Day 54 - Thanksgiving, Equanimity & Abundance.
I awoke this morning to rain on my roof and my iPhone hinting that there might be snow. I would so love to wake up to a little snow. I can’t think of a better way to wake up on Thanksgiving morning.
So I sit here cozy in my bed. Coffee by my side, cat on my lap. Heater on and the house is quiet. So quiet that I can feel that beautiful stillness that speaks to me.
The last few days have been exciting and fun filled. I arrived home from my birthday celebrations yesterday afternoon tired and content. I felt both spent and replenished at the same time. What I became acutely aware of was that I had satisfaction on both sides of my nature. The part of me that is always needing excitement and energy and more - sated and satisfied. The part of me that needs long walks in the woods alone, a book to read in the dead of night and the writer - a bit held off, a little remote but with the knowledge that there would be time for them today. I felt in balance. I felt whole.
I spent the evening cooking in the kitchen with my kids. We made sweet potato soufflé, stuffing, mashed potatoes, mushroom gravy, green bean casserole. My stomach did flip flops with anticipation and excitement for the coming meal. I fell asleep on the couch at 8:30 watching TV with the kids. My daughter covered me up with a blanket and I awoke to my kids laying there on the couch together looking at me. They are teens now but they had their former childhood faces peering at me. It was a moment. It only lasted a couple of seconds before anyone spoke. I felt as though time stopped and I was looking at them with freshness and newness. All of the drama and trauma of adolescent stripped away. I felt they were seeing me more as I am - flawed, raw and broken. Not the super human mother of their childhood but a more realistic version of me. I felt their concern, love and adoration. I felt their confusion regarding our relationship and their own ambivalence about how to feel about this mother creature asleep on the couch. When I awoke to these angelic faces from the past, I was instantly overcome with gratitude for my life. All of it. The pain, the fear, the sorrow, the yelling, the grounding, the hardship, the exhaustion, the difficulty of raising children on your own. In exactly the same instant and measure I felt the love, the laughter, the joy, the fun, the excitement, the privilege and the blessings of our complicated lives. It was a moment that felt perfectly in balance with the right amounts of joy and sorrow, praise and blame, pleasure and pain, security and groundlessness, and comfort and discomfort. Just for that instant, I was in balance with my life, my kids, life at large. It was only a moment but in that moment the entirety of my life was contained and held.
I got up off the couch and went to bed. I slept well and deeply having strange dreams about my house being foreclosed and having to move all that was important to me in an hour. In the dream, I was frantically running all over putting my most sacred items in tubs, gathering animals into cages and saying good bye to a house that held my life. My ex- husband was there and we were doing this pack up together. Reminded me of when he helped me pack up to move back to California. How much I needed him and he was there for me. I awoke with a gentleness and loving feeling despite the difficulty the dream presented.
As I lay in bed waking, I still felt the feelings from the night before. Equanimity. Balance. Intimately aware with both the light and the dark and a need to not turn toward either but just remain in the gap between the two. It was beautiful, peaceful and amazing.
That is my wish for all of you today. That you find peace and joy amidst the pain and grief of family gatherings. That you are able to walk through this day in harmony with all of these other beings that love, challenge and vex us. That you have the immense experience of inner peace that can radiate out to others who are needing a beacon. On this day, I am most thankful for everything. And my experience of being in the middle of it all. Happy Thanksgiving to all - may you find yourself at the heart of your life and in your relations with others.