Well, Master, I’ve learned to be a grasshopper for one thing. I’ve learned that I need to play, that nose to the grindstone was killing me. I needed this 10 months off, stressful as it’s been, to just be with myself. To see how much I’ve grown, changed, since I began this journey. I’ve learned that I want balance. Part grasshopper, part ant, part wild woman, and all master. Yes, for the first time in my life I feel like the Master that Jeshua talks about. He says we’re all masters already. We just don’t see it. I see it now. And I’m going to toot my own horn on this. I’m going to give me my due. I’m going to own the fact that I’ve become far more than I ever hoped I would be. It brings tears to my eyes to realize the gifts I’ve been given that I didn’t even know I wanted.
Does it mean I’ll always be serene? Nope. Does it mean I’ll never make mistakes? Nope. What it means is that I can go through those things with grace. That I can shine no matter what. That I can be a beacon, live a useful life, in spite of it all. Fuck, being a beacon can be hard.
Two years ago grasshoppers were showing up in my life. I found them on my car, in my house, in my garden, gifts from friends. I kept hearing, “Leap! Leap!” And I leapt. Right into the fire. Singed? Yeah, Baby. If I had known the future I never would have leapt. I’m so glad I didn’t know. I suspected but didn’t Know.
As we go through life it becomes clear that experiences are learning events. It takes a few before we realize that typically we come out the other side of challenges changed, transformed, and grateful for what we learned. It takes much longer to be grateful during the process of the challenge, to be grateful before you are transformed or see clearly how and why you are grateful.
These days I recognize life altering journeys long before I emerge on the other side. I know each day that one day I will look back and say to myself, wow, I really needed that. But make no mistake, it never means that I won’t complain or cry as I experience the fire that is burning away what no longer serves me, what and who I no longer need.
This period has been trying. Some serious tears. Some major fear. Some overwhelming gratitude. Some spine tingling joys. I am not out of the woods yet but I think I’ve reached the point at least where the trees are very thin and I can see the golden sunshine that is waiting for me. And I’m grateful it is there encouraging me to continue on just a few more steps. Don’t give up 5 minutes before the miracle. It’s impossible to know when those 5 minutes are. I’m so tired. I confess that there have been times in the last few months when I thought to myself, “You know, it’s been a very interesting life. I’ve learned so very, very much. But I’m done. I’m ready to rejuvenate my spirit and come back next time with a new goal in mind. Why not call it good at 50.” Seriously. No drama, just a realization that 50 years of this particular life is good. And then I think, “you know, the next half of my life is going to be so very different, let’s see what happens. There’s no telling.”
So Grasshopper, what have you learned?
- I’ve learned that there is incredible freedom in working for The Man. That just because I’m committed certain hours and certain days every week to work that feeds someone else, it doesn’t mean I’m not free. I am free. I’m free to pay the bills, keep the car, buy the food I want to eat instead of pinching pennies. I’m free to let my off hours be whatever I want them to be. Not only because I can afford to go to a movie or the fabric store or have the gas to drive to answer phones at AA Intergroup. But free to create because I thirst for that freedom and time to do it.
- I’ve learned that being your own boss isn’t necessarily freedom. Sure I like myself, I’m a great boss. When there are things to do, I do them. When there is nothing to do I don’t do it. But the stress of worrying about bringing home the bacon, literally, is not freedom. And I find that as my days have lengthened into weeks and into months and that I’m only 6 weeks away from one year as my own boss, this simply doesn’t feel like freedom. It feels like a cage and the bacon, I can smell it, is over there somewhere. I wait for some random person to bring me the bacon. OMG. Cage.
- I want to be a worker among workers to an extent that I never wanted to before. I want this job because I want to work around people I genuinely like, whose company I enjoy. I want to work on my abilities, skills, and my attention to detail. It dawned on me that while I’m very good at what I do and I like what I do, I am sometimes in too much of a hurry, so convinced that I’m supposed to hate working that I miss details. That I actually like working. I always have. I just bought into the whole Working For The Man thing that I never saw that any work we ever do is for ourselves in one way or another. I want to chop wood and carry water and see Goddess in the details. I do this in my stitching most of the time (which is why I don’t like to do it for money because then I end up with a deadline) but I want this to move into my work life and my hearth life.
- I’ve learned that I want to continue to stretch myself as a woman, a witch, a lover, a daughter, a sister, and a friend. That I only just began with The Forgiven to discover that pink sparkly part of myself that I had shoved under boulders, under 6 feet of dark earth, in the depths of the deepest darkest cave. She wants to come out and sing and play and dance and sparkle one hell of a lot more.
