"When the waves close over me, I dive down to fish for pearls."
~*~ Masha Kaleko ~*~
~*~ Masha Kaleko ~*~
Yesterday morning I found the above quote and it has been resonating deep within me, like a pearl forming in the very depths of my soul, as I come to the realization of how many times in my life I, too, have fought frantically the waves closing over me instead of looking down, swimming deeper, seeing what was richer, what was now possible, because the door to the past had closed.
I think it is not in our nature, as human beings, to let go easily of that which has been, of those things that formed us, either with sadness, melancholy, or even tragic circumstances that filled our childhood, we want to cling to what we know. In life we are far more likely to cling to the familiar, even if it hurts us, or is not healthy for us in some way. We are constantly perplexed by the abused wife who will not leave her abusive husband, and yet we will walk with the albatross of the past weighing us down so far that we cannot step lightly into all that might be. Too, those who had very happy childhoods, joyous, full of love, seemingly unfettered and free of hardships, at least in their child's mind, often measure everything in their adult lives against these happy memories and their present life cannot help but be found wanting. In either instance we are jeopardizing what could be an amazing and glorious future because we have such a firm toehold in the past. Whatever your past was, let it go.
I know this all too well. I spent nearly 30 years of my writing life with a good bit of the writing tinged or perhaps imperceptibly colored by childhood abuse, and in doing so I was never able to let go of the past. One of the most important parts of my journey these last two and a half years has been to cross a line in the sand and step over it. What was, was. It is past. It cannot serve me in any way now. But the future is radiant, shimmering with possibilities, and if it has been a long journey finding all the parts and pieces that I am now moving into, once I crossed that threshold my whole life was, is, being transformed into something far beyond my imaginings. I am absolutely trembling with elation and the expectancy of a child at Christmas as I look toward my future. I believe it will be full of pearls.
Pearls come in many colors you know. Just because I can see the strand of pearls before me in my mind's eye does not mean that I live with rose-colored glasses on and am not realistic enough to know that there will be hard times, difficult days, and perhaps tragic losses. It is good that we cannot see our futures, because we must live through them as they come, and the worst of these experiences, those that we fear might kill us, will indeed hold the most powerful lessons we will learn in our lives. It may and most likely will take years to discover the the gifts that we will have received, that will have altered the course of our lives, even when a deep sadness remains in a corner of our heart and washes over us again from time to time, but we will be unalterably changed and experience a greater depth in our relation to the world, we become more compassionate, more empathetic toward the hearts and lives of others. No, this is not always the case. There will always be those that will remain tightly closed like the oyster whose shell will not open, never realizing the beauty they have inside, but it is not our job, our purpose, nor is it possible to change another. We can only chart our own course, and in doing so, in opening our hearts to all of the beauty, the richness, and the lessons that life has to offer, we grow enormously and have more to offer ourselves, and if, which is my own goal, we wish to live a life of service in the world, in whatever capacity that might be, we need to allow the waves to close over us and dive down to find the pearls, and then, finally, to swim upwards and break through the surface of the water in a whole new place with the sun casting golden ripples on the water all around us.
A new life is possible at any age, growth and expansion, making choices for our lives that we heretofore never dreamed possible, it's all there, waiting for you. Look for the pearls. They're there...