‘Rocks on my path? I keep them all, and with them I shall build my castle.’ Nemo Nox
Yesterday’s Rx seemed to strike a chord with a lot of you. Its quote laid bare the little known fact that the more you commit your life to growth, the harder the journey seems to get.
So many times in the course of my professional work, I have heard my clientele verbalize their desire to truly experience the magic of the interactive universe. Often times it is a crisis in their lives that has brought them to my therapy practice… and coming through my door gives them a glimpse into another world that they may not have known existed before. That spiritual doorway looks so sparkly and warm… often times they want to bound right through it and get to the good stuff. Well, doorways are not always accurate predictors of what is beyond the door. Perhaps that warm sparkly path toward spiritual evolution emerges for some…it never has for me, nor have I seen the yellow brick road unfold for others who undertake the work of self transformation. For those who feel ready to embark upon the inward journey, I am always quick to remind them to read the disclaimer. The disclaimer is a tiny little sign that you have to squint to see, but it hangs front and center on that sparkly warm doorway….it reads like this:
What you will gain will be valuable beyond anything else you have ever known…. but the fee for entrance will be more than you feel you have. What you can’t see may hurt you, while what you can see is usually false advertising.
I know it doesn’t sound very pleasant… and the truth is, many times it’s not. For many, staying comfortable and safe is the easier choice- and sometimes I envy those who make that choice. But my envy is short-lived because I truly believe that we will all do the work… whether it is now, or whether it is later….. we will all do it.
My motivation for rolling up my sleeves and diving in early came from my work with those at the end of life. As you have heard me say many times here at Rx for the Soul, this work found me very early in life- by the age of 23 I was sitting bedside with the dying 40 hours a week. It did not take long for me to figure out that we either do the work in our living… or we do it in our dying. I made the conscious choice way back then that I wanted to try to do it in my living, and it is a path I have been fiercely committed to ever since. It has not been an easy path…. and from the outside I am sure it has looked jagged, if not flat-out crazy making to many. My commitment to this path has not made me angelic, or elevated, or anything else bright and shiny. It has made me more introspective and serious for sure, but other than that I doubt there are too many outward signs of the inner work I am always in process with. I know without a doubt my commitment to the invisible has made me perplexing to those who may watch from a distance, and has proven to be a real pain to a select few in my life who see it up-close and just don’t get where I come from. Perplexing or not, I can’t worry about that, because I didn’t come here to be easy and agreeable. I came here to grow… and like anyone else on a similar journey, my path has been littered with rocks…some of them boulders. I work earnestly at not cursing those rocks, and I work even harder at trying not to throw them back at the world. Sometimes I succeed in this, and sometimes I don’t. I have learned the hard way that my journey belongs only to me and that there is no point in trying to pawn it off on anyone else.
The rocks we encounter are always ours to grapple with, and just as today’s quote suggests, those who are willing to really own those rocks, often find that they provide the foundation to untold growth.