Some Personal Thoughts on Surrender and Non-Judgment

Making choices and decisions that are consistent with who we are striving to be is not always easy. Setting those boundaries is not so hard. Holding them can be hard. Not sliding into past behaviors can be hard. Not looking backward can be hard.

It’s important though, that we don’t beat ourselves up for any of it. Just acknowledging it is good, beause it makes you aware of your behavior and the nature of it, and where it comes from. I know for me, hypervigilance is something that I backslide into easily. I didn’t really realize or comprehend that I still do it, until I moved to Florida and my life left that hectic pace of full-time work and keeping a house and family. Now I am able to reflect on my actions more, and in a more relaxed atmosphere. Someone said to me the other day that hypervigilance is very defensive. I never thought of it like that, but I guess that is true. It’s like pre-emptive defense. Trying to figure out what’s going to happen so you don’t find yourself blindsided and face down in the dirt. I think anyone who has been in and gotten out of an abusive relationship probably suffers from hypervigilance. And a good bit of PTSD.

One reason I like the Veterans Art Center so much is that instead of drugging people, and telling them to “get over it”, they encourage vets to look at their experiences and create from them. Some of the art can be scary, as they exorcise the demons in their heads. With some artists, you can see the progression from the dark, battle images, to beauty as they are able to let go of some of the bad memories by putting them on the canvas.

That’s what writing did for me. Whether it was journaling, or blogging, or writing poetry, I’ve been able to put it on the page, and let go of the anger and fear and pain. Not saying I’m done yet, but compared to the early days when I left my marriage, and didn’t have a clue who I was. My son provided the motivation, to make a huge change, but how that was going to happen I hadn’t a clue. I basically had to surrender it to the universe.

Now, when faced with a dilemma I can’t solve, and when I recognize that I’m trying to control the outcome, I am much more able (though not all the time) to take a deep breath and allow things to unfold as they will, and accept them as they are. I guess I should add that trying to be non-judgmental is a huge part of healing. Non-judgmental of those who hurt me, and non-judgmental of myself, which is even harder. It has helped me to believe that most people are doing the best they can, from the state of their consciousness at the time. Looking backward without pain and anger can be hard, but when you can take that step across the threshold into creating a better future, it gets easier.

Which, getting back to the beginning of this post, surrender and non-judgement are really part and parcel of becoming the person I aspire to be. It’s a work in progress, for sure.

A lot of stuff rolling around my somewhat hung-over (from my writers group meeting yesterday) mind this morning. Not meaning to preach, lol, just working things out for myself.

Love and light…..

Stream of Consciousness: Men. LOL.

Stream of consciousness……da duh da duh da duh…..

Men.

My ex.

I had to talk to him this week, in the midst of all the chaos of the grand opening and the drama of Scott. He never signed a quitclaim for the deed to our slip, which I got in the divorce. I have sold it, but can’t complete the transaction until he does this. So I called him to ask him to please do it, and he said he would, but that means nothing. He is a worse game player than Scott, I think. I will probably have to threaten him with contempt of court to get him to actually execute the quitclaim. I have a court order from a few years ago that if he is back in court for not following the judge’s orders following our divorce trial, he will go to jail, because he messed with it so much. But that’s who he is. A pathologic liar and sick sociopath. I don’t know if he’s still drinking or not. He said he needs to call me back because he has some issues to discuss. I said, what issues…we’ve been divorced 8 years. I have always said that he still thinks I’m his wife, somehow…..I don’t want to have another conversation with him. But I also know he’ll probably never call me back, lol. It’s not my first go ’round with him either. However, the 10 minute conversation I had with him was exhausting, as it always is. Circular, difficult, can’t be heard, can’t be acknowledged, and he lies, about everything, just to be lying.

Scott.

So wonderful to have freedom from the chaos of Scott. I am not gonna say anything else because I’ve already spent too much time and thought and emotion on this relationship in the last week, and it’s over.

Lou, L.

