Sunday, October 21, 2012
To Heal a Broken Wing
The bird wanted to fly again...naturally.
* ~ * ~ *
I have walked the past few years suffering from a very deep sense of disappointment. Oh, not your run of the mill kind of disappointment, like when a much anticipated plan falls apart, or even the hundred and one small disappointments that befall us on a daily basis. There are many who thought the disappointment I suffered was what comes after a marriage ends. I knew that wasn't it. That was understandable, and perhaps played a part, but because of the very fact that it was understandable -- I mean, who wouldn't be disappointed?-- it actually fell into the realm of "normal."
However, I do recognize it as the doorway. Like a new grief has the tendency to become a conduit for old griefs we never allowed to heal, the disappointment I felt over my marriage ending opened the door to a deeper, more profound disappointment that had been lurking under the surface all along.
This was something different, heavier, and for a time, nameless, and was playing serious havoc on my faith in any and everything, particularly mankind, but once I could finally identify it, simplify it in my mind in some form to make it more manageable, I got to work in finding a cure. But first, I needed to find where the disappointment was directed. That, in all honesty, and unfortunately, has taken me years to sort out.
I had to sort it out. For me, there was no alternative, and I'd do whatever it took. And I did that because something in me said it wasn't right. There was something off...something broken. I did it because I wanted to heal.
I had no problem admitting there was something wrong. I didn't deny it, or try to pretend all was okay in my kingdom when I knew it wasn't. What good would that do? There was something wrong, something off key, and I wanted it found, identified, dealt with, healed, so I could get back to the person I know myself to be...naturally.
There were too many signs, too many things I used to do, too many ways I used to express myself, that was no longer in evidence. My daughter, speaking one time about herself, after surviving the nightmare of being stalked by a cop, "Where did I go? It's like I see the real me, still there, on the other side of some glass, and I'm some person that is standing in her place, stopping her from expressing. I'm smiling, but it's not real, I'm acting like her, pretending to be her, but not. How do I get her back?" I remember answering her, "When you feel safe again." She just looked at me, with those big, beautiful eyes full of tears, and said, "I don't think I'll ever feel safe again." I understood, knew the feeling, but I also knew that if she was willing, she'd allow that self she so sorely missed to find expression again.
One time, during my early 20's, after having a terrible argument with my mother, I got in my car and went for a drive. At the last minute, I decided to drive to see a friend of hers. I knew he loved her, understood her in some mysterious way that I couldn't, and so I went to him, seeking, hoping for some answer to make things better. He questioned me for a time, and after I asked if he could give me some understanding into my mother, I looked up at him, and I'll never forget it...his head was tilted sideways, and he was wearing a crooked smile. I said, "What? What's so amusing?" He said, "I didn't see it before, because of that prickliness you wear around yourself all the time, but you are more like your mother than you think." I'm not sure what offended me more -- his telling me I was prickly, or telling me I was like my mother -- but I went with the mother comment, "I am not anything like my mother! And I will never be!" He stood there unchanging, with that infuriating smile on his face, and said, "It's a compliment. A compliment I thought never to give to you. But now I see you, and that heart of yours is very much like your mothers. Thank God that it is so. She's a healer, and you are too. Just not in the same way." Then he turned around, and went back in his house, leaving me standing there, stupefied.
Years later, I remembered that conversation, and smiled. He was right. I was a healer...in a different way.
My mother used to work in the healing arts. She studied and practiced alternative medicine before it became as mainstream as it is now. (You can thank her for playing a role in why you have these things so readily available to you. It wasn't easy, because the medical field was pushing back. They are still pushing back, to a certain extent.) For a time, she worked in a clinic that was healing people of major illnesses, through diet and herbs, and natural medicines. After she left the clinic, she began doing massage therapy. She can be proud of her life of service, for I know she healed and touched many who were at the brink of death, with her healing arts being their last resort.
In fact, when I came up against a life threatening condition of my own, it was her I myself turned to. Her, I trusted. We may have had our issues, but my faith in her knowledge had me literally putting my life into her capable hands where the care for the body was concerned. I obeyed and did everything she told me. I believed in her, and honored the work she did.
But something happened...something began to change. Her focus began to shift, ever so subtly. In fact, it is only now that I can see what happened...because I fell into the same trap. To this day, I don't think she looks at those she saved, or all those grateful hearts she touched, but instead, looks at those she didn't. Or, more accurately put...those who refused.
I think it boggles the mind of a healer. Creates some sort of shock. For truly, it goes against nature. Everything in nature responds to healing. Wants to get back to it's natural way of being. Hell, at the very least, even recognizes, instinctively, what it's natural way is!
That bird I saved years ago wanted to fly again. I knew he did. He knew his wing was broken, knew that something was broken, and worked with me to heal himself. I think he knew I wanted what he wanted...to fly again. To be in his natural environment. He heard the call, the song of his feathered friends, and longed to go back to them, be a part of them again.
That bird didn't hold tightly to his broken wing, defending the wound, making himself right about how he couldn't fly anymore. Bless his heart, he just kept tryin'! He never gave up. He got tired, weary from the work, but I didn't feel him ever give up. He never quit until he flew again. And he wouldn't have flown again without me. He had help, and received it.
But humans...How could someone not want to be healed? What was that in them that resisted, refused, and rebelled against healing? How could they not want to go back to what is natural?
That wall. It is that wall my mother and I bumped up against...again and again. That resistant thing that will not forgive. That prideful thing that will refuse help. That refuses to see, or even admit they even need help, because needing help is seen as weak.
We get nowhere without help. I would be nowhere without help. All those people that my mother helped heal would not be anywhere without help.
That disappointment was directed right at mankind. Because this is what I saw...a difference. Even an indifference. And my heart didn't know what to do with what I saw. My mind didn't know how to reconcile such a discordance with nature. Man could choose...and wasn't.
The bird wanted to fly again. Humans did not want to rise again, choosing again and again to hold onto their wounds, under their own free will. That was the supreme difference. Simply...unwillingness.
----(to be cont.)