Last Sunday, after a long walk that let loose a bunch of emotional funk, I felt a strong push to go and see the new movie Hereafter. I took a quick shower, packed a bottle of fresh squeezed lemon and lime and apple water, a slice of gluten free pumpkin bread to sneak into the theater, and drove on over.
Saturday had been a really, really rough day. Some of the emotional stuff sloughing off lately is around money. How it's been showing up in the living is a long reoccurring pattern of getting involved with folks in a financial arrangement of some sort, but right before I sign on the dotted line, or hand over my cash, I get a strong, clear message of the chaos that's coming if I don't back off and say "I've changed my mind". Over and over in my life, I've gone ahead and done it, the ensuing chaos making my life much more difficult. Why do I do it? Why do I go ahead when I get the heads up?
Because I've felt afraid. Afraid that something better won't come along. Afraid that I'll miss out. Afraid that I'll cause someone discomfort or embarrass them, or they'll get really, really angry with me if I change my mind. But lately, with increasing frequency, I've been backing out of things. Often at the last minute. It causes weirdness, folks get angry, or think I'm a kook, but afterwards, when I walk away with my time and money intact, I experience a sense of relief so profound it's like pure joy.
So Saturday was rough. As I back away from the pattern, the emotional energy field around it ramps up. And Saturday morning, after dealing with the tail end of nearly buying a new (used) computer, then backing out, I had an anxiety attack. I haven't had one in a really really long time, and I was out at a farmer's market with my sister. I found a way to maintain until I could get home, drink a greensmoothie, take a hot bath, empty everything out so that I was released and relaxed for clients that afternoon. But that night, it heated back up. And just when I thought my head would implode I got a very clear, very simple directive:
Stop fighting. Stop trying to make things better.
In that moment, lying in bed, kitties surrounding me with their love and fur and purring, the full moon beaming in through the window, I got it, truly got it. What this Letting Go means. What surrender and trust is. What is really at the heart of this Backing Away business. Stop coming up with ways to make more money, or get along better with people. Stop trying to change the negative thoughts into positive ones, the anger into expansiveness. Stop trying to make things right. Stop trying to explain so that people don't think I'm nuts.
And then I fell asleep. Woke up Sunday, wrote, cleaned, did laundry, then went for a long walk. Then: Hereafter.
I cried through most of the movie. Because I'm that guy. I don't talk to dead people, but I'm that guy, that psychic guy sitting at the table alone, that guy who meets a lovely person, connects, then watches as she runs away, horrified at what he can see. That guy who gets, really gets, that he'll never live a normal life, that no one can possibly understand what he deals with, not even his brother who so obviously loves him, not the folks he does sessions with.
He says to his brother: a life about death is no life at all.
And I thought about how I say it: a life about No is no life at all.
I cried because in the scenes where the woman drowns, when the twin dies, I felt Calhoon. That fat fuzzball that lived by my side for 16 years. I saw him. Felt him. I remembered the Space of Love The Hoon and I drifted in those last 10 days of his life. In those 10 days I didn't write, didn't really talk to people, put most work on hold. When I was in the Space of Love with him, he purred, his eyes sparkling yes yes yes. When I slipped out of Love, he panted from the pain, his eyes hazy. It focused my mind and intention like nothing I'd ever experienced before, like a laser: anything that took me out of the Space of Love with him had to go: food, thought, emotion, distraction. No conversation, no snacks, no tv, no trying to make The Happy happen. For 10 days, it was just the Hoon, and me, and Love. I pulled away from everyone and everything that didn't reflect the Space of Love, which meant with only a tiny handful of exceptions, everyone and everything in the world created by the personality of Katherine had to go. And at the end of those 10 days, when he died, when he left, I found that I'd also lost the concept of love, that crackling full-emotioned energy that roars through a human's body mind heart. When I tried to come back to my life, that tangled weave of relationships and responsibilities, it was for all intensive purposes, gone.
In the two years since then, I've been attempting to acclimate to a living where there are no relationship ties to anyone, other than those connected with pure survival. Can you imagine this? Totally alone. Not shut down. Just open-eyed, an enormous weight of delusion gone, and there's no going back.
There is no Santa Claus. Superman isn't coming. Human love exists only as an implant in the mind.
I spend my days walking through a world that no one around me can see. It's just under the surface of what everyone else is walking around in. But they can't see it. And so they don't believe it's there. It's been weird enough to have all attachments fall away. But to also exist in another world? One that is so obviously HERE, but that somehow no one else around me can see? How do you even begin to deal with that? How do you live?
I've learned to stop talking, to really, genuinely not speak, because not only can't folks see, they think that To See is madness, or meanness, or sour grapes, or stupidity. I've spent thousands of hours trying to find a way to simply pull back inside myself, disappear from the world, but I can't do it, or I'm not able to pull it off, or Life doesn't want me to. It keeps me plugged in, in a half dozen ways. In the face of that Not This Direction, I've relaxed a lot more, just let the waves of folks reaching out to connect to me roll past, not fighting, just letting them roll.
But seeing the movie, watching Hereafter, lit something all up again. The reality of my situation. What happened, and what I continue to deal with. When the insanities of the psychic and holistic work I do would bring me to my knees in grief and loneliness, The Hoon was there, his huge sparkling eyes seeing everything. And then he was gone. And nothing, no one, took his place.
I just do this day to day paying of bills, work in Hiveworld, see clients for holistic work here and there. I watch movies, tv shows, read books. It's like watching a life spiral down, to nothing, to death, to failure and ruin. How will I pay my bills? How will I keep myself sheltered, fed? And my tremendous energy, the one that has always roared into motion to create energy and money and opportunity, kicks in. It looks for a new job, new ways to meet with holistic clients, pushes to finish the novel, find a way to move to an area of NC that has public health jobs I can use my MPH for.
But then: Just Stop.
I've been working on this post all week. It's long, unwieldy. I don't quite know what to do with the energy behind what I'm writing, the Just Stop. Because stopping is so difficult it makes me want to cry. Sitting here at the keyboard, I want to cry. Because isn't stopping giving up? Isn't it that place that losers go when they finally accept that they can never win? Isn't it the place where sad pathetic people dump themselves out into when they resign themselves to a life of aloneness, of cats and food and tv and a cubicle job? I'm living the life right now that used to be my nightmare. I've spent my whole life avoiding the life I'm living right now. And now I'm supposed to let go even more?
I can't even wrap my mind around it. My living is shredded. And my heart feels savaged.
Why is there no manual for this? Why are there no teachers? The books are bullshit. Have you figured that out yet? And all the teachers are full of it, no matter how well-meaning, no matter how sincere. Every single human appears to be a stand alone unit, and the best a book or a teacher can do is reveal their own personal formula. And it never translates. It never ever translates.
There is just this aloneness. This slowly deepening muteness.
Madness? Waking Up?