The Wheel of the Year is a unique a thing. No matter how you look at it….it brings with it a requirement of change, but with that change comes a certainty.
I would never have thought that, with the arrival of Imbolc this year, inevitable hard growth would have been coming for me. I, myself, felt like that tree that had endured the hardest winter….constantly bombarded by ice and wind and snow. Without that, though, I never would have known that the arrival of spring would cause to me to begin to leaf out even more fully and pour forth a plethera of buds and blooms.
I don’t normally like to share too much about struggles in my own life, but I feel that for the good of the universe, these things have to come forth. Sometimes it takes a very harsh pruning in order for a plant to put forth more blossoms and fruit.
This past year has been a hard year for me. I have watched as friends of mine have dealt with deaths in their families…..I have been there as my own family has struggled through cancers…watching as our loved ones lost the energy to fight and finally passed into the summerlands. I have had the hardest year financially that I think I have ever known. Yes, there have been times that I have wondered, “Where is the money coming from for this bill?” or “What in the world am I going to fix to eat….there is nothing in the house?” Now I am by far the poorest person out there. I have been blessed beyond means. I am only sharing my personal struggles…..I don’t argue that there are poorer or richer or more emotionally devastated.
I have also had my own health scare this year. I found a lump just under my right pectoral muscle. It was not movable and was hard to the touch. Thankfully it turned out to be fat. My body unfortunately does have to seem to have an overabundance of fat and I guess some of it got lonely and decided to congregate in one location.
Of course, the thing that seemed to top off everything this year was plumbing issues. Mopping up two to four inches of water from the bathroom, having to have a plumber come in and tear out drywall and pump 70 to 80 gallons of water out and then having unskilled laborers put the wall back together. All the while I am having to shuttle pets back and forth to the vet to dayboard….and they stress horrendously when their routines are changed.
Now, I share all of these challenges, not so you can say, “Poor guy, that’s so horrible.” Nor do I want to hear, “Oh I have it so much worse.” I share these things, actually, as a point of reference.
I have always lived my life by the philosophy….”We never strive to get over….only to get through.” When you try to get over something, you are avoiding all of the life lessons that it has for you. If there is a patch of grass with flowers in front of me and I leap over it, I am avoiding all that it has to offer me…..the feel of the grass between my toes, the smell of the flowers, the texture of the dirt underneath. If I walk through that same patch, I experience all that it has to offer and can ponder the things I have learned when I am on the other side. It is the same with a mud puddle. While this may not be as satisfying or beautiful an option, I learn just as much. I see the difference of the staining of my feet and then again the pinkness and clean feeling of them after washing them.
I have mentioned before that I had a partner to die of AIDS almost twenty years ago now. If I had used his death as a chance to just “get over myself,” then I would have pushed away every ounce of emotion I needed to feel. I would have diminished his memory. Instead, I chose to grieve him and get “through” his death. I was able to treasure every memory he and I had together, remembered his touch, the things he did and said that made me laugh….this made me a stronger person.
Life tends to be about compromise. I stand firm on one belief…..Be willing to compromise most anything, except yourself. I have given in and compromised on alot of issues, arguments, and so many other things. I will not, however, ever compromise who I am. If someone cannot accept that, then they need to get to steppin. The changes and trials in my life have made me such a strong person and I will not compromise what makes me, me.
I had a dream last night. I dreamed I was at my family home. On the mantle above the fireplace were seven boxes. Each box held something that I needed to relinquish in order to move forward. I cried desparately over each box. I wailed and hurt and agonized. It took everything within me to close each box and move past it, but I did. I watched the transformations happen within myself. I watched myself become stronger. In the end, others recognized it too.
I sat outside early this morning and did something I haven’t done in a long long time. I sang to the sun. I sang to the earth, the air and even to a puddle I saw in the courtyard. My grandmothers and grandfathers did this in the days of the ancients. As I did this, I could feel the shift in the wheel. The elements were rejoicing with me.