So yes, I missed a day. Dear friends who stayed ’til gone midnight, all of us enjoying tea and biscuits and each other’s company. How very blessed I am – but yes, I missed a day.
So making up for it: here is number nine!
It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
Wow. Where do I start? Once, about a thousand years ago, a friend asked me, “Are you safe at home?” It was a pretty gutsy question, considering that the answer was no. My response, though: “Safety is such a nebulous concept”. Pretty much the exact opposite of gutsy!
The problem I have with this principle is that safety is not actually a nebulous concept. It’s pretty binary, really. You are either safe, or you aren’t. I’m physically safe now – no one hits me, or threatens me, or holds me down with sheer greater strength. No one’s so much as raised their voice at me in over nine months. My body is re-learning physical safety. Now I am exploring the limits of my emotional and mental and spiritual safety. Part of that also involves exploring the limits to my creative safety. And that involves opening myself up to be who I really am. That involves me opening myself up to the gentle, vulnerable, terrifying strength of the Creator – and the Creator’s compassion. And, right now, that doesn’t feel safe.
There’s a world of hurt inside my head and my heart and my soul. I’m working on it, working with it, learning how to acknowledge it without being overwhelmed by it, learning how to remember without re-living. That’s hard, because frankly, there’s some pretty shitty stuff to acknowledge and remember. Remembering causes pain. And, to quote the wonderful Joss Whedon (or one of his script-writers), “pain is scary”.
Yep, pain is scary, and opening myself to compassion makes me face the pain and that makes me feel unsafe. That doesn’t mean, though, that I’m not going to do it. I am going to do it, because I can only learn about safety by proving it to myself. I am going to do it. It will just mean that I eat half my body-weight in chocolate afterwards.
That’s ok, right?