|We can cast pretty long shadows...|
I've been thinking a lot about the conflict between most children and parents: the endless struggle, which appears to get more complex as time wears on, from infancy to adulthood, and yet seems quite the same as it ever always was.
I've been told that we actually choose the parents to whom we are born to. That this is somehow part of our--sick and twisted as it sometimes seems--karma. This choice, and the lessons embedded in the relationship we have with our family, is crucial to our education, to truly learning who we are.
That this choice was made by me is, kind of, well...comforting. I am, it turns out, a willing participant in what sometimes feels like totally random luck of the draw.
Here's the but: I've stopped believing in dumb luck. Over the last couple of years, my faith in the way the universe works has been greatly buoyed. I believe there is a reason for everything. Yes, even the tough stuff.
And it's great to feel that there is a point to it all, that there is some great purpose to what at times feels like madness. This is yet another gift, one beloved friend would most definitely say, that comes in unusual wrapping.
Recently, in an attempt to "unwrap" this present, this gift of a complex relationship I have with my mother (this is not to say my relationship with my father is much less complicated--but he seems to have figured greatly in last year's grueling discoveries and is thus less prominent now), I traveled to my most unusual destination yet on this trip. I went back to the womb with the help of my friend Kumar, from Mumuksha in Mysore, who is here now in England to do some healing work via transomatic dialogue therapy.
Ok, at this point, some of you reading this might be tempted to roll the eyes, sigh in thinly veiled bemusement at me going all new-age-y. In truth, even I want to sometimes react like this towards myself, give myself a side-glance and an "Ohhhh, really?"
In a recent conversation, one of my best college friends, who also knows my mother well, suggested I see a therapist to talk out my mommy issues. This too elicits a similar response from me. I can't help it. It's a bit of a reflex. I guess I am from a similar stock as my mother. If you can't grin and bear it in the end, then go figure it out quietly by yourself. Hmmm, perhaps the root of my problems?
Whatever the root, I do recognize that there is only one real problem, one that takes lifetimes to figure out, it takes many births, many parents and a whole lot of varied experiences, some good and some bad. It takes discernment of mind, openness of heart, strength and determination to dig, to uncover layers, to excavate all the blockages that keeps us from the true treasure. We need all the help that we can find, from friends, from loved ones, from therapists and healers, conventional or otherwise. And as for the challenges that arise to test us, they are here to help us too. These presents-in-disguise are obstacles in the darkness. But they are also clues. And as I fumble around the dark room of my soul, these objects give me some idea of my true shape and form, who I am and who I am not.
So here I am, unrooting, unwrapping, traveling unknown distances, pushing boundaries, bumping my knees on obstructions that seem so haphazardly strewn before me--though they are really guiding me down this dimly lit path, where I continue to feel for that magic light switch, so that I might shine, so that I might see.