Wednesday, May 9, 2018

The Dance of THREE - Having Needs is Okay

Today is the day I realized I have needs, and that is OK. It's one thing to know that intellectually, and another entirely to FEEL it at the depths of my being.

I felt anxious. I barely slept last night. So today, I ventured into my art studio and allowed all of my feelings to emerge on the canvas - I scratched, punched, scraped, traced, caressed, clawed and even wiped the canvas until it was nothing but a cacophony of glitter, glaze and acrylic color (See Images Below)

Where I started this week...
This Canvas already had several layers...

Then I painted this layer yesterday...

Only to DESTROY It Today!!
What a Mess!

As I painted, I noticed that there was nothing I could do to alleviate the mess. The more I tried to "make it pretty," the more profound the mess became.

Then it hit me - It's time to embrace the mess. Transformation is messy. Relationships are messy. Learning is messy. Being HUMAN is messy. It doesn't always have to be clear and simple. In fact, nothing REAL in life is ever cut and dry...and so I sit in the mess...and I notice that it is from the chaotic mess that the Phoenix rises again.

The painting is one that I started in 2007 - I haven't shown all of the layers, as there are far too many! This canvas holds layers and layers of my transformation. I call it "Ancient Phoenix Rising"...and it has yet to be completed. I suppose this one canvas holds my journey - and today, that journey is muddy and filled with uncertainty.

Amidst the uncertainty, however, I came to a new realization - I pour myself out to help others, yet deep down, I don't feel that I am allowed to have needs. I worry that I am a burden, or that my needs are too much, or that people will get sick of helping me...I have difficulty trusting others when I am vulnerable...especially right at this moment when I am staring down treatments for a rare disease that has leveled me in the last couple of years. 

Add to it negative comments from those that I love, and there is a toxic mix of painful emotions that tell me - PLAY SMALL!  IT'S NOT OKAY TO HAVE NEEDS!  That voice is loud and painful and persuasive, yet it no longer serves me.  Thus, I ask myself the question - how do I want it now? 

As I contemplate what it means to have needs, I have come to the conclusion that needs are a part of being human. No one is expected to be perfect and completely independent - We were made in the image of God, and the Godhead is THREE for a reason - God is constantly pouring from one to the other, thereby providing an ever-flowing kenotic love that endures for eternity.

This is the image that we emulate, although imperfectly. It's not about making ourselves smaller so that we can be more individualized, more autonomous, more independent....NO! It's about resting upon our rooted wisdom - the endless source of LOVE that comes from the source of all that is - so that we are able to clearly communicate what we need and therefore live in healthy community with others. This is the dance of THREE in human life - individual self, blessing seed of GOD, and community.

So today, I realized that it is okay to have needs. This is new for me, and I am learning to bravely explore this new dance.


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