Crawling into the Darkness

Darkness–womb–child–black–Divine Feminine.  These are the words, emotions, feelings that are at dance with one another inside myself. The question begs: Why is it that we fear darkness–always wanting to shine the light on it–when we began our lives in the quiet shadows of our mother’s womb? We are accustomed to the darkness, to Her sacredness, Her comfort, soothing–Her Love.


We meet our truest selves in the darkness at times. Fears come out of hiding and allow us to feel them in full force. Beliefs are tested and in some cases dissolved to reveal our truth. The darkness can be where our greatest potential for connecting to All That Is really lies.

I’m choosing to crawl into it–as I would crawl into the arms, onto the lap of the Divine Mother. To be held, to be comforted, loved, rocked into the stillness of my soul. She is there–to hold me, to soothe and quiet the worries, fears, pains, to heal the traumas that send my human self into upheaval.

It’s a place we can all go, and in truth, we often do. Close your eyes, feel the power of the black backdrop that is there behind your lids. Behind the veil you become one with the sacred, connected to and able to feel the depths of your soul. In utter darkness. Absent of fear in Her presence, filled up only with loving energy. Calling forth the voice of your soul to express in whatever way it will. The sacred union of your soul with All That Is.

I’m crawling into it…..the womb of the Divine Feminine–hearing only her heartbeat surrounding me. Surrendering into Her Grace–trusting that all is well. Taking each step one at a time. No need to shine a flashlight and see ahead–faith occurs in THIS moment, not the certainty of my future.

The images attached to this post are of the Chartrés Black Madonna. It was while sitting with her in the cathedral nearly 6 years ago that she whispered her message to me: ‘healing.’ And it was in the wooden pew of the chapel that held Her beautifully sacred statuesque presence that I first connected with the power of the Divine Mother. Her open arms are a continual source of comfort to me as well as an invitation to return to the state of reverent peace she evokes.

A Soul’s Longing


Empty.

Waiting. Wanting.

Ready to be filled up.

Aching for something…someone

Absent of human form

Exceeding my physical reach.

 

Blocks. Desperation.

Struggling, reaching

Unable to grasp, to go beyond

To get within

The castle of my soul.

 

Dark night?

I don’t know.

Tears beg to come, but don’t.

Words begin to form–

Only to fall apart again.

 

Empty, hungry.

Frenzy building beneath the surface.

What is it?

Holding me here….

Blocked, just outside the veil.

 

Why can’t I enter?

I hear the call, and then it’s gone.

How do I get from here to there?

What is the next step to take?

I can’t see it nor feel it.

 

What is here to guide my way?

I’m asking…pleading.

Come to me.

 

Let me feel you in every pore of my being

Taste your sweetness lingering on my lips

Hear you with the ears of my heart

Know you absent of words spoken aloud

See you again behind the lids of my eyes.

 

Let me know it’s you

I long for you.

Be with me.

 

This is the cry of my soul,

The ache in my heart–

The restlessness of my being.

Come to me

As though we are one.

 

I open myself to you….

Ready, willing, surrendering

Into the grace of your presence.

 

Amen.

 



			
					

Quiet Contemplation

Several times I’ve come to this place and begun writing. And each time, the Flow is absent and the words feel forced and pieced together. Can’t say I know yet if this time will be different, only that I will honor whatever comes through.

To take care of a bit of ‘business,’ I’m very happy to share that the kitchen/breakfast area is now PAINTED and BEAUTIFUL! A transformation has taken place in this area of our home, one that has been much needed for some time now. During my time away from blogging and social media, there has been a very acute connection to energy from a variety of perspectives, as well as a deeper realization of just how sensitive we are, and the way in which we honor who we are in the ordering our lives. 

My dear friend Cat recently shared a video of Caroline Myss speaking on being fearless, the power of Grace, our souls, Divine service–one out of a series of 11. As I sat and listened to each one, there was such deep and profound truth that rang clear in my soul. It was a reconnection, a realization and awakening still in process–one that I can feel such longing for. The ache for Divine connection is one that begs to be satisfied, and yet the irony is that there is nothing on this Earth that can rise to the occasion and do so. I don’t have the answers–and I won’t pretend I do. But I do feel a nearly desperate call for something ‘else,’ without any awareness yet of what that is. 

I also heard Suze Orman talking about how we relate to our money. ‘When we don’t want to look at or deal with something in our finances, it’s only representative of what we don’t want to look at or deal with in ourselves.’ I remember learning this to some extent several years ago when reading ‘The Energy of Money.‘ But as I listened to Suze, something inside my being began to shift, to get it, to awaken to this truth in a whole new way. I feel it, I am reminded of it from within myself on a near daily basis. And once again, I don’t have the answers, nor even a clear guidance on what to do with what I feel–and I won’t pretend I do. But I AM listening, alert and at attention. I am observing the hunger as it impacts even how I manage my money….or delay doing so. 

