The Word on the Street

October 18th, 2010

Since I picked CHANGE as my word for 2010, I’ve learned to be  more specific in what I ask for from the universe. When I chose it, I thought of Change in terms of new career and creative opportunities, kind of a lite life-makeover that might be accomplished in a couple of workshops, something about as dangerous as kittens or cupcakes. Instead I got Change that cracked me open and left me wondering who I am, who I was, who I will be. I got Change that picked me up like Dorothy’s tornado and set me down in an alien country where I don’t speak the language. I got Change that makes me feel like a stranger to myself when I wake up in the morning. Sometimes I think numbing down my life was better, even though all it did was create a constant re-icing of my soul until something triggered a furious glacial meltdown, drowning all the defenses I’d spent decades building, washing away years of saying “I’ll be fine” whenever something bad happened. Today someone told me that when grief strips you bare, down to the bone, when you think you have nowhere left to go (and I doubt it was mere chance that led me to notice this sign for the first time on a street I drive every day!)–that’s when real change can occur. Maybe someday I’ll be thankful for this painful opportunity to metamorphose, and it’s felicitous that Uranus in the form of positive, revolutionary, happy-trickster change will soon be transiting my planets. But in the meantime, I think I will be very careful about the word I choose for 2011, because  it seems the universe is actually paying attention.

9 Responses to “The Word on the Street”

  1. What I find is that sometimes a relatively minor event in my life triggers an avalanche. It’s kind of like going to pick a loose thread off your favorite sweater and finding the whole thing unraveling.

    A small loss triggers a response that encompasses EVERY loss I’ve experienced, and I can’t grieve for the immediate event without grieving anew for all the rest.

    We tend to be so linear in imagining our selves and our lives. We talk all the time about progress and getting ahead and getting over things. I don’t think life is like a map or a road or a track where we move. I think life is more like a pot of soup–everything together at all times, with different ingredients rising to the top or falling to the bottom depending on how much heat you apply. : )

  2. nikki says:

    Veronica, that is so right. We are always looking for “closure,” and I’m not sure it exists or we should want it even if it does.

  3. Diane says:

    I agree, Nikki. It’s not closure we need; it’s space . . . in our hearts or souls or wherever it is that all the pieces of our lives need to reside. I think the trouble is that we go about our busy lives and fail to make room for some of the biggest, scariest, saddest, or most awkward pieces. In the end, though, they demand space. It’s as though they wait and wait on the stoop of our hearts, knowing that sooner or later we must let them in and find a suitable place for them to sit.

  4. nikki says:

    the thought of that kind of gives me cold chills. Nothing is ever lost.

  5. Laurie Skiba says:

    Nikki, my word for 2009 was LEAP. Another case of Be Careful How You Name Things. The result? Might as well have named 2010 ABYSS. That sounds dire but my gosh. There is a power in naming.

  6. m. heart says:

    All I can say is, me too. The loss, the grief, the thinking there would be changes but not realizing how many layers those changes would go down, and the word I chose for this past year, “quest” really bringing one on. It’s funny because just last night I was thinking about what my word for 2011 might be and “courage” came to mind, but it scared me silly.

  7. nikki says:

    Soooo interesting to hear that! I’m glad I’m not the only one who had that experience. It is so much more powerful than the self-actualizing blogs and books imagine.

  8. nikki says:

    I always approached that word for the year kind of in the spirit of the material world, not the magical world, and I will be spending a few months really thinking about the power of words and what I REALLY want.

  9. Laurie Skiba says:

    This year my word is MAGNIFICAT, which kept coming to me even though I didn’t really want it or choose it rationally. It honors my dad, who taught me to pray that prayer and who died last year, and it seemed a word I needed to center my fragmented soul. I knew it was an irrational choice and now that the year’s almost over, I barely understand it. But you are right: the name of anything is so important and far beyond the self-actualizing stuff and “The Secret,” which seems to cheapen it for me.

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