We took the trip no one knew.
It crept in on little cat feet.*
Perfectly on time.
A mighty quake at our front door – our Date with Destiny.
The initial tremor – Denial – hit like a shock wave wielding a two-ton crow bar. Knocking out power grids and taking down our clear-seeing.
From a blurry haze of confusion, we cried out for our missing steadiness. Our terra firma.
What IS this? Am I going to die?
We grasped for reassurance.
Maybe, it’s no worse than the flu? Probably gone by summertime.
Quick-quick on the heels of fanciful-thinking, a white-hot Anger flared up. A devouring a blow torch.
Unsatiated, until it had incinerated every inch of the normality we’d counted on for decades.
We landed ass-hard into a bleak wasteland of unknowingness.
Bruised, beat up and Bargaining now, we fought hard to recapture lost ground.
“We don’t deserve this.
They did this to us.
And, take that mask and shove it!”
But misfortune had set up shop. Peddling havoc, destruction, death.
A mighty Kali – huffing and puffing.
Blowing to bits our straw houses of false security.
The New Normal.
Change of scene, as Depression slipped onto the stage.
She reached for a warm blanket and tucked us in. Deep-Rest.
The cars stopped. Planes, grounded from flight. Buses, trains, ships. All quiet now.
A bottomless silence, unknown in modern times.
This sequence of psychological and spiritual passages – known as the Grief Cycle – had upended our stability.
Left our old selves for dead.
When Acceptance finally emerged, we clasped her gratefully to our breast, our surrendered heart.
Nowhere to go, nothing to do.
Our homing compass had reoriented. Clocks struck Covid time, 24/7.
And we surprised ourselves, too, by becoming more yielding – capable of shifts and changes to meet the countless moments we did not prefer.
Twisting ourselves, like pretzels, as required by Life.
That we had no other option, had become all too plain.
Yes, tempers flared. Fears and insecurities still dominated our days.
Peace, yet hidden behind the cloudy skies of overwhelm and despair.
But our hearts had started creaking and cracking.
With growing pains of the New Earth.
Each one of us, midwives and new mothers to a magnificent birthing process.
Now, well under way.
“We were born saying goodbye to what we love. We were born in a beautiful reluctance to be here, not quite ready to breathe in this new world. We are here and we are almost not. We are present … while still not wanting to admit we have arrived.”David Whyte, from The Bell and the Blackbird