Back to the painting for a moment. As I began with just a few brush strokes–something immediately felt ‘right.’ Remember in that last post–when I DIDN’T paint? Turns out there was something much more universal at work–even more than I was aware of THAT day. I was going to use a lighter shade, so as not to darken the room. I wasn’t in love with the color–and so my love for painting would have been diminished by having to brush on a color that felt empty, boring, without life. Instead, I chose the shade I first loved, but ruled out due to its richness and the concern of it being ‘too much.’ See where I’m going with this, my friends? A mirror–that is actually being realized as I’m typing. This–a new angle I didn’t see before. It’s the same thing I’ve been trying to do to MYSELF–quiet her/me down…work very hard not to be ‘too much.’ Maintain status quo and don’t by any means stand out from the crowd. 

To be honest, I’m exhausted. It’s a bit unnerving, as I’ve done nothing to BE exhausted from–aside from continually exert enough energy to keep Jackie in that damn box. Ugh. I had no idea, truly, this post was going to end up HERE. Perhaps that’s what has kept me from writing…..the internal digestion of my being is hard at work just trying to stay alive in the midst of such treatment. 

As for the No Comfort Zone Challenge–it’s a daily experience for me. And sometimes trying to see and point out just how I’ve done it each week–already exhausting, too. My life is a practice in getting outside my comfort zone, letting truth weave herself into the fibers of who I am. In that series by Caroline Myss, she said something else that sunk deep into my core: You won’t ever heal as long as you are dishonest with yourself. Honesty–especially the kind that we stir about inside ourselves–is sometimes the greatest discomfort there is. And yet, it brings with it such peace, healing, liberation. 

Thank you all for holding space with and for me. I’m a bit behind in reading your posts…..but I do love connecting with the beautiful energies you are, the perspectives and wisdom you share through your own experiences and the honoring of your own and each other’s journey. We all have a story to share. Realizing the sacredness of it begins within ourselves. 

**To those who have honored me with Blogging Awards….I’ve not forgotten and although I have yet to pay forward the loving grace of being so honored in this way, I’m connecting with new sites that are very deserving of such accolades. More to come. xo

From ‘Comfort’ to ‘Grace’

I had an aha! moment that began last week and has continued into the present. So many things have contributed to this awareness, I can’t begin to list them all. But I will say thank you to my fellow bloggers for the wisdom and inspiration you share. Often your words are the food that warms my soul.

The realization is that we can move from comfort into chaos and just plain feel uncomfortable–OR we can move from comfort into a state of grace. Grace is a mystical substance, with a high vibration of Divine energy. There is a heat to it when you feel it enter your being, surrounding you, indeed comforting you. I experienced its return to my awareness last week when I felt most turned inside out. The faulty belief–and I shared it here–was that discomfort is necessary in order to grow sometimes. While there may still be some TRUTH to that, it doesn’t have to remain part of my belief system. Do you understand the difference, my friends?

Our belief system holds truths that ARE. They don’t have movement or flexibility. The hold static energy and ARE. This particular bit of truth can be so at times, and other times not. Therefore it doesn’t belong in the core of my being as part of what I hold true. I am Divine. THAT is an always truth. Growth = discomfort doesn’t hold up.

The power of this aha! though, came in the moment when I heard the word GRACE spoken by one of my teachers. It took me back instantly to the classroom of Caroline Myss in 2005, when something Divine and beyond all of us entered our space. The energy of grace, the ability to invoke grace at any time, and the realization of how much we all need its presence and power came to life once again. 

We can move out of our comfort zone. But we don’t have to then flounder around in chaos and discomfort. We can invoke the healing, calming energy of grace. The heat of it will move where we most need it. As I felt this last week, I felt everything in my being begin to surrender to its warmth. The inner turmoil and battle were quieted. And I also realized: it’s ok for me to exude grace. I don’t have to hide that in this lifetime. I can be fully Jackie. However she may look, be perceived or understood by others is ok. I don’t have to quiet her, dim her, tone her down in order to feel comfortable in being me. I can enter a state of grace, channel that grace to others in whatever form it takes and be ‘comfortable’ in me. 

I’m not sure words serve me well in sharing this with you, my friends. But I’m clear on it inside myself. I’ve shared below an excerpt of Caroline’s teaching on grace. Within just moments of listening, the power, the sacredness, the high altitude energy of her words penetrates my soul. 

