Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Change

Fruits of the Crone by Brian Froud

It happened so quietly, like some ninja in black, slipping out the window onto the rooftop of the house, down to the yard and past the wall into the night, in some old black and white movie on Saturday morning when I was a kid.  When I woke this morning I realized it had left me and I had never noticed.  I can’t seem to remember when, just that it is gone now. 

Change happens to us all the time.  But when the first one happened, I noticed and I expected to be more aware of this one.  I was expecting it, I knew it would come but, I thought that I would notice somehow.  That there would be some sort of symptom to tell me that it had happened.

Fourteen years ago I conceived a child for the last time.  I miscarried six weeks later and the following week I allowed a surgeon to sever the pathway.  Conception would never again be possible.  I have regretted that decision and grieved for the loss.  But my body was never really aware of what my mind knew.  It did not change who I was.   This is different.

Even if it were still mechanically possible, my body has reached that state where it is no longer capable of creating or gestating life.  That possibility is really over.  And I have a choice to make.

I can grieve.  But I have already done that.  For years I did that.  It doesn’t feel right to grieve for this change.  It feels as though grieving would be saying that my life is over, that there is no reason for me to keep on living, that love and pleasure and joy are no longer possible for me, that I have no purpose and nothing to give or look forward to.  And this doesn’t feel like that to me.  That actually comes as quite a surprise for indeed, I expected that it would.

What this does feel like is a new life.  Like I have been reincarnated again, but with all of the knowledge and wisdom and understanding gained in the previous life intact.  Like I get to start over without having to start at the bottom of the staircase.  It feels like I spent my life until now climbing a tower to reach a door and now I have opened the doorway to find a new world, that the adventure is just beginning and I have lost nothing, like I can start the journey with all the tools I could possibly need and the knowledge of how to use them.

It seems so very strange but, it feels like a cause for celebration.  I give thanks for the change.

Saturday, February 15, 2014


There are many facets to desire. Humans are complex and complicated beings. I do not believe that anyone is truly one dimensional in what attracts, excites and arouses them.  I have spent a good deal of time recently learning about many different ways that other people find that allusive jewel.  I have been reading about others’ experiences, discussing with others how the mystery of sexual desire functions for them, even asking questions and discussing ideas about which I am curious.

I have realized that my desires are not simple.  Sometimes they are conflicting even to the point of paradox.  And I am beginning to understand that is a paradox to be celebrated, a mystery to be enjoyed and explored.  I do not have to forsake any of my desires for any other.  I can explore each and every one of them in excruciating detail. 

I still have a very painful stutter when discussing some of the more extreme desires that I have yet to actually experience.  They are not my only desires, but the fact that I have such difficulty articulating them bestows them with immense power to my thinking.  That the simple act of giving voice to them, putting them into language, is such a struggle  (for one who loves words as much as I do) suggests a great deal of meaning and power.

Perhaps it is the fear of judgment, or the fear of being misunderstood.  Truth be told, some of those desires could be misinterpreted, and indeed have been by some of the people I love and respect.  Specifically the desire to submit to someone else’s will, either by acceptance or by physical “force”, seems to invoke in many the idea of being victimized.  The desire to explore pain or fire or blood, seems to invoke concerns about my mental and emotional health and physical safety. 

Perhaps it is the fear of those desires themselves that instills them with such power. Fear is an amazing and profound emotion and the source of great strength.  I have spent much time reading and learning and exploring intellectually, soon it will be time to actually go out and discover what it all might mean.  When I do, it might be in fear but, it will not be in shame.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Work as an Expression of Identity

I work in the manifest world as a banker.  I am middle management at a neighborhood branch (not my neighborhood).  It is good work and I am fortunate to have the job and to make enough money to pay my bills.  I am fortunate to work for a small bank that is service oriented, that is relationship oriented.  I do not have to sacrifice my ethics to do my job.  I am grateful for that.

However, I am on a “career path” to become a Branch Manager.   My mentors with the bank, which include two Vice Presidents and a few Branch Managers, are grooming me for that career.  They are good people and I value them and I am grateful for their interest and investment in me. 

The thing is I don’t really want the career that they are grooming me for.  Don’t get me wrong, the money would be good and I would enjoy having the increased income but, I don’t like being the boss.  I don’t thrive on it.  It is not a natural and fulfilling position for me, at least not in this context.

What I enjoy, what I thrive on is taking care of people.  I enjoy being of service to others.  I thrive on taking care of details to allow others to do more important work.  My best talents involve care-taking for others whom I respect, anticipating their needs and taking care of them, to make their lives better, their work easier.

I believe that this is an essential part of my identity.  I believe that this is fundamental to my happiness and I am hoping to find work that will allow me to express this part of me, as well as participate more fully in my own neighborhood and community.

The search for work and identity are ongoing.