This week I had some horrid news personally. I felt overwhelmed and could feel my learned behaviour of building my brick barriers to enclose myself instantly kicking in. It is like I create a glass bubble around me to protect myself from any further pain coming my way. I locked myself in my bedroom and tried to accept the pain that felt all consuming.
But with all the work I have done I then asked myself, when does ‘accepting’ and ‘being’ become wallowing? And this feeling of being so very alone in this personal crisis and disconnected from the world is surely being worsened by my self-inflicted isolation.
I was very, very fortunate. One of my closest, oldest and dearest friends was on hand. She drove hours to be with me, to hold me tight, to make me remember that there is always hope. That I am not alone. To gently suggest I do not compare my sorrows to those in Afghanistan because right now that wouldn’t help. And most of all to remind me that I am loved.
And that is the key I believe. So simple, but so crucial. To know we are loved. Yesterday I listened to the most wonderful, inspirational conversation between Chaz Howard and my dear friend Nipun Mehta. It was one of the most moving dialogues I have ever had the honour of hearing. Chaz talked of choosing love over hatred and fear, yet acknowledging that life is ‘messy’ and it is never a straight forward, easy, linear journey we take. It is not about good and bad, clean choices, right and wrong. The world is complex, situations are complex and how do we embrace them? Chaz talked of how ‘the wounded heart is a source of great compassion or great violence’ and how we often reach a fork in the road when we are hurt and there is a decision to be made. If you choose love over fear at that moment then you have hope. And to try to remind ourselves that when the storms of life come our way we are never truly alone.
This conversation could not have come at a better time for me, reinforcing the events of the past days. My dear friend Jo had reminded me of that as she had jumped in the car to be with me. And then messages of love started arriving too. And I reminded myself that my response was not going to be one of fear and disconnecting myself from the world to protect myself. It was going to be one of love. I had reached my own personal fork and there was a decision to make. And I knew from all my work that decision is always love.
So, dear Hubbers, as the bank holiday weekend approaches here in the UK, I am truly grateful for all the love I have in my life. And that too came from a stranger as I walked Archie on the local common, who stopped and talked for an hour to us. We are never truly alone, even when we feel it.
On a final very cheery note, I Ieave you with this song from another dear friend, Nimo, that I listen to every morning as I rise. It is called Grateful. And the words ring so true for me.