Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The delicate dance of darkness and light

It's October.  Autumn.  The season of the harvest. The time of the year when we travel from light toward darkness.  The sun slips away, or so it seems.  Taking with it it's warmth and it's light.  Driving us indoors away from the cold and darkness.  Forcing us to spend more time away from nature, fresh air and more time with each other, for better or for worse.

It's also a time of change.  Like all seasons.  Where spring is a time of new growth and life, autumn is a time of death and dormancy.  The beauty of the season is not lost.  The vibrant colors that abound in nature right now are nothing short of phenomenal.  Mother nature puts on a hell of a show before she blankets the land in cold, sometimes snowy darkness.  I've always found it rather bizarre that just before the leaves die and fall, they are at their most beautiful.  Not unlike us as spiritual beings.  Even after they fall, they paint a gorgeous landscape at the hand of Mother Nature, highlighting the beauty of the land and the season.

For me, it's long been my favorite season.  The crisp and cool nights and mornings that give way to a warmer day.  Skies often cobalt blue and devoid of clouds.  The smell of Halloween otherwise known as decaying leaves.  The crunch of dried leaves under your feet that call you to embrace your inner child and rake them all into a pile just so they can be jumped in gleefully!  The way the leaves blow around in the wind and the way the cat watches them as if they were birds.  These, are a few of my most favorite things.  Many of my happiest childhood as well as my adult memories involve the fall.

For the past 11 years, October has been a time of celebration.  Eleven years ago this month, I gave birth to full term twins.  Almost one year to the day after I miscarried at 15 weeks.  Yes.  I'd like applause.  Thank you.  It was no easy journey, but one of the most amazing of my life.  This is what I looked like about 11 years ago this day.
Yes.  That pumpkin is my 38 week pregnant with twins belly.  Painted by my 3 year old son and his almost 3 year old friend and his mother.  The stretch marks give it authenticity, don't you think?  This picture doesn't really give you an appreciation for how big my belly was.  Trust me.  I was D-O-N-E.

For the past 7 years, it's been bittersweet.  I've chosen to celebrate the birthday of my twins at the cemetery, where one of them is buried.  We have a cupcake picnic there every year now.  It's tradition. I both look forward to the celebration for the one still here and dread it because they are not together on this earth.  I only see one where two should be.  It hurts.  A lot.  I wouldn't miss dancing around her stone singing "Tinker Bell all the way" (those were the actual words, don't you know?) that day for the world.  It's just the way it is now.

About this time of the month, every October, almost like clockwork, I feel a weight descending upon me.  Subtle at first but becoming heavier and more noticeable as the days tick by.  The entire season from their birth day to Christmas is fraught with triggers.  The anticipation, no matter how prepared I think I am, no matter how much I try to integrate it, is there.  It makes me tired.  It makes me cranky.  It makes me sad.

It gets worse as we head toward Thanksgiving.  While I'm grateful for all that I have, I can't help but feel a swirl of emotions over the fact I've lost my daughter.  I thank no one for that.  I don't want to celebrate.  I hate pretending to be happy and seeing everyone else so gleeful.  I.  Hate.  It.  There.  I said it 'out loud'.  The weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas suck.  Yep.  They do.  I used to love the holidays, now I dread them.  I count the days until December 26th, when I can put Christmas away.  Meg died December 18th.  We buried her December 22nd (the Winter Solstice, coincidence??? I say not.).  I feel it building already.  It happens every year.  I'm powerless to stop it.

I find myself wanting to turn inward.  To withdraw.  I go to bed earlier.  I sleep later.  I'm tired.  All the time. I avoid social situations.  I'm generally quieter and more introspective.  I say no to others.  I say yes to my family more often.  As I should, all the time.

In reality, I'm actually honoring my higher self.  My truth.  Connecting with spirit.  Actually listening to my inner wisdom.  Opening my third eye to see that which I often ignore.  Allowing myself the time to 'evolve', integrate and process my purpose here on this third rock away from the sun.

It's not necessarily a bad thing.  Small boy and I started watching Dancing With The Stars again!  It's been years since we've done that.  I'm as tickled as he is we're doing it again!  We tend to do more family things like watching movies and game night.  Comfort foods and family dinners happen more often.

I am also brought closer to my higher self and spirit.  I feel compelled to meditate.  To practice Reiki more, both for myself and others.  I am called back to the Divine.  To nurturing myself and paying attention to my needs and those of my family.  I tend to feel less stress or simply ignore it because something more profound moves into my conscious awareness.  I question everything.  Am I in the right place, with the right people, in the right job, doing the right things?  It tends to be a catalyst for change.

The acute awareness of the reality that life really is short.  You never know when it's 'your time'.  The every day crap is just that.  Crap.  Will it matter if I die tomorrow or if you do?  If not, then don't spin your wheels. Do only that which matters right now.  Live.  Love.  Truth.  I know.  If only it were that easy.

Pssst.  It is.  If we simply allow it to be so.

One of the greatest gifts of this season is that I feel driven to write again.  Not just random thoughts in this blog or a journal, but to really write.  You know.  That book that has been swimming around my head and my heart for the past nearly 8 years now.  It's starting to surface.  The Universe is sending me signs like you read about (no pun intended)!  In the Oracle cards I pull, the seemingly random e-mail I get or Facebook posts that show up in my feed.  In the words of random people who tell me, "You should write about that!"

As always, I think that's great, but in order to write, I need time.  Lots of uninterrupted time.  I work full time.  I have kids who play soccer.  I have a husband.  I have a house to clean.  I ballroom dance.  Yes.  All true.  Like all things in life, it's about choice.  When I choose to write that book, I know it will flow effortlessly from my fingertips.  Not unlike this blog post.  I'm feeling a strong calling.  One I've not felt in many years.  It's almost time!

Despite the anticipatory grief and all the negative emotions I feel, I also feel more connected with spirit.  I have an understanding about life, after life and beyond that was a gift from Meghan.  I celebrate her life and all that she taught me.  She taught me much.  The journey I walked before her death and the one I walk now have made me who I am. Or, more appropriately, helped me realize who I am supposed to be. I will never forget it.  There is a great message and many lessons in her life and in her death. For me.  For you.  For everyone who is ready to hear it.

Someday, I'll tell you, and the world, exactly what I know and how.  I will share the message and the lessons I've learned.  Just as from the decay of the leaves in the fall comes new life in the spring, so goes the circle of life.

You'll just have to wait for that book to learn more...

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