The purpose of our lives is to give birth to the best which is within us.

– Marianne Williamson

REFLECTIONS

Unearthing the Un-lived Life

As I near the end of my year long journey, I am excited to begin the process of summarization. The otherwomanblog has concluded a decade of transformative steps, culminating in an epiphany of spirit. An epiphany, that wondrous and sudden realization of a great truth, seems to occur in a split second, but in reality, comes after a period of dedicated work…work which expands and deepens the interconnectedness of body, mind, psyche and soul. This process is necessarily slow, ensuring we maintain psychological stability, thus avoiding an imbalance that might see us in a straight jacket.

Psychological Equilibrium is Critical

Psychological Equilibrium is Critical

Psychological equilibrium is as critical to the body’s health as temperature, blood sugar, acidity/alkalinity etc.

In my 40’s I was drawn to novels about women who had walked away from the very lives they had spent decades creating. Metaphorically, women ‘dropped their aprons to the floor‘ as they turned away, leaving their kitchens…their homes…their workplaces…their lives. It was as though these women, seemingly against reason and on a whim, walked away from everything they had achieved. Eventually, they would resurface, often in remote settings and in reduced circumstances, but on a personal mission from which they would not be budged. Friends and family, left behind, would attribute such uncharacteristic and bizarre behaviour to a “mid-life’ crisis. In hindsight, I realize that my drive to read about women making unexpected turns in mid-life acted as a preparatory foreknowledge for the psychological and physical struggle which was about to unfold in my life.  

So much ink has been spilled trying to define and understand the mid-life crisis. Stereotypes abound!

Are These Women to be Admired or Shunned?

Possibly the answer lies in the psychic depth to which a woman in mid-life crisis goes! If the process stops at the ego, manifesting in the purchase of a ‘hot’ car or ‘hot’ bed-partner, a facelift or a tummy tuck, shunning may be justified. But if instead the woman attempts to fulfill her higher calling, by restoring wholeness to her personality, then I feel such a woman is to be admired. I have come to believe that each of us has a talent, a passion, unique to our soul. And when this passion is pursued and shared with others, the world is made just a little brighter!

In the first half of my life, like most, I gained an education, life skills, a career, a family…demonstrating self-discipline in a myriad of ways…all necessary tasks if one is to be a contributing member of our civilized world. But once all of this was achieved, a pesky little question erupted my calm…“Is this it?” I had to accept that although I had fulfilled numerous goals, my true calling, my life’s purpose, was still to be unearthed. 

Going Through Hell to Reach Heaven 

In my 40’s, although tantalized by the idea of women who changed the status quo of their lives, I lacked the necessary courage to take a real step away from my familiar, materially successful life. In my version of ‘transformation’, I was in control! I would decide ‘the look’ of my new life and plan its unfolding. But the picture I created was just another version of what I already knew…some ego driven perfection that would ultimately be unfulfilling. The aspect of transformation I did not want to endure was the breaking down of my ego… an ego that held rigid views of what was worthy and what constituted success…an ego full of stereotypes and prejudices…I also had to acknowledge my weaknesses and unpleasant character flaws. In short, I needed to find humility and become humble.

There is no simple, pain-free way to crack the ego. Our ego cracks through the ‘hell’ of the mid-life crisis. This ‘hell’ comes in many forms, all with the express purpose of shattering the status quo…hell may come in the form of an infidelity or a severe illness or a horrible accident or an unexpected loss of status or employment or the development of a phobia…some form of status crushing, life altering, attention grabbing event!

My life altering events came in the form of 2 near death experiences and temporary blindness. Impossible to ignore, I was forced to move away from the known, into the void that is the unknown. Healing my body restored my sight and then imperceptibly, but fantastically, I began to become acquainted with my inner riches. The struggle to heal drew me into the depths of  my soul, allowing me access to the unbounded love and creativity of the Universe. This is the Heaven that follows the Hell.

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