Sunday, January 4, 2009

Turning Scared into Sacred

It would be easy to say that these are scary times we live in post 9/11. We are in the midst of a “recession” that will become a depression if we personally lose our job. Israel has invaded the Gaza strip echoing Russia’s invasion of Georgia this summer. There are no good guys or bad guys, just people hell bent on not getting along.

But when haven’t there been things to be scared of? As a child I was convinced I would not live to adulthood because of the Cold War turning hot. There were air raid tests, duck and cover drills, and our family had a plan of what to do in case of a nuclear attack. Before that there was WWII and before that the Great Depression and before that WWI…Well, you get the idea.

Just for today I’m not going to deal with it. I don’t advocate a complete succession from following the news both local and international. If you’re going to live in a democracy you damn well had better be informed about what’s going on in your neighborhood, your town, state, nation and the world, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t take a day or two off to focus on what is really important.

Fellow neighborhood blogger, Mizu, recommended reading Sarah Breathnach’s Moving On as a continuation of her Simple Abundance. I obtained a used copy and stopped cold where she discusses the economic times and personal treadmill that gave rise to Simple Abundance. Those were bad economic times in the early 1990s, though not as bad as those we are going through now. It is more important than ever that we focus on what we have instead of what we have not.

And then she talks about what scares you. If you reverse the “c” and the “a” in "scared" you get "sacred." Is that not what we are all really yearning for? I am. I work as a Special Education Para Educator. I am the mother of a Special Needs daughter who requires extended motherhood, something I would not trade for the world, but something that creates tasks added to the list of work, shopping, cooking, laundry, and housekeeping of my daily life.

After a Winter Break extended by snow days, tomorrow I return to what my life has become—a race to get things done—so for today I am turning off CNN and turning inward to contemplate the things I have control over. I cannot make the Israelis and Palestinians throw down their weapons and embrace, but I can embrace the frosty grass that sparkled in this morning’s moon light as I walked the dog and work at creating peace and sacred space within my own little spot on the spinning blue marble. I can trade love for fear.


Lorraine Hart said...

That's a beautiful post Stephanie. It's a brilliant step into self-parenthood to give this gift. Human beings run around all the time, trying to have control over everything and everyone else instead of turning to themselves and their choice of what they will gather to them. This idea of control, outside of one's self, is the biggest scary illusion.

To walk within beauty...and the to walk a real life and teach the best example.

Stephanie Frieze said...

Making our lives and home what Breathnach calls a "house of belonging" is the best way to move toward making it a world of belonging.