It’s been over a week of being sick. Not just me, but my 6-year-old daughter too. Snarfly, snotty, sneezy sick. The kind that makes people look at you and then take two giant steps back.
We’ve been making it on our own one day and one tissue at a time. My husband is away in Texas while his grandfather slowly makes the transition out of his body and back into the Oneness. And honestly, things have felt hard.
I had so much “to do” this past week that hung like a brick over my head (and spoiler alert: DIDN’T get done). I pined all week about what I would write on my blog. I sat in front of a blinking cursor and willed myself to make some progress, any progress on my young adult novel. And I stared blankly at the screen trying to work on the syllabus for one of my Semester With Spirit students.
But the things didn’t want to be written, and the work didn’t want to be done. And, by god, there is so much wisdom and beauty in allowing that.
My daughter lost her first tooth last Tuesday (in the midst of all this bodily yuck), and I watched with awe as she completely forgot her fever and celebrated this important milestone. She held that tooth in her hand and beamed in a way I had never seen before. And I was struck by what a natural thing it is for the body to move through phases. We so joyously commemorate them as children, but somewhere along the way we forget to keep celebrating.
I’m not saying that I’m ready to throw a party for the bacteria that have taken up residence in my sinus cavities, but even this moment, this forced pause, has its own celebration-worthy wisdom to share about working with the body instead of against it.
it’s okay to step out of all the energies that normally keep us driving forward and to just sit quietly in the messy now.
Because regardless of “why” I got sick or “what message” my life is trying to send me (because, let’s be honest, you know I’m trying to dissect the shit out of this), the bottom line is that I need rest. And sometimes it’s as simple as that.
The juxtaposition of moving through this sickness at the same time that my husband has been watching his grandfather’s body wither and shut down and seize has been so striking. I’ve reminded him in the few texts we’ve been able to share to ask his guides for help as he witnesses this process and to remember what a beautiful thing it is for the soul to release the body. It doesn’t mean that it’s easy to watch our loved ones suffer, but when we constantly characterize it as sad or tragic, we forget the sacredness of what is happening.
I’ve been shown again and again lately how much our guides want to help us and how much they yearn for us to call on them about problems big or small. I had an all-out shit fit with my guides today. My daughter had just vomited her antibiotics all over the kitchen and guest bathroom (we’re talking walls). Our water filter had flooded our wooden floors in the dining room causing them to buckle. And I was doing puke laundry with a 102 degree fever when I slammed my finger in the dryer door. WTF, right?
I stood right there in the garage with tears in my eyes and screamed at the top of my lungs for my guides to get off their asses and help me. I called the ones I know personally by name, and then I beckoned anyone else who was willing to help. It was messy and raw and riddled with fucks and goddamnits, and when it was all done I couldn't help but laugh. Immediate lightness flooded my body, and suddenly I knew I wasn’t alone.
I wish I could tell you that everything got better immediately. That the vomit cleaned itself (vomit NEVER cleans itself), that the floors magically dried and fixed themselves and that I was miraculously healed of all symptoms. Not so much.
But something did shift. My perspective. And a miracle is simply a shift in our powerful, totally-malleable perspective.
When I teach meditation at retreats with my sister, I always give our students three mantras to take into their practice:
“Let it be easy. Let it be loving. Let it be enough.”
And my guides flooded my heart with those mantras today. I had been making everything so hard, and when I surrendered to the shit storm that was happening right before my eyes, it didn’t seem like such a big deal anymore.
Suddenly all my efforts were enough. I used about 27 baby wipes and let the vomit cleaning be slow, easy and disposable. I pointed some noisy fans on the wet floorboards and told Chloe to feel free to crank the volume on the TV way up. And I ate a bowl of ice cream for dinner. And yes, I know sickness breeds on sugar. But dammit, that was the decision that felt loving.
And here I am, writing the blog post that finally allowed itself to be written. And even though it’s meandering and kind of all over the place and I’ve sneezed at least 12 times while I’m writing it and my kid is hacking up a lung in the other room, I’m letting it be enough. Because for fuck’s sake, life isn’t supposed to be this hard. And so I’m going to let it be easy. (And maybe have some more ice cream.)
However you’re making your life hard today, let it be easy.
Wherever you’ve held yourself to an unrealistic standard, let your efforts be enough.
And for the love of god, let in the love.
And call on your guides. Even if you don’t know their names or you’re not convinced they’re there. Simply say “Guides! WTF? Can I get an assist here?!” (And maybe throw in a please.)
Because when life gets messy, your guides want to help you. I promise.