When you are at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.

Thank you my dear dear friends and family. I did indeed recently reach the end of my rope. You advertently and inadvertently showed me that I do not live or die for me alone. I absorb my difficulties so that I can be part of this universal experience we call life.

I remind myself, with your help, that I am a vessel of infinite capacity for the likes of grief, suffering and pain. Unto myself, I am more than willing to slip into the darkest night. But over and over, when I share the difficulties, you remind me that it is my obsession with self that causes the majority of my suffering.

As my health problems multiplied, so did my mental health. But, as I shared, I learned to empathize and sympathize with your difficulties. You shared your tales of broken bones, disease and nose bleeds. ( I was in the ER yesterday for nose bleed.) You gently explained how long and painful my recoveries will be.

Broke my femur and my brother Rick, my sister Karen and others carried me. I lost my kitty cat to heart disease, I found my grief was shared by all pet owners. I had surgery for another problem and friends brought food and comfort

Ram Dass wrote about his stroke and how it changed his identity from golfer and sports car driver to patient in need of care. He wrote about the challenge of allowing himself to be a gracious patient needing help with everything. I carried thoughts of his journey into the ambulance, hospital bed and rehab because breaking my femur was a game/identity changer.

Dontcha think one of the great spiritual axioms is that when we share our burdens we lessen them? I am convinced that friends have repeatedly saved my soul. Perhaps they are merely God with skin on. Dunno. Don’t care. It works and I cannot come up with a better theory.

Community and connection equals my salvation. Rolling Stones sang

“I’m all alone, won’t you give all your sympathy to mine?
Tell me a story about how you adore me
Live in the shadow, see through the shadow
Live through the shadow, tear at the shadow
Hate in the shadow and love in your shadowy life
Have you seen your lover, baby, standing in the shadow?”

Thanks. Gracias. Kab khun krub. Mam’noon.

May you know the affection I carry in my heart for you. May all beings be safe and may you and they be free from all suffering.

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