- These are the Honey Years.
I’ve been hitting a lot of recovery meetings lately. A lot of meetings. And they are meetings I wasn’t going to before, new people, new stories. And it’s been fabulous to get out of the rut I was in regarding my meetings. I’ve really come to love them and cherish them and will miss them when I’m back at the 9-5. They’ve kept me sane through seriously scary stress. Moved twice in 6 months, no work, no money, fear of losing the car, and yet I’m good. Solid. I haven’t yelled at any one that didn’t elicit an immediate amends. I look back and am very proud of my behavior in all this. I get up, read the email, look for work, send out applications if there are openings, go to a meeting, come home and either go for a walk or stitch or read. My wheel of the year project is back on the front burner. I get through each day as it comes. I breathe.
Last Friday a woman I know, a witchy woman, invited me to see Fleetwood Mac. Of course I said yes. I was nervous. Would we have fun? Would I have fun?
The last time I went to a really big, hard rocking concert, I relapsed. I had 3.5 months of sobriety, free tickes to see Plant and Page, and I took a toke of a stranger’s joint. There is nothing worse than considering and then trying to get loaded with a head full of recovery talk. Nothing. I took one toke and didn’t get high of course. But I had opened the door from just thinking about it to doing it and six weeks later I got drunk as a skunk with 80 of my closest (not) friends. I learned and conceded to my inner most self that I am an alcoholic. No hope for it. Stop or die. And I haven’t had a drink since. That was the day before my birthday. I will have 14 years of recovery on July 3rd.
I had a super great time. Really and truly. She treated me to the best sushi I’ve ever eaten and then we picked up another friend of hers and were off. I danced for over two hours, I got high fived by a guy in his 20’s, a guy in his 50’s danced with me in the bleachers, but mostly I danced with myself and with the music and I sang my lungs out. I didn’t think I could that. Dance alone. Sober. And the next day, my fibromyalgia didn’t kick in. No headache, no body aches. Except for the bruise on my leg where I hit a seat arm rest too hard. Scars of skirmishes won. Oh! And half way through the concert, my bra wire popped out of its casing. Now THAT? Is a good time.
This year I’ve been thinking about how I want to approach and celebrate my 50th birthday. My birth date is July 4th, Independence Day here in U.S.A. I haven’t had any money to consider throwing the big party that I wanted to throw. Invite all my friends. I’ve tried not to think about it too much. A friend suggested why not make all of July my birthday celebration. But still how to celebrate?
And I made a decision. The entire year from July 4, 2009 to July 3, 2010, is going to be my birthday celebration. The first year of the second half of my life will be spent in celebration of what is to come.
- I’m going to get out and hear more music. Buy an extra ticket to take a friend who needs to get out and boogie.
- I’m going to wear more sparkles.
- I’m going to nurture my feminine nature this year as I work more closely with the Goddess. While I will still work magically on things like protection and abundance, I’m changing my focus to concentrate on freedom of self. Living in love instead of fear.
- Living in abundance instead of lack. Giving instead of taking. I’ve got a couple “charities” I’m really interested in. I’m going to find ways to be the god-send that I keep hoping will come to me. Kiva anyone? Can you say Refugee? Endangered animals? Feed the hungry? Campus Cats?
- I’m going to the spa on the day of my birthday because its free. If I’ve had a paycheck, I’m going to get a full body scrub.
- I’m going to have a get together with my friends when I can.
- I’m going to honor myself, continue finding myself, love myself, and see how absolutely fabulous I am. 50! A miracle. I don’t look a day over 45.
I’m going to get a new tattoo. I hope. I’m allergic to nickel and back in the day when I got my first one, the inks all had nickel in them. My tattoo needs some help. I’ve written Vyvyn’s Tattoo shop for more information. I understand that I might be able to get a tattoo these days using nickel free ink. Wouldn’t that be awesome! So, I’m in the process of deciding what I want my 50th birthday tattoo to look like. It might take awhile to figure that one out. Intend it to speak to my journey and transformation.
The concert friend works very closely with Brigid. She did a channel divination for me the other day. Brigid says that the new job is coming very soon, it won’t be exactly as I thought but it will be very good and I’ll be in the saddle in no time. That the summer is full of love but that fall will be difficult again. Not much of a break but I’ll take it.
It isn’t here yet but that’s just details. It’s on its way. I wait, I am patient. I am not the grasshopper but I’m not the ant. I’m the breeze in the trees, the scent of lilac, the bulb in the dark fecund earth in the middle of the final push to sunlight.