God, I like him so much. I think I could easily fall in love with him. I feel like the above drama with S though, spent my emotional energy away from focusing on a relationship with Lou, toward ending one with Scott. It just feels that the connection with Lou has weakened. I hope that I have not energetically sabotaged it. I hope that now that I have closed the door on Scott, that it will reopen the energetic door with Lou. There’s no concrete reason I feel this way, but intuitively, I’m just feeling that we’ve backed away from each other. I’m not pushing it. If I hear from him, I’ll be happy. If I don’t, I’ll still be happy and know that the Universe is still working in my behalf and has not yet brought the exact right guy to me. There are some things that put me off a bit, actually. He’s way more conservative than me. I don’t think he likes to think about things deeply, which right now is a godsend. I am sick of having to go so deep to figure a situation out, and then still feeling confused and chaotic about it. Lou is much more “what you see is what you get.” And, what I saw when I made him dinner, I liked. It was light and breezy, and easy. But at some point, it may frustrate me, to be with someone who shys away from the hard conversations. He goes home a lot to Ohio, which might be a problem at some point, but I also admire his commitment to his kids to help them start this business and make sure it gets off the ground on the exact right footing. That’s just cool. Just saying….I don’t know if that adds up to having a real relationship. But I’m just gonna go with the flow on this one. However the universe takes it, is ok with me. Surrender is becoming easier.

Chuck.

Chuck is an artist I met Friday when he brought in his incredible artwork for the gallery opening. I did not talk to him much at all then, I was just way too busy. Yesterday he came into the gallery I spent the day in, and we began a conversation as he looked at the three original panels used for the granite wall Vietnam Memorial in Tampa. He is a Viet Nam vet. And and incredible artist. And tall, and good looking and kind. One of those people who just is not afraid to be vulnerable. (It’s hard to be a good artist if you’re afrid to be vulnerable, but that’s another blog. Maybe though, that’s why I like artist types so much.) We talked for 20 minutes, maybe a half hour. About my friend the curator, and her physical ailments and how she just pushes through them. How she and I grew up together on the banks of the Mississippi. About movies, and the art therapy mission of the Veterans Art Center, about Gulfport, and CT. Finally, the gallery began to get busy again, and I had to focus my attention on other people’s questions, etc. He said he was going to go check out the other galleries, but we exchanged names, and both said we’d enjoyed talking, and he held my arm for a moment, and said, “ talk to you again….” Not that there were big sparks, or anything. But I did realize that if it doesn’t work with Lou, it could work with someone else. That I don’t need to be feeling bad if the universe directs me and Lou apart. Just gave me a lift. I have a feeling that I may see him again, at the gallery, or at something to do with it.

My horoscope for yesterday (I didn’t read it til this morning, lol) said I might meet the love of my life yesterday, unless I already had. I don’t know if that statement, or either of them is true, but I do believe I will meet that person. My medium said by October, she feels I’ll be in a relationship. I hope she’s right. I think I’m ready to really have that happen.

Love and light, again.

First Surrender, Then Gratitude

I was up for 2 hours in the middle of the night last night, worrying. About my son’s living arrangements, or lack of, in CO. About whether or not the people are going to accept my offer about the foundation cracks in the house. But more about my son. Because, that’s what we do. As mothers. I don’t care about the fact it could cost me $5000, I care that my son had no place to live in CO.

I wrote the poem this morning. My head hurt, my stomach was upset. Bad enough when your only child leaves home, but to leave it so far away, and not to yet know where he will go, if it will be safe…. My son and I have been through so much. I don’t want the terror visited on him by his father ever to visit him again. So, yeah, I’m a little over-protective I guess. But I’ve seen the dark side. I’ve worked too hard to leave it in our past, to take a chance again that it might find a way in.

So, then, on the way to work, I had a conversation with the Universe. It went something like this.

“I can’t do anything about this.” “It’s not in my control.” “I’m turning it over to you, because in your infinite wisdom, what should happen will happen. I am good with whatever it is. I’ll take him to FL and we will drive to CO from there if we have to. I just want him to be in a safe, comfortable place. But it’s up to you, what happens. I let go. I give it to you.”

Or something along those lines. I don’t remember exactly the words, they were thought words, running through my head.

Immediately, I felt physically better, and more able to face the day ahead at work.

I was at work about a half hour and my son called me. In a wicked (a very New England thing to say) cheery voice he said, “Hi, Mom. I think I really have a place this time.” He went on to tell me that he just talked to a woman for a half hour, she had a 4 bedroom home in the town he wants to live in. He said, “She’s a carbon copy of you Mom, she’s into spiritual healing and all that stuff. She teaches English to immigrants. She has another room you can rent if you come to see me, half the price of a hotel room. She’s gonna send me the application. She said I have a really great personality, and she has a really good feeling about me.”

So, what I did on the way to work, was surrender it to the Universe. Let go of attachment to the outcome, and trust.