So I don’t have a specific item or task for this week’s No Comfort Zone Challenge. I do have some places that aren’t comfortable, that are stretching me. I’m surrendering them to grace. They’re too personal to share, but I wanted to share with you the experience around them. And I have a list accumulating of some things I need to address that will fall under this challenge and will be tended to in future weeks. For today, for this round, I ask you to trust that I am honoring our journey into this space and I am honoring the call of my own soul. 

Walking 5 days last week was quite exhilarating. My husband even joined in! I remembered that I hear the voice of spirit so clearly when I walk. The importance of getting out of the house and moving my body goes far beyond the physical benefits. And yet, I do fully believe that as truth. I’ll keep walking….keep listening….and keep sharing. xoxo

A New Day

First, let me thank each of you for your sharing your love and wisdom as comments to my last post ‘Mirror, Mirror.’ What happened after writing that and saying some things ‘out loud’ was quite miraculous to not only experience, but witness unfolding. I began on my own to recognize that it was indeed ME who was making me feel so crazy inside. Through some of your shared thoughts and also other sources, the messages began flooding in: stay present in THIS moment, people see through the eyes of their own experience, we attract situations into our lives to assist us in growing and stretching more into who we are. And perhaps the most powerful of all: the mind is a brilliant thing! When I read ‘A Cracked Pot,’ I felt something release inside myself, and remembered Rumi’s message about light shining through the wounds – the cracks. 

You, see my friends, my MIND stepped into fear, anxiety, panic. And thank you to Miro for reminding us all of the training we undergo as spiritual warriors: have the courage to live in what is true for you now. Old beliefs, tribal and societal conditioning creep in and distract us – and I’m very clear on how I stepped into that darkness of unknowing, shadows, uncertainty and old ‘stuff.’ The beauty of it, is that from our shadows comes the radiance of light.

I was blessed to be spending time with two beautiful women, healers and teachers on Thursday and Friday. Processing emotions and witnessing the inner dialogue of my thoughts and fear-based beliefs brought much needed relief, peace and release. I’m learning more and more how much we are driven by our fears. Again – it’s a language I’ve *known, but am now beginning to experience on a deeper level than ever before.

Perfect. Not perfect. Perfectly imperfect. The words don’t matter – it’s the implications we claim as our own that impact how we see and feel about ourselves. My own inner doubt brought such a depth of uncertainty, disconnection, chaos – it was impossible to see the light and beauty of being ME in that space. The GRACE of it is coming out on the other side, reaching the awareness of simply: I am Jackie. And that’s enough. It’s the message that comes over and over again, wearing different attire, speaking in various dialects, posing as new characters along the way. But always, at the core of my being is this truth: Love heals. And thankfully, I am back to a place of being able to see the beauty of being me, loving me and letting that be my truth.

Uncomfortable? Yes. Very. Healing? Absolutely. It’s part of the journey. We don’t need to make ourselves any bigger – or any smaller – to be okay. And we’ll never be able to convince other people of who we are. There aren’t enough words. So why not just be? And ‘let it be.’ When we feel the need to ‘convince’ – then we somehow aren’t sure of what we know is true. Otherwise, just the reality of it being OUR truth would be enough. Enough. A simple word – so filled with richness and challenge. 

My choice today: ‘Let it be.’ I’m choosing inner peace. Thank you for your love, your warmth, your open hearts. I appreciate you….and I’m sending love out to each of you. xoxo

Breaking Down the Box

I couldn’t have guessed what the real implication of moving out of my own ‘comfort zone’ would be this early in 2012. Yesterday – January 1 – I had an emotional meltdown. Typically I’m very mindful of how I communicate and interact when my emotions are stretched to the edge – and even that isn’t a regular occurrence. Mindfulness in expression, I’ve worked hard to connect to that space. And I really thought taking part in this ‘no comfort zone’ challenge would expand my ability to live authentically and connect me even more intimately with my purest self.

As I tried to fall asleep after unleashing tears, anger, frustration and all of what I was feeling inside on the people involved, I could hear myself thinking aloud: ‘Welcome to your no comfort zone, Jackie.’ Emotions neatly processed, words carefully chosen, choices weighed with conscious contemplation. I don’t ‘lose it’ very often, in fact I can’t recall the last time I did.

