Through this period of Lent I have been putting an effort to keep my own council. It is not an easy thing for I am a talker and I tend to speak my mind. Speaking my mind hasn’t really worked for me. It’s like ‘I fought the world and the world won’.
Somehow I’ve always felt I’m a rebel. I’ve had more than one person say to me: Lily, only you would say what other people would only think. That has always puzzled and shocked me for I do not think I am a rude person. I do not tell people they are ugly or they stink. I do not even tell them when they are rude.
Would you not say that they are guilty of what they are accusing me of? And isn’t it rude to say that to my face? Trying my best to understand people and all their ways haven’t really worked for me either. It has only hurt my head and heart. It has also made me an angry person at times.
So my dears, I’m trying new ways. It’s not for me to know you if you want to be a mystery. I have reached and reached out to you, doing my part. I only ask you to meet me halfway. My dears, when I talk to you, I only want you to acknowledge you heard me, even if you don’t like what I said.
My dears, do you think that silence doesn’t speak. Well, if it doesn’t, body language speaks volumes. So does actions. And it is a bit of a curse I can read both of them. Ignorance can be bliss.
In this time, I am making a friend of silence. Only in silence can I learn what is important to me. Only in silence can I hear myself. In silence I can value myself just for myself. In silence I cannot be misunderstood.
For a few weeks in February, I biked the hilly streets of Lake Havasu in Arizona. I struggled up the streets, concentrating so hard I barely noticed the houses and yards. At the top, I would rest and gathered up my courage before I could take the steep plunge down. Each time I was sure I would take a tumble and fall. But I never did.
Back home on level ground, with both feet beneath me, I slipped and slid. My feet flew out beneath me. I hit the snow-covered ground. My head snapped up and then banged on the hard ice. My jaw opened and shut. I felt indescribable pain reverberating through my head. I moaned and writhed in the snow. I heard Sheba whimpered near me. I was sure I was dying but I didn’t.
Just now I tried a session of nail trimming/grinding with Sheba. She was good with the muzzle and leash, but no way was she going to have a pedicure. So I failed – today.
Tomorrow is another day. And I have as much spirit as my furry baby. It is a little worn out and limp lately. Life seems to be full of cares and people needing caring. But I know I still have it in me all the same. I can still rise and shine. I can triumph.
She felt her heart begin to heal once she touched the keyboard. The words fell from her fingertips. The tight band around her chest loosened. She could breathe again. She could feel again.
She sighs. Life is hard. Life is easy. You just have to breathe and be with the moment. The rest will take care of itself, one second at a time, one minute, a day, a week, a month. It will go on however you decide to make it.
I want life not to be hard but not easy either. It needs to be of challenge and hope.
The day has broken. I struggle out of bed and struggle through my qigong routines. Such is life. How many mornings have I gotten out of bed now? And how many times have I done my qigong exercises? You think I would have perfected both that I could do them in my sleep!
But surprise and no surprise, it isn’t so. We never reach that perfection point of no struggle…while we are still breathing. Perhaps it is a good thing. Otherwise, we would stop reaching for the moon, the stars, for something better or just different. We would stop growing and developing into new possibilities.
And so I sigh and sip my coffee and suffer my little discomforts. I massage my sore tight spots. I breathe out my angst and inhale the goodness of the universe. I let go of my judgements and let in the love.
If I am to live in this world, I have to be of this world. We are all the same. We are the dancers. Our struggle is the dance. It matters how we dance. Let my dance be the tango.
Just as I am physically moving out of the desert, I am easing into Lent. I am back in the desert where the mornings and nights are cool and air is so clear. The doves are cooing and the song birds are singing their song. The quails strut their stuff.
I am happy in the desert. I love its barrenness. There are no distractions. There’s no news – no television, no radio. There are no things for me to want, no cravings to satisfy. There is only quietness and stillness. I can almost hear God’s whisper echoing in the canyons. I can see his shadow in the moonlight.
I can see forever in the desert. I can breathe with ease. I can still my mind and listen to my own heartbeat. I will follow it when it is time to leave the desert again.