Over my afternoon cuppa @HarneyTea’s wondrous Viennese Earl Grey blend, I had my chat with the Divine (today it felt rather like Grandma Burke, my paternal grandmother, decided to pay a call). Her message to me:
What I heard, “Enough already! I get it, you’re feeling frustrated and stifled because life right now requires you to focus on being nurturing and somewhat maternal – not your favorite thing. You think your creative juices are drying up from lack of use. I call bullshit! You aren’t looking at things clearly. Open up you damn eyes and see what’s really going on. See how you can change things so your creative energies find expression. Stop waiting for things to change and make it happen! Stop letting self-pity hold you down. You already know the answer so trust your instincts.”
I’m afraid of starting over; of being the student again, the beginner. At the same time I do have faith and confidence in my ability to succeed at whatever I focus my energies towards achieving. I think there is still a part of me that resists drawing attention to myself; that wants to avoid standing out from the crowd. Call it the lingering effects of high school mocking and teasing.
My inability to seek support and assistance further complicates matters. I’m definitely in the “rugged individualist” camp. I know it’s short-sighted and makes things more difficult than they need to be but it’s a mold I find almost impossible to break. I come from a long line of self-sufficient, fiercely independent women. We can bear a helluva lot without asking for help. In this respect I’m my own worst enemy. So, the only thing holding me back is me and my own self-doubt and stubbornness.
What is waiting within you to be realized? What is your next step?
So! I got the High Priestess again. Clearly she has a message that I’m either ignoring or not understanding. Looking at the image on that card I’m struck by the sense of hidden knowledge; wisdom being contained until I’m capable of understanding and embracing it. It’s as if the High Priestess and her Crow are speaking to me but I don’t recognize their language.
The Star Rx is pointing out that I need to look inward. In order to learn the High Priestess’ language I need to understand myself. The truth is she isn’t blocking me from finally learning what she hides; she’s protecting me from more pain. Although I present myself as though the pain and trauma of my past doesn’t hurt anymore, I’m lying to myself. If I want to heal and move forward then I need to truly release that pain and not just ignore it.
My next step is to stop trying to walk away from my emotions. I can’t run fast or far enough to escape it. I need to face it head on; stop treating my sometimes brutal past as a punchline. The reality is that I did survive but there are scars – physical, emotional and psychological. They may not be visible anymore but their energy lingers.
You’ve gone as far as you can on your own. Finding partners to help find creative ways to utilize what you’ve learned might be the next best step.
A candle burning in isolation offers light to no one. Let your light shine by finding creative outlets to express yourself.
Okay, you’ve howled in the wilderness; explored the darkness alone; stumbled along in your quest for self-knowledge and inner truth. How about sharing with the class? Bare your soul and let others learn from and build upon your experience.
You don’t need to take on this challenge alone. Allow yourself to find help and support from others who care.
Your defenses may be well-developed and serve a purpose but they also isolate you. Be open to alternative paths and methods
The image of the rugged individualist is often self-defeating and illusory. SEeking help when needed does not imply weakness. In fact, being able to ask for assistance may show a strength of character and willingness to be vulnerable and exposed that the “rugged individualist” fears.
For some reason today I’ve found myself pondering the energy of The Hermit. I can certainly see the challenge of forging ahead and searching through the unknown to find a path. However recently I’ve begun to see a shadow aspect of The Hermit – the madness of solitude. I’ve come to realize that solitude can provide one with an opportunity for deep insight and self-discovery, or it can push you past the breaking point. It can produce a situation where madness licks at the edges of your mind because the solitude has become unbearable. There have been times recently where that kind of madness has brushed against my mind.
It has made me appreciate the sense of isolation and aloneness felt by caregivers of various stripes from stay-at-home parents to those caring for ailing family members. When the circumstances are such that socializing or time alone are just not in the cards, that’s when the wings of madness flutter close. Social networking can help relieve some of this sense of isolation and aloneness but it really is not substitute for human interaction.
Of course I speak from personal experience. My life over the past few years has been a long example of the madness of isolation. In caring for my in-laws, a situation has been created in which I am usually alone with no adult interaction (as much as I may love my in-laws they are not capable of adult conversation at this point). I rely on phone calls and instant messaging to keep in touch with friends but sometimes it’s just not enough. Even when I’m talking or texting with friends I’m still in the same crazy-making environment.
Perhaps madness caused by isolation is also initiates creativity. I have certainly had moments when I become very creative trying to find ways to alleviate the solitude. History is littered with tales of creative geniuses who isolated themselves in pursuit of their goals. There can clearly be times when isolation and solitude produce a positive result but when it is the result of external forces I have a feeling that is when madness comes to call. The relentless, oppressiveness of forced isolation can push us over the edge. We might indeed be exploring uncharted territory and forging a new path but eventually all our efforts at distracting ourselves and alleviating the aloneness fail and we’re left lost in the woods with no recourse. Howling at the moon may be fun with a pack but when you’re alone in those woods you can feel a prickle of fear as worries of impending madness assail you.