Friday, November 14, 2014

Dark journeys

"When you light a candle, you also cast a shadow." -Ursula K. Le Guin

Sometimes, we have to spend time with our darker thoughts and feelings. This can be a proactive, voluntary journey, or we can be dragged, kicking and screaming along that part of the path.  I'm having one of those times, and I have been for a while. You've probably noticed, and I'm sorry.  It's not comfortable, by any stretch of the imagination, but it now seems to be necessary.

"Everybody is a moon, and has a dark side he never shows to anybody." -Mark Twain

As uncomfortable and difficult as this is for me, I'm finding the people around me aren't making it easier to get through.  My thoughts and feelings aren't comfortable for them, and I'm not feeling very strong right now as I try to work through some ideas and emotions that I've allowed to fester.  Sometime's they are offering what they think of as help, and I'm not ready or able to deal with the issues they think I should.  Sometimes they don't understand what I'm upset about, and I'm not always able to fully articulate the layers of my thoughts and feelings that would help them understand why I'm hurt.  Some of the people around me simply add to the pain by being oblivious to it.  Right now, the most comforting thing to me is that a couple of people are acknowledging that I am allowed to feel the way I feel and that I will have to decide what to do with those emotions. They know they can't do anything but love me as I am.  I appreciate it, more than I can say.

"Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds that darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it."  -Terry Pratchett   

In the midst of this internal angst, I am also finding that my outer world is pretty busy and chaotic. I think I could handle one set of problems or the other, but trying to fight a war on two fronts is exhausting and so far, fruitless.  I'm frustrated by nearly everything and everyone around me. I'm tired, but I don't sleep well. I do a lot of things, but I feel like I'm doing any of them well or with the energy and enthusiasm they deserve, which fuels a lot of negative feelings about myself and my life.  Feeling like I can't depend on anyone to help with either part of my life makes me feel isolated, and I have reached a point where I can no longer ignore all the ways that I am dissatisfied with my life and relationships. I refuse to wear the happy, hopeful mask anymore.  It doesn't feel like a good thing anymore for me or anyone else (though some people will disagree with this).  I need to make change because I can't continue living my life this way. It's not working.

"Someone once gave me a box full  of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift." - Mary Oliver

A few years ago, when I was actively working on my Into the Cauldron project,  I spent some time exploring, through meditation, the shadow lands of my inner landscape. it was an amazing and informative way of getting to know and understand some of myself, but it didn't address the causes of those parts. had I known then that I would be standing here, I probably would have started working on some of these issues then, and in a very different fashion than I am now.  I would have spent less time looking at the results and more time understanding how and why those events were part of my inner landscape.  Hindsight is always perfect, though.

"Darkness does not leave us easily as we would hope." -Margaret Stohl

For now, all I know to do is to keep going, to keep trying to understand, to make peace, to create a path.  I can't return to where I was, and I'm pretty certain I don't want to (I'm saying that now, but every time I feel a new ache in my heart, I wish I could. That stronger, brave me, keeps pushing onward, and I have to hope she knows what she's doing.).  I want something different for myself, but I have to build a better foundation if I'm going to have a future that does not repeat the past or present.  I have to clear my inner landscape, gather what useful things I find in this journey, and use them to build something new.  I can, but first, I have to do this. It can't wait. I can't wait.

"What makes night within us may leave stars." -Victor Hugo


  1. I feel for you. I wish I had the answer to your problems and concerns. If I can act as a sounding board, I'll do what I can to help you.


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