I am writing from the UK where I am visiting family and friends, in the glorious springtime where the flowers are bursting forth and the lush green landscape is a feast for my eyes. I am letting go, on a deeper level, of my father who died a year ago. This last year for me has been one of deeply grieving his loss, and the loss of so much of the world I had known while he was in it. He was my best friend.
Grief humbles us. It opens us to our raw humanity and connects us deeply with the loss that so many are experiencing on the planet right now; loss of home, of country, of family. It puts us in touch with the greater loss that the planet is dealing with; so many countless species dying and so much of the ecosystem that is our life source in grave danger. I have never known grief like this, as though my heart was an open wound, red raw and bleeding. However it is important to grieve, to feel the unbearable loss that is part of life. It happens when we love and care deeply.
I have come to recognize that I am not only grieving my father and all that he was to me. I am grieving the loss of who I have known myself to be. I have been on a journey of shedding my old self, my outworn self, of leaving behind parts of my life that I have loved and identified with. As I look back on my life I notice that I have reached the midlife passage. It is not an easy place to be, to come to, as Dante says in the Divine Comedy “ the middle of the road of my life, and to awake in the dark wood, where the true way is wholly lost.” The one thing that I do know is that an incredible amount of self compassion is needed, to hold myself in the dark hours, the lonely times when it seems hopeless and pointless.
It is in this midlife passage where we come face to face with the illusions and delusions of our ego identity. With what is no longer working within us. With the places we try and fail and cannot fix what is not meant to be fixed, but has to be let go of, just as we let go those old shoes that are too small for us. It is often a scary, painful and confusing journey, to realize that we no longer recognize ourselves, and have not the energy or inclination to reinvent ourselves any more; because we are not meant to. This is where the Soul work happens, and something much larger than what we have previously identified with begins to make itself known to us. Our Being, our True Self, our Essence is calling us Home.
I am in the midst of this journey right now so I don’t know where it is leading me. However I am learning to trust it, knowing it is beyond my ability to control and I can only surrender to it and to Life. And to know that what I most long for, and have been searching for my whole life, is resting deep within me, waiting to be born.
I wish I could write something more uplifting, but it wouldn’t be authentic. I hope that in some way these words touch you and open you to your larger potential, even through the challenging and painful times that so many of us are experiencing. May all Beings be Free.