Back a few years ago, I fell in love with someone new. The moment I met him, I knew he was someone I wanted to know deeply. I met him with a wide-open heart.
You know that feeling of being so ready for love? Where the eagerness and light-heartedness far outweigh your wisdom and discernment? That’s where I was.
You see, I had just completed an intense transformational retreat where my heart was broken open – open so wide, that it found its way back to its natural tendency to trust. I had finally come through the deep grief of my late-husband’s death, a death that had plucked me out of Kansas and dropped me in Oz. Death didn’t provide me with ruby slippers, though. Death seems to be like that. It doesn’t give you a way home to the old life. Instead, you must travel through the darkness to discover the new life waiting on the other side.
So I found myself with this brilliant heart of light. I had known deep lasting love with my late-husband, and I felt eagerness to love again. But, I was different now, and I didn’t yet know how different I was.
So, here I was ready for love. I dove right in. It was deep and rich and sweet. Then it ended. He ended it. It wasn’t mean to be. I can see that now, but back then, I didn’t see it coming. My very pink heart took one hell of a hit.
I fell hard. I curled up inside my shell and thought long and hard about giving my heart away so easily. Why hadn’t I seen it coming? Why did I trust so easily and carelessly?
And then I saw it. I saw how I had left myself to be in relationship with him. I didnâ€™t see it happening at the time. But, in the aftermath of rejection, I realized I felt untethered and unmoored. I was no longer solidly in myself. I was hanging out there. I was perched precariously in no-manâ€™s land – literally. The man I thought was there had moved on.
Somewhere along the way, I had gone from â€˜in here with meâ€™ to â€˜over there with himâ€™. The realization shook me to the core. When had it happened? How could I have done that to myself?
I decided I wasn’t going to date again until I found the wisdom that must accompany the open trusting heart. I needed time to understand. I needed time to make sense of the lesson that was being offered up.
So I sat with myself. And I felt. And I danced. This is when I began to dance as a practice, a practice that provided the opening to embodiment. And, I began to be really honest with myself. I began to see how much I had projected onto this man. I could see how enveloping an open heart can be when itâ€™s not grounded in oneself and balanced with discernment and wisdom.
My teacher has since talked about what happens when the heart opens, how it can lead us into places we don’t expect to be when its not yet tempered with the wisdom that comes after the opening. But at the time, I had to learn this myself.
While he wasnâ€™t all that gracious or compassionate in how he went about ending the relationship, I saw his ending it as rejection. This was another sign I had left me. The good thing about this was that the feeling of rejection was my doorway in, my doorway into me. I suddenly saw me, my own reflection in his rejection and I realized it was time to come inside to find the love I was longing for. I wasn’t really longing for him, the man out there. I was longing to know me, to stand by me, to stay with me from the beginning.
Then, they came unannounced, as they so often do. Words came. Words came up through my body and out through my fingers. Wisdom wound its way up from somewhere down in the dark recesses, places I had pushed away a long time ago.
Wisdom coursed out my fingers onto the page. No editing was necessary, for it knew itself fully before it was formed.
When the writing was done, I stood up from the desk and went to throw up. I threw up as if I was expelling something poisonous from my body â€“ and I was. They were poisonous beliefs that kept me looking out there for love. As these beliefs were released, wisdom, that had longed to see the light of day, flooded my body and mind, wisdom that was meant for me.
Wisdom hungers to be known by the one it loves.
ripe with love
You see me here, strong and soft, eager and afraid,
my heart racing with desire
to be seen and heard,
to be held and to hold.
I am here,
from this bondage placed on me long ago,
from this cage of sin, fault, and fear.
I found the key
to my release when
I saw myself
in the reflection of your rejection.
My open heart was
both weakness and threat, lover and enemy.
You saw me seeing you
and you shut the door on my escape.
But freedom is funny,
it was mine to find all along.
when I filled my emptiness, with the fullness of me.
The dive was deep, the way was dark.
On the surface I had only seen,
how I never quite matched up
with everything I was expected to be.
But as I dove deeper into the depths of my being,
A glorious Light began to emerge.
It came from a time long ago,
It called me home in a language I had long forgotten.
There, deep inside me, I found the seed
Planted long ago, at the beginning of time.
My deepest Self, my truest Truth
My inner being in perpetual Spring.
I am ripe with love,
Ripe with the nectar of passionate presence
I am here to hold you,
within the folds of my velvet petals.
Fall down, deep down, into the depths of my being.
For I blossom in time to break your fall
As you land with a thundering whisper,
â€œCatch me, please catch me.â€
Open yourself to the center of me.
Drink deeply the love that has been waiting for you,
waiting with timeless patience,
knowing what has always been, will be again.
Let me lay side-by-side with you.
Let me feel again how perfect the fit is,
if we only allow ourselves to relax
into the shape we already are.
Remember the rightness of this fit.
Donâ€™t fight what you know to be true.
I can love side by side again,
Knowing the love comes through me to you.
You see me here,
soft and strong, knowing and sure.
My heart is filled with the truest Truth and the brightest Light
See your Self reflected in my love.
~ Julie Daley
Why am I sharing this with you today? After I wrote my post of last week, The Courage to Sin, I remembered this poem, written as I traveled from ‘out there’ to ‘in here’, as I came back from ‘out there with him’ to ‘back in here with me’. I remembered how I had wound my way out of the structures that I had believed in for all those years, structures that told me I could only find love ‘out there’.
And in writing the post about sin, I revisited the sense of rejection: rejection of self, rejection ofÂ body, women rejecting each other, rejection of men, and rejection by society of the natural, intrinsic beauty of the feminine nature of things. Perhaps Iâ€™ve gone from the microcosm to the macrocosm. Seems like I’m traveling in circles.
I see that current-day cultures, fed by patriarchal beliefs and practices, reject the woman who speaks truth, the woman with a voice, the woman with fire, the woman that no longer wishes to roll over and play pretty.
Just as it was with the man ‘out there’, so it is with the world ‘out there’. I can’t find the wisdom ‘out there’. I can only find it in here, in the depths of my own being. And if Iâ€™m seeing rejection, then Iâ€™ve left myself. Thatâ€™s the real pain, rejection of self.
Anything growing needs roots down deep into the earth to support its growth, to give it nourishment as it opens to the sun, rain, wind and stars. And so it is with humans. We, too, must have strong roots, grounded in the earth, so that we are nourished with wisdom, the wisdom of the feminine principle, the wisdom of Sophia. With this available to us, we can marry this with our internal masculine and come into a more balanced harmony within.
I have found my heart can open, and stay open, even in the most difficult times, as long as I am rooted in the body, rooted down into the center of things. If I am to truly love another, and Iâ€™m not just talking about the other Iâ€™m in relationship with, but all beings, my love must come from this grounded place within my own body, within my open heart. When the body is grounded in the earth, the heart is held by the body, and the mind is held by the heart, clarity, compassion and sovereignty can flourish.
I must remember this now as I begin to voice the truth of my own experience and as I listen, with an open heart, to women and men voice theirs.
This is where our power resides as human beings. It is available to us when our open hearts are grounded in wisdom. Power that isnâ€™t power to dominate, but power to all the love we have to give. The seed of our wisdom was planted long ago. It remains, simply waiting for us to turn and look within.
I wonder what you’ve experienced? What have you learned about an open heart and wisdom? What lessons have relationship, loss, and death taught you? What journeys have you taken within? How has wisdom hungered to be known within you? I’d love to hear. I’d love to know what you’ve discovered down in the depths of your own body and in the openness of your heart