much as we may want to do this we know the stench will always find us. Eventually. Like it has.
So I am turning inward. The place where it all originates, anyway. It is too easy to say this is limited to a country, a time or a person. It is bigger than that. So I must become big enough to not just cope, but to thrive, and flourish, and succeed. And the way I do this is by pulling my gaze into the depths of my own being.
I look inside and see my own intolerances. I see my impatience with those who hold different worldviews or who won’t just step up and take care of themselves or see their own value. I find places in me that are shadowed and angry and racist and elitist. And they are there. I slowly, carefully, allow the unravelling. The taking apart of the vision of who I thought I was. Who I think my son and his father are and what I thought was truth. The blinders come off. And I do this because then and only then can the light come in. At the moment that I embrace my own contradictions and ugliness, the resistance and fear begins to diminish.
So I must become big enough to not just cope, but to thrive, and flourish, and succeed.
I have been training my whole life for this. I carefully pull my compassion cloak around me. I will not run away from myself. This means I will not run away from you either.
I will not run
I am already seeing sharp shards of light. My soul is allowing this transformation. My heart is opening. A different kind of power is rising up inside me. It is not soft or hazy or flattering. It is the transmutation of fear. And it is rather heady. I am in submission to my vulnerability and I am dining on the scraps of my emotional refuse. Chewing on my shadow. And yours. And my son’s and neighbours and fellow humans. Now I know why junk yard dogs are so tough.
My soul is allowing this transformation.
Within me the energies of hatred are being mixed with hope. And ignorance is being blended with joy. It is the birth of a maelstrom of power and enlightenment that no one or no thing will penetrate. My new strength will be porous, liquid, bending. It can adapt and accept and still hold its own.
I can do this.
Originally published at tracytheemes.com.