Limbo

I’ve been feeling neither here nor there for a while, and I’ve found the crux, weeks out from leaving the country indefinitely. I’m tipping my life on its head, and there’s a bunch of stuff falling out.

Stuff I’m holding up and scrutinising — in late night darkness, or 5am light encountered too early. Not the time to see clearly.

But perhaps even in the broad light of a sunny April day, it won’t be any clearer. My lesson is to trust much deeper in the timing and unfolding of my days, reminding myself that the panic and near-constant questioning are part of it.

This limbo has laid me bare too. I feel watched, questioned, scrutinised myself. But others are a mirror of ourselves, so this pulling apart of self and choices is really owned and orchestrated by me.

This 360 degree turn, this flip, is to be a turn inwards.

Pay attention to what you’re putting out to others, and what you perceive and feel coming back from them. They are a reflection of where you need to focus your attention internally.

“The cosmos will always mirror back to us whatever your inner state is. The greater the love we discover in ourselves, the greater the love will reflect back to us in the environment through others.” – Deepak Chopra.

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Wave

Sometimes I wonder if you feel it the same way I do, the ebb and flow, the fury and the feign.

Are you as small as I am, clinging to that tidal wave?

Or do you burst at the seams, shot across that room in a million tiny particles?

Is it all so insatiable to you, as it is to me?

Slowest

You were the slow drip

Entering my veins

I let you wash through me, stain me with a new colour

Lines at my navel, to my chest, approaching my lips

A ravishing feast we were – to delight in and devour

One morsel at a time

No need to hurry, we thought

But now we are the hourglass stuck, dreary sands held fast

Now we beg for spare change

For a taste from the plate of the knowing and divine

Wild

The truth is I really like being the odd one out, in a place where I know no one.

I feel most alive when I’m in the corner of a cafe half-way round the world, trying to order a coffee as those around me go about their daily routines. I love meeting strangers in happenstance, and falling into deep conversations about all that brought us there. I’m most myself when I’m wandering the backstreets of small Euro-towns or Asian alleys, overhearing the murmer of families and friends sharing stories.

Perhaps it’s quite romanticised, but I’m filled with a burning curiosity, a desire to soak it all up.

Map of me

Artist: @little.tattoos

I’m far from aimless, but you’re far away
And it leaves me incomplete

I’m unsettled, out of body
And it’s not just you, it’s me
I’m on a jagged track in a home that’s not my own

It took years to read between the lines
But you draw them like a map

And still I need directions,
Or I’m as good as lost

How long is the thread between us?
How many wires must we cross?

Revisit your mantras

I’ve realised that I’ve unconsciously stepped away from some of the guiding thoughts I try to live by – mantras, if you will. A friend reminded me. We were having a conversation about being in control versus being in charge – there’s quite a difference.

Picture in control as a person – an uptight, rigid individual, focusing on all the elements in their life in detail so that they remain in order and play out as desired. Perhaps they’re quite agitated, tired, a little cagey at times. I’ve been this person a number of times – when looking for a new job, moving apartment, or developing relationships. And sometimes, that minute focus really pays off.

But when it doesn’t, when things don’t go to plan, when the in control person’s expectations aren’t met, they can come crashing down, depending on the scenario. It can feel like a tumbleweed of ‘the world’s against me’ when expectations don’t meet reality.

The in charge person is softer, calmer. They exude a sense of organised and ‘right where I need to be’. Of course, they too have expectations, wants, needs and desires. But their outlook is different – they accept that life is a flow of events and moments unfolding and that sometimes it feels like it isn’t going to plan when things don’t happen as expected or hoped for.

I’ve been this person too. Getting hit with an unexpected or unwanted blow – some heavy, others light changes of course. And when I’ve let go of my unmet expectation of how it was meant to be, I’ve always found it easier to move forward, even in the shitty situations. Not necessarily picking myself up and dusting off the very next day – time and processing is important – but taking on the mindset that life is a flow and I have the choice to embrace it, be grateful and trust in divine timing.

Being in charge is about letting go (and remembering that you always have a choice about how to react to any situation).

Being in control is forceful, unforgiving, unwilling (sometimes it might even just be learned behaviour…how we’ve seen others feel and react to similar situations to what we find ourselves in).

Maybe letting go involves going inward first, or tackling a situation head on that perhaps you’d sidelined or packed away as too difficult or painful to confront – before being able to rid yourself of thinking about it, trying to understand it over and over and control what someone else thinks, feels, says, does and how it impacts you. Other times its experiencing a situation as it unfolds, being aware, and trying to move gracefully with it, understanding that whether you realise it or not, it came your way as a sort of necessary stepping-stone to what’s next.

It’s worth pointing out here that I certainly don’t mean life should be something we just ride through passively, without chasing our desires actively and going for what it is that we want in life. See the ever-eccentric Jason Silva’s thoughts on this one.

(There’s another video of his I can’t find that highlights this more clearly – essentially, while yoga and meditation and ‘clean living’ and all the more mindful, trending extra-curricular stuff is great (of which much I subscribe to) and you totally could and should do it, don’t look at those activities as the whole ‘letting go’ landscape – you still have to try, you still have to be and do.) It just might not all pan out the way you expected – but it will go down as it should.

As my friend and I discussed in control versus in charge, I struck an instant parallel to Power vs. Force. (Fascinating, if not slightly too-many-layered for me, read – but nonetheless very impactful).

“Power serves others, whereas force is self-serving.” – David R. Hawkins.