What is “IT”?
Out of balance. Out of a carefully cultivated identity or pattern. Out of the minds attempts to make sense of everything or anything at all. Out of feeling a sense of groundedness. Out of control. Out of…..you fill in the blank.
Into chaos. Into rage and anger. Into deep grieving and loss. Into the unknown. Into the heart of uncertainty. Into the wildness of untamed expression.
The warning was clear as I watched the thick smoke from a wildfire only two miles away make its way towards my home sanctuary. The property owner informing me of what to do by turning my car facing out of the driveway with everything I needed for an imminent evacuation.
Never having experienced this before common sense, cultivated over a lifetime, came forth and gave my mind something to focus on. I don’t remember feeling fear, but instead acceptance of what one must do when presented with these circumstances. I had a place to go to that was safe and having simplified my life there was very little I needed to take with me.
The fire continued to be uncontrolled with high temperatures and wind driving it unpredictably. Landscape with beautiful trees and teeming wildlife was being scorched before courageous fire fighter’s eyes, valiantly doing their best to contain the fire in very challenging conditions.
Our area only one of so many burning uncontrollably, many losing their homes and animals – or their lives – amidst emergency evacuations. Within 24 hours I was able to come back home as the roads to the property were opened back again. The fire had shifted its’ course thanks to the amazing efforts of the fire fighters – and the shift in wind.
Staying on alert for sudden changes, and being ready to quickly leave once again if the fire changed course or became uncontrollable, I was to be one of the fortunate ones. But I didn’t’ know that at the time of evacuation.
Taxing an already vigilant nervous system trying to hold on from the fires devastation and subsequent air quality so poor one could not even walk outside, to the pandemic virus and home sheltering, racial injustice and violence, political chaos, the recent death of two beloved friends, losing employment, a move to a new location. Realizing that I had joined many others here in the U.S. and across the world reaching their own tipping point….. and falling over the edge.
In those moments I was to feel and experience that “Losing It” from time to time is necessary and can be an escape valve for stored up tension, anxiety and unexpressed emotion. For some of us who have identities cultivated as always “having it together” and always “being there” to support others, it can be scary territory and one where we feel naked and vulnerable. Is anyone listening or watching me?
In transparently sharing this experience with others it becomes a part of the collective permission. Leaping over the patterned excuse that you are more fortunate than many others so why should you permit yourself to lose it? Why shouldn’t you?!
Just like the fire that has scorched 1000’s of acres of California landscape there is a time for “raging” and clearing away the debris followed by regeneration. It is the way of nature….the way we maintain a semblance of balance amidst the rawness and fear of chaos and the unknown.
A way we restore the nervous system back to rest and renew. The landscape regenerates, we pick up the pieces of our lives and build them back again never to be the same. In tune with the ever changing impermanent landscape of our lives, nature and all living beings we are called to action.
As we place our attention not on the chaos, but on what is most important in and to our lives and well being, as well as the collective – the heart centered actions we can take into restoring wholeness –