Friday, September 7, 2012

The Beauty of Being Awakened

I think it is fair to say that being awakened is probably not on anyone’s top-five list.  We certainly don’t think highly of the sounds of alarm clocks pelting us with shades of awareness we’d rather flee.  And yet, being awakened is an amazing thing, and no, I am not really talking about big love for alarms that herald the start to the daily race to accomplish all that needs doing while attempting to have lives too.  The awakenings I am thinking of are the ones that change our paths, help us to see the next adventure, allow us to see the different layers in all that we thought we knew.  Awakenings of spirit, of dreams, of direction.  

All too often, it is the patterns that drive us.  We do what we’ve always done, afraid to change, to explore new paths that will cause consternation among loved ones, to step beyond our own known worlds.  But even though the steady, known paths seem safe, there live echoes of voices inside us declaring that there is something more for all of us, accomplishments, dreams, connections.  The yearning in us is very real.  For something more.  Something that can only be found by walking into the unknown.

For me, the past five years has been a trek through the unknown.  I’ve fallen into some murky waters and had to learn to swim.  I’ve been pushed and prodded by my dreams, wounded by the slights that come with striking for more, and then reached the peaks.  I’ve seen my book published.  After all that fear and doubt, my book is in the world.  And now when I go to pick my dogs up at my vet, vet technicians rush out to tell me how much they loved my book.  Friends call to say that they gave the book to someone who loved it and passed it on.  I look back over the winding road of the past five years and see that all is as it should have been.  The letdowns forced me to grow, forced me to commit to what I wanted, and to not let go no matter how many hurdles blocked my path.  And as I work toward the release of the second book in my series, I feel right in my direction and willing to work as hard as needed to honor the stories that made a home in me.

For so many years, writing has been front and center in my life and today is no different, but there are other things in life.  Other yearnings to reach for.  Other patterns to break.  Other awakenings.  Change.  I wish I could say I wasn’t afraid of what comes next, but it is unsettling still to wander beyond my barriers.  Even newer patterns have the power to lull us and we must always be willing to look at our lives, what works and what needs work, and to lean into the direction of growth.

Maybe we are all Snow White, yearning to be awakened.  And Prince Charming shows up in many guises: a lyric of a much-loved song; a passage in a powerful book; a new friend who sees the reflection of who we are now, not who we have been; an old friend who never gave up on who we could be; a person who challenges our perceptions about our place in the world, a person who surprises us just by being who they are.  Opportunities are all around us.  To be better.  To do more.  To claim the life we always knew we could live.  To be that person we are in the silent places inside our hearts.  And as much fear as is felt in sharing that vision of self with the world, risking the hurts that could come, I, for one, would rather dare than shrink away.  I want—no, I need—to keep changing and growing and never let old patterns define new horizons.  Stagnation is the true enemy, draining us of the will to dare.  But in what fiction story did the hero ever refuse to dare?  That wouldn’t make such a good story in fiction, so let’s not live it in real life either.

Quote for the Day (a repeat because I love it) from Anais Nin

“There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”


Debra Lynn Lazar said...

Beautiful post. I look forward to seeing you continue to blossom. ;-)

Elsie said...

Awakening is a beautiful thing, as is stepping outside your comfort zone to blossom. Inspirational post.

Caroline Starr Rose said...

Lovely, like you!

Jemi Fraser said...

So true! I'm not the bravest person - not by a long stretch - but I'm getting better!