"We, the compound of Sovereign, Soul, and Sediment!"
~ James Lendall Basford ~
I have come to realize that a clean slate for The New Year is not necessarily a realistic possibility. I must carry my loss and pain with me, not as a weight or a burden, but as a gift. I have been blessed by the experiences of my past, and cannot be free of them as if they had never happened. They did happen. And, while they need not dictate or disable my forward momentum, they do have their place in my heart, and in my soul. They have become a part of me. We have become one, and I go forward larger and more compassionate for all I have been through, and not in any way handicapped by it, or victimized, but grown in depth, and wisdom, and life experience, and the ability to unconditionally love.
The past bejewels my spirit, and gives me sparkle and verve.
"Christmas is a time when you get homesick- even when you're home."
~ Carol Nelson ~
The energy of Christmas feels both sad and beautiful to me. I can take or leave the jacked up crowds, and holiday fever, and egos around gifts, but the traditional music that has survived the ages mingled with candlelight and the tree, and fires, and movies, and sweets, and people gathering... these, for me, are full of yearning that is not grabby, but soft and sensuous and sorrowful and rich.
"There's always a period of curious fear between the first sweet-smelling breeze and the time when the rain comes cracking down."
~ Don DeLillo ~
Kintsukuroi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with molten gold. This practice highlights the cracks, makes them beautiful, and allows the object to continue to be useful. This acknowledgement and celebration of injury is a far different approach from using transparent glue in the hopes that no one will notice the break, or worse yet, throwing the object in the trash.
"Nature looks dead in winter because her life is gathered into her heart."
~ Hugh Macmillan ~
Things are revealed in the winter landscape. We see houses and views that are otherwise hidden. And maybe it's a little the same with us as well. Much as we celebrate together and create coziness, there is nonetheless a piece of our spirit this time of year which feels barren somehow, and is laid bare.
"It is, indeed, the season for kindling, not merely the fire of hospitality in the hall, but the genial flame of charity in the heart. What bosom can remain insensible to the call of happiness?"
~ Washington Irving ~
It's been enough sadness lately. Time to turn our attention elsewhere, and look to the moment for peace and joy and glittering lights of the season and the sound of Christmas coming. The sadness will wait for us to return to it, and we do not betray our grief by enjoying the pleasures of this sensational world. Everything has its part and its place, and we are meant to feel it all!
I used to think it was helpful to make suggestions when someone shared a problem with me, but I'm not so sure about that anymore. I think it's ok to say that I had a similar experience (if I did) and here's what helped me, but to have the audacity to say, "You should try THIS," well, that's another thing entirely. Maybe they have tried it, and it didn't work for them, or maybe there's a legitimate reason why they haven't tried it, or maybe it's just not their path.
Most of the time, what people need is not to be told what to do, or what to take, or how to fix something that they may not even think is broken, but to be listened to, acknowledged, and heard.
I stop jumping the gun in communication with others and really listen from the heart.