Life is a Gift?

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It’s been a challenging week for me physically. For decades I’ve struggled with fatigue which eventually was fed by insomnia as well. As I move beyond menopause and continue to heal on deeper and deeper levels, overall my sleep and energy slowly improve. However, some days can feel like one step forward, two steps back. I know that’s not really the case, but when I am faced with the all too familiar territory of feeling oppressed due to lack of sleep, it can be difficult to maintain an optimistic focus.

Ironically, times of struggle can propel me towards healing. In spite of my fears and disappointments trying to convince me otherwise, some aspect of me just gets fed up. Fed up with acceptance, compliance, and patiently waiting to sleep better, feel better, and center more. At some point, I gather my energy, set my intention, and find myself in deep healing mediation. I guess what so many say is true, we have to be ready. I do think we can prime ourselves to foster growth and healing. There is always part of my awareness that seeks to do just that: Don’t wait, jump now, and just heal. Yet, in spite of my daily practice and prayers, I often find myself feeling stuck as I did this past week.

So, I push. What feels like a preparation for labor before birth, gives way to graceful ease into healing. It’s funny, after so many years and hours of meditating, I rarely have any idea how or when the opportunity for genuine healing work will manifest. Fortunately, this morning was one of those times. My physical frustration was giving way to mental and emotional suffering filled with self-judgments and attempts to force change. Yeah, like that was going to work. It never has for me before. I’m just not someone who responds well to making choices based on societal standards. I’ve lived an unconventional life in a conventional manner. And yet, I still trick myself into thinking “well, maybe this time they’re right.” Fortunately, when those kinds of thoughts and feelings arise, so does my determination to heal. Then, hopefully, focused intention gives way to what I call productive meditation.

As I sought clarity and guidance regarding yet another layer of my insomnia, I was guided through familiar territory to another dimension of my awareness. I did receive guidance that “yes”, on a physical level, I was still experiencing hormonal influences that were manifesting as sleep disruption. But, there was also a core awareness that came to light. “I shouldn’t have come.” I knew what that meant. Some aspect of me doubted my decision to incarnate. Not just when and how I did, but the whole human experience. I’m not referring to depression or suicidal doubts. This was a core observation not a feeling.

I wasn’t exactly surprised by the realization. I’ve never thought I was a very “physical” person in terms of activity and energy. What I really wondered was: Is that my soul or my ego saying that? I knew the answer before I could even form the question. My soul knows that I chose to incarnate. It’s some aspect of my ego that questioned why and if I really wanted to be here. The question is how committed am I to the human experience? Am I willing to go for it physically and externally as much as I do internally and spiritually?

It’s frequently easier in hindsight to see the signs that nudge us forward. As I reflect on the last week or so, I can see a thread of synchronicity. For example, I read a blog last week by Oriah titled Committing to a Human Life. This is by no means a new topic for me. However, as with most things, there are many layers. Healing brings the opportunity to discover another layer. For me, realizing that some aspect of me was still questioning whether I had made the best choice to incarnate when I did was more concrete than I expected.

As I allow the morning realizations to sink in, I sense an expansion of trust. I can feel a broader awareness of acceptance. I made an appropriate choice. Life, my life, is a gift. It’s not that I don’t appreciate my life. I do. I am continually amazed at the consistent grace that I am fortunate to float in! For me, embracing a holistic perspective means there are many views, layers, and dimensions to our existence. We can think that life is a gift even though we may not truly believe that or nurture our lives with body and soul. We can talk the talk if we choose. I want to walk the talk and feel the talk. I want to know, live, and breathe the opportunity that being in physical form offers. In my experience, that is much easier said than done.

The honest realization that some aspect of me is still questioning whether I should have incarnated brings an ease to my suffering. I have written and spoken about the importance of bearing witness to ones pain. At the root of our suffering is pain. Acknowledge the suffering, track down the pain at the root, and healing will take place. When I allow my consciousness to recognize a core doubt, I have found a root to my suffering. Some aspect of me is healed as I allow my doubts, fears, and vulnerabilities to surface. I find myself in a more peaceful, lighter, and loving state. I find self compassion and gratitude. May you find peace in the gift of living fully.

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