Composting Death

IMG_7024March 23, 2017

Dear Cherished Heart,

I have suffered an emotional death. That sounds so melodramatic. And no such thing even exists. I have not died, for I still  breath. But . . .

If you could see me—really see me—you would see a hole right through my chest. How can that be explained?

The day we got married was filled with sunshine, love, laughter, and promise. Something inside of me opened up to a soul-filled kind of love. I leaned in. I am on a search for that blessed day, the one where we created affirmations of love and authenticity, and an intention to be together for a lifetime. Our people filled the pews and cheered for us as Handel’s Hornpipe, Water Music Suite,  danced on a breeze.  Hornpipe for God’s sake: optimism amidst playful banter.

But what was my point Cherished Heart?

Oh yeah. Living and dying simultaneously. Waking. Cooking. Driving. Crying. Walking. Loving. Eating. Aching. Washing. Buying. Petting. Playing. Flailing. Talking. Listening. Smiling.

Can I not curl into a ball on a feather-bed and sleep until the edges of the pain have softened?

Can I not be held up by others and shuffled through life like cattle in a chute—moving to a rhythm outside of myself?

Can pen and paper not manifest a set of agreements that are fair to all, and written with kindness and lingering admiration?

Can I let go and float wherever the current is meant to take me?

How can emotional death compost and support growth, when I am rooted to it?

When will the weight of it ease up? I am strong but weary.

Who am I outside of this grief and felled marriage?

Beside my writing chair sits a solid wood table holding the accoutrements of writing. Coffee. Candle. Cross. Cards. I had pulled a card earlier, which I immediately disregarded as bullshit.

I’m taking a second look.

You can recover from anything. You can heal from anything. There is nothing that has fundamentally damaged your spirit, your will, and your heart, no matter how broken those parts of you feel at times. They have only ever been broken to heal stronger. They have not been broken beyond repair, and never will be. You are breaking out of something, rising above it, trying to transcend a pattern within yourself, or one in relation to another person— and you will succeed. Focus on your integrity and truth. Be yourself. If you have forgotten who that is, don’t worry—that true self has not gone away, and never will.  It is ready and waiting to rise up, in original gorgeousness and glory, and be alive. It is never too late for you.” Wild Kuan Yin, Alana Fairchild

It is with utmost relief that I learn I am not going to die or be permanently broken by this experience. My soul will compost my pain, and that is a slow process indeed.

Yours Truly,

Mona Lott




November 24, 2016

Dear Cherished Heart,

The inclination to withdraw makes perfect sense. The inner conflict while navigating a map with no clear direction markers is confusing. If I speak my conflicting thoughts out loud—Have I made a mistake? Time to envision a new path. Am I being selfish? I cannot cope with the pain of still loving, but not living—I risk getting advice that I can’t follow.

A couple of days ago I wrote a question in my journal:  “What do I need to know about this relationship?”

I pulled a Tarot Card.

Four of Swords.

You don’t have to know or use Tarot to understand that our lives are filled with symbols, signs, messages, and guides. You need only pay attention.

To merely glance at the card is quite dreadful indeed. But in reading and looking again, I saw many things. The letters P-A-X inscribed with lead into the yellow glass resonated with me. PAX is the Latin word for PEACE.

When we stand in the sunshine we are exposed to light, and to shadow. If peace is the freedom from disturbance, then the shadow-side of peace is conflict. I fear conflict and have walked many miles out of my way to avoid or dislodge it.

Withdrawing allows me to avoid perceived conflict too. I don’t want to have to defend my actions, because right now, the choices I’ve made feel indefensible.

A voice cries out:  You are letting everyone down. You can’t give up on your marriage. It’s sacrilegious.”

Whose voice is that?

Omigod…It’s ME—the twelve or thirteen-year-old who lives inside of me; she is speaking to her parents.

Dear thirteen-year-old self,

I am sorry that you were so confused by your parents separation and divorce. Know this—your parents made decisions that had nothing to do with you. Children do not bear the burden of the decisions made by their parents even when they are inherently affected by them. You could not have done anything differently. 

Even though your parents made this most unexpected decision—and the pain of it will find the most inopportune times to stab you in the spaces between the ribs that protect your heart—you will be loved and cherished by each parent, even when one of them lacks the skill to tell or show you. 

 You will grow into a fine woman, one who will grow from experience, succeed and fail, and love and be loved. It won’t be easy to put your parents divorce, or your father’s choice to walk away, behind you, because it will always be within you. 

One day you will be a loving and protective mother. Please know that the role of protector has its limits. Eventually you will need to allow FAITH, and TRUST, and HOPE to imprint upon your disquieted heart. It is then that the reins you grip so tightly in your endeavour to guide and protect, need to slacken. Otherwise, you will hold your children back, or they will pull away and break the connection completely. 

Bear no grudge against your parents young heart, for they were—for the most part—doing the best that they could given the circumstances of their lives. You are 100% deserving of love and belonging, 

Love you like crazy, 

Fifty-year-old Wendy

So, Cherished Heart though it is sometimes necessary to pull back and allow the body-mind to arrange the fragmented pieces of one’s life into a new mosaic, withdrawal needs a counter-balance for wellness. Sit on the teeter-totter and gaze up at the other end. What you find there…will find you.

Truly Yours,

Mona Lott