Life circulates. A new day happens. The seasons turn. What arises, declines. What empties, fills. In this, there is endless hope. What rests behind the Universe and is the Source of all assures us the Sun comes up. In actuality and metaphorically, we are promised that what we need will be provided in life’s constant rhythms. It’s like serving life (giving) and being served by life (receiving). Why worry then?
Life is the same and yet very different. Life is meant to cycle. If we cling beyond what is meant to be, we suffer. There are times when life brings us to our knees. There are unquestionably hurt-filled moments when we must release and allow the “life force” to move freely in order to attain the next or “inner” level, as in the physical loss of a beloved animal, like our Zoe cat last Christmas.
In the hills and valleys of life, we sometimes hit a deeper layer—an emotional whirlpool—that temporarily appears to arrest our progression. Depression and grief, for instance, recycle. Purposeful at times, they can be fertile places, a portal into darkness wherein we encounter such strong emotional residues as resentment and lack of forgiveness. The inner cavern is where the healing light of acceptance and release awaits.
I am in one of these transitory whirlpools. My heartache has resurfaced, missing Zoe and Silver cats and my mom (who died a little over a year ago). Several recent events have triggered my lingering grief. Two friends had to make the tough decision to euthanize their animal, one a cat, the other a dog. Another close friend’s sister died of cancer and a failing heart. My sister-in-law’s sister was diagnosed with uterine cancer and given a few weeks to live. My siblings and I have reached the final steps, which will dissolve into thin air the family Trust my parents set up—the last remnant of their physical endowment to us.
We recently watched the movie “Haichi: A Dog’s Tale,” which put me over the emotional top. The movie is based on a remarkable, true story about the timeless bond of love between a man and a dog in Japan in the 1930’s. On weekdays, Haichi (a dignified and courageous Akita, a Japanese breed of large dog) accompanied his owner to the train station to send him off to work. Haichi awaited his arrival one evening, but the owner had died that day of a heart attack. For many years, Haichi kept his vigilant wait for his beloved owner, hoping he’d come home one day. When Haichi finally dies, the owner greets him from the other side of the veil. Haichi leaps up, filled with the joy and energy of a young dog, and off the two go. Reunited. Death and life, life and death.
I sobbed deeply during most of the second half of the movie. My own buried grief found a needed release. Out it poured, discharged from the whirlpool, down the river of grief to be dispersed in the ocean of fresh life. New space is available. I go on with less weight. I feel more transparent and available to what is currently circulating and unfolding in my life.
In a very weird and terrible moment of synchronicity, just this instant, as I write, a dark-eyed Junco (a genus of small grayish American sparrows) hit the window above my computer like a speeding bullet. It died instantaneously, traveling from this world into the next on lifted wings.
Life is similar and yet diverse. Some moments in life are much more difficult than others. Life cycles. The Moon wanes.
…a time to weep and a time to laugh;
Text © by Zane Maser, 2010. Photo © by Chris and Zane Maser, 2010. All rights reserved worldwide.
My editorial guru and technological wizard is Chris Maser, my delightful husband.
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