Suffering is not new. And yet, when the newest wound, the freshest cut, the current scene plays out before me, it comes crashing down, squeezing my heart, knocking air from my lungs, weighing my body down, pressing me closer and closer to the ground, as if to remind me to root into the Earth.
Ukraine. The people of Ukraine. The people of countries all over this great Earth of ours. This new scene of horror, this freshest of cuts, this newest of wounds. I have no words, only the squeezing of heart, the pressing into earth, the coming up for more and more and more air, please. I believe good will prevail. I cannot see the steps to get there but I believe and I have faith and I have heart. Rooting, together.
The days tick by with quiet routines and responsibilities. I am unsure where the last week has gone, am aware though, as I move through my routines and responsibilities, that, halfway around the world, there are people whose routines and responsibilities have been disrupted, overturned, ripped out from beneath, become inconsequential. I watch the evening news to stay abreast, the final story each evening supposedly uplifting, but barely so. Still. People are rooting, together, in their movements. Out of one country, into another country, staying with the heart, stepping into outstretched arms, releasing, hoping, praying, separating, coming together, despairing, grieving, dying, living, trusting.
There are tulips on the kitchen table, one on my nightstand. They open more each day, begin their slow drooping toward table top, arching out and away and toward. I love how tulips droop in their blooming, the way they release and give in to a new shape and contour. It saddens me too though, as I know this means their end is near. It is a suffering.
Suffering is, perhaps, always about moving out and away and toward at the same time. As Ukrainians suffer, as the world suffers (in a different way) alongside them, I have heart that we are moving toward something else. I don’t know what or why or how, but I believe and I have faith and I have heart. In the suffering, in the rooting, in the releasing into a new shape and contour.
May we be stronger, more beautiful, more loving, more true in whatever follows.
Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls;
the most massive characters are seared with scars.
~ Khalil Gibran ~
P.S. I’d love for you to join me this month for The Quiet Page. We’ll be exploring Compassion this month. I’m feeling rather pensive as I prepare for our time together, and I hope for it to be healing in many ways. We meet Wednesday, March 16; there’s a digital version available for those who cannot attend the live gathering. All details are right here.