Sunday, April 25, 2010

A volcano eruption in Charlotte...

My life is a mess. I am a mess. An utter and total disaster. Not because anything in my family or house or neighborhood has changed in the past 24 hours, but because I have changed. I am changing. I am looking at and listening to myself in new ways, in old ways, in ways I neither need nor care to define.

Some old stuff has been brought to the surface again. Old feelings. Old dreams. They are dreams and feelings and wishes and yearnings that I thought I'd successfully gotten over or past or around, only to find that it's all still there. Whatever the hell "it" is.

Like the one in Iceland, this volcano of emotions has roared back to life and is spewing ash and lava and dust and messiness all over my life. Mind, soul, and spiritual travel have come to a full stop because I've been thrown off my normal flight path. Into new ways of thinking, of looking at my life, of sharing who I am with the people I know and love.

I find that I'm crying a lot more these days. And journaling almost non-stop. And fervently praying for an end to the eruption. But also sitting in and with it and getting burned and cleansed and clear. Very clear. Clear about who I am and what I want and who I am not and what I no longer want.

I've been told countless times in recent years to "be yourself. tell the truth. stop holding back. live passionately. be real. take better care of yourself. be happy." Heck, just this week, I bought a little wall hanging that speaks of living passionately and not holding anything back. It hangs neatly next to the door in my kitchen that leads to my garage and out into the world.

One thing I know for sure is that if I did all those things, if I gave in and allowed myself to be true to my dreams and my desires, if I ever walked out of my kitchen and got into my minivan with all those words of advice and encouragement in mind and actually followed through on them... I hesitate to even finish that statement in public. Well, let me say this, if I did all that stuff, I wouldn't be sitting here at my computer in Charlotte, North Carolina on a late April night. Not hardly. Not even close.

Not long ago, I was walking through a market in Spain with a friend of mine who lives in a situation where he never has to cook for himself. I asked him if he ever has the desire to cook. He said, "When those feelings come up, Gail, I sit down and wait for them pass." I laughed. But I also shuddered - because those words describe what I do every single day of my life.

Every day that I feel the urge to grab my passport and head for the airport,
Every day that I feel the urge to say what I really think and ask for what I really want,
Every day that I feel the urge to yell and scream and curse somebody out and punch somebody in the face,
Every day that I feel the urge to eat and drink myself into oblivion,
Every day that I feel the urge to NOT take care of anyone or anything other than myself,
Every day that I feel the urge to NOT cook or clean or drive anybody anywhere,
Every day that I feel the urge to NOT be good and kind and patient and polite,
every one of those days - which coincidentally turns out to be every day -
I sit down and breathe and wait a while until the feelings pass.

And they do pass.
Most of the time.
Every now and then.
But never for long.
Never for long.

Well, I'd better go and figure out what to do with all this hot lava that seems to be flowing from my eyes down onto my shirt and into my journal.


Mary Anna said...

I pray for your volcano to cease its activity and become dormant once and for all.

Moneesha said...

I hope you are able to unravel yourself and make peace with your life. Me & my home are here when you need the break.

Lisa said...

Whoa! Such power!

Welcome to yet another chapter in your mid-life of (what I'm calling these days) Full Catastrophe Living!

SOOOOOO many of us women are right there with you, dear Gail. The Universe is not letting up on us ~ repeatedly calling our attention to the amazing ways in which we are needed authentically in the world.

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive." ~Howard Thurman

I'll be there soon ~ and I'll be bringing my lava-scooper-upper so we can make pretty, creative, wonderful things out of all this is spewing forth from us :)


GailNHB said...

Thanks for the love, friends, and the concern.

Mary Anna, thanks for your prayers. I think the one thing I have learned about my volcano(es) is that they don't stay dormant for long. I get rest periods every now and then, but then the heat builds up again, and I've gotta let it blow and flow.

Monee, I am making peace with my life - and right now, that peacemaking also involves allowing the lava to flow. I've gotta stop trying to keep it all under wraps, under control, and let some of the steam out of the pot.

Lisa, I look forward to some serious lava-tending, and even some lava-art, when you get here. For sure. And lots of tea and talk and coffee and chatting. Long walks, too... I don't want to be the one to break your streak! Not hardly!!!

jena strong said...

So courageous, this level of honesty, which I suppose is the only kind of real honesty there is. I have so much more response to your words than I can write in this tiny little box. Feeling our connection and sending you love.