Category : Mantra
I am so in love.
With this grey and iced-over day.
With the heat in my heart.
I am so in love.
Bliss ran up my spine in yoga today.
My heart burst open, wide.
Love confetti flying across the world.
I wished for each piece to touch every one of you.
My soul could feel yours in the vibration of this beautiful and tragic life.
We are all connected.
And I…I am so in love.
Come fall with me.
I somewhat jokingly posted on Facebook that I have developed an addiction to buying shirts with the word “love” emblazoned on them. My collection keeps growing and I can’t seem to stop myself from buying just one more, and then another, and then… Talking with one of my best guys this week, he mentioned how much he is digging this “love campaign” I’ve got going on. Huh. A love campaign?
Truth be told, I have been rather love focused this year. This is surprising, most of all to me, given that I’ve been dealing with the greatest heartbreak of my life. Love walked right out my own front door, and I seem to have been seeking it everywhere since. Literally putting love on. Wearing “love” on ever increasing numbers of tanks and tees. Maybe I’ve been unconsciously believing if I have the word “love” written across my chest, it will fill up my heart by way of osmosis.
You see, the other truth is that I have been filled with rage. Sorrow. Disbelief. I’ve had vengeful thought after vengeful thought. Mean. Perverse. Bordering on evil fantasies. Ideas of possible futures blowing up in the face of a person who I used to know. Who I used to love. Who I used to have a life with. My thoughts and I have been dark. So dark I don’t even want to admit that it’s true I have these images, these scenarios I dream up as I drive to work, walk the dog, read words on a page with no retention.
I want to hide these parts for fear that you will see how awful I can be. Flooded with hate. Venom coursing through me. But all those feelings are true. They cannot be denied. They won’t allow me to disown them. He cut and run, and never looked back. After 16 years.
But his actions, his choices of abandonment, they say far more about him than they ever will about me.
Because I can feel this darkness, this black vastness, begin to eat me alive. And I won’t allow that. I can’t. I will not let hate take root. I will not let the vengeful fantasies, the voodoo thoughts take over. Why? To do so would mean to turn away from the light. To disavow the incredible love that surrounds me. The love that has held me up and not let me be sucked into the vortex of bleakness.
Love is not simply a word inscribed on my phone case, my sweatshirt, my yoga tank. Love is my religion, my practice, my guide. Love is what I want to be, how I want to be, who I want to be. I want to radiate love. I want to breathe love in. I want to shower you with love. Love is everything. Love is the only thing.
So, yeah. Maybe I am on a love campaign.
Happy 2015, friends. I’ve got love on the brain. No, “love” is not my one word for the year, yet it’s palpable for me as this new year begins. I’m reflecting on the opportunity we have every day, in each of our relationships, to choose love. Although I’m not one for making new year’s resolutions per se (I do set intentions for the year ahead), I’d like to dedicate myself to choosing love. I want to engage in love as a living, breathing entity that must be cared for and tended to. I want to embrace love as a practice.
Life as we know it can change in an instant. I think the events of the past week remind us all of that. As I look back over the past few months, I am seeing ways in which I’ve been reminded repeatedly of this change-ability of life. My favorite film of this year’s True/False Festival, The Crash Reel, was all about the frailty of our human experience and how quickly it all can change. Focusing on the devastating training-run crash of then Olympic-bound snowboarder Kevin Pearce and his slow steps at healing, we as viewers are pulled in immediately to how his life changes 180 degrees in one moment. We are reminded, in deeply affecting and emotional ways throughout the documentary, that each of us is potentially one instant away from our own life-altering moment.
Watching this film reminded me of a childhood friend’s grandmother whose life was forever impacted by a freak, Frida Kahlo-like car accident. I thought about my friend’s niece who almost died this past summer of cardiac arrest at the age of 9. It brought up horrific images of 9/11, Columbine, the tsunami. Memories of countless close calls and near-misses in my own life and in the lives of my friends and loved ones bubbled up. The film reverberated with me for a few weeks as it culled forth my experience of being diagnosed with cancer five years ago and the ways in which that health crisis changed me and my life in an instant. I’m sure as you are reading this, just as I sit here writing, other memories and stories of lives changing in the blink of an eye flash before us.
And while these thoughts can bring about such despair and sadness, this awareness can also remind us to cherish what we have in our lives right now. I remember when Tony and I were going to sleep the evening we saw The Crash Reel, I couldn’t hug him tight enough. I distinctly remember holding onto him as we lay there in our friends’ guest room, thinking how much I love him, how much I need him, how quickly our lives are flying by, and how much I want to keep this moment forever. I recall having waves of fear that this moment, and the next, indeed our fifteen plus years together, will all keep whizzing by, and that in any one moment, something could come crashing in that changes all of it. I can still feel the pangs of guilt I had in knowing I am not always so mindful of this bigger picture, that I’m not always so close to understanding my deep love for Tony and the gratitude I have for him in my life. No, I could more clearly see all the moments I totally take for granted, the times I choose to be on the computer or my phone scrolling through social media rather than talking to Tony about our respective days at work, the times I’m frustrated that he didn’t rinse out his coffee mug (again!), and on and on. And I remember thinking before drifting off to sleep that I don’t want to do that anymore, I don’t want to take Tony for granted, I don’t want to choose to look at Instagram rather than connecting with him, I don’t want to be so frustrated about the damn coffee mug.
But then, that moment was gone. I fell asleep. I woke up the next day, and my life marched on with all its usual distractions, ungratefulness, and annoyances. And then my neighbor was diagnosed with cancer. A wake-up call. And then students at Tony’s high school were in a terrible car accident coming back from lunch. Another wake-up call. And then the episodes of this past week unfurled. More wake-up calls. So I write this post to remind myself to stay awake. To urge my awareness to linger. To choose love, every day. Because life can change in an instant. xoxo
Today is day 365 of my 365 project. But, I needed to write this post for today. I’ll be sharing my thoughts tomorrow on this past year’s journey, and announcing my next project. See you then.