You shall be free indeed when your days are not without a care nor your nights without want and a grief. But rather when these things girdle your life and yet you rise above them naked and unbound.
I had one of those really tough nights last night. Many years ago, around the time my marriage began to fall apart, sleep became a broken in torn pieces kind of experience, maybe also accompanied by the onset of menopause, I’m not sure. It was harder to sleep through the night, I experienced startled awakening with feelings of swelling and tearing in and around my legs, gut and heart. In the space of the warm comfort of another human body was the vast space and yawning emptiness of the house we had tried to make into a home but could not sustain. It’s strange that often getting what we think we may want, will often turn out in an entirely different way to which we envision.
There followed the years of torn apart grief over something lost, that had value, but at times was also filled with disconnection and difficulties. And of course this loss resonated deeply with echoes and imprints of earlier traumas, separations and losses. It wasn’t only the ending of our earthly day to day togetherness I was grieving, but also the experience of being torn away again from the UK, my ancestral home where we had been trying to establish a new life and had experienced such soufulness in those special years when the Leo part of my chart was being woken and illuminated. Family difficulties drew me home and the ties that bound pulled me tightly and deeply from within. It was a deeply liminal time, where so much was awakening for healing and recognition.
Since that time sleep has been fractured and it is well known that part of depression is insomnia whilst startled waking is a large part of Post Traumatic Stress. On the first two anniversaries of my husband’s decision to leave me I had serious accidents and these left me with a lot of unresolved pain and grief.
We are profoundly mysterious creatures, we humans. Deep in our souls in depresssion and in suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune we are on some level processing experiences of feeling that manifest in painful bodily sensations for which there are no words. Is this the legacy of a childhood and a history in which it was almost impossible to feel on a true level and make sense of those feelings with words?
For me it is always a relief when the tearing that I feel inwardly breaks through the surface of consciousness and turns into tears or something that is recognised, for then the pressure that had built up is released and flows and there is a greater sense of peace and understanding of what, prior to that was illusive, entangled, mixed up, frozen and confused.
Last night there was a long period of wakefulness and tearing, I turned on the light and went to the toilet and little Jasper, my dog peeked his nose around the door to see what was up. Usually even he sleeps though my nightly wakings. Both us ended up back in bed and I was holding him tightly against minimum resistance, till he settled. He usually needs his space and last night after a little period of cuddles he jumped down and I watched as he departed the room with his long tail wagging, off to explore the mysteries of the night outside the back door.
Sleep though incredible illusive finally came after over two hours of wakefulness and pain.
For the past few weeks I have been finding Tuesdays difficult. This was my therapy day and I find it interesting that in the astrological signature of days, Tuesday is under the rulership of Mars and sparks up my natal Mars Saturn Moon which rules blockages and difficulties in relationships with nurturing and sharing and allowing feelings to flow. Things could not really be resolved with my therapist since our break during January and February and this has been source of grief and pain, within which I have questioned and searched my soul deeply.
Its not really in my nature to draw a final line under relationships. I usually try to keep a door open to someone else, no matter what the difficulties between us, because on some level I guess I am a forgiving sort and realise that no one is perfect. I am realist and I know that it is not always possible to be met fully. We cannot always see deeply into another persons inner world and know intimately the unique landscape of their very human heart, and perhaps what is most important is that we stay on intimate terms with our own. But this time something is different.
Maybe this is just Saturn square natal Venus territory, because despite the sadness I feel over our conflict and separation on some deeper level I have a recognition that for now a line has needed to be drawn. What I am also recognising is that I can have these feelings and feel them, but it may not always be necessary to take any action to “resolve” them. Maybe in just allowing them a place, without struggling to change them or take any kind of action they will alchemise and eventually pass.
As usual , Jasper and I went to the dog park this morning where I met with my lovely elderly friend, Margo. We have great conversations which tap into deeper issues that we are both experiencing, especially in our families. We discuss movies, human nature, astrology, feelings and personal insights. I opened up about my sister, the difficulties she is having with depression as her psychiatrist struggles to find the right dose of medication to balance her and my own feelings of powerlessness and sadness around this.
As I explore my own journey around grief, loss and depression I realise what a challenge it has been for me to make the decision to move forward and embrace the positive joys that life can offer, even in the midst of sadness. A kind of tenacity and courage has been necessary to make the decision to step out and take actions which in some way help me to break the paralysing hold of depression. Risking the move into a new day which may contain all kind of blessings or disappointments means that I have found the strength on some level to recognise that both experiences are manageable despite the risk and pain. What I experience when I do this is, that what would have remained damned up if I had chosen to stay in isolation begins to shift and move, I am loosened and vulnerable yet also awake and alive in a very vivid present moment.
Tears have been bubbling up for much of the past week, dreams have been more frequent, both during and especially heading into the forward movement of Mercury retrograde at the end of last week. Soon Mercury will be heading back, past its opposition to my natal Uranus in the first and onto my natal Chiron in Pisces in the seventh.
Instead of avoiding my family I am choosing to spend some time with them. On Sunday I left my mother’s place with quite a headache. Not much was moving and as I sensed it was time to leave I felt the pinned energy, the buried pain and the banked up emotion that surrounds my mother and sister at present and the pain shifted as I moved back into the peace of my own life. I experienced the feeling of deeper serenity that comes when I return to the calm oasis of my own place. For me it is a place of refuge in which I can explore and create.
Today similarly I have returned and been nourished, yet again in blog space, connecting and reading beautiful pieces on wordpress where others are expressing their feelings, insights and views on all kinds of matters.
As I engage in this activity and work on polishing my own blog, I have the image of a multi-faceted diamond that I am turning around and around to catch the light and which is reflecting upon me and the room a prism of rainbows.
Its kind of a paradox to me that last night could have had held so much pain while today is shining like a beautiful diamond. But I guess paradoxes are the stuff of life, within every pain there is a blessing and in opening ourselves to pain we are also opening our selves to life, joy and love. For it takes love to stay with the pain and within the healing embrace of love our pain can be held and transformed, birthing wisdom, understanding and insight. And these, I guess, are the multi-faceted colours cast by the diamond’s rainbow prism.