the cherry blossoms
never force themselves into
a premature yes

Haiku of Feminine Eros by Britt Posmer

Blossoms 01

For nearly two weeks now, I have been on the Origins journey, created by Anne Davin, Ph.D. and Robert Mirabel, and accompanied by a collective of people from all over the world. This is our final day with a new lesson. But I do not think it is our final day. Indeed, it is only the beginning. During this week, we have been given glimpses of how to reconnect to the world in a meaningful way. And not just the world of people, and of our ancestors, but also to the natural world, both animate and inanimate. For some of us, this may have been a refresher course, and for others, perhaps a whole new way of seeing and being. For myself, it was a bit of both but mostly it has been a part of my ongoing journey of healing and of renewal.

The final essay that accompanied this lesson was brilliant. There’s no other way to say it. It condensed down not only what this past two weeks has been about, but also left us with a blueprint of how to carry it forward as we prepare to return to our suspended lives and participate, perhaps a little more fully and with intention. My wife, Laureen, was always about Authenticity and Intention. Those were the primary values that guided her life. To that I would add – Compassion and Gratitude (which were also important to her), and Humility and Integrity. And a little bit of Love and Patience doesn’t hurt either. I call these my word pairs. I’ve worked with word pairs for a long time and sometimes I find stones etched with the words and I carry them with me in my pockets until I feel it is time for another lesson from a different pair.

In addition to the word pairs, and for me, it has come down to two simple pieces of wisdom by which I try to live. I cannot say that they are deeply profound, but I think it is a good way to live. So much so that when I recently had a business card made up, I put both of them on the back of my card. And the truth is, it really isn’t a business card. I’m not sure what it is – I think it may be my Life’s Purpose card.  Anyhow, the words I live by are:

“Be the Change you want to see in the world” – Mahatma Gandhi

“It does not require many words to speak the truth” – Chief Joseph (Nez Perce)

And honestly, I think if I stick to those two ways of being, and carry around my word pairs, then I will live a good life and it will be good for my soul, and hopefully I will be a source of comfort, gentleness and healing in other people’s lives. There is yet one more thing that I see on Facebook from time to time and for me it really is what it is all about – “We are all just walking each other home”.  To me, that is pure Truth.

Now I didn’t always have the vision to include in this, my extended family of all the animals and plants and even the rocks and all that is around us and is a part of our World.  But I had a good teacher and through observing her way of being in the world, I learned. I used to tell her that when I get to Heaven, the Other Side, or whatever it is that awaits us, I’m going to have to go to the animal section to find you because that is where you will be. She would laugh and nod her head in agreement.

And when I spoke to her through the medium last Fall (and this was one of those things that let me know it was her because there was no way he would know that we were having these conversations), she told me that I was right. Everything matters. All the insects that we released into the world matter (we always had a catch and release plan in our house, and bug jars scattered around the house for that purpose). She even went so far as to say that she was naming them all. I had to laugh at that, because I knew it was exactly what she would do. Like the time she nursed the tree cricket inside our house after it had been stung by a wasp. She kept it alive for a few weeks, feeding it bits of  puréed strawberries mixed with leaves. And I watched as it came to wait for her to come and feed it every day – it would get excited, waving its antenna, when she approached its little leafy bed. She named it, rather simply, Tree Cricket.

You cannot watch something like that and not be affected, and not realize how important everything is. Not to mention understanding the depth of compassion and connection that she had with the world.

In that, I have been blessed and blessed again. And I suspect on some level, she has passed the torch on to me and in whatever manner it is meant to manifest, it is now my turn to take her lessons and apply them to my life – to practice what she preached. And even in her death, although it took a while to get there, I realized that she had blessed me. She truly had achieved what she was sent here to do. We never spoke of it, because we didn’t have to. But we both knew, in the instant that her doctor told us it was over, that she was done. She let go. We let go. Her final gift came to her from her cousin. A simple necklace given to her on the day before Christmas. A thin sterling chain with a small silver pendant on it. One word stamped on the pendant. “Loved”  In that very instant, when I saw that word, I knew that Laureen’s purpose here was fulfilled. She knew it too.

And thereafter, only unconditional love surrounded my wife in those last months of her life. And we both surrendered to the rest of it. And her passing was as gentle as it might be. Even the hospice nurses were amazed at the lack of pain, and how her beauty did not diminish even as the cancer did its work. And on the last day that our hospice nurse saw Laureen, she cried. I do not think it usual for hospice nurses to show their emotion since they have to live with this every day. I think, or perhaps I’d like to hope, that our nurse’s tears were for the beauty that was about to depart from our world. A world that sorely needs such beauty in it.

Upon later reflection, I realized that Laureen knew her time was done and she accepted that. Such strength of spirit. In the quiet days that we had left together, she urged me to continue to live my life. To not give up and give in to the darkness. I know that she talked to our friends, in secret, asking them to keep an eye on me. We talked about me moving on, about finding someone to be in my life again, and as much as I did not want to hear those words at that time, I knew that she was giving me gift upon gift. Out of love. As I would have given to her.

She has released me to continue my journey. And I am changed in the knowing of her. In the love that we shared. When I am doing my 5-day blessings, I first look for her in my heart and call her to me. Invoking our love, which I know will never fade, I am filled with love which I can then pass on to those who I am holding in prayer. Together, with me in this world and her in the next, we are focusing our love to create healing in this world. That is a part of my path now and I am blessed in the understanding of that, and in the way in which it was gifted to me. I think that is all that is within me to say right now.  Aho.

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4 Responses to BLESSINGS

  1. Wendy Hrubec says:

    John, the power of this is beyond words. Utterly beautiful and truthful. I am in awe your process, clarity and connectedness.

  2. John- You and Laureen are one of the great love stories, I think. It is a wonderful world that allowed you and she to be such a gift to each other. Thank you for sharing this.

  3. Walks with Wolves says:

    Just stunning. Your word craft is humbling and hauntingly beautiful.

  4. nowandzenn says:

    I am humbled by all of your beautiful acknowledgements. I can only say that throughout my entire journey with Laureen, it was never lost on me at how lucky I was to have found her. Or, perhaps, she found me.

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