This morning as the rain stops and starts, and the sun goes under for a good long while and then comes out blazing and brilliant and all happy about the stir it causes, I think of our lives and how they are like that….
Your Rainbow — Where Does It Lead You?
Gray and cloudy followed by unprecedented brilliance and stunning color — rainbows complete with pots of gold! If we can handle the clouds, which is often difficult, we can handle the rainbows, right?
I don’t know. I keep having to remind myself that dark and light can be equally valuable, and I’ve been around the bend a few times!
All of us know the power of how we think about our life story, whether we see a cloudy future — or something brighter. Jean Houston, in “A Passion for the Possible,” talks about a woman who thought about her life as a play with an unhappy ending until a friend sent her an Emily Dickinson poem that spoke of sumptuous despair. She thought to herself, “How wonderful to rise out of my piddling desperation to a sumptuous celebration of my condition!”
This woman began to think of richer words to describe her feelings, and one thing led to another until she remembered that as a teenager she used to write poetry. She began to write again. One day, she sent a poem to her married daughter, who responded with a poem of her own. Soon they were talking on the phone and getting closer than they had been in years. On a whim, she offered to read one of her poems to her friends, who were quite taken with it. Within a week they had a poetry-writing circle. Pretty soon she was creating poetry circles for her church group and within a year, she was invited to create poetry circles for inner-city women. She became a volunteer to be a Friend in Court for teenage girls in trouble and became a social activist helping families.
Her life today is full of adventure and challenge and deliciousness, all because she saw value in revising and rethinking her interpretation of “cloudy skies.” Dark days were just fine after all. In fact, they became sumptuous and full of rich meaning.
opening in beautiful ways
She opened to this new and more inclusive view of things, which clearly beckoned the sun and rousing adventure as well as an ever-widening circle of positive influence.
So here’s to the weather in our lives — blazing sun, quiet and oppressive heat, strong and prevailing winds, dog days of summer, frigid winters, unrelenting rain, gentle showers, wild thunder — all of it. May you find delicious drops of creativity, love, awareness and surprising gifts in every well-weathered corner of your world.
In my life, I have three favorite women and we meet regularly. It’s something I look forward to with a smile on my face way before I get to wherever we are meeting. Connecting with a group of women and staying connected has never really happened to me before — not sure why— but I’m glad it’s happening now.
So there are four of us. According to my cursory research, the symbolic meaning of the number four deals with stability and groundedness and represents solidity, calmness and home. To realize the power of four, think of the four seasons, four directions, or four elements (air, earth, fire, water). Being in this supportive group of four encourages me to explore my roots. I feel stronger and more centered after leaving this fabulous group of women, I know myself better, whether or not I have been the center of conversation, and I am accepted no matter what is going on with me.
We meet in places where it’s quiet enough to talk. We don’t gossip. We don’t figure each other out or psycho-analyze. We ask a lot of questions and listen to each other. And laugh. Oh, do we laugh. To see one’s self reflected in the eyes of three others who love you is surprising — in a good way! Besides, laughter is the best ab workout around.
More evidence that four is a great and stable thing — you can build a pyramid on a base of four. With this group of four, I feel like we can rise above anything, and get a pyramidal (!) perspective on life while standing on solid ground.
And what a view that is. Thanks, girls. Here’s to more groups of four! Let me know if you have one, or when you build one and write me about it. I’d love to hear all about it.