Thursday, September 22, 2011

Increased Bandwidth's Mixed Blessings

Once, not all that long ago either, I had a relatively easy life at DEFCON1.

When you are poised for imminent disaster, there isn't room for much else. So, any perceived virtue in you as a result isn't really a virtue at all; it's necessity. Life is stripped down to its most essential elements.

As we settle into the new school year, I've eased off, almost imperceptibly, into the new rhythms of our lives. Nic accepts all the rights and responsibilities of his life as a middle schooler (but will continue to try to get away with whatever he thinks he can get away with), and G blossoms in full sunlight, now away from the shadow of his older brother. Great stuff.

Suddenly, my own frontiers expand out in every direction, as far as the eye can see. My sons' collective burgeoning independence has granted me freedom, of a sort. I think about other things, because I can.

I wish this were as cool as it sounds.

On one level, this all-consuming fire of vigilance exhausted me. But only now am I appreciating how much it shielded me.

Now that I've contained the fire, I'm free to see everything that's around it. And the last 24 hours have taught me how much I relied on it to keep from dealing with other things in my life.

I find now that I am consumed with things that have passed me by, and I am forced to confront this daily. Doing nothing is not really an option, but acting brashly won't win me any medals, either.

I walked the labyrinth again yesterday, after a walk, a cry, and Reiki in the woods. I had to stop and ask myself what I was REALLY upset about, because as it happens, I occasionally swap out my truths for less painful alternatives. That doesn't work, because in my heart of hearts, I can't lie to myself, as much as I'd like to, as convenient as that would be.

So, I come to the center of the labyrinth. And I wait. And I am aware of how foolish I look, standing there, waiting for wisdom.

Finally, I speak aloud. "I'm nowhere near home, am I?"

Suddenly, the wind picks up. The low hanging clouds and threatening rain had almost discouraged me from this walk, but I still did it. I wanted my answers. I stood still as the wind whipped through the trees around me.

I continued. "You're not done with me yet, are you?"

One last gust, and then peace.

I walked out from the center, pondering all the implications, none the wiser regarding courses of action I need to take. I hear Fr M's voice once again: "In God's time, not yours."

As life settles into routine, I find I have a whole new set of challenges ahead.

I hope I am equal to them.

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