But the walls of safety, my desire for integrity and efforts of mindfulness couldn’t hold me in last night. It wasn’t unkindness that flowed from me, but a deep, deep pain and frustration that sought to move beyond the barriers and ‘right ways’ of expressing and just be heard. I can’t begin to tell you, my friends, how careful I usually am to not say something harmful, to not be the parent who can’t control her emotions when her children upset her, to hold it together and not become the ’emotional mother’ when I feel hurt by teenagers who have no idea what life is really about–because I don’t want to put ‘my stuff’ on them. I want to be a conscious mother who honors her children’s feelings and ability to choose–only perhaps I’ve done too much of that and the scales are out of balance. 

I would normally be checking everything I said this morning to see what damage I might have done. And yet, something deeper inside knows it wasn’t about that, and I wasn’t cruel or unkind. I was human. Feeling, expressing, speaking my truth–out loud. It’s not only our comfortable truth that we are compelled to share, is it friends? We have emotional truth, spiritual truth, mental truth–all are a part of our being. Emotional truth found her way to my lips last night, and she spoke with a passion that couldn’t be quieted. And here’s what’s true: I’m not sorry. Not because I’m pious–but because I can’t find anything to feel ‘sorry’ for. 

My realization in all this in real-life time of what I have known to be true: when we begin listening to our guidance (to walk five days in one week, for example) we step into the unknown and much, much greater things begin moving. The comfortable box I was in, where I could find peace in how I was interacting throughout this 6 month ordeal in our family took new form last night. What was once a nice square ‘cardboard box’ is now a flattened bit of flaps that no longer fit together. Alchemy. Spiritual alchemy. What was–is no longer. 

I don’t know what today will bring. I do know that I’m committed to this journey, however it leads me. And it feels quite clear that 2012 will bring an unveiling of the walls that confine who I am. Beyond those walls lives the mystery, the mystical journey, the magic of BEing. THAT is my destination. I’m so grateful to have found Marge’s post about the ‘no-comfort zone’ challenge. For in taking those steps of committing, listening to the guidance that came, and then following through and WALKING yesterday, already the transformation has made her entrance. And that was DAY ONE. 

 

 

I AM….Accepting the Challenge, Too

The challenge: Once each week during 2012, do something that is ‘outside your comfort zone’ and share it on your blogsite.

Generally the words ‘commitment’ and ‘goal’ are not a large part of my vocabulary. The free spirit of feeling energy move through me is something I treasure and can be known to vehemently defend. So this step forward of ‘committing’ to accept the challenge is stirring some seemingly subtle places in my consciousness. As I read Joss’s post about accepting the challenge, her words began to resonate. Specifically this bit: When I read this, my heart called out “yes” and as soon as I responded to her challenge, via comment, my head started asking “what did you just do?”

My own heart began to chime in with the subtlety of a whisper, that perhaps this challenge moves beyond posting, sharing, experiencing and rests much deeper in the guidance of our souls. While at the same time, my mind began to work her magic: doubts, fears, uncertainty. Commit? Say I’ll do it every week? Ugh. How quickly we naturally bypass the voice of our soul and tune in to the mayhem of the mind. 

In working with spiritual teacher Fay Hart, I’m becoming more and more aware of the way my mind steps forward to do what she feels is ‘in my best interest.’ In this case, she (the brilliance of the mind) thought that perhaps this would be too much pressure. And certainly–saying it out LOUD, posting the YES in a place where others will see it is out of the question. There’s no ability to ‘slide by’ in that scenario. She surely felt it was her place to take control of the situation and prevent the anxiety that quietly crept in the back door. 

And yet…with a moment of stillness, of checking in with my heart, I realized that what Marge’s post on the No Comfort Zone challenge was really doing was speaking to me from the Universe. You see, dear friends, our Divine guidance comes in any number of ways. We are spiritual beings walking this journey through Earth School, so of course the language will often be that of the earthling. Marge beautifully served as channel, delivering the message. What has happened from a Universal perspective is that each one of us who take part are choosing to become even more empowered, to walk hand in hand with our fears–to HONOR the truth of our heart’s desires, to HEAR the whispers that are always there with us. We are answering the call, my friends. The call that comes to us from our sacred souls. 

So YES. Out LOUD and with great reverence, I AM accepting the challenge, too. I am committing to this journey that lies open before me. I am touching even more deeply the heart of Jackie and the light of her spirit. 

I welcome you to join me, whether you are part of the blogging community or a friend who joins us here. However you feel led, consider what it would mean to you to step out of your own comfort zone. Imagine the heights to which you’ll soar and the ways in which your spirit will feel enhanced. And perhaps the most beautiful piece of this experience, is that you are supported by a community of others who join you in answering the call of the Divine. Together, we will each step more fully into the I AM of who we are.

As my dear friend Joss reminds us always….Walk in Beauty.