Sunday, July 26, 2015

To Dance With Nature

                            "A Broken Heart Is Heavy and Hard To Carry"
 ~ Jo Grishman

When we enter into any relationship, we usually believe and expect that it will be a forever one.  Two people move forward with the hopes and expectations, that being together, whether in friend, love or working relationship, it will grow stronger and long lasting. Like in nature, nothing is static, change is inevitable. We hopefully grow as people, and that being in relationship as an “us”, will make us a better “me”. It is actually unrealistic to think that we will never change, yet we always hope that if we do, we will remain on the same path as the other. Sometimes this path intersects like a DNA molecule, always coming back to itself. Sometimes it waxes and wanes, reaches a place of stasis, and then if we are lucky, a place of shared stability. This is not always the case. Often though, through the growth process, the relationship does not look the way we might have seen it, in our mind’s eye.  Plants reach toward the light of the sun, soaking it in to thrive. The branches of a tree, beginning from a place of sameness, start growing apart. This separation, this individuation, is necessary to thrive. We look toward the changing seasons of nature, for guidance in our own lives. 

Last June, I participated in a profoundly moving dance retreat. We danced in and with nature, amongst the trees and rocks, as though there was no separation between the self and the forest. During this experience, we each chose a rock and stick to bring inside, to join us in the dance. At the conclusion, I admittedly had “rock envy”. I gazed longingly from across the room, wanting to be in relationship with a rock that was in the arms of another. I asked the proud partner of her wonderful heart shaped rock, if she intended to take it home with her. She responded, that “the rock was broken and rather heavy to carry”, and that I was welcome to have it. I accepted this wonderful gift with feelings of hope and potential. Yes, yes indeed, a broken heart is heavy and hard to carry. I delighted in the prospect of collaborating with this rock, to create a sculpture. I have just completed it, in the midst of some relationships in my life, that are in a state of flux, seeking balance amidst the turbulent storm. By co-creating with this rock, some of the experiences I brought home from the retreat, as well as with life itself unfolding, I am trying to process with a guarded optimism, the new relationships that I am being challenged with. It is a dance unto itself.

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