"...BE THE FIERY CENTER..."
-stone carving, Santa Monica Beach
99.9% of the time, life is great. a big beautiful lovefest.
This post is about the other .1 percent.
so for two days, i'd been walking around with something bubbling up inside me. something icky and negative. a loose, ambiguous feeling i couldn't label or define, nor did i want to. in fact, i'd been trying to distract myself so i wouldn't have to feel it at all. whatever it was, it was getting to me. but the point is not what the problem was, the point is, how do to deal with it. how do i deal with it? those times when i feel i'm not accomplished enough, not successful enough, whatever the demon may be, it starts as a .1 percent rumbling, till it boils and bubbles into what i call 'the 5 percent mark'-- the imaginary measurement which demands me to stop and deal with it.
like i said, most days are great. i love my life. but every now and then, some small bit of frustration lies foundation in my heart, builds upon itself until it finally demands attention. The frustration, i think, mainly, derives from my time not being my own anymore, which results in the inability to complete tasks at will due to the ever-constant needs of your baby. so even though now i may be living a "slower" pace of life, i still have goals i need to complete ("complete being the key word-- most tasks lie half-finished around my house) during the day to give me a sense of accomplishment. (No matter that some days those goals are straight from a 1950's housewife's checklist -- do laundry, iron, wash floors; some days the goals are more to my liking -- design press kit for new client, finish art piece, write business plan, take satine to park).
so this, coupled with sleep exhaustion, and some talented friends/family i have around me who are full-force pursuing and succeeding in their careers, (and here i am, leaving mine -- at least for now) left me... well, a little downtrodden that i was not accomplishing enough. "Well at least I'm a mother, I'm good at that!" But this was a day when i wasn't even feeling up to par in that department. so yeah, i had a day or two where i felt the pain of feeling truely small. unaccomplished. and even though most days i am quite happy with myself and my life and have enjoyed slowing down and sinking a bit deeper into the process of living... this day, the old negative voice was haunting me. Probably it's first visit since i became a mom...
but the point is not WHY i was bummed out, the point is... how do i breathe into the pain (of any type/cause), open to it, and find the larger space underneath?, rather than holding it so close (hoping no one will find out,) that it suffocates me, constricts me...
so with great courage (because for me, my ego doesn't like to admit when i feel 'less than', and i am frightened to admit to others my shortcomings) i took a breath and found myself sharing these thoughts with a friend... and miraculously, i found that there was a lot less burden to share... that the breathing into the center of it, coming from there, was my way though.
and then, a few days later, i was walking with my friend Dan (love you Dan) in Santa Monica. I looked over, and carved onto the top of a stone wall was the engraving:
"...BE THE FIERY CENTER..."
Perhaps that is what it said, perhaps that is just how I remember it. (it's a long quote and i didnt' read it's entirety-- i just took this extraction from it.) It struck me. If we can connect to our deep centers, that fiery heart of things, live from there, without masks and pretensions... if we can breathe into the smallness... we just may find our way through, find our connection to the boundless, fiery center that connects us to the greater Whole.