A Walk Down Memory Lane
Wandering down the winding promenades of my memories, I find myself on a pier walkway at Club Puerto Azul, Venezuela, circa 1980-81. It is a moonless night; the air is balmy in its uniquely tropical way, and I feel lost and alone. Lost was the theme of my existence here in this beautiful but lonely country. I was in my early 20s, a newlywed and a foreigner in my new home. The language was foreign, the food was unfamiliar, the customs were mind-boggling, and my new life was alien in all aspects.
My husband and I were guests of his childhood friend and his wife. They had invited us to spend a weekend getaway at the beach. Though the setting was gorgeous, the day had been a challenge for me, most of the conversations had been in Spanish, and I struggled to participate logically in my new language. I had ultimately given up trying to communicate because everything said to each other had to be translated by my new husband. As they say… much was lost in translation.
Coming up for me now is a memory of one of those translations, which was when the wife asked, "why do you have stretch marks on your thighs?" Hearing those words come from my husband's lips and knowing that she was looking/judging my slight 120 lb frame sent me into a spiral of self-doubt and condemnation. As I stumbled to come up with a reason why my lily-white super skinny legs had stretch marks, I felt my new world closing in on me. It has taken me years to experience that memory and not have a visceral reaction.
On that moonless night, I felt incredibly isolated and alone. We had spent the day poolside; I can't remember why we were not on the beach (that would have been my preference). I definitely was not participating in any decision-making. After finishing a pleasant dinner, which I had spent smiling and nodding in silence, they decided to take a stroll on the waterfront walkway. Thankfully my husband had taken a moment to explain to me what they had agreed on.
My anxiety and sense of isolation increased with each step away from the lights of the resort. The darkness of the night began to feel like it was crushing me. Finally, when we reached the end of the walkway, and I allowed myself to glance out into the vast expanse of the dark and enormous Caribean ocean meeting the black sky, I felt extreme terror. I felt as if I was being consumed by or was falling into a black hole of nothingness. The outer vista was reflecting my inner state of being. At that moment, no one in heaven or on earth could have convinced me that I would ultimately find grace in that darkness of the soul.
That was a long time ago, a divorce, a country, and a lifetime away. The memory of that night still has the cellular emotional sting of emptiness but from a different perspective. Through the grace of transformation and alchemy, the black hole or void is now my comfort space—the warm cozy embrace of the omniverse.
A black hole, outer space, the vastness of the universe are all depictions of the void—the quiet space of nothingness. For much of my early life, I was afraid of darkness, solitude, and silence. Today I Know it to be the place of grace and conscious connection.
I am obsessed with the notion of silence and darkness as allies- the catalysts to hear the voice of my inner knowing. The void is my conscious connection to my higher power or what I call God. It takes focused commitment and determination to disconnect from the outer world and to go within. The gifts we receive from embracing the silence and darkness are life-altering and directly affect the collective consciousness. Knowing this to be true, I deliberately set aside time every morning before the sun rises to dive into this space or the void.
What is the void? It is the yummy space of nothingness; It is the zero-point field where all creation begins. We can not know the will of our higher self, our heart, the universe, the multiverse, the Omniverse, and the Creator if we cannot disconnect from our outer world's chaos, noise, and flashing lights.
I invite you to join me in spirit for a moment of deliberate silent connection. Turn off the t.v., radio, phone, computer, walk out of the store, pull the car over, etc., slip into the darkest, quietest space you can find, and BE in the stillness of your soul. Although for some, this may feel frightening at first, I urge you to try, if only for a moment.
Connect to All That Is, touch your heart and give thanks. Give thanks for this moment and the divine silence of your inner being.
Make the promise to yourself right now that you will find the 5 minutes that this will take and allow yourself the grace of this pure connection.
I remain deeply honored and "OH SO" Grateful for each and every one of you. May the peace and grace of the God of your understanding be with you always,