Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Angelou, Basquiat and fear
|Illustration by Jean-Michel Basquiat.|
I want a magic charm to keep up my sleeve. I want rows of charms, worn bandolier-style like a Girl Scout sash with amulets in place of badges. I want pockets for my ammunition in case life breaks out in forms too unexpectedly unwelcome.
Blog writers whom I follow as consistently as I can, which could be defined at the present as not very, confront daily events that would leave me shell-shocked, immobilized. "Don't compare pain" is advice carried from various recovery group sessions. Still. Most of us are given circumstances that we are expected to endure, for it is not within our power to change them. Once the whimpering, in my case, stops, comes time for the winnowing. How can I see this (or these) differently, what CAN I change, is there peace to be found within discouragement, certainly within multiple imperfections?
Definitions can be adjusted, the word imperfect changed to read ideal. How much are we handed that is ideal? Life is a make-do business. Mostly. Am I frightened or am I resistant? They are not the same. Am I capable of evolving, of becoming the flexible, adaptable creature that survives growing older with optimism and good humor? Can I believe in myself and my work when connections to the numinous suddenly feel thin and fragile?
Certainty would be a fine thing, certainty of the good outcome, unfailing trust in resilience and the transcending of all which is irksome or unsettling, guarantees of safety, of wisdom, of ability. Wish for the moon, then go back and read the contract. The word guarantee does not appear.
When I feel, because of orbiting planets or undulating chemistry, that I am flimsy and vulnerable, fear starts to wriggle in under the tent or over the transom. I forget that I am both wave and particle, solid and gas, earth and sky. I become foggy and forget the only thing we can count on is change. I lose the grasp on my gifts, that I am one among the great shape shifters, the mind changers, the course adjusters. I am most frightened when I fail to remember who I am.