Whats life all about?
Over the last few days I found myself struggling with this age-old question. The impact of the new moon was cruel and unrelenting and refused to loosen its grip on me. Dragging me unwillingly, to places I did not want to go, into a place we all try to avoid. The darkness that resides inside our own soul, something inside me told me that I had to hang on, that these periods are transient and like most things in life will pass.
I possess highly attuned skills in human psychology, human grief and depression but am also smart enough to know; that when you are there alone and struggling none of these will help. In fact, like a lot of people say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
I found it practically impossible to look at all the good in my life. Instead I was almost hypnotically drawn to the negative, the dark and the unexplainable. We are all our own worst critics not matter what face (Maybe masque is a better word) that we show to the world.
I slept a lot, I hardly ate and my only communication (real communication) was with my friend in America. We can talk about anything and I think the distance helps. Then we are able to carry on the charade to the outside world that everything is ok.
I have been to this place periodically, throughout my life. I call them “Dark Nights of the Soul” and remember others who have walked the same path and achieved great things. Such as Sir Winston Churchill who tagged them as “Bad Dog Days”
So maybe I am not such a failure after all, I know as I come out and back to real life that I am not. However, when I am there, it is a vastly different story as I go over all my past mistakes, telling myself I am useless and much worse. I think how the world would be a much better place if I were not in it. I beg the universe, God anyone for a positive sign and wait. Slowly, the fog lifts and the world becomes visible again. I laugh at something ridiculous, silly and it is just the medicine I need.
Hope returns and I dance with it joyfully holding it tight, firmly, afraid I may lose it. I realise the gift behind these “Dark Nights of the Soul” have a gift as we leave them. It comes gently, almost a whisper but we are quiet now, ready to listen, willing to learn. It is almost worth the pain, the gift, the insight, we could have gained no other way.
I realise that I was experiencing what I am, what I have become, the part of me that slipped away bit by bit, become lost, until it screamed that it wanted to go home because that was now the only way I would hear it. To the gentle peace of knowing, of simply being and doing.
Sometimes when we love we give away too much. The object of our love becomes everything to us and we see ourselves through the veil of that relationship. We forget who we are, we think we are the way that person relates to us, hurts us. The world around us becomes masked by a great fog that we are unable to see through.
If we are lucky, yes I did say lucky, we experience those “Dark Nights of the Soul” we gain access to our heart and who we are at a soul level. Who we would be but for a life interrupted, a wrong fork in the road that leads us slightly off course. To the place where we give too much to another, forget our dreams, hopes, what makes us who we are.
We lose our identity, to fit in, to make it work and it is like we are tearing out a piece of our own hearts. Life is over far too soon and most of us will spend a long time in old age, when the time to do these things have long passed us by, regretting those things we didn’t do. Remembering, how we sold ourselves cheaply, betrayed our soul and the very essence of who we are.
If there is something you want to do, take a step towards it today, no matter how small. Take your flashlight of hope and shine it through the fog and reconnect with who you are or who you can become. Be the light in your own lives, so others can watch you and find their own light.