I was with someone I absolutely adore recently and I said something really funny. So funny, I made myself fall over laughing. Full belly, head to toe laughter.
“God Jill, It’s good to hear you laugh!” my friend said to me.
And as good as it must have been to hear, it was even better to feel.
These are the moments I feel myself remembering who I am. Knowing gratitude in the most intimate way.
I realize that I have faith. And whenever I feel stressed or uneasy, it is because I am somehow, not feeling or trusting my connection to a larger picture.
On my last day of freedom before my second surgery, I took myself to another city for the day by train. As luck would have it, there was one NJ Transit train which had broken down and caused delays to all of the trains across the board. There was nothing to do but wait.
My delay was about 2.5 hours. I finally arrived at my destination around 1pm and spent a lovely day. When I arrived back at the train station that evening to head back to New Jersey and I looked to see which gate my train would be departing from, I looked up at the board and saw my train was listed as “CANCELLED.” I laughed out loud and the first thought I had as I closed my eyes, was “Okay, God, show me what’s next.”
I felt no stress. No worry. I just walked over to customer service and once I reached the window, the teller handed me a new ticket for a new train which was meant to depart about 45 minutes later.
You plan. God laughs. You might as well laugh along.
I’m “supposed to” move out of my home in four days so that the repairs on the damage incurred during Hurricane Irene can finally begin. I was all set to stay with my dear friend when yesterday she apprised me that there’s a slight problem now. Hmmmm. I was supposed to move out, and I was all set to move in. Now what?
Well, I’m not entirely sure.
But I am waiting for a sign.
Really? Waiting for a sign?
How could that be? The signs are everywhere. Even when you’re not looking, they are right in front of your face. Sometimes it’s as if god is slapping you in the face to “wake up,” that’s how obvious the signs are. At least that’s how it is for me.
It’s like what I said about setbacks. I fully believe they are RESETS.
So, take pain. Is it desirable? Wanted? Of course not. But I am beginning to believe there is a reason it has been offered to me. And I believe this in my bones, no pun intended. Something was taken and something was given. The fact that I cannot live the life I had been living is “challenging” me on many levels, there’s no question about it. But that is because I became accustomed and attached to my identity as a Yogin, as a practitioner and as a Teacher. And now, I am being asked to give up aspects of that identity. For how long? I don’t know. But it is not terribly useful for me to question that right now either.
I’ve lost many loved ones to terminal illnesses. And I am lucky that I am alive and that this is not something I am being challenged with.
There are many ways in which I’m not so “lucky.” But truth be told, I don’t like to indulge those places. But to not evade, I can sum up by referencing having been called an “orphan” while at my friend’s Thanksgiving table.
After all these years, and three major surgeries as an orphan, I can say that maybe some things are taken from us because they are just like illness and better for our spirit to not live within our soul bodies. While those who need those systems fully intact, get to have them there like armies by their sides because it is their karma, because it is what is being called for, because it CAN be the gift. While other systems many never know how to be.
What I have come to trust is that it may be best for those systems to remain in their chosen places of residence. Surrender attachment. And that the act of faith may be in sending souls back to their appointed places.
These thoughts come NOT from fact. They come only from faith.
I’m grateful to know that at 43, I have a little faith. I know that I do because when I was about to have my last surgery a friend of mine asked me if I was scared. I wasn’t. I knew I wasn’t. I felt something much different. What I felt was grief. For all I would have to surrender. Put aside. Give up.
I am still surrendering. And each day, it takes a lot of faith to keep letting go. Keep listening. And keep trusting that I am on the right path. No matter how hard it is to read the signs.
Here’s to having “a little.” Faith, that is.