Thoughts, words, actions, events, experiences
As strictly Negative OR Positive
Can strip away
The beauty of an honest moment
Being with it
Instead of reducing, denying, cutting and running
Neutralizes the energy
Making it all grist for the mill of life.
People have referred to me as a positive person since “positive” became a buzz word in our culture. This is a huge compliment so I receive the generosity of this statement, holding it in my heart with gratitude. Optimism comes naturally to me as I can easily spin the suckiest experiences that life has thrown my way into a source of wisdom that enriches my life and that I can share with others. But I do not deny that life can be sucky in order to maintain some ideal standard of positivity. Life can absolutely suck! And what I have come to know is acknowledging this is a positive way to be with it. Denying that something sucks or reducing the enormity of a shattering experience has a negative impact in the repression of what is. When I look at the glass, I see that it is half empty AND half full. I do turn a blind eye in order to fit the cultural idea of what being positive means and I do not pretend for fear of looking stupid or inferior as in the tale: The Emperor’s New Clothes where no one would acknowledge he had no damn clothes on except the child who has no worries of fitting in and expresses freely what he sees.
While I appreciate the positive thought movement in bringing great awareness to how our thinking affects our lives, it has also created a stripping away of what is, the beauty of a purely honest moment where we can be with it, see it, feel it, instead of reducing it to the labels: negative or positive, denying it or cutting and running (as if we can really cut and run from life try as we might). It can become a means of controlling the human experience instead being with it all, trusting that there are treasures buried even in the crappiest, messiest, stinkiest shit life brings our way. If we sweep the shit under the rug, it is still there. It festers. It stinks and can’t be covered by any amount of perfume. But if we scoop it up, acknowledge it and how much it stinks, give it the attention necessary to process it allowing the messiness, it will neutralize energetically being neither negative or positive rather an experience, grist for the mill of life.
If we dare to let life in, be with it, see it, feel it, we can alchemize lead into gold, shit into fertilizer. This became so clear to me, so sacred to me when my late-husband, John, died. I had an unconscious belief, a familial and cultural imprint: If I feel it, it will kill me. I had backbone to spare, a tough Irish broad who knew how to take charge, suck it up, power through by doing and not feeling. But this had no place in entering the healing only found in honoring life, my humanness and the vastness of my soul’s journey. Being with it, seeing it, feeling it saved me. I am who I am today because I allowed myself to be human even though it scared the hell out of me and cut me to pieces only to make me a new, more alive than ever before living with such passion and love that it oozes from me.
The invitation this day is to acknowledge the glass is half empty AND half full, to be present to what is, to see the beauty of an honest moment, being with it, seeing it, feeling it and giving thanks for it all. It is a process. I like to say: start with Fu%& it, Fu%& this, Fu%& that and eventually you’ll get to Bless it, Bless this, Bless that. Being human is fun!