This morning I sat at my desk intending to write in the same, highly practiced way as I do on most mornings. I met with my focus mate partner – for those who don’t know, Focusmate is a co-working environment online that helps people transform their to-do’s into ta-da’s while supporting another person doing the same in either 25 minute or 50 minute containers.
“I am going to complete my morning writing practice,” I told my new friend’s smiling face and she reported her tasks back to me. We wished each other well and I started writing.
What I wasn’t expecting was to be visited by memories, Kahlil Gibran, Daniel Pink and experience divine healing in the midst of it.
I knew Dan Pink would be present because I had been meditating on his sentence since I read it yesterday in his new best seller, “The Power of Regret.”
The sentence was “Some beliefs operate quietly, like existential background music.”
The overall theme of the writing was to be trust, a word that has been known to invoke a churning feeling in my gut. My friend Laurie Smith’s 28 Days of Flow Challenge had thrown down the word gauntlet and feeling brave, I stepped into the circle to wrestle with it.
Here is what I wrote:
Trust: some days, most days to be honest, I don’t trust much of anything or anyone, much less myself. There was something Brene Brown says in “Atlas of the Heart” about living disappointed instead of risking disappointment. Over the years, I have lived more disappointed than I have risked disappointment.
When I visit my patterns of trust, I realize the bruises of opting out of trust started very early. I don’t want to sound like I am blaming because I am not claiming victimhood, I am exploring what happened. I am examining what the facts are without reconstructing a false narrative based on my opinions.
I think about what was happening in my young parents’ lives when I was a little one and I think “I don’t know how they did as well as they did. A cross country move with four children under the age of 7 with Mom pregnant setting up in a new location with a newish company. All the expectations for success…. once John was born with Down’s syndrome… the guilt and the grief and the fourteen month (fifteen sixteen month) me battled the lack of trust with refusing to learn to walk.
If I didn’t walk, they would have to carry me. They would have to pay attention and lift me up to the places I couldn’t crawl, right?
I didn’t trust for my safety and perhaps because I couldn’t trust I would receive the love I yearned for and practical love through action which I needed in order to continue my little life.
Before language set in fully, I determined being the ultimate protector and caretaker was what I needed to be in order to survive.
This was imprinted upon my innermost psyche: If I take care of others well, we will all stay safe.
This might have been my unspoken but definitely believed mantra – the existential background music, so now that my two younger brothers are dead, I have been proven lacking.
I have been proven lacking again. And Again. And again.
The adult, intellectual me says how flawed this belief is as we are all finite creatures. The spiritual side disagrees, saying “our souls are infinite, my brothers have gone nowhere”. The petulant side claps back with “oh yeah, if they’re here why can’t I shake and scold them for leaving me, for not fighting harder, what did I do wrong so that they didn’t fight longer or better?”
Kahlil Gibran ambles in and says a version of his lesson on Children:
“Your brothers were not your children any more than your children are your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.”
I realize in a flash or a glimmer of a flash I can trust life’s longing, the divine heartbeat, because each circumstance I have lived so far has proven itself to be a guide as much as I hated some of those situations and circumstances, as much as I wanted to vomit the moments from my existence – eventually the gratitude for them turned over in the soil as mulch, to be fragrant and helpful to my personal ecosphere.
I am sitting with that.
Hands off keyboard.
This morning I danced. I said I would dance so I danced in front of the mirror to Nat King Cole’s L-O-V-E twice. I trusted and acted.
I did my lymph exercises in the room of the manse I designated for dance and exercise. I trusted myself to do this, too. It isn’t a habit or a practice yet, it is an intention I am doing my best to fulfill.
Before I sat to write I moved. And I laughed as I danced and I breathed deeply as I moved my lymph system purposefully and it all felt so good, something I wanted to do yesterday but hadn’t built my self-trust ladder sturdy enough yet and now, apparently I have.
Today at this moment I have trusted and acted on purpose. Today at this moment my trust is enriched as even white bread may be enriched with nutrients.
Self-trust is an ultimate nutrient.
The little me can go back and trust her parents who she knows were doing the best they could do. They didn’t need my assistance, I offered my assistance with love, even as a toddler. Perhaps part of my assistance was a prayer for love, but it was birthed in love nonetheless as was I.
I was birthed in love, even if my birth wasn’t planned or convenient or even if my parents actively attempted to prevent my conception. I am a gift from life’s longing for itself. I can reference more sacred texts and embrace this.
After dancing and exercising and trusting myself to walk toward feeling better, I simply engaged with trust at the urging of my friend Laurie Smith and Kahlil Gibran showed up to offer healing.
I can’t think of anything to be much cooler than that.
What has been your favorite moment so far this morning?
Julie JordanScott is a Creative Life Coach, an award-winning storyteller, actor and poet whose photos and mixed media art graces the walls of collectors across the United States. Her writing has appeared on the New York Times Best Sellers List, the Amazon best sellers list and on American Greetings Holiday cards (and other greeting cards). She currently lives in a manse in Sussex, NJ, where she is working on finishing her most recent book project, hugging trees daily and enjoys having random inspirational conversations with strangers.
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