Reverb10: December 16: Friendship
Following a link from Gretchen Rubin at the Happiness Project, I found the Reverb10 site, which encourages us to spend each day of December looking back at 2010 and thinking about what we want in our lives in 2011, through daily prompts. Since I started nine days late, I'm not going to write about all of them, but I think I'll write now about one that sings to me.
December 16 – Friendship How has a friend changed you or your perspective on the world this year? Was this change gradual, or a sudden burst?
I met a wonderful lady last year by stumbling on to her blog. Her words touched me deeply, and I commented on her post and also forwarded her blog to my sweetie at the time. He was even more blown away by her words than I was, and it started a chain of events that, I think, taught all three of us some new things about ourselves.
Her blog - all about living and loving, moments of enlightenment, and moments of struggle, and how they all intersect - seemed to tell a parallel story to my own story. Things that had recently happened in my life, especially concerning my relationship, seemed to have parallels in hers. It was eery. She writes continually of opening up to the love that surrounds us like air, and letting that energy flow through us without resistance. She writes of the boundless ecstasy that is awakening to this interconnectedness, and how we suffer by believing ourselves to be separate.
Meanwhile, over the past year, she also wrote (on her blog and in e-mails to me) of her struggles with the reality of being a single mom, with relationships - both new and past - and in carving out a career for herself in the midst of it all. Throughout this time, I was also struggling mightily with my relationship. Her words, always wise and kind, brought me back to earth when I was shattered, panic-stricken, or terrified that I was losing my love. Her message was always: this is the way it's meant to be. Everything's happening for a reason, and everything is okay. Her wisdom and good humor, and her sharing of her own struggles and stories with me, helped me tremendously in walking my path that eventually led to my relationship ending.
Now, sitting here in relative peace and contentment, feeling better than I have in years, I'm in awe that we met and that we share so many parallel experiences. We have never actually met in real life. She lives in the midwest and I live on the west coast. We've only spoken by phone once. But she has changed my perspective - or at least her perspective has supported my changing perspective - on why we're here and what we're here to do.
During this time, I met another woman, in a workshop designed to help us find our soul's mission in this life. We hadn't really spoken much when another group member took me aside and told me that this other woman lived in the east bay as well but didn't have a car - could I perhaps drive her back across the bridge after class? This started another friendship with eery parallels to what was going on in my relationship. She was struggling in similar ways in her own relationship, and on our drives home, we would talk about what was going on for us in our relationships and in our hearts. Meeting her made me realize that I wasn't crazy for being in the situation I was in, or wanting what I wanted. She ended her relationship long before mine ended, but seeing her blossom after the ending gave me hope and confidence that I could survive and thrive in a new life without my love. Her care, concern, and genuine interest in what was happening in my life is an amazing gift.
Both of these women helped me see the importance of intuition and that deep, inner knowing that we all have access to, and opened my heart to the possibility that there are other realities out there that are worth exploring. They reminded me that love surrounds us, all the time, and also that we don' t have to be doormats to have relationships ;-) For many reasons, I consider myself a wholly new person now, not the same person I was a year ago. These two women are crucial to that transformation, and I would not have the perspective I have now if I hadn't met them.Meeting them and developing friendships with them also gave me confidence that there IS some force out there, or some energy, that looks out for us. How could I have randomly met these two amazing women at the exact time in my life when I needed them?
Thank you, L and E, for your wonderful kindness, amazing strong energy, creativity and inspiration, and for keeping me grounded during what was one of the most difficult years of my life!