This was not my intention, but low and behold, it was my reality! It has been a good summer, full of the many things I like most; celebration, relaxation, connection, being in nature and enjoying the life I have created for myself. I realize how much I enjoy connecting with you and sharing my musings on business, opportunities, and that which is top of my mind. Even though I haven’t written a word, I have been ruminating on the topic of this newsletter for a couple of months. Let me know what you think.
Back in June, a friend came for dinner and during the course of the meal she asked me how my life was going. I told her I felt a sense of ease and grace, more so than I can remember at any point in my adult life. I explained that I was really blessed to be feeling this way. She looked at me with surprise, pulled back and asked “How can you be feeling grace and ease when so many terrible things are happening in the world?” Her response surprised me, knocked me upside the head and I thought “Oh yes, she’s absolutely right about the state of the world, why am I not being dominated by sadness, despair and anger?”
Back in the day I was the one at the front of the march, the one leading the charge, the one with massive amounts of overt angst. I truly believed my actions and feelings were what identified me as a political activist, a seeker of social justice, someone on the “right” side of the fight. What has happened to me, I wondered? Have I lost my compassion and my commitment to changing the world? The long and the short of this conversation was that her inquiry pushed me to question my sense of well-being.
I responded to my dinner companion with some confusion, but also some certainty. I know that what is happening and how I feel is a good thing. Her question triggered me and for a moment I thought that maybe it was a bad thing. I heard concern in her voice that maybe I wasn’t the person she thought I was.
It turned out that my friend was specifically referring to the homophobic killings at the nightclub in Florida. Being that we are both lesbian feminists, she didn’t understand how I could not be as upset as she was by this horrible event. What I know to be true is that my anger, my rage, my fear, my upset could fuel me, but I’m no longer confident they’re moving me in the right direction. I’m starting to glean that transforming myself and supporting other people on a path of change is what it’s going to take for us to make a positive shift in the world.
I still have my feelings, my upset, my anger, and my sadness about terrorism, about the state of politics in this country and the world, about the many things I am deeply concerned about. What has shifted is I no longer think that hitting the streets and pounding my head against the wall of what I see as evil or bad is the solution. For most of my life I have been an activist. I am realizing that finding some peace, some ease, and some grace inside me pinpoints that I have shifted who I am in the world. And curiously enough, I do not feel less powerful! I feel more grounded, more centered, more connected and I’m a better listener. I’m more in touch with my feelings, I’m more aware of what is going on around me, and I am showing up as a more compassionate person.