“Don’t be afraid to go where you’ve never gone and do what you’ve never done because both are necessary to have what you’ve never had and be who you’ve never been.” (Tut.com)
I fall asleep in sweet surrender–despite the fear that my life could be dramatically altered in the morning.
When thoughts of inadequacy appear, something revolutionary occurs. Rather than attempt to chase my fears away or figure them out, I simply surrender them.
I find myself turning them over to whomever it is who cares for me–the ancestors, the angels, the common consciousness.
Instead of finding fault with myself for either being inadequate or feeling it, I allow it. I soften into it. And I fall asleep, dreaming of women. Marrying them.
These dreams have recurred of late–which my husband blames on the episodes of The L Word, a series that I incessantly consumed while sick. (Beware of Netflix streaming!) Given my obvious sexual preferences however, we both know that there is something more going on.
I am softening.
After a lifetime relying on the strong masculine aspects of my particular makeup, I have allowed myself to be vulnerable.
In fact, this whole revolutionary process began with a single act of vulnerability–sent in an email to a stranger.
It was her kindness or curiosity or mirroring slip of sanity which set this into motion. On this particular day, I was faced with refusing or accepting a new position, and I was deeply conflicted. My mind said that it was a mighty fine fit. My insides had something else to say.
Given my family’s financial needs and how long it was taking me to find “aligned” work, I was about tip the scale toward practicalities. In a last ditch effort to stay true to myself, I scouted the classifieds, and found hers. I sent out a quick email, requesting a full job description, to which she promptly followed up: “Let me know if you’re still interested.”
Her response took me by surprise. I had expected the standard, “Please send your resume, cover letter and three references if you’re interested,” and given the discernment facing me on this day, I didn’t have the energy for that.
After reading the very long and thorough job description, I replied that I LOVED the organization, but found the responsibilities “scary.” I wished her luck filling the position and thanked her for the ease of our exchange.
Once again, I was taken aback by her quick and easy reply. “What about it scares you?”
Amused, I delved deeper into the requirements to answer that question for myself; and in the process discovered that I had done pretty much all of what was asked in some way or another.
Inspired by our playful volley of emails, I took a risk and sent her a full response: highlighting my experience and interests–and even going so far as to candidly share where I would be challenged and where I would be bored. I had nothing to loose.
Her reply was dismaying. She needed to get back to me later in the day because she had some work to finish.
Now, I wasn’t sure what to do. Do I let go of the sure thing (the job that was on the table) for something that was a big maybe? Do I tell her that I had something on the line? Hadn’t I already trespassed her kindness?
In an act of even greater vulnerability, I apologized for taking advantage of the casualness of our email exchange and offered a brief explanation of my urgency.
I didn’t expect to hear from her before the end of the day so I enrolled my husband and my sisters in the quandary, out of which came this resounding message, “A bird in hand is better than two in the bush.”
But did I want that bird in hand, even if I didn’t have another?
But was that okay?
A prompt reply from the kind and curious woman ensued, assuring me that she had welcomed each of my emails, and that she would like to offer me an interview. (She added that she would understand if I wanted to take the “bird in hand.”)
Bird in hand? Was it a sign?
In a delirious response to this tidal wave of movement, I drafted two emails–one refusing the job that had been offered, and the other accepting the interview.
Perched on a precipice of insanity, I resisted hitting “send” on either.
While my fingers dangled above the keys, the phone rang.
It was a friend offering some temporary work in the upcoming weeks. As she went on to describe her needs at great length, I kept thinking that I wasn’t capable of thinking about anything else at this moment, though I didn’t have the strength to interrupt her.
When I hung up, I realized that I had just been granted a reprieve. I could turn down the bird in hand and have some income to tide me over until another wave of possibility appeared.
48 hours later, I arrived with my resume and cover letter and three references to formally meet the woman who may have conspired to redirect “the current” of my life.
Afterward, I ate chicken wings–which brings me back to the beginning of this sweet surrender to hope, fear, identity, expression–and indigestion.
Kelly Salasin, November 8, 2010
To start at the beginning of the chicken-wing/life-work saga, click this link: The Mask
or to read the previous post of my great surrender, click here: The Revolution–Inside.
and the follow up post: Salamander Dream.