And what I got in response was exactly the answer I needed.  Immediately. First After we hung up I just looked up and said, “Thank you.” I felt like crying. I have stressed so much over this.

He’s only going to live there a few months, but I think it is a perfect step down from the comfort of living with me, to living on his own. It is perfect. She sent the application tonight, he filled it out immediately and returned it. He will give her the security deposit, and I will feel safe enough to drive my son to CO.

I am so grateful right now. So grateful, on so many levels. Just can’t say more. He’s my only kid, and he’s an awesome kid. I’m just grateful.

Love and light.

Living Like Water, Today

Bird on branch

Living like water today, this minute, for me, means being part of the frozen landscape.  It means, watching the birds flit from leafless branch to leafless branch, looking for a haven from the cold arctic wind that blows, and shakes the bare branches clean of even the birds.

It mean, watching the snow blow across the yard, when it’s not snowing, but appears to be blizzarding, unless you look up and see the blue sky.  It means, quietude, and emptiness, and barren scenes of white and brown and gray.  It means solitude, time not stopped but non-existent.  No memories that can color the landscape, nor dreams.  Just now, with myself, in this moment.

Typing, calling an old friend, planning a dinner.  Keeping thoughts here and now, so as not to undo the uneasy peace which has been made within, to let the past go, and not to dream dreams.  To forgive, but not to forget.  To love, but not to lose myself. To find beauty and revel in it, but not try to hold onto it.  To acknowledge pain and feel it, but let it move through me.

To let it all come and go.  To let it flow, or stay frozen, let it blow, or seep into the ground, but not to add or take from what is.  To accept it, to surrender to the forces that have control, which are not within me.  To melt into the tapestry of what is, and be an integral part of something greater, and go within the flow of the one thing to wherever I am supposed to be.

 

Sweet Surrender

surrender

Surrender….God what a scary concept that can be. 

To many people, it means give up.  Just give up.  What good would that do? How can you even consider it, when something is weighing on you and seems so vital. How can you let go of wanting to direct and control the outcome to be what you want it to be?

I had this moment during my divorce, when my son was traveling with my ex to a hockey tournament. I didn’t know where they were, I couldn’t call them because neither of them would give me the cell phone number of the new phones my ex had bought them. My son was playing for a new team, I didn’t know any of the parents to contact them.  I knew my ex was an alcoholic, and would think nothing of driving drunk. I was in a panic attack, the only real one I’ve ever had, terrified for my son.

They were supposed to be back on a Sunday morning, and I was going to go over to my old house and just see my son for 5 minutes, to reassure myself he was ok. But I needed to pull myself together somehow, because I didn’t want him to know how freaked out I’d become. So I x’d out of my email, shut the computer down, and I went in the shower, and hoped that would straighten me out.

I ended up on my knees in there, naked, alone, letting the water (oh it’s always the water) just cleanse me. “God, I can’t do this anymore. I just can’t. I’m giving it to you, to do with what you will. I’ll go along with whatever you do.”

Surrender. I had never thought of it, never considered it even as a concept. I was just doing it, because I had no where to go. I could not deal with it one more minute, so I gave the burden over to the universe.

When I got out of the shower, I felt better, but not great. I dressed, I headed out of the small condo I was renting. But as I headed for the door, a voice was in my head, “check your email.”

WTF? I had just checked it an hour before. I am not obsessive. But it felt like a command, so I sat down with my coat on, opened my laptop, and checked my mail again.

There, was the only email my son had ever sent me, written while I was on my knees in the shower.

Hi Mom. The tournament was good, I broke my stick and had to get a new one. Are you coming to my game today?”

Immediately. I didn’t wait for an answer, it was there the moment I surrendered.

Surrender isn’t giving up. It’s giving it over to the unconditional love of the universe to deal with, and because that energy is love, nothing but love, I got what I needed.

From that moment on in my life, I have always known that everything will be ok. Every time anything, anything happens that I can’t deal with, I know it will all be ok.

It is one of the most freeing acts you can do as a human. I remember a year or two later, reading the chapter in The Power of Now about surrender. I laid the book down, just sobbing, knowing that that’s what I’d done (that’s when I got a name for it). And realizing the power it had.

Surrender. Don’t give up. Give up the idea that you have any power over the outcome, and trust in the loving energy of the universe to work it out for you. You are, no matter what you think, an integral part of that loving energy, and it will work in your behalf, if you just let it.

Peace….