If you had asked me months ago if I thought looking within was challenging I’d have said “absolutely not!”
Well, not so damn fast.
I’m in my hometown, 2,500+ miles away from my husband and dogs, isolated in a hotel room much of the time, with nothing to do think. And write. On top of that, I am reading my favorite spiritual authors, Mark Nepo and Mike Dooley. That reading sent me back to journaling in a big way back in August, and I haven’t stopped.
My reading and digging deep have exposed my soul in all its vulnerability. Up close and personal are things about myself that I’ve long buried—and wanted to keep there. It can be painful.
What does “inhabiting our truth” really mean? How is it related (or not) to getting what we want? Should we choose what we want or what we know we “should” do? What is authenticity? How do we nurture ourselves when we need to? My head is spinning. And tears are flowing.
I’m finding that looking within is neither easy, nor pain-free. But I can see that living with an open heart allows me to participate fully in life–to be alive right here and now. Being alive means allowing ourselves to be touched by life. No walls. Exposed.
“Each day we are reshaped by the rough and gentle currents of life,” Nepo writes. “The things we care for and the things we lose excavate a new depth in us until we sense that our heart has a new bottom.”
Indeed. And excavation can hurt.
Nepo says that everything we go through means nothing if we can’t take down our walls and allow life to touch us, forge us, shape us. That we can stand firm in our own worth without accepting what others project back at us.
None of this is easy. But, he adds, while participating in life requires that we ride the waves that come and go and even crash upon us in our life—we’re still here.
We’re still here.