Thursday, February 18, 2010

Valentine’s Day ~ 2010

In the early morning light, still buried under the warmth of my down comforter, I looked out my west window. I have never noticed this before, but two “new growth” branches from a couple of mature Juniper trees, this day are reaching toward each other. They delicately arch and meet forming the top of a perfect “heart” shape. The traditional valentine icon was completed by the mature branches of the tree. Just as quickly as I locked in on the image, a strong wind which had blown in a dusting of snow overnight, shook the trees. The heart branches danced into other shapes, tormented by the storm, only to settle down again into the quiet picture of Love.

I was grateful to receive this valentine’s day gift from the trees. The transmuting image an easy metaphor for life: Love ~ to love in turmoil ~ to Love ~ to no longer looks or feels like love. And always in the peaceful quiet state settling back into the perfect image of LOVE.

In my day to day life I hold onto the image of a loving heart, but the reality is often not so pretty. In the past year, I have watched my career as an appraiser changed by new laws and it feels like my own sense of self-worth, respect, and ability to love myself is being ripped from me. Many dear friends around me are also having trouble holding the image of self love at this time. The stories vary: a romantic love lost, now sullied with feelings of guilt and failure; the stability of a decade long marriage shifting, like the Great Sand Dunes, and the disturbing unknowing-ness of what the future looks like; jobs lost or cut back and the wobbly self-image and stability fading with them, or the heart wrenching grief of watching our children leave the nest, letting go as they seek to find their way in life.

I have a saying on my wall that I know by heart, but still need to read every once in a while. “If you cannot find that which you seek inside yourself, you will never find it without.” Love? Security? Respect? Where do these reside inside of me? I catch glimpses now and then; acknowledge their presence and move forward, stronger.

On a lighter note, three years ago my cat and I decided that today, Valentine’s Day, would be her birthday. Magic came to me from a neighbor who found her abandoned. She is beautiful and such a marvelous friend and a loving presence in our little home. A pet psychic told me several years ago that she was four then, so today, she is six. I seriously doubt that she has any image problems, and I am happy to participate in her feline prophesy of self worth and priestess status. My heart is full and our homestead is held in love.

* annette

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