It’s mid-January and I’m feeling a bit disoriented. Most years, I do a lot of year-end review and new-year intention setting between the solstice and new year. Then, on the first Sunday in January, I participate in the White Stone Ceremony at Unity Spiritual Center to hear a new “name” or “word” that will guide my year. These events help set the course and ground me into the new year – both personally and professionally.
But I haven’t done any of them this year. There was no draw to review my year and set intentions in those familiar ways. When I listened to the recording of the White Stone Ceremony, nothing came. No new “name”, no “word” to guide my year. I wondered “What’s going on????”, “Where am I?”, and “How can I get back on track, internally?”
What’s going on is that my life has more fluidity and ease than in the past and I’m having a hard time accepting it. I’m listening to guidance regularly (daily, hourly, minute-by-minute) and following the guidance I hear (mostly:-) Living like this means there is no clear ritual or pattern, there is only the guidance in the moment.
When I get honest with myself, I know everything is OK, even of it is different. For instance, in late November and early December I was guided to create offerings for the first half of 2014. Having followed that guidance, which at the time it felt premature, has made it easy to step into the new year. The dates are set, the advertising is happening, the curriculum is ready, and people are enrolling.
And it’s a good thing, too. In December I was sick for ten days, traveled for five, had a meltdown upon my return, and then spent the last days of 2013 and the beginning of 2014 recovering from the meltdown. When I re-entered life as I had known it…managing my business, seeing clients, offering workshops, managing our household as my husband went back to school…there was no time for navel-gazing and intention setting. There was simply a lot of work to do!
But the part of me that likes structure and ritual? It’s freaking out. It wants (I want) something familiar. Something to hold onto. I want to know what’s going on and where I’m headed. I want certainty. Of course, certainty isn’t quite the same as structure, but both strategies meet similar needs for me – safety and comfort. So when structure isn’t available, I reach for certainty, forgetting that the sense of safety and comfort I am yearning for is in my connection to Source, Spirit, The Great Mystery, All That IS.
Finally, as mid-January morphs into almost February, I get some things to hold on to. My doctor tells me I have officially entered menopause, a bit early because of last year’s hysterectomy. My “words” arrive, repeated to me over and over during conversations, readings, and meditations. Revealed over time rather than in a moment. Grace. Courage.
I mourn the passing of the rituals, but feel relief in the opportunities to make meaning of my life unfolding. These two words will serve me well as I navigate this empowering transition called menopause. Embracing the healing and transformation available at menopause takes courage. Riding the waves of the emotional and hormonal changes requires reliance on grace. Standing firm in the Self and surrendering to something larger; polarities to live by.