With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope … —Martin Luther King, Jr.
dear ones, I want to honor the darkness today, this first day of 2017–the darkness that makes lifelight so bright. Ten years ago today we lost our twins. It was devastating. But these two little souls that were complete within me for only such a short time, were not meant to become lives that I wished and wanted, instead they came to give me an incredible gift: a blessing of life wisdom that I could only know by living through the loss my pregnancy.
We lost them on New Year’s Day–the holiday I love the most… the day so many of us celebrate collective optimism and hope, we are all rooting for our lives and each other with greater passion and possibility. The twins left me on my favorite day of the year, challenging most everything I believed about hope.
It was an experience that brought me literally to my knees. (Perhaps it is the times upon our knees that are the most significant to who we become?!)
I am sharing this with you, wishing not to cause you any pain, but because I want to honor these little souls on their 10-year anniversary and thank them for their brief stay with me. And because I want to honor the darknesses –the losses and pain–that you live with, too.
While they didn’t become children, they were something. Light. Energy. Love. Presense. Tiny miraculous gifts. Their being–and their ending– gifted me great lessons that I will carry with me as a torch in my darkness, for the rest of my life… these:
There are times in life when there are no words that can be said to reduce a person’s pain. There are times where the only thing that can be done is sacred listening, being present for someone when they grieve or carry great burden and pain is the greatest gift of friendship. No one could fix my loss. Not even the later joyful miracle of my son. It was a painful loss that happened and still, I carry their memory with me, with great love and gratitude.
They taught me to be a mindful guardian of the times when I should not say anything, but simply and deeply listen. They taught me there will be many times in life when I will not–and should not–find words to attempt to make things better for someone who is hurting… and that allowing space for not knowing what to say… space in silence… and hand holding… and hugging … and listening these are the most powerful love medicine of all.
These shimmers of light that the twins–those beautiful little beginnings… beings and endings–gave to me, helped me to take back my power of how I get to choose what I believe about this miraculous and painful world.
I honor you dear ones, and all our losses and pain. I am so sorry for the suffering us humans endure in this life… and I am grateful for it too, and to loss–my darkness–as it makes me carry a bright light with greater courage, to even share this pain –these trembling words–with you. We are not alone. Life longs to be with life, and I am here if ever you want to talk and just be heard.
I am rooting for you this 2017, and praying for our collective joy and transmutation of our suffering.
I wish all of us blessings and courage as we welcome this new year, with all its possibilities. I honor the darkness that makes the light much brighter.
with all my ❤
I wish you a beautiful winter solstice (and summer for tother side of our world), a very Happy Christmas, and beautiful blessings upon these final days of 2016. i want to honor everything you carry in and on your heart right now. gentle hugs to you.
this past year i tried really hard to embrace more of my (perfect) imperfections, and attempted to run with them, not FROM them. the older i get, the more courage i find to truly give who I am to my friends and family.
life is fleeting and imperfect. the more i show up authentically, real, honest, and imperfect the more in tune i am with my heart, gifts and self love and compassion–and funny, but the more JOY i feel. so grateful.
so in the spirit of perfect imperfection, 😉 here’s a little gift from my heart to yours, two songs of the season.
thank you to my friend Cindy Bizzell for her beautiful accompaniment on piano for both songs.
O Holy Night
O Holy Night is one of my most favorite Christmas carols. the music was written in 1847 by Adolphe Adam using a French poem by Placide Cappeau. below is my favorite stanza that makes me daydream about what it might have been like to physically walk beside Jesus. ❤
Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.
Under the Holly Bough
Cindy introduced me to this lovely contemporary piece, music composed by Scott Henderson set to a poem by Charles Mackay, 1851.
from my imperfect heart to yours… sending you my love,
When I think about the water protectors and the sacred work they are doing to protect the land and river and our future humans, I am inspired yet simultaneously perplexed by their willingness to die for this cause. These incredible humans are willing to be present in body, mind and spirit in prayer and peace knowing well they may be harmed by rubber bullets, concussion granades and other various human-made intentional suffering devices. They are willing to face arrest and to be crated in dog cages, to suffer and potentially die at the hands of a system and–let me remind myself–at the hands of OTHER HUMANS: A system and humans that not only devalues, disrespects and disregards their beliefs and basic needs, but intentionally inflicts horrific suffering upon them, to try to stop them.
The now thousands of mostly peaceful people in North Dakota–men, women, and children–these humans are prepared to die to stop the rape, monetization and exploitation of Mother Earth, willing to let their lives end in the name of ending the DAPL and our collective addiction to oil.
(I find it funny but not ironic that wordpress and facebook thinks monetization is misspelled, but at least it suggests “demonetization”… that is something!)
I am so grateful for their known suffering and–coincidental intentional prayerful–optimism. (I pray for the suffering to stop.) I honor our brothers and sisters in North Dakota–and all around the world–us humans who are done with the old story. Those of us who are willing to go with less of our physical desires met. I honor this complicated time we are living between stories; old story of greed and take and oppression and separateness, and the possibility of new story of sharing, giving and celebrating each other for all our unique expressions of humanity, and unity.
I don’t have answers but I am willing to go with much less (and endure intentional suffering) so my grandchildren can have enough.
I am ready to use human intention and creativity to bring in the NEW story. I want to serve (and listen, learn and love) however I can.
The Water Protectors’ tenacity, courage and conviction leads me to ask myself–and perhaps you too–: What am I willing to die for? What do I believe in so much that I would risk making my children motherless?
Perhaps until I can fully answer these questions, I am not truly living or fully alive?!
just thinking and questioning with you. with all my ❤
In Raleigh, North Carolina yesterday, a couple hundred of us local Water Protectors went to steps of Wells Fargo building downtown, to peacefully share the message in English, Cherokee and Navajo: Water is Life. It felt good to stand physically–should to shoulder, heart to heart–with so many strangers who are committed to being a voice for those on the front line protecting the water, in ND. I have been shooting love canons through my site here and on Facebook, but to actually use my body felt powerful.
While our connections and stance felt good, it also felt very bad. I had to deal with my own hypocrisy and nausea: driving my fossil-fueled minivan there, and protesting and standing in front of a company that bought my house for my family, I owe mega bucks for my home mortgage. I strive to not contribute to the problems, but me– like practically EVERYONE– I am stuck in this system of our old story.
I felt sadness for the workers coming out. For some of them, today may have been the first time they heard about how their company was involved in funding DAPL.
I know in my heart and entire being, that we are ALL in this together. While Water IS Life, I know that most of us are bound by our dependencies to oil. It fuels our lifestyles, the way water fuels our bodies. While I believe this is the situation right now, I do NOT believe there is nothing that we can do about it.
I pray for greed, fear and the myth of separation to be washed away by love and sacred listening. I write about the injustice and plight in ND and the Sioux and perhaps ya’ll are perplexed by how an immigrant from England could care so much… but I do. If you ever want to talk about it, please reach out, don’t silently carry your curiosity… I am here to lovingly and peacefully share the situation and my heart. And in turn to listen to you.
I pray for us all, that we realize that ND represents every single duality of our America, from racism, elitism, greed, putting profit over people’s and Mama Earth’s health… and countless civil liberty violations. I pray for the new America to come peacefully now, and for intentional human suffering to end. I pray.
Thank you for reading and hearing me. And our Native aAmerican brothers and sisters say, Thank you for being.
knowing and believing a better new story is coming…