Friday, December 13, 2019

Yule. The Next Right Thing; Coming to Terms With Diagnosis, Dreams, Mother Moon, Frozen 2, and Resilience.

Beautiful bounty is often ignored by current sorrows. Mother moon sings while she empties her chalices of the past as she wanes, "Let go of the past. Other's do not want to hear about it anymore unless you still need to tell your story to heal but if your holding on simply to hold on- maybe your own self doesn't want to hear it? Don't allow the pain of today to blight out the current blessings. Move forward in hopeful anticipation of all that is and what could be. Come child, dream into this night instead of living in nightmares."

Dreams are more precious than silver. Why? Because they light us up with renewal and allow us to hope for the future. When a new diagnosis happens in life, whether in health, business, or on the home/ relational front, often we experience a temporary loss of dreams. (A diagnosis in this context meaning identifying signs and symptoms.) Current blessings flee to that elusive cloud where the lost things go and we are left bereft. Or so it feels. We feel we are that lone toy soldier trying to beat the drum to inspire cadence to a silent army of ghosts. Will we ever hear that music of the morning? Will we ever be whole again? Did our truths get mushed into the mire of grim reality? Or are they the stars shinning above but masked by the haze of initial shock? "I've seen dark before, but not like this. This is cold. This is empty. This is numb. The life I knew is over. The lights are out. Hello darkness, I'm ready to succumb...This grief has a gravity that pulls me down..." (Frozen 2 Next Right Thing Lyrics.)

And time continues to tick it's tock. We revisit the past to make sense for the future, but sometimes we get stuck. We forget to release our concerns, the blues of rejection or the security we take within pain. But who are we without that pain? And if there is literal pain that persists, how do we still make the best life we can within it? Can we let whom we were yesterday go?  "But a tiny voice whispers in my mind. You are lost. Hope is gone. But you must go on. And do the next right thing." (Frozen 2 Next Right Thing Lyrics."

Yet, yesterday perhaps troubles were not so far away. They are here now, new information, new tears, but the heart can always find another way. And if that is too comes down to the next right thing. "I won't look to far ahead, It's too much for me to take. But break it down to this next breath, this next step. This next choice. Is one that I can make. So I'll walk through this night, stumbling blindly toward the light. And do the next right thing. And with the dawn, what comes then? When it's clear that everything will never be the same again? Then I'll make the choice, to hear that voice and do the next right thing..." (- Frozen 2 Lyrics sung by Anna.)

The shadows recede in morning light eventually. Until then, through the darkness, sometimes the next step is the next best thing. "Can there be a day beyond this night? I don't know anymore what is true. I can't find my direction. I'm all alone..." (The Next Right Thing Lyrics.) Resilience is that admirable quality that requires the person whom has been broken, strained or bullied by life to recover in some shape or form and continue becoming whom they already were, are and will be...usually by taking the next step and breaking it down to the next step after that.

It's not about wondering whether we earned that next step. It's not about being only content with life when we are in control. It isn't about NOT being enough or TOO much as we are currently. In all our messy magic, it's about being what IS.

Awakening comes in stages. Transformation often happens in elusive, liminal spaces. Recovery takes much more to recover our muchness. The muchness from which we know we are worthy, imaginative, unique, loved and part of nature. We are children of sparkles, light and beauty, when with radiant clarity, the magic seeps in. But sometimes, there is so much dark it feels like there are no more wisps of music or light. We want to close our eyes against the darkness. Perhaps for a moment we do. But then we realize we are still taking that next breath. What follows is a next step. And opening our eyes we still may not see any light but we choose to walk another step regardless. Not realizing that we have entered a pocket of numb protection. It is what it is needed. For the moment. It is a place to let the tears slip, allow grief, be angry without judgement, and lose ourselves in darker dreams. And we step again. And again. And again. And again. Until we see a soft glow. The gradual gentling of nightfall reminds us that we can not rush healing.

After days of steps, falls and confusion, we enter another liminal space between. We suddenly feel a bit of certainty...we made it through for a reason. It's time to show ourselves find what is the core within. We no longer walk on trembling legs. We have lost much. But maybe, maybe we can find something different, within ourselves that is muchier. That opens the door and we grow into that unknown space. Some of it may be worse than expected but if we look for the right things, the next right thing, we see more sacred innocence, mature beauty, and wizened knowledge. Out of the darkness comes a light. It is both within and without.

Yule/ Christmas mimics this process. Eves of preparing. Our sorrows are put to sleep as we anticipate being awakened by gentle light. We are renewed. We find new dreams in the midnight blue that showcases each snowflake. The cold moon reflects off of white. It's no longer black in the sky. We can see the footprints in the snow of where we have been. Do we want to go back? Why would we want to retrace the crunches of snow back into our darkness? Holding on to remorse, regret, bitterness or the same old stories from the past are the same as walking back into that place we could barely stand.

