Have you ever been in a situation where one of your worst fears comes true, and in that moment, there is nothing you can do about it? It grips you, and holds tight, threatening to squeeze the life breath right out of you. It is that shock of disbelief, a rug being pulled out from under, leaving you neither falling, nor flying, just suspended in the realm of "nowhere". Yet in this nowhere place, you feel visible to everyone and vulnerable to everything. In my case, it is all accompanied by a flood of tears, and a desire to bury myself under a mountain of blankets where the world can't find me for at least a little while.
But then... something happens. The dust clears. Maybe all those tears washed it away. And in the clarity and reality of circumstances, you realize that there are two choices; emotionally holding on to something or someone you no longer have, or letting go and moving on. Just to be clear here, I am not talking about the death of a loved one. While I believe the same essential principle applies, we all know there is a much deeper and appropriate grief that accompanies death, which takes serious healing to be able to move on from. I am speaking of broken dreams, ended relationships, closing chapters.
I won't bore you with details, but long story short, we have been in a three+ year battle to attempt to save our house, which has drained us emotionally, financially, and spiritually. The clock is ticking, and this door is closing.
In those first moments, described above, we feel defeated. We cling to that closed door. We feel safe there. But once we wipe the tears, and look up, we can suddenly see the world beyond that door. We sense that the breath wasn't being squeezed out from us, we were holding it. We exhale. And we breath in again, deeply. As we step away from the closed door, we feel that the momentum of those steps is good. This is a path we would not have trod upon in the security and comfort we were living in.
This has been the story of my life. Each painful experience has been so very necessary to get me to look around, or away... to see with new eyes. I believe so many of us settle for so much less than God has prepared for us in this world, and there are times when, because He loves us, He allows the hurts and losses, so that we will wake up, and take a new look around.... to begin again.
And that is exactly what I am doing now; beginning again. At my age, there's no time for waiting around for the right time or circumstances. There's no doing things the way others want me to. There's no doubting, or getting my feet wet. There is only slamming doors shut, saying "thank you and good-bye" and excitedly dancing my way down the path, holding my children's hands, to see what new wonders await. Life is WAY too short to mourn the loss of any "thing". People, yes. Things, no. I cannot change what has already happened, or any of the nine million mistakes I've made along the way. I could choose to see this as "losing everything". But instead, I think I shall see it as an empty canvas to paint the next chapter on. I have evolved in my art. I am excited to work from a truly heartfelt and authentic core, incorporated my love of drawing, painting, photography, and words.
I made a promise to myself a while back. I never want all of my best memories to be behind me. I will always make today the best day. I will always choose happiness. A decade ago, I would not have been able to do that in these current circumstances. But amazingly, having practiced this way of life, it is much easier than I ever thought. True peace cannot, and is not, altered by outside forces or events. It flows within and pours out. Like water, it levels on it's own, and balances our hearts in the midst of storms.
I can see the horizon. I know God is leading me. I am sure of everything I am, and everything I want to express. I am focused. I am walking out on that water...