There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief… and of unspeakable love. – Washington Irving
I know when Ginger is tired. And when she is not wanting me to go on a trip. She gets a pink ring at the bottom of her eye sockets. Her normally white furred circles that hold her full of love eyes turn a pink color, as if a flame is being held beneath the skin. A heat wanting to burst out of the protective barrier, held back by extra hugs, and my own avoidance at looking into her eyes so that I can be strong and reassuring for both of us. My heart knows it is her way of crying tears, for Ginger’s greatest happiness is when her “peeps” (aka my husband and I) are home. Though she knows our hearts connect through space, her guardianship feels easiest to her when she can also physically see me. When I pack for a trip, her eyes bravely say I really wish you’d stay. I promise to keep home in safe shape while you’re gone. Hurry back, ok?
As I dance between my fur-coated opposites, Kutana, on the other hand, loves her peeps, sure. And she has so much fun and joy when we are home with her. Yet, because she is always looking forward to the next adventure or discovery that might cross her path, her eyes speak more the words of curiosity or of innocence. And they speak occasionally a little bit of spitfire and mischief, too! Where Ginger wills it’s time for cuddles with her I only have eyes for you looks, we watch on alert for Kutana’s eyes to enlarge which then means one thing. It’s time for zoomies! in which the interior of home becomes Kutana’s circle racetrack. Though Kutana finds a way to curl up in the pile of clothes I’m gathering to pack, lowest on her mind is the sadness mom is leaving. At the top of her mind is hhmmmmm, these weren’t here before. Let me see. What can I start nosing through to grab? Kutana’s perspective to flow with what life brings communicates with her eyes okay, I’ll miss you, but go explore mom, explore for us both.
The dance of grace between opposites. Like, when to stay and when to leave.
When to hold on and when to let go.
When to step forward in a way we release our hold on something, or what we are holding on to releases its hold on us.
When to step forward giving purpose to the ebbs of life, to make those ebbs matter that they did not happen in vain.
Over these past few weeks, what an honor I have had to witness these very powerful and beautiful dances of grace.
I have been incredibly blessed to volunteer for this exceptional organization. Please click on this link below to learn more about this amazing support system in the community.
I had the privilege of writing life stories for extraordinary individuals this organization has supported and empowered to step forward. When each inspiring storyteller reached a point they knew it was time to let go, each stepped forward making the painful chapters of their life matter in how each are flourishing with life like butterflies. With wings gently and strongly soaring through the air of healing, they are no longer in the cocoons of physical, emotional, or mental traumatic experiences.
I have also had the sacred honor of two individuals sharing their stories with me for book three. Another compilation in development of inspiring life stories of how pain, trauma sorrow, and despair have been turned into resilience, courage, dignity, and hope. Hope in the Form of a Moose and other Inspiring Stories… Two more extraordinary individuals who are trusting me with the greatest gift one can give another which is one’s story, having faith that it will be safely and unconditionally listened to without judgment and shared with reverence. Faith that in sharing it will inspire others on their healing journeys. These two remarkable individuals who are stepping forward, releasing their hold on the pain, trauma, sorrow, and despair that bound them to alcohol. Each inspiring story enhanced by the unconditional love of a sobriety dog.
And then there is the very special gift of my path crossing with a young soul from a country that has experienced profound loss and grief. She shared with me how all the songs of her country are sorrowful to honor the significant loss. Then she played a song that transcended the need to understand the words of another language I didn’t natively speak. A song of such beauty.
And such release.
This young wise soul and I talked of hope. We talked about Hope Has a Cold Nose. We talked of purpose, of sunrises, of finding the gifts in the moments we wish wouldn’t take place. We talked of not hiding grief, and that in the sorrowful songs is a dance of grace. By honoring the pain and speaking and showing it, there is a letting go to step forward. There is healing in the tears of grief, sprung forth from the beautiful musical sounds that play you are safe to cry. We talked of the importance of embracing an exchange program in another country, leaving home to explore, discover, offer different perspectives that might teach awareness. Or gratitude. Or both.
We talked of shining a light, and of returning home bringing healing, new ways of seeing, and hope for life’s flourishing.
I write this month’s blog on my return home to Ginger’s at long last home eyes and Kutana’s ready for our run? And oh, by the way, welcome home eyes.
Among the many moments I bring home with me, I bring a sacred time shared with another radiant amazing soul who walks the lifelong journey of letting come hope and the releasing of her profound loss while she steps forward now as a double beacon of light.
Intertwined souls, her son and her. He gave her life when she gained the privilege of becoming his mother, as she gave him life for this world. Her wish that he would show the way for others with his kindness, encouraging strength, and generous heart. His wish that in all that he did he would reach the end of his life having made it meaningful.
She didn’t plan that it would be twenty-one years and nine months that his end would come.
Now she gives his meaningful life voice through her own, inspiring others that the most important things we can have are fellowship and friendship. That if you have enthusiasm, love, friendship, unity, beauty, and a compass of principles to guide your way, you WILL live the most meaningful life. Her son’s flight from Earth now her wings; in her living is his life.
As she so beautifully told me from words of wisdom she had read from someone whose name has momentarily escaped my mind
How will I know I have lived a life of meaning?
The reply: If you are still here, you have not.
If you are still here, you still have more steps to take forward. And,
More of your light to shine
In the dance of grace between releasing the grip of pain and grief and stepping forward is the center of
Hope is like a road in the country; there was never a road, but when many people walk it, the road comes into existence. – Lu Xun, writer – essayist
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