The interesting thing with difficulty and pain is it is so much easier to acknowledge it once it has passed. When in the throes of it, I’m often so focused (even if in a quiet, non-active way) on letting it pass that I may or may not acknowledge it out loud. This is perhaps changing ever so slightly. But even so, once the pain has passed, the hardness has lifted, it becomes easier to see it, talk about it, acknowledge how present it was. How hard things really were.
I’ve been in that headspace looking back at last year. Especially the months between March and October. Even as I was living life, thriving in so many ways, I was also in the darkest darkness I have been. Internally, spiritually. In retrospect, as I’ve said before, it was possibly the most spiritually rich and “productive” time in my adult life. In restrospect, though. Now, I can look back and feel chuffed at the progression, but back then it often felt like having my teeth extracted in slow motion. Like constantly walking in the dark. Like just havin no idea at all if and when the light would come.
But it did. The light showed up. It always does. When things began to shift in about November. Slowly at first, and then with a steadily building gallop. By January, I felt like a new person living a new life all over again. Even though virtually nothing about my life, on paper, had changed. It was entirely internal. Like shedding everything for a brand new world.
So bright, full and positive has it been in fact, that it was only when N reminded me at therapy last month, how very dark and bleak the days were and how challenging, roundabout and clutching-at-straws my sessions were, that I remembered that it was true.
I’ve been thinking about this since. How the lifting of pain, in this way that it does at the end of a cycle, with a heave and a ho, actually made so much room in my life.
It wasn;t literal room of course. Like I said, my life remained unchanged on paper. But this is probably what we call “expand” in therapy speak. An internal sense of opening, unfolding, stretch, limitlessness. And externally, it does manifest as a vastness, tinged with a sparkly newness that’s hard to really put words to.
The other interesting thing about it was how long this “transition” lasted. I put it in quotes because I imagine dtransitions to be long, but even my idea of this frame of time is short and brisk, compared to what these soul shifts are like in real life. And the shift is almost always preceded by immense pain.
I realise now much of the inexplicable, intangible, wordless pain that I experienced was from being slowly broken open. Like a slow hatch from the darkness and warmth of an egg where I’ve cowered and grown silently for years now.
That state of hibernation has made me go within, withdraw from my surroundings, from people around me, from friends, from groups I belonged to, from my work as I knew it, from habits, from routines and rituals, and it quite literally put me in a self-protective space. Almost as if in preparation for the tender, vulnerability that would inevitably come from it. I have longed for this coming out, but it was just not time. Until about December, when I began to feel the natural, organic shift away from the inwardness. For the first time in years it wasn’t taking effort, coaxing, willing of energy. And in the weeks and months since, I have reveled in watching the shell fall to the side.
I feel so alive. Eager. Burning with desires to move, to do so many things, to open myself up, to experience. And I am so very eager to see what becomes of this vast, wild, open unknown.
One year ago: Monday Tarot Message: Tend to your masculine side
Three years ago: Please press pause and try again
Five years ago: Seeing the sunrise