First, I’m enormously grateful to know know know that feelings are just that, feelings, and not truths. And that they will pass. And (now here’s the big transformational magic part) that I have the power of choice! This is the concept that opens the door to liberation. When I find myself, as I did last night, feeling powerful PPD (post-pilgrimage depression)—once I realized what was running around in my head causing my malaise—I was then empowered to choose. The progress-not-perfection part: Sometimes I can’t/won’t make that choice right in the moment of awareness. Sometimes I seem to have a (self-sabotaging) need to wallow. Yum, wallowing in negative thoughts, in the hell of my own devising.
I can’t bear it. So here I am this morning, having posted on Facebook about the PPD, having gotten two loving comments back (one gently yet firmly advising me to get busy in my own backyard; thank you Michelle!). I’m up, the bed is made, morning practice is complete, I’m showered and dressed, and am happily gratefully present in my day right here in sunny Oakland. I’m wearing my marinière today, bought at the Marché des Paysans (farmer’s market) in L’Isle sur la Sorgue two Sundays ago. I am going to make an omelette aux fines herbes (herbes de Provence, bought in Provence) for my breakfast. I’m nearly unpacked. Three of the four boxes of stuff I mailed home have arrived. The last is taking a boat, should be here by the end of the month—perfect timing as it contains my Irish wellies (rainboots). I have so much for which to be grateful. I see, hear, smell, taste blessings all around me. I am a grateful woman.
I write in humble gratitude for the people I’ve met, the sights I’ve explored, the food I’ve eaten and cooked, the indelible memories, the photographs I’ve taken, the technology that allows me to post my ongoing travelogue on Facebook, the sacred moments of this pilgrimage, the conversations I’ve had (some in French!), the endless beauty, the quality of the light in Provence, the ability to walk (especially after the couple of days when I could barely do so), my health, how flawlessly all has gone. Je suis complètement et totalement reconnaissante (I am completely and utterly grateful).
It is a beautiful full moon Mabon (autumn equinox) evening in Provence.
Cloudy, cool, might have rain tomorrow. I am about to go to sleep for the third night out of eight in this beautiful yellow and orange room with a perfectly comfortable king-size bed.
Took a hot bubble bath in the tub.
Made my dinner in this perfect Provencale kitchen: rotisserie chicken from the local butcher; eggplant sliced thin, salted/sweated, and sautéed with curry powder (bought at the most beautiful spices stall ever at the farmers market–see pix on facebook); chard/carrots/zucchini from last night; and an artichoke, also from this morning’s market.
I am enjoying exploring Provence, by car and on foot. Taking lots and lots of pictures. The ochre hills, the ancient stone huts, walls and buildings, it’s pretty magical. Went to a bourie village today—old stone huts. Did my equinox ritual there. In deepest gratitude, I tucked all the origami cranes from my second Saturn return celebration into crevices in the walls, along with tiny seashells from my altar and, most importantly, I think, the ceramic leaf from the spring equinox ritual on which I wrote my intention to make this journey. It is very tiring to my index finger to type on the phone, so I’ll end this post now.
My daughter Rose is now 23 years old, a young woman.
Life us happening for her, to her, as it does for us all. She has a big decision to make, and make soon. Oh my heart is full of compassion and the grief that accompanies the knowing that I can’t protect her from tough decisions, nor make them for her.
I have a swelling heart full of gratitude for the gift of the relationship I have with Rosie today and the blessing of having lived long enough to thoroughly transform my life.
And I continue to pray for her ease and joy and that the learning of life’s lessons bends but doesn’t break her. And since she survived a childhood with me as well as she has, I’m confident that she’s well equipped for whatever might be next.
It’s been true for me, that old saying that whatever doesn’t kill mr will only make me stronger. May it be so for Rose as well.
My journey in Ireland is coming to a close. I’ve had a quiet day and a half in Cork town. Met a new friend at a meeting last night.
I was tired and grumpy when I landed up in Cork. Long drive. Thwarted by the GPS from hell. Prevented me from seeing the dolmen in the Burren I was planning to see as well as Lough Gur. Maddening. Frustrating. Tiring.
So I got to Cork, walked to a meeting and, when called on, just shared my truth the best I could. Got some smiles and nods and the magical release from self-obsession and reminder that my attitude is a choice.
Was delighted by the compassionate and friendly shares. Connected powerfully with a gal after the meeting. Angela. My new friend. She took me home with her and fed me dinner.
She met me this morning, took me to a meeting and walked around town with me. I am delighted to have connected with her. She is kind and funny and super generous.
I just now called the car rental place and asked for an adjustment due to the faulty GPS. I’m getting 50% refunded. Glad I asked. Glad I got a yes.
I’m grateful blessed and happy. Happy to take the day off from sightseeing. Happy for the warm sunshine of the early afternoon. Grateful for the veg soup at lunch.
Grateful I get to have one more quick visit with Angela before she drives off tonite. And for me, another meeting and dinner out and then a quiet night in.
I am so grateful that I know this feeling for what it is, that I don’t have to spend the day ruled by it.
I am grateful for the tools that allow me to transcend feelings and circumstances. There is one of each, I think, causing my unease. Yes you may laugh. I’m trying to as well. The feeling is loneliness. The feeling that today would be better with a lover, a companion at my side. The circumstance is that a celeb (I think, who knows who’s behind those user names anyway) declined to play another WWF game with me (that’s iPhone scrabble). Rejection. Ouch. You’ll likely feel compassion for the first and either laugh or wonder at my immaturity in the second. Sigh. There I go being human again!
So, I reject and release the power of these thoughts to ruin my day. Just sayin’… In humble gratitude.