Instead we hopefully look ahead. The crisp landscape beckons with enticing sparkles leading us onward. We see trees covered in frost. We ponder. The trees do not seem to resent their load. They don't break with the heavy cold. They bend. They don't refuse their burdens but instead with welcoming energy they enhance droplets of arctic to pleasing aesthetic. Their branches are happy to hibernate and host the complex formation of the ice crystals. Beneath brittle beauty the warmth of the tree is rooted underground. It knows what it is and what the cycles of life bring. The trees shine in the drenching moonlight as the silence ensconces the atmosphere. Swirls of snow continue falling and fly around like time often seems to do. The moon continues to reflect light.

And we chose what we are going to do. We do have a choice in some way... almost always. We look back and already our old prints are filling up with fresh glimmers. We could retreat. Some do and we don't blame them...perhaps they need more hibernation in the liminal? We know others run into the snow with abandon or fling themselves into the cold embrace to create snow angels with imprints and heat. That sounds like a nice approach too. Maybe we are that person when we decide to let yesterday go?

Or maybe we are that person who still has to carry pain? It will be our reality until we die, despite best efforts of health, meditation, faith or community. It does not give us an excuse to expire our next breath willingly... (In most cases that is. There are often exceptions to everything...even exceptions.) In general, most of us, do not want to have our footsteps lost in the snow. Walking is easier than it first was, where each momentum forward took every last bit of strength. What was a stumble is now tentative. One day it may be a marathon or at the very least a leap or jog. But for now, those who still carry pain, continue to walk a tad more heavily. But their prints are theirs alone. The snow proceeds to fill up their deep, sorrowful passings with individual and collective sparkles. The Oak moon is ever present and it watches with a soft inspiring glow. The winter night exhales and kisses the night with quiet rejuvenation. Silver lines the edges of perspective. All it takes is a step and the aura of nettle as a reminder to pay attention and dreams are in the embers of the soul. Slowly they will awaken again.

Until then it's another step, another look up through the frosted trees and up to the twinkling stars that glimmer through the snowfall, and another moment of focused BEING. No longer are you lost. North is true North. Resilience is in the next right thing. Nurturance is found in nature and community. Loving return of light is found within.

Wherever you are, whatever you struggle with or are grateful for, and for whatever season you are in or stage of light, be it Morning or Midnight, may you find yourself.

Yule Blessings;

* If you want my opinion on Frozen 2: I LOVED it. I was not a huge fan of Frozen 1 for multiple reasons though there were parts I absolutely loved and related to (AKA Elsa.) Frozen 2 incorporated depth, grief, emotion, magic, elements, and the right balance between Extroversion and Introversion. I found it was more cohesive, intellectual and emotional while also whimsical with love at it's core. The songs were beautiful lyrically and dealt with complex topics like maturity, changing (which is hard for everyone at times), growing up, being lost with choices, finding yourself, grief, and keeping that elusive tie between magic/myth and practical pragmatism.  "Into the Woods" (click) finally showcased Glees' Jonathan Groff's 80s rock band voice! My heart did several joyful leaps with that song. I had memorized it before we even stepped foot in the theatres. I loved the Bee Gees Moose scene. We have already gone twice and the songs have been on repeat. The entire journey seemed to mimic my last year and I cried through the entire movie the first time. In the second viewing I enjoyed all the incredible beauty and gorgeous songs. Idina has been a pivotal part of my healing journey since my twenties with Wicked's Elphaba and continues this tradition with Elsa.

** For anyone curious about the rest of my diagnostic process email me. I generally am not ready to talk about it except in a few places I have healthily divulged. The pictures of life are ever changing. I am not a stranger to diagnosis. Some have been accurate, others have actually been the first step to deeper issues. Each one has been a process of pain, discovery, change, crisis and sometimes ironic redemption. ( To be clear this is not about anything previous I have written. New information has come to light. Some diagnosis are more personal, have more consequences in other realms or require more space to absorb and figure out what the next right step is...for each person they are different as we all have different fears, strengths ect...)

Song choice: The Next Right Thing- Frozen 2 or here

And for Fun: Lost in the Woods- Jonathan Groff ( Immense joy has been found in playing it over and over!:)


Ashe Skyler said...

The dark times don't sink in to my core. I rely on the quote, "This, too, shall pass. It may pass like a kidney stone, but it'll pass." Of course, some dark times will never let things get back to the way things were, like scars and missing body parts, but so long as you keep moving forward, life can be brought into balance again and the light will return. :)

Kmarie said...

Ashe; very true. For a few weeks I had to just keep whispering to myself “ the next right thing...” but it does get gradually light. It’s true that it will pass somehow or we will ... 🤔😞but yea sometimes unfortunately like a kidney stone ;(

Anonymous said...

With the busy season I meant to comment that this post had poetic descriptions. It was full of imagery that captured my attention. Thank you. Even though I don’t know what you are specifically struggling with it felt like I was being talked to in my struggles. Also it was encouraging. Merry Christmas. -C

Kmarie said...

C: Thank you. Merry Christmas to you too! Hope it was sensational. I am glad it could be encouraging to specific cases that are different from mine too. This post rolled off my tongue in a matter of 15 minutes...I think it was deep in my heart and needed to be put on paper!