Is it just me, or have the stakes risen?

Well, yesterday’s post was a little melodramatic, no? It’s all true, or at least it was the truth of how I felt last night. It was also a bit of laziness, intellectual laziness… a difficulty being truly articulate about what is happening right now. Perhaps it’s because I don’t have sufficient perspective at this moment to make sense of the recent events happening around and within me. I feel like my life is moving very differently, but it’s difficult to articulate why or in what way. It feels like events are taking place on a larger scale, that the risks are all greater, the consequences more profound, and that when called to move forward I don’t feel I have sufficient knowledge to make decisions. These days I measure the different ways of looking, the different possibilities, and I find myself feeling drawn to wait for more to reveal itself…

Just wait…

Be patient, be patient, don’t jump to any conclusions, don’t make any assumptions, but this lack of clarity on what things mean right now in this moment has had the secondary effect of making it difficult to act except for in very clear instances.

1. I’m very excited to be beginning a new job soon, a job that feels like a break for me, an opportunity of the kind I haven’t really had before, an opportunity to really create, craft, and envision something powerful and beautiful. I’m ready for it, I’ve been ready, it is in fact more well matched energetically to what I wanted to be doing this fall than the other options I had considered. This feels like it could move me from one level of operating to the next, and for that I am anxious to get started. It definitely feels like an opportunity the likes of which I’ve never had before, and I can see it changing my life in very profound ways.

2. After Amy passed quickly and unexpectedly from the prime of her life there have been a series of other dramatic quick passings with tragic circumstances that have brought the fragility of life home to me in a way that has changed my lived experience for now. Mortality is certainly something I’ve considered, thought about and explored… but when people go in for ordinary surgeries and die from fast moving infections, reactions to normal drugs, brain tumors that develop quickly and kill within a week, I find myself looking around and feeling deeply how death is in any and every moment. It seems like it’s easier to die right now than it was three months ago… curious and fixating to feel the specter of death while driving around, saying goodbye to a friend at the end of an evening, or when I have the littlest of headaches…

3. Two close friendships that have been very important to me during my life are not flowing in harmonious or energetically viable ways. This happens from time to time, very few friendships are perfect, but in these situations both women approached the difficulty between us with an intensity that let me know that the very ground upon which the friendship had been built was in question for them. To be honest, it’s very hard for me because I love these women, and they mean a lot to me, and in my world everything is workable. But the truth is that I don’t know what their experience is, I don’t know how I trigger them, and I can’t know whether my friendship is good for them or not. It is entirely possible, I believe, for two people to love each other, to care about each other, and to not necessarily be good for each other, and for this to be true for one and not the other.

It’s calling me to look hard for compassion in a situation in which I don’t really have understanding. It’s also calling me to find the ability to be okay with being a scapegoat of sorts while also avoiding adopting a victim mentality about being wronged or misunderstood.  After offering love, words of space as well as willingness to discuss, and as much strength as I could muster, I’m starting to wonder if sometimes it isn’t the right thing to do to let someone go- not to shut them out, but merely let go of what the relationship has been and trust that no matter how difficult or painful a situation is, ultimate good can and will come out of it. Whether that ultimate good is a resurrected friendship or a lesson truly learned is not up to me. I’m not used to experiencing sadness, betrayal, anger, frustration, victim-hood, and exasperation with this intensity, and though I’ve also felt peace, humility, patience and trust (not as much as I would like to), this is a big challenge for me.

4. It feels all the more profound given having lost Amy this year. Sometimes when I look at pictures of she and I together I feel guilty and angry at myself for having any “negative” emotions involving these situations. In my heart of hearts I know that that love is the only thing that really matters and that thought combined with the thought of never having said goodbye to Amy, makes me want to shake my friends and say “Stop wasting your life being upset! Can’t we start from our mutual love and care? Isn’t that enough? Can’t we be bigger than this? Can’t we see each other clearly as two people doing our best in this world? Can’t we just love each other?”

Thankfully I’ve had enough sense to refrain from that tactic.

But I’ve offered the olive branch a few times and I now find myself acknowledging that friendship is about two people, and my profound willingness does not make up for another’s hesitation or refusal. So I find some peace in respecting time, in allowing the flow of this world to carry us to our destinations with all the timing we need. But sometimes I’m plagued by the question; did I do enough? For now the answer is yes…

While time does it’s work seamlessly and gracefully I’m trying to convince myself that going through experiencing these feelings while not beating up on myself might be important too.

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One thought on “Is it just me, or have the stakes risen?

  1. Dashielle,

    This is a beautiful post. I have been through this as well – shifting friendships, abrupt endings. Stepping out of the way to let time sort it out…there is wisdom in that.

    Thank you for the excellent Sunday reading.

    Leah

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