I suppose this is one of those “here’s what I’ve been doing for the past four months” catch-up posts. Unfortunate, but necessary, especially in light of a few emails I’ve been receiving, mostly along the lines of: are you still alive?
I am still alive. And here is the longest of shortest of recaps.
In June, my relationship of 3.5 years ended. It was a surprise to many, including me, but it was the right thing to do. That’s all I care to say about it.
Out of respect for that relationship, I had regretfully severed all ties with someone previously very significant to me, so at the end of June I found myself with a decision to make: let the ties remain severed, and let regret continue to flourish, or tug on the slack line to see if he was still holding the other end.
So I tugged, and you know the rest of that story.
Since his return in early August, we picked up where we left off and then some. The past few months have been a whirlwind for us, packed with dates and parties and travel and games, as well as with plans for our future together. Initially it was surreal; when we had to part ways four years ago, I knew I was losing the potential to have the relationship of a lifetime, and could do nothing to prevent the loss. To have the potential again, and not only to have it but to have it realized, was more than I could fathom. I hardly felt I deserved to get what I wanted, and occasionally felt some guilt for being so happy.
Guilt. Over happiness. Yes, I got over that. I won’t lie; I’ve worried about how to put this all into words without sounding smug or self-important. But there is an element to finally getting what I want that creates the ultimate vulnerability, and I have been afraid to be vulnerable in the face of pessimism, so easily believing that I do not deserve to be happy, that I am not enough.
Then, while watching a movie on Saturday, I was reminded of this quote from Marianne Williamson:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”I could shrink from the expression of this massive wonder. I could do it, and I could remain in the shadows, so careful not to hurt anyone’s feelings by mentioning my own. But what sort of a life is that? I had this love once, kept it quietly and gently to myself, and lost it; how could I ever shut up about it again? I want everyone to have this feeling!
You can believe me or not. You can share in this with me or not. I can’t tell you anything but what I know, and what I know is that we don’t have enough time for fear or resentment or regret. It took me long enough to figure this out, but it wasn’t too late, and for that I am the luckiest person I know.