When I was a child in the late 50’s I learned about carburetors in cars. My first car was a red convertible Volkswagen bug. I was told it would run smoother if I take it on the highway and hit the gas to clean out the carburetor.
Well, I cleaned my carburetor yesterday. I was running sluggishly, a pall of disinterest hanging over me, feeling sorry for myself and general malaise. It’s easy to get caught up in my story about losing my daughter to liver disease after a life-long battle. I can easily talk myself into depression and wallow in it for years. That’s not my choice.
Every day I choose to focus on living with the expectancy life has to offer if I am mindful, have awareness and commit to learning and experiencing life from every situation. I am more than my story. I am more than my ego. I am a spiritual being in a physical body.
I know life has to offer so much more than what I can see with my physical eyes. Every day is a path of opportunity beyond my physical experience and it is exciting and astounding. Every day teaches me that surrender and acceptance is the answer. Gentleness, kindness and respect are the key to my self-care.
So I blew out my carburetor. I started with my grief-stricken heart and pushed past exhaustion until I felt my deep loss. I kept going and came out the other side in a spirit of acceptance.
With cranked up music and my glorious headphones, I drummed and chanted to sacred Sanskrit music for an hour. Rhythmic drumming is like breathing. I became one with my drum, pushed past any pain and kept at it until I let go. It was marvelously freeing and I survived. The rhythm held me.
Anniversaries of loss are milestones. They represent another year of living beyond loss, and are rife with memories of those who have moved on. My spiritual teacher, Matt Kahn reminds me it is a privilege to live in a physical body.
Yes, we experience pain and loss. We also experience pain and loss witnessing others struggle in their physical bodies. Life is hard and always no matter the circumstance, we learn from our experience. We deepen. We grow.
We are a death-phobic society. Always focusing on the loss and forgetting the focus is in living.
“Grief is the midwife of your capacity to be immensely grateful for being born.” -- Stephen Jenkinson, Author of Die Wise
When it’s time for one to leave their physical body, that’s the only change -- they leave their physical body. They are still around. Their presence merges with our heart, and together we continue to live in our physical body on this earth until it’s our time to leave.
I am grateful every day I can see those I love whether in person or on Zoom. A day will come when scenarios change and adjustment is needed.
My ego continues to warn me I must hold on to what I see, nagging me about loss because it’s devastating to lose someone we love.
In reality, against everything we’ve been taught since childhood, there is no death. There’s a shift of physical perspective. I can’t physically see my daughter but I believe she exists. I feel her and I talk with her.
I learned truth and love exists in my heart energy. My physical heart beats and does its job. My heart energy is where the essence of every interaction resides. If I am honest with myself, I feel my truth through my heart essence.