This is my 100th post on the blog. And it's been almost a month since I've written anything. Today seemed like the day to get over this hump. I've been stymied for a myriad of reasons, but I'm going to put something out here today, jumbled and confused as it may be, and move past this logjam in my head and heart. Part of the reason I've put off this post is because 100 posts feels like a milestone that I should mark somehow. I've surfed around, looking at what others have said. I've thought about lists of 100 things. And I've run up against the wall, over and over again.
I've also been busy trying to get the debris from a major storm cleaned up. Wednesday after Labor Day, the interior of Texas experienced the remnants of Hurricane Hermine. The wind blew, it rained hard all day, and by the evening we had a slew of tornadoes that the news team tracked live from a helicopter. It was quite the day. My neighborhood, my home, experienced no damage of any sort. The gardens enjoyed the soaking rain. The whipping wind didn't even knock leaves off the trees full at the ripeness of the end of summer. But my interior process that day matched or even exceeded the weather swirling around me outside - and that's the debris I've been cleaning.
Four years ago in November, I spent a Saturday sitting at the feet of a woman who had a message that turned my world upside down and inside out. She took the box I'd had God, spirituality, soul and self in all my life and blew it completely apart. And then she proceeded to show me how to make a dance floor out of the pieces. That Saturday opened the door for a new direction in my life and my work, a journey to myself, and a process of becoming, each and every day, a little bit more of who I really am. The concrete result of that day was my returning to school the next August, a little over 3 years ago, to get my Masters degree in Counseling. Me, a computer tech, a programmer quickly falling out of touch with the advances in the technical world since staying home with my kids 8 years before, someone who had been told all her life she didn't possess creativity or people skills, someone who had pigeonholed herself into a lifestyle that had me behind the scenes, working on the organizational details, balancing the books, making the schedules. Doing jobs that I was good at, but that didn't resonate with my soul.
I spent the first half of 2007 uncovering and reframing my story. And then in August I started back to school and almost immediately realized that taking all the pieces and putting them back together, looking deep into my own self in learning how to hold space for others, unpacking and un-bandaging old wounds -- all the things the degree was going to require that I hadn't counted on -- was going to require me to find someone to walk through the process with me. The job was too big to do alone. The pieces were too scattered. Some days the pain of self-reflection was simply too much to bear alone. And ultimately, I decided that if I couldn't sit in the chair as a client, I had no business trying to sit in the chair as a therapist. Jeanie - the catalyst and by now a friend and mentor - had been gently pointing me in the direction of Jungian analysis for the better part of a year. Finally, with fear and trembling, I took the plunge and dialed the number she'd given me.
I called on a Friday afternoon, praying I wouldn't get an answer. I didn't. But I left a message. Within just an hour or so, I received a return phone call, and within about 15 minutes, found myself scheduled for a noon appointment on Monday morning. Three years ago today, I sat terrified, across from a stranger, pouring out my story the best I could tell it in an hour. In these past three years, Tess has held every word I've said with grace and created a space to unpack and unearth a self and a soul that I didn't even really know existed. She's become a guide to my dreams, my self, my soul. The hour a week I spend with her touches a numinous place I find nowhere else in my life. She's taught me how to honor my own soul. And now, between the process of analysis and the deep digging required in my program of study, I barely recognize the person that sat in that chair, trembling, three years ago.
During my course of study, and through my work in analysis - I came to grips with the fact that writing is my art. I am a writer. It's my gift, my form of expression, my spiritual process, my liturgy. I can access the deepest parts of myself with a pen and paper, or in front of a computer keyboard. So about a year ago, I started this blog. In 100 posts, I have lost a lot of fear. I've found a voice. I've begun to figure out what works for me and what doesn't. And I've met a handful of treasured companions that are sharing this journey with me.
Then, I graduated in May from my course of study. And through a series of events that I cannot even explain, had a plan in place to start work in September in a position that seemed perfect. With a plan in place, I took the summer off, except for the licensing exam I had to take. My husband and I took our first ever trip to Europe. I enjoyed the summer with my girls. And I anticipated finally getting to do what I'd been dreaming of doing. And then, suddenly, a hurricane.
By the time the storm blew itself out - both literally and metaphorically - my world was re-arranged. The perfect job was no longer in place and I found myself dangling from a tree limb, scrambling to find some solid footing. Since then, things have unfolded so fast and so furiously that I can barely keep up. The synchronicity and connections that have unfolded are simply mind boggling. I've felt loved and supported in ways that defy explanation. I am doing a job that makes my heart sing in the process of meeting the requirements I have to meet for licensing, with help from a group of people who feel like home, like a tribe. And I am awed and humbled by the glimpse I've had into the workings of the universe that I do not begin to comprehend. I'm not usually one to say that God orchestrates events, there is a deterministic flavor to that theology that turns my stomach, especially when it's used to oppress and shame someone. But I cannot deny God in this process. Something bigger than me is afoot here. And all I can do is stand in awe.
So, the debris from the storm is swept up. The tree limbs are stacked neatly waiting recycling. And my world, my heart and soul are swept clean and reveling in the sunshine. It's a 100th post. It's a three year anniversary. And it's a brand new beginning to a journey I cannot even begin to fathom. All I know is that I can't wait to see what's around the next corner. And now, I'm off to work!