After a long wet and cold spring, I was able to sit outside and enjoy the earth and sun energy while meditating this morning. As I sat down at our stone fire pit, I noticed a large winged ant on it’s back on the surface of the wall of the pit. The ant was struggling to right itself. It would roll slightly from one side to the other with it’s legs flailing about, then appear so close to righting itself, yet not quite able to do so. I briefly wondered about putting the ant out of it’s misery, but who am I to decide the fate of another’s life. Maybe it wasn’t even suffering; in spite of appearing to be through my human perceptions. As I watched the ant, I realized what a beautiful example it was of how I had been feeling lately. There are times when I am so overwhelmed by energetic intrusion, that I feel like that ant looked. Endlessly flailing about trying to “right” myself again. Hoping that if I just keep trying, I will gain the little extra nudge I need to feel centered and like myself again. Then, I thought why not just flip the ant over so she can choose her fate. Maybe simply helping to right her was an act of kindness. So, I gently grabbed her wings and flipped her over. She immediately appeared to calm due to the lack of incessant squirming, and she wandered off down over the edge of the stones.
It’s a bit ironic because I feel and know that I have, as I believe we all do, an abundance of universal support through guides, power animals, or whatever you choose to call helping spirits. I know that I am always surrounded, that my guides are present and willing to support and provide service whenever I seek it. That there is a gentle nudge trying to assist me with righting myself whether I am conscious of it, can feel it, sense the presence or not. Yet, there are times when I still can’t seem to flip over even with the energetic support that I know is available to help me. It’s like being stuck on one radio station. I know there’s other stations, but I can’t seem to change the channel. Like the bug on it’s back, I feel like I am continuing an approach that isn’t working, yet persevere due to not being able to find my way back to center.
As I am writing this, I look up to see that the ant has reappeared and is wandering around the surface of the fire pit. Is she seeking or merely surviving? Has she completed her life’s path or is she just beginning it? Does she even know? Sometimes it’s a fine line between the death of one cycle of our life and the rebirth of another cycle since they are so closely linked. Grieving can overlap birth, creating confusion and doubt.
In some Native American teachings, ants represent patience. Knowing and trusting that what is yours will arrive when the time is appropriate. Having patience and trust in ourselves and the universe to provide that which we need most is part of the medicine of ants. Like a dance between letting go and opening to receptivity, often it can be challenging to embrace death, creation, and rebirth with clarity and understanding. Frequently, I recognize the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth that is ongoing throughout my life. I regularly glance at the time and see my birth date showing on the clock, and I think: Another opportunity to birth, start anew and shed the past. Sometimes, the process of rebirthing is easier than others. Other times, I don’t even distinguish the cycle taking shape and form within my being until I am trying to make sense of what is going on with me energetically and seeking clarity. Then, little reminders of past experience creep in; remember, you’ve been here before. It may not feel the “same”, but there is common ground to the process. For example, when I go through a deeper shift that changes my energetic awareness and integrates more of my soul self with my personality, it can take me a while to become familiar with my own energy as it changes. There are times when I simply observe, and after time passes, I realize I’m feeling more like myself than a confused observer. But, there are times, like recently, when I have been struggling, like the queen ant, to right myself. And, it is a challenge to determine whether I simply need a nudge to flip over and move forward, or if I have been pushed onto my back by unwanted influences.
I know that resistance is futile, as the Borg in Star Trek say. However, as it is with the crew in Star Trek, I do not wish to be taken over by a controlling group or individual consciousness. So, there are times when in spite of knowing better, I resist. Of course in my mind, I am not resisting. I am trying to gather strength and fortify my energies. But, there is still a push that is born from the desire to not experience the projected energy of another as my own. This can lead me to question my own ability to trust that I will guide myself appropriately and wisely, especially when I feel driven by another’s push rather than my own. The irony is that if I genuinely feel that the disruption is due to a shadow aspect of my own being, I would not question the legitimacy of facing my shadow in order to clear and grow. This leads me to ponder: Am I diminishing an opportunity to learn and grow due to the source and the messenger? I do know that in order for an unwanted influence to really take hold and overwhelm us, that we are resonating with some aspect of the energy(s). This is important because if we deny the aspects of our own selves that share some similarity to what’s being presented to us, then we cannot take genuine responsibility (i.e., respond appropriately) to what is happening.
I also wonder, am I simply feeling overly vulnerable to the energetic influences of another(s)? Could be. In my experience, I tend to be highly sensitive to another’s energy which is heightened by being an empath. However, seeking the perfect (a concept I do not care for) solution or continual state of well being (as in bliss) is not realistic either. I am grateful that I frequently do experience happiness and even joy. However, in accepting the experience of being human, I must also accept that no state of being is permanent. I do think that we can surrender to the flow of grace which opens the doorway to joy and wellness being more pervasive and continuous in our lives. Undoubtedly, the more I do the work that is required to surrender, open, and let go, the more peace, well being, compassion, and loving kindness that I experience as well.
In the end, does it really matter what the trigger or where the source comes from that presents aspects of ourselves to our awareness? Maybe not as much as I had thought. I think part of me was holding onto a fantasy that if I was able to observe, yet remain unattached to or take on, the energies that come from unwanted influences, that I would be strong, clear, and free to be happy, peaceful, and loving because I could trust myself to do the inner work required for growth and integration. Although, possibly the fantasy was just my own denials that diminish my capacity to face the discomfort of my own choices and life style changes that I think I would benefit from facing. Are the intrusions an excuse? The answer is not clear cut. As with most things in life, truth lies somewhere in the murkiness of gray, not in the black and white.
All the above said, sometimes energetic intrusions, or as I like to call them coots or cooties, are just coots and serve no real productive purpose. Other times, they are ripe with opportunity to learn, grow, and strengthen. For, just as I do not want to chase unrealistic dreams and fantasies of perfection and bliss, clinging to viewing everything that I experience as a serious growth opportunity can lead to unnecessary drama due to exaggerating the importance of events and our own selves. As Freud said, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. I think being overly serious creates obstacles to enlightenment not the other way around, and it certainly isn’t conducive to fun and playfulness. I’m with Mary J. Blige: No More Drama! Otherwise, we may miss the simplicity of surrender and acceptance by attributing more “power” and influence than something deserves. It is my hope that by encouraging balance, trust, and faith, that I will be aware of opportunities and respond in the most appropriate manner possible for me at any given moment. Hopefully, I can then live with wisdom, compassion, patience, tolerance, and loving kindness. Even if it does takes me a while to right myself! It’s all a journey that starts within. Once I surrender to grace, I can flip over, discover my wings were there all along, and fly free. I can rest in the awareness of knowing I am never alone, never void of support, and always enough.